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Apple vs. Microsoft Multi-Touch Mouse Comparison

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  • by sopssa (1498795) * <sopssa@email.com> on Monday November 23, 2009 @11:53AM (#30202638) Journal

    Problem with this, like with many other touch screen like devices, is that you don't get physical feedback when you're clicking or scrolling or doing anything. There's a reason why you actually need to push the mouse button a little bit so it clicks. Not much, but it actually feels like a click. Keyboard presses need to be the same way too - you need the feedback.

    Another example is the scroll in mouses. My Logitech MX Revolution mouse has both seamless and non-seamless mode that you can activate for different apps. Seamless mode was activated by default for IE and I had to take it off, because mouse scroll also needs to "tick" and feel back when you're scrolling. The Apple video shows that you can scroll faster by moving your finger rapidly - guess what, you can do that with a normal scroll too, just by rapidly firing the scroller to either direction (the logitech software actually releases the tick for a bit so it works even better)

    Other thing to consider is how quickly the touch area gets dirty and less functional. I sometimes like to eat a great three story cheese bacon hamburger filled with majonese, chipotle ketchup and delicious cheese with deep fried french fries, topped with a cold beer and chocolate ice cream with strawberries and chocolate dipping. Lets face it, the touch area is going to get dirty. Will it function the same way after that and can you clean it as easily?

    • by peragrin (659227) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:02PM (#30202750)

      Onsidering my iPhone is easy to clean and I don't need tactile feedback for the on screen keyboard I would say it is something some people will work easily with and others won't. Your results will vary.

      As a side note if your eating that mess if food at your computer and not using napkins or towels your keyboard has to be disgusting

      • by Jurily (900488) <jurily@noSpAM.gmail.com> on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:08PM (#30202802)

        Onsidering my iPhone is easy to clean and I don't need tactile feedback

        You never input text?

        • by beelsebob (529313) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:31PM (#30203062)

          Sure I have, it's a lot easier than it is on a tiny physical keyboard.

        • by Starayo (989319) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:37PM (#30203116) Homepage
          Insightful my ass. I type almost as fast with my iPhone as I do with my keyboard. Feedback is available both visually (letter pops up to show which button you pressed) and audibly (click sounds). The odd slip of the finger is generally fixed by the iPhone's autocorrect too.

          The only people who continually raise the issue with this are people who haven't used the product, or have and are easily frustrated. Or they're too old to learn a slightly new trick. Even my dad can type quickly with an iPhone when he uses one, and says it's much better and easier than typing on the blackberry storm which also provides the physical feedback, but then again, the storm (first version at least) is an embarrassment of a phone.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Zalbik (308903)

            I type almost as fast with my iPhone as I do with my keyboard.

            Sorry, but all that tells me is that you suck at using a keyboard. World records for texting have people completing a 160 character message at 40 seconds.
            See here [engadget.com] and here [wikipedia.org].
            That works out to 48 words per minute, which is still very slow compare to even a novice touch-typist.

            You will also note that the world records are continually won by people using tactile keyboards.

            The only people who continually raise the issue with this are people who haven'

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              Sorry, but all that tells me is that you suck at using a keyboard. ...
              Wow, over-generalize much?

              So you really don't see the irony there?

            • by Anubis IV (1279820) on Monday November 23, 2009 @02:12PM (#30204176)
              You DO realize that all of those text message records (except for the blindfolded one) were done on traditional number pads before touchscreen virtual keyboards even existed on phones, right? As in, typing a "c" would mean pressing the 1 button three times, rather than just hitting the "c" button on the virtual keyboard. The records are completely irrelevant when talking about modern smart phones with full QWERTY keyboards.

