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Purchasing two portable computers has made all the differencefor Ken Levitt, owner of Mexican Accent Inc. in New Berlin,Wisconsin. A manufacturer of tortillas and tortilla chips, the47-year-old entrepreneur was looking for a way to help him competewith the big guys. The answer: Giving multimedia presentations onthe road via laptop computer. Levitt estimates his closing saleshave tripled since acquiring portable computers more than a yearago. "They've been a very powerful sales tool forus," he says.

As more small-business owners realize how portable computing canimprove sales, boost customer service and maximize theirproductivity on the road, the real question is how to getstarted?

"You need to begin with a vision for how the business isgoing to operate," advises Sharon Marsh Roberts, president ofcomputer consulting company Roberts Financial Systems Inc. inLinden, New Jersey, and vice president of the InternationalComputer Consultants Association.

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