Written by Robert Mac
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Trimble is a major innovator in GPS, or Global Positioning System, technology, and is based in the Silicon Valley in California. Trimble combines GPS with wireless technologies and software for such emerging applications as surveying, auto navigation, and other information technology services. They have introduced a lot of "firsts" in the IT arena, particularly in GPS advancements.

Trimble Created the First Pocket-sized GPS Receiver
In 2001, Trimble designed a GPS receiver that the average citizen could fit in a pocket; finally, GPS technology was practical enough for public consumption. The next year, they raised the bar again, creating a stamp-sized receiver, and in 2003 they made one the size of a chip. Now, satellite receivers are so common that they are available with cell phones, laptops, and handheld computers.

The only problem with the diminishing size of technology is their delicacy: the smaller things get, the more susceptible they are to anything from shock to magnetism to water vapor. Furthermore, the smaller they are, the more closely packed the innards are, making repairs more difficult. Luckily, when technology gets small, it's easy to reinforce them with protective casings.

Crushproof, dustproof, and waterproof cases are available for most handheld GPS systems. Just like ruggedized containers for MP3 players, they let you access the handheld's functions while the unit remains completely protected. The last thing you want out in the wild is your PDA to fall off a ledge or into a river; with a properly protected one, you'll never have to worry about that.

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