              I'm not in love with my iPhone's keyboard (tactile feedback would be nice), nor am I particularly gifted at using it (I don't have a texting plan and send e-mails rarely), but I'd place myself around 25-30 wpm. With practice, I'd imagine I could easily pass 40wpm. I'm not going to suggest that most people can type as quickly with an iPhone as with a normal keyboard (I certainly don't), but the records you're waving around as a counter-argument to his claims are entirely irrelevant and deserve to be pointed out as such.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by jason.sweet (1272826)
        Looks like a little tactile feedback on your 'C' would have helped.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by sirdankus (1004283)

      The dirt issue seems much worse with normal scroll mice. Bacon remnants are fairly easy to wipe (or indeed, lick) off a smooth surface like a touch pad. Once any amount of dirt gets into the mechanical bits of a scroll wheel, you're left with the option of putting up with a sticky scroll wheel, or buying a new mouse.

      The tactile feedback part is exactly how I feel, though.

      • by Pinky's Brain (1158667) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:06PM (#30202776)

        A Philips screwdriver and 15 minutes of your life will suffice to clean the inside of your mouse too.

        • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:47PM (#30203258)

          A Philips screwdriver and 15 minutes of your life will suffice to clean the inside of your mouse too.

          Unless it's an Apple mouse, which is sealed for all eternity and cannot be user-serviced.

          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            by ColdWetDog (752185)

            Unless it's an Apple mouse, which is sealed for all eternity and cannot be user-serviced.

            When you only have a hammer, everything begins to look like a nail. A most Apple mice really do look like nails most of the time...

            Just say'in.

          • Heh...that's very much not true. I'm using one now that was recently taken apart and cleaned.
             
            It's now rubber-cemented back together, so the next time it doesn't take half an hour and severe risk to life and limb hacking at it with a sharp knife to service.
             
            Best of all, it works great for the first time in 6 months!

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            A Philips screwdriver and 15 minutes of your life will suffice to clean the inside of your mouse too.

            Unless it's an Apple mouse, which is sealed for all eternity and cannot be user-serviced.

            Does it occur to you that the Magic Mouse, lacking buttons and balls, doesn't ever get dirty on the inside?

      • by oldspewey (1303305) on Monday November 23, 2009 @01:04PM (#30203452)

        Bacon remnants are fairly easy to wipe (or indeed, lick) off a smooth surface like a touch pad.

        mentalimage.erase(slashdotposterwholicksbacon);

    • by odin84gk (1162545) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:08PM (#30202788)

      New capacitive sensors will work, even if it is covered in a layer of crap. You don't need to physically touch the surface to get it to work.

      The real issue is this: How can you make it intuitive enough to work and become widely accepted? There are some people who still struggle with the right-click, let alone anything more complicated.

      • by Jesus_666 (702802)
        They don't need to.

        Apple is heavily using multitouch. Everyone who has a newer Apple notebook or an iPhone or iPod touch knows how to use multitouch interfaces. (And, for that matter, Microsoft and Google are also using it for their handhelds so it will most likely become a common smartphone feature in the future.) Apple's market consists of Mac users and tech-savvy or style-conscious young people who are likely to quickly learn how to use the Magic Mouse.

        Microsoft is toying with the concept but it's un
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by biryokumaru (822262) *

          Us old folk might think "tech-savvy" is a bit generous for you iPhone-using youngsters.

          • by Jesus_666 (702802) on Monday November 23, 2009 @02:34PM (#30204390)
            "Tech-savvy" is pretty fitting for us Unix-using youngsters. I explicitly put "style-conscious" as a separate group. Not everyone buys Macs because they're shiny; some people buy them because OS X is a Unix with nice features (like Grand Central) and an excellent GUI. And that's the people I referred to with "tech-savvy".
    • by mcgrew (92797) * on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:12PM (#30202836) Homepage Journal

      Problem with this, like with many other touch screen like devices, is that you don't get physical feedback when you're clicking or scrolling or doing anything.

      Thet doesn't seem to matter to iPhone or MegaGame machines. You need feedback, but not auditory or tactile feedback. The only need for tactile or auditory feedback is if your devise is so molasses-in-January slow that nothing apparently happens when you use the control.

      Feedback needs to appear instantaneous or it's useless.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      The Magic Mouse clicks. The entire surface is a button, just like with the older Mighty Mouse (a.k.a. Apple Mouse). It may be touch sensitive, but Apple agreed that feedback was necessary and built it in.

