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ErgoSlider Offers a New Mouse Alternative

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the would-hate-to-draw-with-it dept.

Input Devices 118

Zothecula writes "First achieving widespread use with the release of the Apple Macintosh in 1984, the humble computer mouse has reigned supreme as the digital pointing device of choice for more than 20 years. During this time it has seen off countless pretenders to the throne, as well as undergoing some useful (and otherwise) redesigns such as Apple's Magic Mouse, Microsoft's Arc, the 3D-Spheric-Mouse, the AirMouse and the Orbita. The latest product to take a shot at the title is the Ergo-Slider Plus+, a device that looks like a padded wrist rest, but with a cylinder at the front that rolls and slides in a special groove to move the onscreen cursor." It reminds me of the Isopoint pointing device in the long-passed Apple-compatible Outbound Laptop.

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first post? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846436)

first post?

Re:first post? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846464)

Congratulations. Have a biscuit.

No trackpoint, no sale (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846444)

I'll say the same thing as always: no trackpoint, no sale!

Re:No trackpoint, no sale (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846648)

So you're the one!

isn't this old? (3)

Picardo85 (1408929) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846450)

i've seen something that looks exactly like that in offices across the country for many years ...

Re:isn't this old? (1)

mikael_j (106439) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846470)

It's old alright, we have a bunch of similar devices where I work.

Re:isn't this old? (1)

alphatel (1450715) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846522)

What happens when you push the cursor to the left-most left and it still won't go more left? Unlike a mouse or ball this device has an end stop.

Re:isn't this old? (2)

Picardo85 (1408929) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846576)

that's a very good question! the device is designed so that you never have to move the "roll" more than a centimeter or two to get across the screen. So if you face yourself with having it at one end of the device you can move it to the middle, or the other end if you feel like it. This will "reset" it. It's actually a rather well thought through device.

Re:isn't this old? (1)

leonardluen (211265) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847922)

so, you are saying this isn't meant for gaming where there really is no "edge of the screen" when moving your avatar around.

Re:isn't this old? (1)

fbjon (692006) | more than 3 years ago | (#34850234)

The similar RollerMouse (a fairly old product line by now) has buttons at either end of the bar's movement slot that move the cursor at some set speed. If you hit the end, the button is pressed and the mouse cursor keeps moving. Also, pushing the bar down is the same as a left click, very nifty.

Re:isn't this old? (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847838)

It may be set up with proportional positioning; the horizontal location of the roller bar might be proportional to the horizontal location of the mouse pointer. Moving the bar all the way to the left brings the mouse pointer all the way to the left side of the screen. Moving the bar all the way to the right brings the mouse pointer to the right side of the screen.

Re:isn't this old? (1)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | more than 3 years ago | (#34849752)

It goes *ding* and moves to the right.

Re:isn't this old? (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 3 years ago | (#34849870)

It goes *ding* and moves to the right.

I'm afraid that most Slashdotters are too young to get that.

Re:isn't this old? (5, Insightful)

Half-pint HAL (718102) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846542)

Ah, no. That thing is an "ErgoSlider", or possibly an "ErgoSlider Plus".

As you can tell from the name, the "ErgoSlider Plus+" is something completely different and totally new.

Anyway, on a more serious note, I have read several reviews complaining about the ErgoSlider causing cramps and pains. There's no easy way to carry out the rotating motion, for one thing. For another, wrist rests are bad for your wrists. Wrist rests should only be used while resting because you are supposed to keep your wrist straight and neutral while carrying out fine hand movements. The ErgoSlider has you dropping your wrist habitually, and it leads to increased movement of the wrist during operation, leading to strain on the tendons and nerves, particularly within the carpal tunnel.

HAL

Re:isn't this old? (3, Informative)

Half-pint HAL (718102) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846548)

Oh, and if anyone wants to trust the reviewer's knowledge of ergonomics over mine, notice that in the photo he is using a laptop on a riser without an external keyboard. That's a massive, massive ergonomics no-no.

HAL.

Ergonomic no-no? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846650)

notice that in the photo he is using a laptop on a riser without an external keyboard. That's a massive, massive ergonomics no-no.

Only if he is using the keyboard at all. Maybe he types all his text with the mouse (tsk, tsk. Kids these days ;-D

On a serious note: I couldn't agree more.

Re:isn't this old? (1)

arekq (651007) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847718)

Totally agree with you.
Well, at least they didn't claim that this is a mouse killer. :)

Re:isn't this old? (4, Funny)

scdeimos (632778) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846652)

As you can tell from the name, the "ErgoSlider Plus+" is something completely different and totally new.

