Stories by Network World staff

  • Home and Office Gear Tech Treasures [2011 Cool Yule Tools]

    They say that a man's home is his castle – we figure that if you're going to have a castle, it needs to be filled up with some really cool, high-tech stuff. If you're working at a home office or just want to boost that home network in order to get a better connected home entertainment system up and running, the following products are great gift ideas:

  • Smartphones and Accessories Tech Treasures [2011 Cool Yule Tools]

    Remember when cell phones were as big as a brick and required a separate shoulder pack to keep the battery up and running? Yeah, so do we. But we also remember the birth of the <a href="http://www.networkworld.com/slideshows/2010/061510-smartphone-history.html">smartphone</a>, and since then, they’ve gotten smarter and smarter. With dozens of choices out there now (several iPhone models and carriers, along with multitudes of <a href="http://www.networkworld.com/slideshows/2010/022610-android-not-phones-google-subnet.html">Android devices</a>), we figure that your gift recipient already has a smartphone. So we’re focusing on some products that can enhance their smartphone, whether it’s a nice case, charging device, Bluetooth headset or other cool accessory. Here’s what we liked this year:

  • Computer, Notebook and Tablet Tech Treasures [2011 Cool Yule Tools]

    We’ve always had a category covering the world of computers in our Cool Yule Tools holiday gift guide. But then computers gave way to <a href="http://www.networkworld.com/supp/2010/hgg/110810-coolyule-computers-notebooks.html">notebooks</a> (so we combined the category), and then tablets have entered the scene. With the arrival and success of the iPad and other tablets, many have said that “the PC is dead”, and we’ll admit, our choices of cool computers are fewer than in years past. But there are still some nice systems out there, here are a bunch of desktops, notebooks, and yes, tablets, that we think would make for some good gifts:

  • Home Entertainment Tech Treasures [2011 Cool Yule Tools]

    The home entertainment category in our Cool Yule Tools holiday guide used to be a part of the “After Hours” section, but with the explosion of high-tech features in the consumer electronics space, there’s a multitude of devices that will keep you entertained after a long day of work. Here are our picks for gift ideas that can keep you entertained and connected when you’re home:

  • Tablet Accessories Tech Treasures [2011 Cool Yule Tools]

    While last year may have been the year of the tablet (with the introduction/invasion of the iPad), this year certainly qualifies as the year of the tablet accessory. Whether it’s a case, a pillow, stand or speaker system, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite devices to go along with our favorite tablets:

  • Personal Storage Tech Treasures [2011 Cool Yule Tools]

    There’s a lot of shiny and flashy gadgets and home entertainment devices that will entice most of the population during the holidays – cameras, music players, <a href="http://www.networkworld.com/supp/2011/hgg/112111-coolyule-photo-video-253136.html">camcorders</a> and <a href="http://www.networkworld.com/supp/2011/hgg/112111-coolyule-tablet-accessories-253145.html">tablets</a> are sure to be this season’s top sellers once again. But once gift recipients start to create content, listen to music, download apps or record videos, they will eventually need a good, safe and reliable digital place to store their stuff. That’s where storage comes in – it’s not always the sexiest product category, but there’s a lot of new innovations in storage that we think will make good gifts as well:

  • Health & Fitness Tech Treasures [2011 Cool Yule Tools]

    Making a big comeback in this year’s holiday gift guide is the <a href="http://www.networkworld.com/slideshows/2010/061110-fitness-tech.html">health and fitness</a> category. Whether you’re just starting out on the path of exercise, or are a veteran athlete, the number of consumer electronics products dedicated to a person’s health has increased steadily over the past few years. Here are some of our favorites that can make a good gift under the tree for your favorite fitness enthusiast:

  • Miscellaneous Tech Treasures [2011 Cool Yule Tools]

    In our 12th year of presenting our Cool Yule Tools holiday gift guide, we’ve done our best to try to categorize the gift ideas into different groups – <a href="http://www.networkworld.com/supp/2011/hgg/112111-coolyule-portable-entertainment-253133.html">portable entertainment</a>, <a href="http://www.networkworld.com/supp/2011/hgg/112111-coolyule-travel-253156.html">travel gear</a>, etc. While many of these ideas could, in theory, be placed there, sometimes we just feel that the device/gift idea should just be placed in “miscellaneous.” So that’s what we did with some of these. Enjoy!

  • After Hours (video games) Tech Treasures [2011 Cool Yule Tools]

    When we first started doing the Cool Yule Tools holiday gift guides, our “After Hours” section used to cover all of the “<a href="http://www.networkworld.com/supp/2011/hgg/112111-coolyule-home-entertainment-253138.html">entertainment</a>” devices, toys, gadgets and video games. With the explosion of home entertainment, personal entertainment and other consumer electronics, the entire guide is practically an “After Hours” section. Still, here are some of our picks of favorite video games and other “after work” distractions for you or your family:

  • 2010 Cool Yule tools - Top 11 portable entertainment gift ideas

    The days of having multiple devices for listening to music or watching movies is basically over – Apple dominates the market so much so that it’s hard to find interesting devices that don’t immediately compare themselves to the iPod or the iPad. So a lot of the gear in the portable entertainment space this year focuses on the headphone space, where we are seeing lots of different choices, designs and styles. Here are our picks for favorites in the portable entertainment space