    • by mctk (840035)

      ...with deep fried french fries, topped with a cold beer and chocolate ice cream...

      Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

    • by TheKidWho (705796)

      I use a 3d Connexion SpaceExplorer 3D mouse on a daily basis for work... There is no way any multi-touch screen will EVER come close to the level of control that mouse gives me.

    • by Fross (83754)

      The good news is that with that diet, the mouse's warranty will probably outlive you, so if it does die of grease, you can get another one.

    • by Jesus_666 (702802)

      The Apple video shows that you can scroll faster by moving your finger rapidly - guess what, you can do that with a normal scroll too, just by rapidly firing the scroller to either direction (the logitech software actually releases the tick for a bit so it works even better)

      Maybe Logitech mice have special hardware to handle fast scrolling but most mice can't really handle very fast scrolling - you scroll just as far as with regular scroll speed; the additional revolutions of the wheel are swallowed.

      Lets fa

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Genevish (93570)
      "Problem with this, like with many other touch screen like devices, is that you don't get physical feedback when you're clicking or scrolling or doing anything."

      With the Apple mouse, there is a physical click. The entire top surface moves down for a click. The capacitive surface is just used to determine if it was a right or left click.

    • It doesn’t need to.
      With that diet, you will have died,
      and be covered with dirt before it’s covered with dirt. ^^

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 23, 2009 @11:58AM (#30202716)

    I don't think anyone is denying that Microsoft R&D can churn out some interesting concepts from time to time, but there's a big difference between shipping an actual product with most of the details worked out, and merely mocking up a few prototypes that are nowhere close to being ready for actual sale. I'd be curious to see what prototypes Apple came up with before shipping the Magic Mouse. That'd be a more interesting comparison.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Toe, The (545098)

      And how much would these MS prototypes cost the end-user? One that may be really awesome isn't going to be very practical if it is $700...

      And have they done ergonomics testing to see if these concepts hurt your wrist after a day of use?

      And how easy/hard is the configuration software? The user learning experience?

      Comparing a real shipping product to vaporware is just silly.

      I have an image in my head of a mind-controlled input device that simply takes the cursor wherever I want it, moves pages on a whim, and

    • by crosseyedatnite (19044) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:13PM (#30202856) Homepage

      I believe the first consumer optical mouse would beg to differ.

      http://hardware.slashdot.org/story/99/04/20/0214216/MS-Introduces-Optical-Mouse [slashdot.org]

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by gyrogeerloose (849181)

        Funny how the article you refer to questions if the optical mouse was anything new even in 1999. Not to mention, of course, that said optical mouse was actually developed and built by Logitech and merely marketed under the Microsoft brand anyway.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Jesus_666 (702802)
        And this is relevant... how? The GP complained about the article comparing Microsoft's prototypes to Apple's finished product. Yes, of course Microsoft has shipped mice before. That doesn't change the fact that Microsoft does not have a multitouch mouse on the market right now and most likely won't for another few months.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by ElSupreme (1217088)
          What is the big advatage to a "multi touch" mouse. What does it offer that my Microsoft mouse doesn't do?
          Click. Both (but i leave my fingers on the surface of the mouse, will the Apple one require me to lift my right finger?)
          Right Click. Both. (same issue as above)
          Scroll up. Both (I have a nice wheel, it has acceleration and no indentations)
          Scroll sidways. Both (my wheel tilts sideways, never really needs use)
          Go back. Both (I assume there is some two touch swipe method for this, I have a back button)
          Z
    • MS: displaying prototypes of multi-touch mice. Apple: actually selling one. That right there is sort of a microcosm of the whole industry.

  • by argent (18001) <peter@slasCOUGAR ... ga.com minus cat> on Monday November 23, 2009 @11:59AM (#30202720) Homepage Journal

    Which multi-touch mouse do you want the most? Or are they all gimmicks?

    Nice card-forcing there.

    I like Microsoft's basic wheel mouse on Windows and Mac, and HP's 3-button optical mouse on X11.