Think I'll wait until the ErgoSlider Plus# is released.

Re:isn't this old? (1)

digitig (1056110) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847016)

And the Objective Ergo Slider Plus for Apple users?

Re:isn't this old? (1)

NevarMore (248971) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847704)

And the Objective Ergo Slider Plus for Apple users?

For Apple users?

I believe that would be the Subjective Ego Stroker .

ZING!

Re:isn't this old? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34850044)

Mod parent up! Insightful! Recommended reading! An inconvenient truth!

Give it an award!

Re:isn't this old? (1)

Chemisor (97276) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847898)

> Think I'll wait until the ErgoSlider Plus# is released.

Is that because you pound on it or because it cuts your wrists?

Re:isn't this old? (0)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847344)

Incorrect summary?

"First achieving widespread use with the release of the Apple Macintosh in 1984"

The Mac was neither the first mouse-based computer, nor did it "widespread" the concept. - Mac sold around 100,000 units its first five years (mainly because it cost approximately ten times more than other computers). But Amigas and Commodore 64s, all with mice, sold 40+ million. Example: WorldWideWeb may have been first browser but it was Mosaic that popularized the web & made it explode for ordinary people.

Likewise I would give credit for widespread mouse usage to the C64, the most popular computer of its day. By the end of the 80s most people with mice in their hands were sitting in front of the C64 (or its more-advanced cousin: Amiga). Not the overpriced ($4000) Macs.

Re:isn't this old? (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 3 years ago | (#34848278)

No, the Commodore 64 did not use a mouse. (Although you could buy one as an add-on peripheral.) The Commodore64 mouse didn't hit the market until 1986, well after computer mouse had been made popular by the Macintosh, the Amiga, and the Atari ST. By the end of the 80s most people with a mouse in their hand were sitting in front of Motorola 68000 based machines or early MS-Windows boxes.

Re:isn't this old? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847598)

This device makes zero sense if it is not built into a keyboard. And then it becomes a keyboard which you have to repair instead of binning it and spending another five or six bucks on a new Keytronics, Mitsumi, or other minimally acceptable brand. (Or as I do, pull another USB hub media keyboard that you got at the flea market off the stack and rejoice in spending no more than five bucks on a keyboard with fancy features.)

Re:isn't this old? (1)

m0rphin3 (461197) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846714)

Probably the MouseTrapper [mousetrapper.com] , first made in 1984(!).

Re:isn't this old? (2)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846854)

yeah, but gizmag lamers are not old enough to have been to real banks, post offices, tax office or anywhere. and actually it's not a real article even at that, just a short blurb. AND THERE'S A FRIGGIN SUBSCRIBE TO US time delayed pop-over

not only that, but the product is named plus+. meaning it's already gotten a "plus" AND a plus sign!

Re:isn't this old? (1)

meza (414214) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847938)

Yeah I remember my friends dad using something similar for their Windows 3.11 computer. So that should have been mid 90s.

Re:isn't this old? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34848836)

It's a good design. But it's far from new! I've been happily using Contour Design's RollerMouse for over a year.
It took me only a couple of days to adapt to the design. No more wrist pain.

http://ergo.contourdesign.com/products/rollermouse/default.aspx

Re:isn't this old? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34849036)

My point exactly. Only main difference seems to be, that here the wide rolling "stick" is fully exposed instead of being partly covered. Those have been sold especially for people suffering from the wrist problems when using a traditional mouse.

Let's see if somebody reinvents the mouse pushbutton which can be pressed by leg (knee or foot). Or the drawing pad! Or new ergonomic mouse utilizing a manual BALL instead of a led or a laser, whoo-hoo!

Re:isn't this old? (1)

EvilSurfinCow (763679) | more than 3 years ago | (#34849388)

Curious, are you somewhere in Europe or in the US? I've never seen these in the US before, but in Finland, they seem quite common. Just wondering if they've been over here for years and are a new thing to the US?

Re:isn't this old? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34849764)

yeah it is old.

I bought a similar thing called a 'roller mouse' made by contourDesign.com back in 2003 or 2004... worked fine, lasted a pretty long time.

If the basic patents have gone off, then this 'new' concept must be at least 17 years old. :-)

A better mousetrap? (3, Insightful)

hairyfish (1653411) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846476)

The accuracy, efficiency, and robustness of the optical mouse is already the perfect HID. Why do people persist with the folly of trying to improve on this perfection?

