Diamonds? Forever. Gadgets? Not So Much

_

How do you make two months' salary last forever? Buy a diamond. How do you make two months' salary last approximately six months before you endure daily grand mal seizures of buyer's remorse and technolust? Buy an expensive piece of gadgetry._ Well, that's my motto, anyway. The fellas at CNET in the U.K. took the matter further and pitted a 1997 Apple Newton against a brand-new Samsung Q1 UMPC. And guess what? The Newton won. One major factor in the victory was battery life. While the Q1 lasted about 2.5 hours before collapsing in a heap of exhausted silicon, the marathon-man Newton was good for 30 laps around the clock. So, Steve Jobs, there's a lesson in this: Create a gadget that can run for 30 hours, and it will be beloved forever. Give me a device that, when scarcely two years old, lasts an hour (like my iPod), and I'm gonna throw the f***ing thing across the office in a fit of rage. —Joe Brown