  • joke ? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Tom (822) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:00PM (#30202732) Homepage Journal

    No, seriously, they post crap like that on the Internet?

    This is a comparison of a finished product that is shipping today, against a number of prototypes, none of which you can buy anywhere and most of which you will never be able to buy. Most importantly, none of which are finished and ready for use. We're all living in the tech world. We've all seen at least a hundred videos of prototypes that we were really looking forward to - and the final product either never arrived or wasn't half as good as the demo had led us believe.

    Make a comparison when they're both shipping. Everything else is dumb, and creating false expectations.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by kjart (941720)

      No, seriously, they post crap like that on the Internet?

      You must be new here.

  • by Ukab the Great (87152) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:00PM (#30202740)

    "I'm a mac" (Justin Long touches himself)
    "I'm a PC" (John Hodgeman touches himself)

  • So many choices (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Nerdfest (867930) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:05PM (#30202772)
    Personally, I'd buy one that provided solid Linux support. The Apple mouse looks pretty, and sounds functional, but I haven't heard of any Linux drivers. Anyone?
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymusing (1450747)

      Sir, may we interest you in a nice search engine [google.com]?

    • I don't know this for sure but it's probably just a standard USB interface. I know that it will work with any modern Mac without installing a driver so there's a good chance it will work with Linux as well. But just don't go buy one on my advice without trying it out first--I'd feel bad if I were wrong!

    • by mcgrew (92797) *

      Agreed. I have a logitech cordless optical mouse with a lot of buttons, but the only ones that work in Linux are the normal left and right buttons and the scroll wheel. However, I really don't miss the functionality of the oother buttons because I spend more time on the PC at work than at home, and it's a plain old fashioned two button scroll mouse. The only thing I miss on it us being optical and having a cord; those two "features" are annoying after using the cordless optical mouse.

  • Apple Mouse (Score:5, Funny)

    by camperdave (969942) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:09PM (#30202814) Journal
    So instead of having only one mouse button, Apple is getting rid of all of them?
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by czmax (939486)

      Apple is moving the computer interface in a new direction. Apparently they were not satisfied with one, two, three (lets add some more!) button mice. I can imagine them asking what the value was of having "a little tiny keyboard that you slide around your desk", and subsequently deciding to do something different.

      Oddly they've taken the "multiple buttons is confusing" approach and leapt off a cliff. Have you watched a new user try to figure out one of the new apple trackpads? There is so little feedback tha

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Jesus_666 (702802)
        Actually, I haven't seen any way in which the Magic Mouse's gestures differ from Apple's trackpad gestures, save for them using one finger less. If you can use an Apple trackpad under OS X you can use the Magic Mouse.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Have you watched a new user try to figure out one of the new apple trackpads? There is so little feedback that they have a hard time even understanding that there is a button available... and its seriously too bad if they meet up with a highly customized desktop supporting multiple gestures. I've noted that even experienced users need to take some time to figure out a peers configuration (concerning which corners do what).... but can you imagine what will happen as the gestures themselves become more and more customizable and as applications add their own gestures to the mix?

        First Apple makes the, reasonable I think, assumption that the person logged in is the one currently at the computer. The guest account (or a new one) is meant for other users and it has a very simple and consistent setup. When you go to configure the gestures they are explained in the preference panel. No doubt gestures will become more configurable but it won't be through Apple but through third party software. It would be out of character for Apple to do anything but offer a basic set of gestures and loc

    • It's all about simplifying the user interface, to make it more intuitive. Have you seen what they're doing to replace the keyboard as well? [theonion.com]
    • Anyone using the words "Apple" and "one mouse button" in a slashdot comment should be banned for 2 weeks and the comment should be set at an automatic -1. I am not a huge Apple fan anymore, but this argument is so tired and idiotic that it has to be a mark of a troll or a moron.

      Want a multi-button mouse? Go buy one!