Re:A better mousetrap? (3, Insightful)

Nialin (570647) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846546)

Perfect for what, RSS? The mouse needs to become ergonomic enough to help prevent injury. Change ain't bad.

Re:A better mousetrap? (1)

frank_adrian314159 (469671) | more than 3 years ago | (#34849398)

I find that a trackball and one of these [kinesis-ergo.com] work just fine. As an added benefit, it keeps most bystanders off your computer.

Re:A better mousetrap? (1)

_merlin (160982) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846600)

Haha - don't you remember when the mechanical mouse was also "perfect" and the optical mouse was an unreliable gimmick that needed a mousepad with a funny pattern? Or before that, when you'd have to be a wimp to use a mouse at all? Any mouse gives me sore ring and little fingers, and a sore wrist. Give me a pen tablet any day!

CLI ! only wimps use GUIs (1)

fantomas (94850) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847322)

What is this pen tablet you speak of? vi doesn't need this, what could be more intuitive than 'k' to move up, 'j' to move down, 'h' to move left and 'l' to move right. All children and new computer users understand this without tuition and it is guaranteed RSI free! Easiest way of working in a document!

Re:CLI ! only wimps use GUIs (1)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847628)

vi doesn't need this, what could be more intuitive than 'k' to move up, 'j' to move down, 'h' to move left and 'l' to move right. All children and new computer users understand this without tuition and it is guaranteed RSI free! Easiest way of working in a document!

Ok, so vi isn't intuitive, but once you learn it you'll work far less hard to get real work done than you would doing the same tasks with gedit, kate, or notepad. If you spend more than half your waking life in a text editor, "intuitive" becomes a relatively unimportant quality.

Re:A better mousetrap? (1)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847488)

I'm completely spoiled by custom keybindings via xbindkeys and this device [newegg.com] . The format is nearly perfection for me, the wireless tracking is excellent, and the keyboard itself is pretty good, too. Can't imagine ever going back to using separate keyboard and pointer devices.

Touch or gesture is the future (1)

Troll-Under-D'Bridge (1782952) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846636)

Agreed. The post-Mice era will either be touch screen (iPhone) or gesture-based (Kinect), if not mind control. The device appears to inherit the main short-coming of the mouse as a pointing device. It is an indirect approximation of the movement of one's finger. You move the device blindly while looking at a triangle-like thing moving at the screen, far from obvious to new users, whose real world experience would involve manipulating an object while looking directly at it. The Slider looks more like a niche product for those suffering from RSI. So, yes, it's an alternative, the device that would overthrow the reign of the mighty mouse.

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (1)

johnnysaucepn (1263108) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846668)

Touchscreens are great for devices that are either sitting in your lap, or you're only using for short bursts, or both. Having trialled touchscreens in an office settings, I can say that they are not comfortable.

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846738)

Nothing quite like holding up your arms towards the screen all day. Not to mention constantly having your sight obscured by all that flesh hanging in front of it and greasing up the screen.

Too much information. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846828)

I don't think Slashdot is interested in descriptions of your masturbation experiences...

Re:Too much information. (1)

tophermeyer (1573841) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847440)

I don't think Slashdot is interested in descriptions of your masturbation experiences...

Speak for yourself!

GP, please continue.

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846762)

The post-Mice era will either be touch screen (iPhone) or gesture-based (Kinect)

This is complete and utter bullshit. Touch can never work for anything that isn't handheld, and gestures are inaccurate and exhausting when used for extended periods of time.

mind control

Well, yeah. Once we get the tech.

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (5, Informative)

Peeteriz (821290) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846840)

Both touch and gesture are extremely faulty from ergonomics/RSI viewpoint - they will not be and can not be 'the future', simply as the hands of homo sapiens simply won't tolerate handling touchscreens or gesturing 8 hours a day, 5 days a week - they'll get too tired much, much sooner; and if you *need* to use them still while tired, greet RSI and damage to your hands.

Mouse+keyboard causes problems for some people in excessive use and can often be fixed with proper positioning. Full-day use of touchscreens and gestures will cause problems for everyone.

Really, even a full day of having your hands touching but not resting on a touchscreen would be physically impossible. A full day of having your arms raised in whatever gesture would be physically impossible.

Touch/gesture interfaces are suitable for occasional use, but not for replacing your main workday interface. Sorry, but you'll have to find something else that involves a rested position of your main muscles.

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34847238)

I use touch+gestures eight hours a day, and it's much better than mouse+keyboard.

http://www.google.co.uk/#q=touchstream&fp=1&cad=b

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (1)

Crudely_Indecent (739699) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847262)

Sorry, but you'll have to find something else...

