My Mouse Fetish

I've talked about the programmer's take on keyboard and chair, but I have yet to cover that other computing staple: the mouse. I was reminded when HMK referenced Ars Technica's History of the GUI:

This is a companion discussion topic for the original blog entry at:

You know, I am a mouse user only under duress … I still much prefer the keyboard, and I’m the guy at work who knows all the keyboard shortcuts in Word, etc. It’s my belief, of course, that mousing is slower than keying for office-type work. (Not for gaming, duh.) People occasionally watch over my shoulder as I do things, and I’ve gotten comments to the effect of “Wow, you’re fast!” I’m not fast per se, but because I don’t have to constantly switch between keyboard and mouse, and can instead do tasks with keyboard shortcuts, it looks like I’m fast.

Naturally, I find mouse-centric UIs that don’t accommodate keyboards very frustrating.

Why this is relevant to your post exactly I can’t say. :slight_smile:

How about the Roller Mouse?

Wow, that rollerbar thing is pretty crazy. I had to watch the flash demo to figure out what the heck it was!

Mostly in image editing; slower, precise cursor control is nice when doing pixel-level work. It’s not a huge feature, just a handy one-- and it makes those previously useless “above and below the scroll wheel” buttons useful again.

Another good topic Jeff!

Well, I guess I will come to the defense of the wireless mouse, the heavy mouse, and the large mouse. I still use and like the original Wireless Intellimouse Explorer (about 3 years now?). It’s probably the heaviest one out there as I’ve tried the newer one from a friend but didn’t like it enough to spend another $50 on it. The one negative, for me, is that the battery life isn’t good like the new ones. I can get about 30 days out of one set of rechargeables…I have two sets so I’m good to go but still.

As far as buttons, I like the standard setup, scroll wheel, left/right, and front/back buttons. I have a small Belkin mouse that I keep in my laptop bag for travel and meetings around the office but for the most part I stick with the beast.

The key to wireless mice performance is the batteries you use. You need the high capacity rechargables, like the Maha PowerEx series. They are also great for digital cameras. I average about a month and a half between charges. I have a wireless logitech and never noticed the weight. But those extra buttons are annoying. I rarely hit the thumb button and when I do I have to stop for a second and think what just happened. Scroll wheels are the bomb especially now that I got VB6 to have scroll wheel support. I like scroll wheels you can push down for a middle click. Great for browsing with firefox where that opens a new tab.

I’m also obsessed with mice; here’s my take on Apple’s ill-conceived Round Mouse:

Jeff, can you explain how the adjustable DPI sensitivity is useful (especialy in software development related tasks, if possible)?

I’ve been reading the reviews of the 518 and I just don’t get it. Wouldn’t you just pick the sensitivity that matched what “felt right” to you and stick with it.

Jeff, good example on the sensitivity question, I can see how that would be useful. Thanks.

Give me my logitech wireless trackball any day!

I remember the old Logitech Mouse Man. Not exactly ergonomic, but it got the job done. Anyway, nowadays I’m a fan of the Logitech MX series as well. I owned a 510 for a year and a half, but the place where the cord connects to the mouse somehow got damaged. So, today I got a 518 because I liked my 510 so much. I doubt I’ll ever use the DPI changer buttons but the mouse is very ergonomic and accurate. Good choice Jeff.

I have since switched to the MS Habu mouse:

I need to weigh it. It’s very very light, I expect within 10% of the very light MX518.

I have an astronomy book published in 1906 (but in a box buried under other boxes at a moving company’s storage site) that describes a “mouse” — that term is used — no larger than the palm of your hand that is used to steer a huge telescope.

I wish I could dig the book out, if only to explode the myth that the mouse was invented to run computers.

Adjustable DPI settings are for gamers. This is a gaming mouse, not used for the “Every Day Joe.” You can change sensitivity for things like the imaging software mentioned above, or for a First Person Shooter, such as Half-Life 2. Example: When you’re on the run with a machine gunnery style weapon, high sensitivity is keen because you want to be able to turn (in the game) quickly and pull the trigger before your enemy. However, if you have a sniper rifle, you want small precise movements, so you would lower the sensitivity to be able to make pin point accuracy shots.

For anyone who enjoys a heavy mouse, there is the Natural Mouse by MS*. It’s a hit or miss with reviewers*, so do try it at Best Buy before purchasing.

I like the emphasis on proper posture and the added weight (144 grams, without batteries). I always keep a separate corded mouse with the article-mentioned features: back/forward; scroll-wheel; cord; laser but have yet to use it.

Working with a MX518 myself here. Biggest benefit isn’t the resolution changing button but the two buttons to the left of it.

Great way to navigate the internet, used as next previous page.

That or use them for more functions when gaming :slight_smile:

I have had the MX518 for about a year and a half. I love it. I have zero complaints about it.

Don’t know that much about these either, but I’ve seen a few models that have optionally insertable weights in case the user wants the heft added.

i just found out my fessish today as a scroll whell brushed uo aginsed my leg

I have to comment on the weight of mice. The mouse provided with my new work desktop is very light: too light, in fact. And the cable annoys me. Within days I brought in my own wireless mouse. The weight of the batteries is comforting.