    • I was especially amused when the video does the whole "press this key and scroll to zoom" bit. I don't know, but the two finger thing should be able to zoom without any keyboard input. The MS prototypes did the fingers moving apart to zoom in and moving together to zoom out. That seems pretty intuitive to me. Why introduce keystrokes into it if this is the next big thing? It is indeed the one button mouse thing all over again.

  • Doll (Score:5, Funny)

    by Das Auge (597142) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:11PM (#30202834)
    Show me on the doll where Microsoft and Apple multi-touched you inappropriately.
  • This Logitech mouse combines the best of both worlds (2D touch-sensitive scrolling but with actual buttons for tactile feedback). It's been around for half a decade (since 2004).

    http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Cordless-Optical-Notebook-Mouse/dp/B0002SAF3M [amazon.com]

    I'm sure they've released better models since then, but that is one I've actually used.

    It would have made more sense for the article to compare the Magic Mouse against against the Logitech mouse since it actually exists, instead of Microsoft's prototypes.

  • Johnny Chung Lee turns one into a fortune telling palm reader.
  • by chrysalis (50680) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:15PM (#30202886) Homepage

    If you love the "touch" aspect of the Magic Mouse, an alternative is the Wacom Bamboo Touch tablet.

    It's roughly the same price as a Magic Mouse, it supports gestures just fine, the area makes it more comfortable than a mouse and best of all, you can also use it as a tablet.

    • by ticklemeozmo (595926) <justin.j.novack@acm . o rg> on Monday November 23, 2009 @01:18PM (#30203584) Homepage Journal
      They made one glaring design error with the Wacom (Daewoo) Bamboo Touch Tablet. When using in right hand mode, the buttons are on the left (so your thumb can hit it), unfortunately, so is the WIRE. Meaning you can't flush it up against your keyboard or something else. Regardless of where your computer is, in this design, the buttons and wire should be on opposite sides. If you want it on your left side, the wire should hang off the left side, not the right side. That alone says "cheap knockoff".
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by cbreak (1575875)

      Does it work like the TouchPad on Mac Books gesture wise? I am mainly interested in the basic gestures such as click and dragging.

  • Lifting fingers... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by amaupin (721551) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:16PM (#30202896) Homepage

    So with my current mouse I can rest my finger on the mouse button, and press down when I want to click.

    With these new mice, when I want to click I have to lift my finger up from the surface of the mouse and then press down (if the video in the article is indicative of how it functions). I think constantly lifting my finger would become tiring.

    • by timster (32400)

      The "Magic Mouse" clicks just like a regular mouse, so you only have to lift your (left) finger if you want a right-click.

      • by Yvan256 (722131)

        I think that's what amaupin was saying. I don't know anyone who doesn't rest his fingers on the buttons surfaces when using a mouse.

        My Logitech mouse: I simply left-click or right-click. One step.
        Apple Magic Mouse: I need to lift both fingers, then left-tap or right-tap. Two steps. And then what? Can I put both my fingers down after that? Won't it register both a left and right tap?

        I might be cool for the horizontal or vertical swipes since I'm used to that with the trackpad on my 12" PowerBook, but until I

        • by HogGeek (456673)

          Incorrect, it requires a physical force to click.

          Either left or right. Now if you left finger is on the pad, clicking is just like any other mouse. What timster is saying is you must remove (lift) you left, If you want "right" click...

        • by TomHandy (578620)
          You don't need to lift both fingers for a left or right click. For a left click, all you have to do is click the mouse and it will register as a left click. The point is that for a right click, you have to lift your left finger (so that only the right half of the surface is being touched, so that when you click, it realizes it is a right click). To be clear, the Magic Mouse is not like the laptop trackpad (I noticed you mentioned left and right tapping). The whole mouse is still one large physical butto
          • by Yvan256 (722131)

            Ok, now I understand. However, it's still one more step (i.e. lift the finger of the button you don't want to click), making clicking a two-step process and the fact that it's kind of counter-intuitive to be moving the finger that you don't want to be clicking (i.e. move the right finger for a left click, and vice-versa).