My favorite is Eye Tracking [wikipedia.org] . Unfortunately, the device [wikipedia.org] makes the wearer look like Hannibal Lechter.

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (1)

tophermeyer (1573841) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847468)

Eye trackers are getting a lot better. I've always wondered about the feasibility of using a couple of IR cameras on the top corners of the monitor to track gaze direction. Seems like it would be workable, even if it is only practical in certain environments.

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (1)

skarphace (812333) | more than 3 years ago | (#34849928)

This might be a problem with cross-eyed people, though.

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (1)

Crudely_Indecent (739699) | more than 3 years ago | (#34850840)

So you only track one eye...the good one.

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34847942)

I totally agree, touch and gesture input ideas are obviously going to become very tiring, very quickly, and the fools who thought them up shouldn't even have spent more than a few minutes thinking about them before they realised this. Nothing will beat the mouse and keyboard.

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (1)

Rary (566291) | more than 3 years ago | (#34848422)

Touch is too limited. I'm not reaching across my desk to tap on my monitor all day long, nor am I going to sacrifice my neck to stare down at a device that sits in my lap all day. Ergonomics demands that my hands and my eyes be in different places.

Touch is perfect for small handheld devices (smartphones, audio devices) and quick-use machines (ATMs). For long term use, I need to rest my hands on my desk and look straight ahead at my monitor. This means either a keyboard and mouse or some evolution of that concept.

Re:Touch or gesture is the future (1)

Lucidus (681639) | more than 3 years ago | (#34848518)

I strongly disagree. Most users do not watch the cursor moving around on the screen, but rather concentrate on a region of interest as the cursor moves into the desired position. I would contend that the ability to move the cursor predictably, without focusing directly on either the mouse or the cursor itself, offers major advantages.

Re:A better mousetrap? (1)

mikael_j (106439) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846684)

I've actually found the tablet+pen combo to be more precise and efficient for everyday GUI work with xterms or other terminal emulators (not for games though). Of course, it takes a little while to get used to and you need a good tablet, if you buy the cheapest used Trust tablet you can find you'll probably end up frustrated by it.

That said, I'm still waiting for a direct mind-machine interface with the visual output hooked up directly to either the optic nerve or the optic centre in the brain. Hopefully by then we'll also have (good) cybernetic eyes (higher res, better light sensitivity, capable of seeing a wider frequence range than our regular squishy eyes).

Re:A better mousetrap? (3, Insightful)

Smallpond (221300) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846876)

Easy to use graphics tablets have been around since as early as 1969 [acm.org] . The only reason mice are the standard is that they are cheap.

Re:A better mousetrap? (1)

lwsimon (724555) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847092)

And because they aren't as efficient. I have an older Wacom Intuos that I paid big bucks for, and I hate using it as a mouse for long periods - I have to move my hand over a foot to go from corner to corner on the screen! If it were any smaller, I'd have trouble with small details.

I *have* used a trackball for many things, including FPS gaming, and it was okay. I'm big to a Microsoft Arc these days, though, because it allows me to slightly curl my two smallest fingers under when my wrist begins to tire, and alternate between the two hand positions.

Re:A better mousetrap? (1)

Smallpond (221300) | more than 3 years ago | (#34849048)

If you want to just use it to do user interface operations, you need to set the scale down like a mouse. Typical screen:mouse motion is like 5:1, where a tablet by default is supposed to be more like 1:1 for doing fine graphics.

I hate trying to draw with a mouse. You need to zoom in so much that you are only seeing a tiny section of your work.

Good idea on changing hand positions.

Re:A better mousetrap? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846706)

It's basically the same device as Mousetrapper have sold for many years. This slashvert fails on basic background checks. http://www.mousetrapper.com/ [mousetrapper.com]

Re:A better mousetrap? (1)

Neil Boekend (1854906) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846746)

No. Any one pointer device can cause RSI (except probably a brain interface). Ergonomic ones delay the process, but the problem will re-emerge. Use two or more different ones. MS and Linux have no problem with a mouse, a trackball and a tablet connected. In the near future screens may come with an embedded touch interface. Use them all, switch often. The switching between them provides with an alternation of the muscles tortured, and thus with another delay. If this combined delay supersedes the time required to heal you are golden.
IANAD

Re:A better mousetrap? (1)

Ignacio (1465) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846782)

Even a brain interface can cause RSI. It just causes it in the brain instead of in the wrists.

