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I tend to spend a lot of time using a PC, be it a laptop or a desk top, and, as many people may be the same, I have my favourite little laptop that I tend to try and use as often as possible, mainly due to the fact that I know it so well, (isn't that a song?).
Anyway, a few months ago my favourite laptop decided to start playing up on me, well, the touchpad did anyway, staring to become sluggish and quite unresponsive. So I had to decide whether to replace the touchpad itself, which as anyone with a Dell laptop will know is not a pretty prospect as it means stripping more off than a Swedish girl working on London, (no offence to Swedes intended), or start using an external mouse so that I could carry on until I got around to repairing the touchpad.
I decided on the latter, checking around for a suitable external mouse so that I could carry on with my favourite machine without ripping it apart to replace the touch pad. Luckily it was actually a friend of mine that gave me one of her old 'mouse' to keep me active until I had bought my own, but since using this particular mouse I have grown rather fond of it and have realised that it is just as easy, and as useful, to keep using this mouse rather than fixing my touchpad or even buying a new one. And before you start calling me Scrouge McDuck, I offered my friend the market price for this mouse but she told me not to be silly and said I could keep it as long as I bought her a G & T next time we went out for a drink.
Anyway, this mouse that I am talking about is called Mickey... no, I'm kidding, it's actually called a Microsoft 1000 wireless mobile mouse which describes the mouse as it is, a wireless mouse from a small company called Microsoft.
So what is this mouse then..?
It is a 2GHz optical wireless mouse, so that there's no wires to struggle around, and as it's optical it means that you don't need to have it on a mouse mat as it runs quite happily on most surfaces. Although it struggles on glass as the little red light simply shines right through that surface, confusing the mouse beyond belief... (mice aren't really that clever at the end of the day are they?). But it runs smoothly on wooden tables, book covers and more, even my leg as I sometimes use that.
It's slightly smaller that a standard mouse, being 55mm wide by 96mm long and 30mm in height.
It has the usual 3 button functions, left, right and centre, with the press of the scroll wheel acting as the third button, and a 1000 DPI sensitivity, hence the name 1000 wireless.
There is a little on/off switch which is designed to help you save the battery power, but as the battery is supposed to last up to ten month on moderate use there's no real need to use this switch really, but I use it if I'm not using the mouse for a while.
There is a little 'hole' on the underside of the mouse which houses the Nano transceiver, keeping this important device safe and sound so that it doesn't get damaged.
To use this mouse, basically as it's wireless, you do need a way of connecting it to the PC you're using, and this is where something called a Nano transceiver comes in handy as this is what slots into the USB port of your PC.
This Nano Transceiver is very small indeed and once fitted into the USB port can actually be left in there without it interfering with the laptops 'footprint' so that when you put it away, in a bag or such like, it won't make a blind bit of difference.
Turn it over and you'll see there is a little 'hole' which can house the Nano transceiver, keeping this important device safe and sound so that it doesn't get damaged. There's also the battery slot and the little on and off switch, which helps save the life of the battery.
Before you do rush out and buy this you have to make sure that it will run on your system, which it should do really as it runs on all Windows OS, except windows XP 64-bit, for some reason), and Mac OS X v10.4 - 10.6.
Then all you need on your PC is a spare USB port and an AA battery, which slots into the mouse itself.
You Don't even need to mess around finding drivers as it is that good old 'plug and play' system, which simply means that you plug the Nano Transceiver into the USB port and it automatically locates the drivers, install the right ones and gets you ready for action on seconds.
The one I have has a black plastic casing but it does come in several other colours to suit a persons individuality, such as pink, red, blue and others, so there's possibly one there for every person.
Since using this mouse I've slightly gone off using a touchpad on laptops, (but I do try and keep my hand in on those as I don't want to lose the ability to use them really).
It's a rather lovely shape, being slightly curved over the tops and the sides, so that when I'm using it it actually feels nice in my hand. The little grey coloured wheel, which is on the middle towards the front, as most are, is smooth running with the button functions on either side feeling like they should. By this I mean that when you press them they make a slight clicking noise which makes me feel like they are responding to the touch of my fingers.
My laptop responds straight away, which is what is supposed to happen with any good wireless mouse, as if it was a wired mouse really. Although I did have to go into my settings to change the speed and sensitivity, but once done and saved that was, well, job done.
I like the fact that you can either leave the little Nano transceiver in my laptop it slot it back into the mouse itself. This keep the little device safe and always at hand without the fear of losing it.
So what about the price?
This wireless optical mouse sells for around the £12.00 region, which is pretty good going considering how useful it has become and how responsive it is too. It is a good size to carry around in any laptop bags and the little wireless 'nano transceiver' is such a small size it can either stay in the USB port or even slots into the purpose built slot in the mouse itself.
In all, if your laptop touchpad becomes as useful as a chocolate teapot on a warm day, or you just prefer a mouse than a touchpad, then this is well worth looking at as it is as good as a touchpad and as responsive as a cat chasing a mouse.
© Blissman70 2012