It's a scenario every laptop owner fears: dropping your portable computer en route to your destination and causing permanent damage.
Unfortunately, that's not uncommon. Based on claims handled by computer insurance agency Safeware Inc., in 1996 accidental damage to laptops increased 45 percent over 1995. Although you can't prevent theft or natural disasters, some accidents--such as having your computer slide off your lap and fall to the ground--are avoidable. That's the idea behind ergonomic laptop accessories. Here's a sampling:
- Legtop Podeum Pro: Gone are the days of hunching over a laptop perched precariously on your lap. Rach Inc.'s Legtop Podeum Pro comes with a padded, built-in carrying case that, when unfolded, straps the laptop to your thigh. No matter where you're sitting, the Legtop Podeum Pro provides a hands-free ergonomic solution that goes where you go. Cost: $99.95.
- ComputERGO: For those who need more space for their work, the ComputERGO from Neutral Posture Ergonomics Inc. may be the ideal solution. It's narrow enough to fit through an airplane aisle and resembles a suitcase when folded. Once opened, however, an entire workstation emerges: a work surface for your laptop, two fold-out wings for your mouse and documents, a file organizer, and retractable power cords. Your laptop secures to the work surface, which adjusts to two heights. Cost: $985.
- Field-Pro: Who says you can't input data and walk around at the same time? It's possible with Pit Bull Chains' Field-Pro, a portable computer support system that attaches a laptop work surface at your waist. This product gives users mobility and saves time, too--no more waiting to input information you've gathered in the field until you're back in the office. You can even run through the airport while wearing it. Cost: $169.