Re:A better mousetrap? (1)

fregare (923563) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846910)

I know someone who has RSI of the brain.

Trackballs FTW! (2)

DG (989) | more than 3 years ago | (#34848184)

Because it ain't perfect.

I have a small cache of Logitech Trackballs (of a couple of different models) which I think are WAY better input devices. All the functions of a mouse, but the hand rests in a single location so I use less desk space and don't have to wobble all over the place to use it.

Once you go track(ball) you'll never go back.

I don't userstand why they aren't more popular.

DG

Re:Trackballs FTW! (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 3 years ago | (#34848358)

Crackers be fearing of the track, is all.

No, really, track is where it's at, baby. Go and try and find a discontinued Microsoft Trackball Explorer anywhere. If you can get one for less than $200, buy it - they're only increasing in value. A Logitech wireless trackball is the next best thing, but nothing - nothing compares to one of those Microsoft trackballs. It's like stroking a purring kitten, while Alyson Hannigan nuzzles your neck and Felicia Day nibbles on your earlobe.

try the L-TracX (1)

Chirs (87576) | more than 3 years ago | (#34849152)

Clearly Superior Technologies has a trackball called the L-TracX. Laser optical tracking, runtime switchable resolution (in the hardware), stainless steel rollers.

And of course the ball is standard pool-ball sized, so you can do this:

http://ajm.no-ip.info/CST/tb/img_2463.jpg [no-ip.info]

Re:A better mousetrap? (1)

1u3hr (530656) | more than 3 years ago | (#34850188)

The accuracy, efficiency, and robustness of the IBM Trackpoint is already the perfect HID. Why do people persist with the folly of trying to improve on this perfection?

Re:A better mousetrap? (1)

merxete (1965396) | more than 3 years ago | (#34850194)

What about the nouse [sciencedirect.com] ?

Ergo-Slider (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846478)

Thats really, really old news.

The ergo slider (or same but under other name), has been in use by at least the taxoffices in Finland for quite a few years. I also believe some of the banks use them.
So this isn't really new, if you want something new I suggest looking at the newer touchpad interfaces (10-GUI and the like), webcam interfaces (eg. the colored gloves) and voice control.

WAY old! (4, Informative)

FlyveHest (105693) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846480)

More than 10 years ago I had a coworker that suffered from RSS from mouse-use, and she got a piece of hardware that is more or less the spitting image of this device.

Slashvertisement, anyone?

Re:WAY old! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846562)

More than 10 years ago I had a coworker that suffered from RSS from mouse-use, and she got a piece of hardware that is more or less the spitting image of this device.

Slashvertisement, anyone?

I used to have that. Then I remembered a slashdot post from someone who claimed that RSS was caused by the very small movements that a mouse requires and that the body prefers large muscular movements.
10 pushups each day and I got rid of the problem. (Anything more than 0 is probably sufficient.)

Re:WAY old! (1)

stjobe (78285) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846702)

Yeah, same here. 1996-1997 something. Exact same principle. It's nothing "new" about this thing, they've been around for at least 15 years.

Re:WAY old! (2)

Gubbe (705219) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846800)

Just a hunch, but might they have been around 17 years [wikipedia.org] ?

Rollermouse has been the only product of this type that I have come across so far. This is the first time I've heard of an "ErgoSlider." Perhaps Rollermouse's patent expired and the clones are starting to roll in.

Re:WAY old! (1)

stjobe (78285) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847986)

Someone else posted with a link to the actual device my then co-worker used, the MouseTrapper [mousetrapper.com] . According to that poster, it was first made in 1984, so 27 years in fact.

Re:WAY old! (1)

ElectroPrime (1817866) | more than 3 years ago | (#34848642)

More than 10 years ago I had a coworker that suffered from RSS from mouse-use, and she got a piece of hardware that is more or less the spitting image of this device.

Slashvertisement, anyone?

Well, duh, XML-based formats are bad for you.

Basically an oversized trackpoint (2)

loufoque (1400831) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846488)

But not as good.

No video? (1)

master_p (608214) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846506)

Is there a video on how this device is used? the manufacturer's site doesn't have any. We can't really say if it works without seeing it in action.

Too Big (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846592)

My first thought is this device is too big. I guess they are aiming at the "static" market.

Too big (1)

franciscohs (1003004) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846602)

At the moment I saw the picture I knew this wouldn't work, that's it... NEXT!

Is this used in 1984? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846606)

It looks atrocious and can't possibly be "double-plus" good like it claims.

