Thursday, March 11, 2010

I Have a Problem

Yes, I said this week I would cover three main types of backups.  Yes, I have only covered one.  There are still two days left!  First, I have to come clean about something.  Something I am not proud of.  Something not many people know about.  I have a problem.  I like mice.  Not the little furry things pictured here, but the kind that you use to control your computer.  Well, not the kind you probably use to control your computer, but the kind that you could be using to control your computer if you are as big of a Geek as me.

The truth is, my love affair began with my first optical mouse in 1999.  It was Microsoft's first Intellimouse Explorer and it was also the first optical mouse to hit the mass market (Pictured to the right).  My dad bought it for me when he bought one for himself.  It was expensive, it had its own software and as many buttons on it as I have fingers on one hand (that's the standard five if you have never met me).  It was the first to glow that familiar red of many optical mice today.  It worked great, fit my hand and never got all dirty inside like the older ball mice did.  While I may not use it today, I still have my first mouse and it works as well as it did the day I got it.  In fact, it is one of probably 20 or so mice that I own.  I know, I know its excessive, but keep in mind, I have several personal computers that I use around my house and I work on computers for a living.

So why mice?  To be honest, I have been on a quest the past 10 or so years to try the newest mice technologies out there.  You may laugh, but a year does not pass in which there is some new advancement in mouse technologies.  From sensitivity, to style, to the ability for buttons to change function based on what program you are using, mice are as varied as the people that use them.  If you think about it, it makes sense.  Your hand is not the same size as mine.  Your fine motor control is not the same, and you probably do not use your mouse on the same surfaces that I do.  Yet most people stick with the drab inexpensive mouse that comes with their computer.

If you use a computer regularly and you are still using the generic mouse that came with your computer, do yourself a favor and give a new mouse a spin.  The best way to go shopping is to go to a store where they have them out for you to touch.  Bring some hand sanitizer and give them all a spin.  You will notice right away that they all have their own unique feel and fit.  Some will feel natural, while others will feel off.  After you found one that feels nice in your hand, take a look at the price and features.  Wireless is nice for the geek on the go, while wired won't eat your batteries and will be more reliable.  You may see a sensitivity rating in DPI.  The higher the DPI, the faster and smoother your cursor can move on the screen.  There will be different types of scroll wheels, different type of sensors and different numbers of buttons.  And for those that care, yes they come in a variety of  "fun" colors and patterns.  I cannot begin to explain all of the differences, but google can be your friend.  I personally like mice from Microsoft, Logitech and Razer.  Any of their mice are great options.  A new mouse will set you back anywhere between $10 and $150.  The different features and build quality factor into that price.  As always, if you have questions, please feel free to post them below.  With that off of my chest, I can now resume my regularly scheduled posts.  Thank you.

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