            Seems to me the Magic Mouse is more complicated than a regular mouse, which is the opposite of what Apple products usually are.

            • by egomaniac (105476) on Monday November 23, 2009 @01:36PM (#30203776) Homepage

              Maybe you should actually try USING one before deciding how intuitive or nonintuitive it is. It's actually a really fantastic mouse.

            • by timster (32400)

              No, I think you still don't quite understand. You don't have to lift any fingers for a left-click. Only for a right-click. That aspect works the exact same way that Apple mice have for some years now.

              This is one of those things that sounds really complicated if you think about it, but is actually very simple to use.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by HogGeek (456673)

      Not with the Apple Product.

      I'm using one now, and there is a "tactical" feel for the actual click...

    • by DontBlameCanada (1325547) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:39PM (#30203134)

      I think constantly lifting my finger would become tiring.

      Someone definitely needs to get more physical exercise, me thinks.

    • I think constantly lifting my finger would become tiring.

      Seriously? Wow. And I thought I was in bad shape...

    • ... how often do you click, anyway? If your finger would seriously get tired from being lifted a millimeter off the mouse and then letting it fall back... man, see a doctor. If you can't manage the effort involved in lifting your finger occasionally to click, I'd hate to see what happened when you have to actually TYPE something.

      I'm sort of lukewarm to the whole mighty mouse concept myself, but I can't see this as a serious objection to it.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      Not just you, it tires out George Jetson [wikipedia.org] as well!
  • Advantages? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by foobsr (693224) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:17PM (#30202912) Homepage Journal
    Apart from probably gaming, I have difficulties to get a grasp of the advantages of the concept, especially if compared to a multi-touch tablet.

    CC.
    • by ASBands (1087159)

      These guys make a decent point: 10GUI [10gui.com]. The keyboard is a pretty nice thing -- we can express quite a wide range of things to the computer. The mouse, however, sucks. An entire hand and we're limited to a position on the screen and binary "clicks." I use an 11-button mouse to help with this, but most applications are not built to support such interaction, so I'm limited to setting them for global commands (back center is reveal, left and swipe is change desktop), save for some special cases (which is pre

  • Should have been the title.

  • by gentlemen_loser (817960) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:26PM (#30202996) Homepage
    The Microsoft designs are all still prototypes. I would say that one of the two companies have "introduced" a multi-touch mouse. The other is currently researching a way to copy it (as always) and quite possibly playing with themselves. This design makes it look like you are holding a nutsack [wordpress.com]

    On the bright side, I have a magic mouse now and will say that it really is a whole new (awesome) experience.
  • "Tame improvement" (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Nerdposeur (910128) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:29PM (#30203030) Journal

    From TFA:

    The Magic Mouse is a straightforward application of multi-touch to mousing and is a tame improvement compared with Microsoft's more radical designs.

    ...and by "tame" we mean "already living peacefully in people's houses." And by "radical" we mean "awesome in theory."

  • by wowbagger (69688) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:43PM (#30203190) Homepage Journal

    The title of this comment should be "How do these mice prevent finger movement from causing mouse movement", but due to the limits /. places on comment titles....

    OK, so let us say I have the Mac Mouse, and I swipe my fingers over the surface to do a horizontal scroll of a document.
    * How do I prevent my finger motion from moving the mouse itself, and thus the pointer of the mouse?
    * Does the mouse have such a high coefficient of static friction that the CoF between my fingers and the shell * the force my fingers apply is too small to break the mouse loose?
    * What does that imply about normal mouse usage?
    ** Will I lose the ability to move the mouse by small amounts due to the stiction?
    ** Will I have to completely change my grip on the mouse to transition from mousing to swiping?

    • The gestures are performed while you're holding the mouse, so it doesn't move.Try swiping your fingers around on your current mouse, I bet you can do it without moving the mouse or your grip (I can). For the record, I have tried the Magic Mouse, and it seemed to work okay, but I'm not swapping it for my Revolution MX.

