I've seen a couple of posts on the mostly inactive palm-med listserv about MDs looking to replace their old Palm Tungsten PDAs as the batteries no longer keep a charge. They have all their contact data and text files on the Palm Desktop software, but need a new handheld to re-sync.
Steve Gibson has one solution (search the keyword "refrigerator" in this text passage). He was doing his Security Now Webcast with Leo Laporte and mentioned that he has six TX's stashed in a refrigerator.
Other MDs have offered to give away their PDAs to those in need, but it's probably time to evaluate all the options now and in the near future. The Palm PDA and the associated Garnet OS has had a wide acceptance in the medical community, so I would think that this is going to be a big issue for many.
Of course, the Palm Pre and the new WebOS are about to be released, and I'm watching the Palm blog to get the latest news. I'm switching. I'll lose the third party apps that I've enjoyed using on my Treo 700p like Agendus, but I'm willing to move on. I'm hoping that porting the old data to the new OS won't be much of a problem, which is something I'll start researching.
You can export your contact infomation via a csv (comma separated values) text file. As an experiment, this morning I export some of my contacts, then imported them into Excel. I'm pretty sure the other devices such as the Blackberry would accept this format. At least this gives you a generic format to backup to in case you lose the old Palm programs.