Mouse – Concept, functions and types of mouse

We explain what the mouse is and the main functions of this peripheral device. Also, as it is an optical and mechanical mouse.

The mouse facilitates interaction with graphical interfaces on computer systems.

What is the mouse?

In computing, it is called mouse (from English: “mouse”), mouse, pointer or pointer to a peripheral input device, for manual use, designed to facilitate user interaction with graphical environment interfaces of numerous computer systems. Today it is a popular and traditional computer accessory.

The mouse works by capturing through various mechanisms the movement that the user impresses when moving it with his hand, and translates it on the screen through the position of a cursor or pointer, usually in the shape of an arrow or hand.
To do this, it must transmit the signals of the movement detected to the computer, which can be done through a cable (PS / 2 or USB) or remotely, through various wireless devices (wireless).

The earliest versions of the mouse were made of wood and were designed in the 1960s by Douglas Engelbart and Bill English at the Standford Research Institute. Although today they would look rudimentary, their operation and design were basically the same, and although they were called “X and Y axis indicators for visual systems”, they were nicknamed “mouse” due to their resemblance to this little animal. Eventually the nickname would remain and the first contemporary mouse model was introduced in 1968.

In many systems this device has been replaced by the touch screen, which allows the user’s own hand, or a special indicator bar, to enter movement information directly into the system, without the need for additional hardware.

Mouse functions

The mouse is intended to reflect the movements of our hand.

The mouse has the task of reflecting the movements of our hand in the virtual graphic environment of the system, that is, of serving as extension or representation of our will within the computer system.

Thus, we can dictate to the system which applications we want to run, by pressing the button (or one of them: the Macintosh mouse has a single button, while the IBM mouse has two) on the icon that represents it, or even where we would like to move it in the folder system, represented by windows that display its content.

Similarly, the mouse can serve as an interface to application software such as video games, spreadsheets, and much more.

Optical mouse

It is known as optical mice to which have a system for tracking the position of the device by means of a light-emitting entity (such as the Laser or the LED), instead of the usual rotating ball that is inside the mechanics. This allows for a smoother, more precise ride that is less prone to dirt build-up. However, it requires higher energy consumption.

Mechanical mouse

mechanical mouse
The mechanical mouse is much less accurate than optical mice.

This is the name of the classic mouse, whose operation requires a rubber or plastic ball inserted inside to move two wheels or fixed axes, whose movement is transmitted through electronic circuits to the computer.

This mechanism is the traditional and most economical, but it is much less precise than optical mice and has a tendency to accumulate dirt when moving on the surface, which leads to obstacles and other deficiencies in its operation.