Mobile Thermal Printing on the Cheap

If you've ever wished that you could print a hard copy map from your IrDA-equipped PDA or cell phone while you're on the road and you're willing to do a little nuts-and-bolts work, BG Micro has a printer for you. BG Micro is currently selling the Citizen PD-22 thermal printer for around thirty bucks. This portable battery-powered serial printer can give you a quick print through either a serial or IrDA port. Unfortunately, the serial port requires a special cable which isn't available from BG Micro. Luckily, you still have IrDA. Oops, your PC/PDA doesn't have an IrDA port? No problem, BG Micro also sells the ACTiSYS ACT-IR4000US IrDA USB dongle for $4.95. You can download Windows drivers for this dongle direct from ACTiSYS. Once your IrDA connection is up and running, look to Citizen Systems Europe for all of your driver, manual, datasheet, and support needs. Oh, and as you (re)discover the joys of printing maps, messages and photographs on thermal paper, BG Micro can also supply you with five rolls of PD-02 replacement paper for ten bucks. —Dave Prochnow

(Image: Citizen Systems Europe)