Re: Linux stifles innovation...

Gregory S. Youngblood (
Sun, 18 Feb 2001 12:00:03 -0600 (CST)

On Sun, 18 Feb 2001, Michael H. Warfield wrote:

> On Sat, Feb 17, 2001 at 09:15:08PM -0800, Ben Ford wrote:
> > >
> > > On the other hand, they make excellent mice. The mouse wheel and
> > > the new optical mice are truly innovative and Microsoft should be
> > > commended for them.
> > >
> > The wheel was a nifty idea, but I've seen workstations 15 years old with
> > optical mice. It wasn't MS's idea.
> I think their "innovation" was not requiring the optical cross
> grid mouse pad common on Sun workstations over the years. The Microsoft
> optical mouse uses variations in the surface characteristics of whatever
> it's on to perform it's function. The old optical mice just used two
> different colors of LED's (red and IR) and a special pad. This would
> actually have to scan and track the surface below it. Don't know that
> I've seen anyone do that before.

I remember being at a computer show in Minneapolis where a small company
was showing off this mouse that worked on a variety of surfaces without a
ball. I'm trying to remember if the mouse was optical or used yet another
method of functioning -- I think it was optical, though I could be
mistaken. This was in 1992/1993.

The point is, I really do not believe Microsoft made the "leap" to provide
opitcal mice without the need of the mousepad grid. Their "innovation" was
in marketing it on a wide scale though.

I could be mistaken - if so then let's give them their credit - but I have
a hard time believing it was their idea without some serious proof.

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