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(Or is that Computer Mouses?)
Computer mice are necessary components for desktop computers (some choices: wireless computer mouse, ergonomic computer mouse, gaming mouse, and much more). Why are mice not called computer mouses? What about the history of the computer mouse? Read on to learn more.
What is a computer mouse? It's not a furry little rodent! Computer mice are what allow you to control an onscreen pointer that can be used for a multitude of actions.
History Of The Computer Mouse
Let's take a brief look here at the history of the computer mouse. The first computer mouse was invented in 1963 by a gentleman named Douglas Englebart.
It was a simple mouse, basically a wooden shell with 2 wheels. The 2 wheels would translate to X,Y coordinates on the computer screen, and produced movement in only those coordinates. In otherwords, you could move left and right, or up and down, but not diagonally. It was nicknamed a "mouse" because the cord connecting it gave it the appearance of having a tail.
In 1972, Bill English, who had worked with Douglas on the first computer mouse, invented the original trackball mouse. This mouse had a roller ball inside that made contact with the surface, such as a desk.
When the ball was rolled, it would turn wheels that would interrupt light signals and tell the computer which wheel was moving in which direction.
This was the first mouse that allowed movement in any direction, even diagonal.
These computer mouses worked well (yes, computer mouses is an acceptable plural form of computer mice), but had a few issues. The rollerball would pick up lint and dust and would have to be cleaned occasionally. The interior wheels, which were later replaced with rollers, would break or become jammed and hamper the movement of the mouse. Finally, you needed a mouse pad for the roller ball mouse to be truly effective, it would slide, and not roll correctly on many surfaces. This is where optical mice came in.
Optical computer mice work by illuminating the surface that they are on by use of an LED or laser diode. Laser mice became popular in 2004 when Logitech introduced the MX1000 laser mouse.
Optical mice take "pictures" of the surface that they are on, and send that image to a digital signal processor.
This DSP compares the image just sent to the previous image and determines how far and in what direction the mouse has moved. It then sends a signal to the computer processor, which moves your cursor on screen. This process takes place very quickly, and happens from 1500 - 6000 times per second.
A laser mouse has many advantage over a rollerball mouse. A laser mouse can be used on almost any surface. There are no moving parts on the movement detection side, so nothing to mechanically break. They are more sensitive then a rollerball mouse so are better for precise operations such as fine graphics work.
Finally, laser computer mice are much faster, allowing faster movement of the onscreen pointer, which is very useful for computer gamers.
Computer mice today come in many different forms. Rollerball mice are getting harder and harder to find, while laser mice are becoming the norm. But there are different forms of "mice" on the market today.
Computer Mouse Buying Guide
When you are looking at buying computer mice, there are a few things to take into account. The main one being, what are you going to use the mouse for? There is a difference in price, size, and functionality between say a mouse for gaming, and a mouse made for a laptop. Here are some things that you will need to decide...
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