12 Tech Helpers for Teeny, Tiny Offices

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These days, few areas are as easy to scale down as a home office - with smart phones, tablets, ultrabooks and laptops abounding, you could likely work comfortably in even the smallest of spaces. Seeing as small offices call for small office solutions, we've rounded up twelve items that can be found in miniature sizes.

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Hard Drive: If you're looking for more space for your data, an external hard drive is a great option - but is yet one more item clamoring for space on your desk surface. Not so with LaCie's Rugged Triple USB 3.0 hard drive, or Gigabyte's A2Tiny, both of which are more on the hand held side.

Computer: The $25 Rasberry Pi is hands down the smallest computer on the market; this little Linux-based, single-board computer doesn't look like much but does succeed in doing a whole lot with very little. Intended to help teach school children about programming, the Rasberry Pi does not include a keyboard or a monitor, but is capable of running enough programs to act as a smart TV or media center. If that's far too geeked out for your purposes, consider the sleek Lenovo Q180 an acceptable runner up.

Flash Drive: Flash drives are great for storing and transporting data from work to home, but that Virgin Mary USB Flash Drive hardly fits in your pocket. Keep it simple with LaCie's MosKeyto, which is designed to fit flush against a laptop, or Pico's minimalist USB flash drive which is shock and water resistant - and the size of a fingertip.

030412-10407254.jpgKeyboard: So, you have a small desk, a tiny computer and a pocket-sized hard drive. Why are you still working on a bulky, full sized keyboard? Matias makes a keyboard that folds neatly in two when you're done, and Adesso and Grantec both make flexible silicon keyboards that are washable, dirt- and dust-proof, and can be rolled up for storage or transport.


Printer: Printers are typically guilty of being the biggest hogs of desk space, but more petite printing options are increasingly available. Brother produces some space friendly options like the utilitarian PocketJet 6 with Bluetooth or the MW-120, a small format mobile printer that works using thermal printing. If receipt sized print outs of web content is all you need, then sign up for a BERG Little Printer - a tiny cube with a friendly face, the Little Printer pulls data from the cloud and uses thermal printing to churn out RSS feeds with a smile. Just need to print photos? Zink and Polaroid both have mobile photo printers that can fit in the palm of your hand.

USB Hub: All those gadgets need to get plugged in somewhere, and few things are as frustrating as realizing that you can't plug in your printer (or Ghost Lamps) without unplugging your speakers or iPod. Save yourself the hassle and grab a USB Hub, which can be found in a variety of shapes including R2-D2 or TARDIS. Not looking for cute? Keep it functional with the Monster Hub or USB Squid.

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Scanner: A scanner is a great addition to any home office - not only can you scan photos and important documents, but it virtually eliminates any need for a fax machine. Much like printers, many scanners now come in easy handheld versions like Hammacher Schlemmer's Portable Handheld Scanner, or even in pen versions, like the Iris Executive Scanning Pen.

Desk: We've already covered some exceptional wall-mounted desk designs and some simple laptop desk stands, but if none of those is working for you, check out the old school Scholar Craft student desk or the fold-out London Craft Desk. Both are straightforward designs that can easily be squeezed into available space.

Office Lamp: If your super small home office is lacking lighting, there are a number of streamlined, high-powered LED desk lamps that can provide ample illumination, like the Bulbrite or I-Bar. If you don't have enough space for even that, consider using a travel light like the Really Tiny Book Light to illuminate pages. However, if you're just looking for a little ambient light at your computer desk, these glowing Pac-Man Ghost Lamps (or tiny Mushroom Lamp) are tiny and plug into a USB socket so you won't have to hunt for a spare wall socket.

Calculator: Sure, everyone has a calculator on their computer and smartphone, but if you prefer you can easily stock your desk with a slim number cruncher like the solar powered Credit Card Pocket Calculator, or the easily accessed Calculator Clip.

Greenery: No office is complete without a few plants around and here our friends at Etsy have you covered; just browse their copious terrarium offerings for a little spot of nature at your desk. From terrariums in a brandy glasses to teensy 2 inch hanging terrariums, there are plenty of options here.

Corkboard: Need a corkboard to pin coupons, receipts and reminders? Etsy has you covered here as well with a variety of bulletin board options from small corkboards in painted frames, to memo board combos and even repurposed embroidery hoops.

Top image: Kim & George's Brooklyn Heights Home; All others as linked above.