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Apple vs. Microsoft Multi-Touch Mouse Comparison 255

blee37 writes "This is a side-by-side comparison of the Apple and Microsoft multi-touch mice. It includes video demonstrations of using the mice in applications, first-person shooters and 3D manipulation. It also has new photos of the internals of all the mice."
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Apple vs. Microsoft Multi-Touch Mouse Comparison

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  • 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 sirdankus ( 1004283 ) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:03PM (#30202762)

    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.

  • 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?
  • 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 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.

  • 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.

  • Re:Apple Mouse (Score:2, Interesting)

    by czmax ( 939486 ) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:29PM (#30203024)

    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 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?

    This leads to my greatest complaint about the new Magic Mouse -- it doesn't behave the same as a trackpad. In effect having pushed back on movable "mice keyboards" they've also neglected to build a moveable "mice trackpad". Just because it is mounted onto a "mouse" and can be slid around on the desk is no reason, in my book, to introduce a bunch of different gestures and actions. I think they should instead simply mount a full featured trackpad there in mouse form factor. Rather than build their own set of "here is how gestures might be different on this device" instead they should have focused on making gestures customizable in general.

    We don't have a mechanism for customizing gestures today and I think there is a lot of software research on making that interface work better .... the hardware needs to be stabilized for a bit longer before that will happen though. I hope to see it soon.

    (All this, by the way, leaves your average windows trackpad in the dust; and it is good to see MS is at least experimenting with the ideas. I hope they find the flaws in Apples approach rather than trying to leapfrog in an entirely new direction).

  • What??? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sean.peters ( 568334 ) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:37PM (#30203114) Homepage

    Dude, without any kind of tactile feedback, you have to look at the keyboard, instead of looking at the text you're typing. How can that not be a problem? Reasonable people can disagree over whether that means tactile feedback is "nice-to-have" or "critical", but let's not pretend the issue doesn't even exist.

  • 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.
  • 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?

  • Re:What??? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:55PM (#30203348)

    I don't understand why you have to look at the keyboard instead of the text.

    By Looking at the text, you see what you're entering; what does looking at the keyboard tell you that the screen does not? Unless you're comparing someone who can type without looking in the first place to someone who has too, in which case the argument seems strange to me.

  • by gyrogeerloose ( 849181 ) on Monday November 23, 2009 @12:57PM (#30203362) Journal

    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.

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

    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.

  • by Jesus_666 ( 702802 ) on Monday November 23, 2009 @01:20PM (#30203612)
    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.
  • by cbreak ( 1575875 ) on Monday November 23, 2009 @01:34PM (#30203754)

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

  • by biryokumaru ( 822262 ) * <> on Monday November 23, 2009 @02:11PM (#30204166)

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

  • by At0miC ( 7174 ) on Monday November 23, 2009 @06:34PM (#30207258)

    Looks like these guys have an app that is adding the functionality you want... []

Think of it! With VLSI we can pack 100 ENIACs in 1 sq. cm.!