Apple Mighty Mouse

by TDJ

To left click or right click, that is the question
When you first encounter the Mighty Mouse (MM) the most obvious observation is that there are no buttons in the traditional sense. Much like the latest Apple one button mouse the whole body of the mouse pushes down when you click. The MM works via sensors in the front of the mouse that seem know which finger is doing the clicking. This is the first issue to note with the MM: how to get it to right click (assuming you?re a right handed user). You must have your finger off the left part of the mouse when doing a right click, otherwise it assumes you performed a left click. This took a while to figure out why I was left clicking nearly every time I wanted to right click, and to be honest it still is quite frustrating even after a few weeks of use.

Any which way but loose
The scroll ball is my favourite feature of the MM. Instead of the usual scroll wheel located between the left and right buttons, Apple have decided to use a little ball that can go either in the x or y directions. To get it to work you have to apply a little pressure (about the weight of your finger), and it works really well. You might think scrolling in the x direction is pretty useless but I noticed when using other mice that I found it really noticeable that feature was missing. If the ball is pushed harder it acts as the third button for the mouse, again with the entire body of the mouse moving to enable a click. One very important point regarding the ball is, DO NOT GET CRUMBS IN IT. I was eating my lunch at my desk and had some crumbs on my index finger, I rolled the ball and a few crumbs went under the ball rendering it useless, until I moved it in every direction vigorously and somehow dislodged the crumbs. This didn?t solve the problem entirely, as every now and again the ball stops working, and again, I have to move it like buggery to get it working.

Give it a squeeze

The squeeze buttons are my least favourite feature of the MM. You may look at the mouse and think ?cool its got extra buttons on either side, a 5 button mouse.? Wrong. They are two little pressure sensors that act as one button when you squeeze the MM. WTF indeed. And to actually get it to work you have to have squeeze pretty hard, and make sure your fingers are just in the right spot, otherwise your just sitting there squeezing your mouse. I?ve got it mapped to the application swapper, which I don?t use too regularly, so its annoyance is minimised. Nice idea Apple, but on MM-2, bin it, and just put some buttons on there.

Ergonomics are a myth
Apple has gone for form over function with the MM, as it is a pretty little white and grey oval shape, with no contouring to the hand at all. This is a big change from the Logitech wireless mouse I was using, which fitted my hand quite nicely. It feels like most of the time my fingertips are all trying to touch each other at the same time if that makes any sense. In other words, my hand feels sore if I?m working the mouse regularly, which makes it useless for any serious computer user.

Apple has come up with some interesting ideas for the MM, however most of them are flawed, the scroll ball is nifty, but fragile, while the squeeze buttons are just plain annoying. The MM can only be recommended for the Apple enthusiast, who must have all things Apple (my MM was a present from my Uncle who is a Mac nut). To get the MM working as it should the latest version of OS X is required. If you?re in need of a comfortable mouse that you don?t need to think before you click then look elsewhere. At least Apple now sells two button mice.

Rating: 4.9/10

  • Apple Mighty Mouse
  • by TDJ
  • Published on October 1st, 2005
4.9 / 10

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