Re:Is this used in 1984? (1)

Smallpond (221300) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846888)

Plus+ is ad-speak for "maybe the third one will catch on"

Nothing new. (1)

Trracer (210292) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846608)

As many have previously said, this is hardly anything new.
For the last 10 years we've been using products like the Mousetrapper at work.
http://www.mousetrapper.com/ [mousetrapper.com]

Disappointing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846654)

This is essentially just an upside-down mouse, or a trackball. I was expecting some completely new kind of input device from the title.

WOW! (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846660)

Can I invest in your company?

Buahahaha... just kidding... that thing is just all sorts of fail. And if you're going to pimp your product with a fake slashdot article, you think next time you could use pictures of one that wasn't already 5 years old and covered in grime?

I've seen this before, and we USE them (1)

fluor2 (242824) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846700)

This seem like a copy-paste of the product RollerMouse [contourdesign.com] from Contour Design which have a lot of users at my company. We even have Autocad-people using this. Seem to me that it actually works, as they have less problems with shoulder-pains etc.

Re:I've seen this before, and we USE them (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846882)

You know, I can see this as potentially useful for cad, but I can't get away from the fact the it seems to get in the way of the keyboard. So often you need to do vertical or horizontal only movements, so that might be an advantage.

Maybe one of these with a chording keyboard under the other hand, or a customized pad like an N52? (Real CAD operators use keyboards - it's much faster than the mouse; you could say the same for photo editing and painting as well, I suspect)

How does this thing do with cheetos int he trough?

iam (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34846704)

as good http://hardware.slashdot.org

How many pointer devices do you need? (1)

dotcommie (1176557) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846900)

The picture shows a nipple, a touch pad, a mouse and a ErgoSlider Plus.. all on one computer. Are the other 3 pointed devices used to cover inadequacies of the ErgoSlider?

Re:How many pointer devices do you need? (1)

Tacvek (948259) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847236)

That's nowhere near enough. Where is the Wiimote, Trackball, joystick, Digitizer pad (e.g. Wacom pad), touch screen, gamepad, light pen, and neural interface?

Seriously though, for avoiding RSI, having a variety of pointer devices available is not a bad idea. Not to mention that each pointer device has some benefits versus the others for certain applications.

Mousetrapper (0)

the_arrow (171557) | more than 3 years ago | (#34846936)

Not much different from Mousetrapper [mousetrapper.com] it seems.

WTB a hand held eraser point JOYSTICK (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34847074)

Anyone ever seen a hand held 'thumb mouse'?

    I've been looking for years for a gamer style joystick with an IBM 'eraser-point' type controller mounted on the end of a cylinder that has an up/down clicker function.

    A device like this could be adjusted for rate of gain on the x/y axes performing click/drag operations with no wrist or arm movements allowing the arms to be at rest, not even on the desk.

Sounds like the name of (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34847446)

A dildo

awkward (1)

AntEater (16627) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847512)

It just looks weird and bit awkward to use. Maybe I'm just stuck in my own little rut but I think I'll stick with my big fat Kensington trackball.

Re:awkward (2)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847952)

Exactly. I've been a long time user of trackballs. The article specifically says "the device is clinically proven to reduce muscle strain by letting users move the onscreen pointer without overusing their wrists". Which is basically what I realized a long time ago with trackballs. They let you control the pointer with very good accuracy, while allowing you to leave your wrist in, and entire arm, in a single position. Only your fingers (or thumb depending on the trackball) have to move, and you leave the mouse in one spot, ensuring that you don't put your arm in some weird position.

These things are all over our office (1)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 3 years ago | (#34847974)

These are not new. There are 2 or 3 people in my cube farm who have a device just like that, just uglier. There's a few variations, including one that is an integral part of the keyboard. At this office, anyone who requests it can get an ergonomic analysis of their cube and this is one of the options they recommend for certain people.

c0m (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34848126)

Naw (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34848170)

Can't see the same range of movement and freedom as a mouse, almost like using an Etch-a-Sketch for modern computing. Also moving away from optical sensors back to mechanical rollers, how long before this cylinder gets gummed up from dead skin cells and finger oil?

uh, tablet anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34849560)

and i don't mean a touch screen. i've been using a wacom for years, it's ergonomic, feels as natural as writing and customizable for right-click, left-click, etc.

anytime i pick up a mouse now it's to plug it in for the IT guy who isn't used to a tablet.

Patented? (1)

toxonix (1793960) | more than 3 years ago | (#34849584)

I don't use any input device. I control a complex set of metaphorical gestures
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