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A ROLODEX THAT PLUGS INTO YOUR LAPTOP

FOR THE PAST ELEVEN YEARS, Franklin Electronic Publishers Inc. has focused on portable reference devices such as electronic dictionaries and language translators, selling more than 15 million of these gizmos. But with its acquisition of Rolodex Electronics last year, the Burlington (N.J.) company is set to join Sharp and Casio in the crowded market for handheld electronic organizers.

On Sept. 8, Franklin will debut its REX series of personal information managers. REX's most notable aspect is its size. It weighs less than 1.5 ounces and takes up the space of a thick stack of credit cards. To enter data--names, appointments, phone numbers--owners must insert REX into a so-called Type II PC Card slot found on almost every recent laptop. A Starfish Software contact management program called Sidekick, included with REX, transfers data from the laptop to REX and automatically updates REX's files. Franklin says the $130 REX-1 can hold 750 entries, while the $150 REX-3 holds 2,500. A $40 docking station can be bought separately for use with desktop PCs.

EDITED BY PAUL M. ENG



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PHOTO: Rolodex Electronics' Rex


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