    • by ThrowAwaySociety (1351793) on Monday November 23, 2009 @03:47PM (#30205146)

      The title of this comment should be "How do these mice prevent finger movement from causing mouse movement", but due to the limits /. places on comment titles....

      OK, so let us say I have the Mac Mouse, and I swipe my fingers over the surface to do a horizontal scroll of a document.
      * How do I prevent my finger motion from moving the mouse itself, and thus the pointer of the mouse?
      * Does the mouse have such a high coefficient of static friction that the CoF between my fingers and the shell * the force my fingers apply is too small to break the mouse loose?

      For scrolling, it works the same way as any mouse with a physical scroll wheel. You steady the mouse with your thumb on one side, and your pinkie, ring, and (possibly) middle fingers on the other, and stroke with your index finger. You don't end up knocking your mouse around when you poke at the scroll wheel, do you?

      ** Will I have to completely change my grip on the mouse to transition from mousing to swiping?

      Well, the multi-finger back/forward gestures are a bit trickier, since your index and middle fingers moving together aren't as dextrous as your index finger alone. The "back" gesture is pretty simple--you lift your pinkie and ring fingers off, but leave your thumb to counter the force of the swipe--but the opposite "forward" gesture is darned near impossible for me. Luckily, you don't navigate forward as often as you go back, but still.

      The video on the Apple site helps.

      Having played with one for a brief period:
      - Normal tracking and clicking is no different from any other mouse
      - Both X and Y scrolling is very natural and intuitive.
      - The optional "scroll with momentum" is annoying and distracting to me, but might be familiar to iPhone users.
      - Right clicking requires lifting your left finger. Easy enough to get used to, but not natural.
      - Back and Forward gestures are cool, but would take some serious effort to get used to.
      - The mouse is very low and flat.

  • by sean.peters (568334) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:49PM (#30203288) Homepage

    From TFA:

    This is arguably the first substantial improvement to the mouse since it was invented in 1968 by Doug Englebart.

    Ok, can't agree with this one. Since then we've added the scroll wheel, which was a huge improvement in mouse technology. If you don't believe me, try going back to a plain two-button mouse, and then work with a document bigger than your screen. You used to spend your life moving back and forth between the scroll bar and the text. We've also, for the most part, done away with crappy ball mice in favor of the light tracking ones, which eliminated the sticky mouse problem.

    Multi-touch may turn out to be a big deal, but it's certainly a stretch to say that mice haven't improved substantially since '68.

  • by dindi (78034) on Monday November 23, 2009 @01:02PM (#30203418) Homepage

    So here is the deal: I ordered a Magic mouse and after an hour of use I put it back in the packaging and sold it to a colleague.

    Why ?

    The idea is great, the functions are not. Not being able to pinch, rotate and zoom without a key is one (stupid) thing, considering that the mouse can track 4 fingers.

    Accidental actions (scroll mostly) is annoying. A button or ball moves when you move it, this thing tracks every touch, that annoyed me to hell.

    Having no 3rd button however is an absolute deal breaker. I would live with a 3-finger touch, or 2 finger tap, but the lack of buttons just made me pack it and sell it.

    And do not get me wrong, I use the Mightly mouse and several Logi trackballs and only Mac aluminium keyboards (except on my Macbook)...

    I think the hardware is awesome but the drivers absolutely SUCK!

    Just my 2c.

    ps: the optical touch tracking looks interesting on the videos... maybe I would try that next... .or just stay with my logis.

  • keyboard "touch" technology finally applied to the mouse.

  • How do you compare an actual shipping product with what amounts to conceptualizations a person can't even get their hands on unless they happen to work for Microsoft Research (and even then they're not fully functional mice)?

    This is just unbelievably silly.

  • I have some carpal tunnel problems. I also like to play Age of Empires which is almost unusable without a right mouse button. I've tried it before with Apple wired and wireless mice, and it's just painful. To right click, you have to lift your index finger so that it senses that the click is from the right side; otherwise, it registers a left click.

    I can't imagine these multitouch mice being a whole lot better. If you have carpal tunnel problems, you might want to stay away. If you don't, be careful, b

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