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Work Smarter With These Computer Input Devices

Styluses, wireless keyboards and other devices to boost your efficiency.

Just as chefs stir with spoons rather than screwdrivers and plasterers smear stucco with trowels instead of spatulas, tech pros need the right tool for each job they undertake. Four-inch smartphone screens weren't designed for typing memos, and a mouse wasn't made to paint digital pictures. But arm your computer with the appropriate input devices, and you will immediately see the difference in the quality and efficiency of your work.

Adonit Jot Touch
Image courtesy of Adonit

What's your point?
Adonit Jot Touch ($100)

While most styluses write like fat rubber crayons, Adonit's finely tooled aluminum implement lets users see the exact point where the ballpoint touches the touchscreen. That alone was enough to make previous Adonit models the most accurate around, but the updated Jot Touch adds the ability to press harder to make thicker lines. The dampening tip makes doodling on glass feel as natural as sketching on paper.

Ideal for: Artists, designers who want to draw their concepts.

Mobee Magic Numpad
Image courtesy of Mobee

Extra digits
Mobee Magic Numpad ($30)

As manufacturers continue to simplify keyboards, they often cut tools users love, like the number pad. Mobee Magic Numpad is software that combines with an overlay to turn the Apple Magic Trackpad into a touch-sensitive numeric keyboard extension.

Ideal for: Number crunchers who don't want to haul around a full-size keyboard.

Logitech Wireless Solar Keyboard
Image courtesy of Logitech

Master keys
Logitech Wireless Solar Keyboard K760 ($80)

At the push of a button, this Bluetooth-connected keyboard seamlessly switches among Mac, iPhone and iPad, allowing users to type, text and chat on three screens without reconfiguring settings. Small and light, the K760 is great for mobile workers.

Ideal for: iPhone/iPad power users.

Wacom Intuos5 Professional Pen Tablet
Image courtesy of Wacom

Finger painting
Wacom Intuos5 Professional Pen Tablet ($349)

With wireless connectivity, touch controls and pressure sensitivity, Wacom's tablet will have you mothballing your old sketch board--or investing in the technology for the first time. It transmits data to your computer via radio frequency, not Bluetooth, which results in a faster and more sensitive device.

Ideal for: Graphic artists and photographers who do a lot of retouching.

Portland, Ore.-based writer John Patrick Pullen has covered travel, business and tech for publications including Entrepreneur, Fortune, The Magazine, and Wired. Find him at www.jppullen.com.

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This article was originally published in the October 2012 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Tools of the Trade.

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