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View Full Version : Why do the Mac mice only have one button?


Gary King
Jun 1, 2005, 08:20 PM
Why do the Mac mice only have one button? Just curious as to who invented this craziness. I know you can plug in other mice, but... one-button? :eek:

mad jew
Jun 1, 2005, 08:22 PM
Mainly because Steve is too stubborn to get a second button. :D

MacTruck
Jun 1, 2005, 08:34 PM
You know its funny, you don't need more than one button on a mouse. You can click ctrl and click to access the menus. Infact I don't even use a mouse. I use the keyboard for all navigation. I use tab to navigate throughout all the fields. Never needed a mouse. Infact I think that at WWDC we are discontinuing the mouse altogether. It is far outdated, heck its been around since 1993 for Jobs sakes. Well I hope I don't get fired by Steve now for letting the big secret out. Anyway the keyboard is the Key to navigation. Koo Koo.

Sincerely,

Rosco Peco Train
Apple Design Engineer

BornAgainMac
Jun 1, 2005, 09:16 PM
Beginners get confused with 2 buttons on their mouse. If you ever get a chance, watch a beginner use their computer. It is so frustrating the watch. If a two button mouse comes from Apple, it will be within a week according to rumors.

Fukui
Jun 1, 2005, 09:16 PM
Well, I just gave my old mac to someone and it has a two button mouse (sony). I tried explaining (she's never used a computer before), and just like the classic examples people cite, she got all confused about which button to double click, which one to drag and click etc. When I told her she could get a mouse with just one button, she said "Really? I want that!" So I would say it still feasable.

And honestly, my left finger starts to hurt after using a two-button, but the apple mouse I use my whole hand... count me converted.:eek: (Though some other way to use the scrolling or right click on the mouse would be welcome)

DakotaGuy
Jun 1, 2005, 09:20 PM
Why do the Mac mice only have one button? Just curious as to who invented this craziness. I know you can plug in other mice, but... one-button? :eek:


There are some people that would say who invented the craziness of mice that have many complex controls on them. Steve and many in Apple still believe in the one button mouse. If they were easy to convince that a multi-function would be better, the single button mouse would have been gone years ago.

I think it is probably time to move on and expand somewhat, but I still use my one-button mouse without any issues. At this point I really doubt that a multi-function mouse would improve the speed of computing for me. A right click might be nice, but Control-Click is really not that hard to get used to.

iGary
Jun 1, 2005, 09:27 PM
The people who introduced the world's first consumer mouse came up with this "crazyness."

katie ta achoo
Jun 1, 2005, 09:37 PM
And honestly, my left finger starts to hurt after using a two-button, but the apple mouse I use my whole hand... count me converted.:eek: (Though some other way to use the scrolling or right click on the mouse would be welcome)


Ooh, I know what you mean. I have crazy tendinitis and using my trackpad or a 2 button mouse KILLS me. I love being able to plop down my whole hand to click! Much easier on the wrists and elbows.
Now.. if only I could do the same thing for viola! :)

Pistol Pete
Jun 1, 2005, 09:48 PM
You know its funny, you don't need more than one button on a mouse. You can click ctrl and click to access the menus. Infact I don't even use a mouse. I use the keyboard for all navigation. I use tab to navigate throughout all the fields. Never needed a mouse. Infact I think that at WWDC we are discontinuing the mouse altogether. It is far outdated, heck its been around since 1993 for Jobs sakes. Well I hope I don't get fired by Steve now for letting the big secret out. Anyway the keyboard is the Key to navigation. Koo Koo.

Sincerely,

Rosco Peco Train
Apple Design Engineer


HAHAHAHA you serious....you have to think.....just a little....apple wants pc users to feel comfortable and familiar with a mac.

not confused and frustrated...

JW8725
Jun 1, 2005, 09:57 PM
Having used PC mice all my life, i find the apple mouse a big problem. Sure does look pretty and is built excellently. But the fact that it doesnt have a scroller or a second button makes surfing the net a problem. A major one. I only now use my mac mouse as a second wireless option. For god sakes Mr Jobby make a better mouse!

dotdotdot
Jun 1, 2005, 10:01 PM
Everyone that complains about the one button mouse is either a power user or someone who uses computers a lot.

My grandparents use a dell laptop and only understand the left click. I told them the computer will break if you right click, so it was easy to teach them.

Fukui
Jun 1, 2005, 10:03 PM
Having used PC mice all my life, i find the apple mouse a big problem. Sure does look pretty and is built excellently. But the fact that it doesnt have a scroller or a second button makes surfing the net a problem. A major one. I only now use my mac mouse as a second wireless option. For god sakes Mr Jobby make a better mouse!
I used to be the same way.
But after using it for a few months...:eek:

Pistol Pete
Jun 1, 2005, 10:05 PM
lol well it might break....damn DELLS!!!

Cooknn
Jun 1, 2005, 10:22 PM
Maybe next week we'll finally get an Apple two button scroll mouse ;)

Blackheart
Jun 1, 2005, 10:26 PM
Mainly because Steve is too stubborn to get a second button. :D

Don't confuse Steve Jobs with Apple Computer. Steve Jobs had a 2 button mouse on his NeXT machines. As to the reason why Apple hasn't moved on, I have not a clue.

http://students.washington.edu/stuartbr/macrumors/next_mouse.jpg

EDIT: Added Picture

Cooknn
Jun 1, 2005, 10:34 PM
Don't confuse Steve Jobs with Apple Computer. Steve Jobs had a 2 button mouse on his NeXT machines.Sweet pic! Not very ergonomic though :D I'll always have a place in my heart for all things NeXT although I never owned one. I wonder how much that mouse cost if you bought it ala' cart back in the day...

Chrispy
Jun 1, 2005, 10:37 PM
Don't confuse Steve Jobs with Apple Computer. Steve Jobs had a 2 button mouse on his NeXT machines. As to the reason why Apple hasn't moved on, I have not a clue.

http://students.washington.edu/stuartbr/macrumors/next_mouse.jpg

EDIT: Added Picture

Those NeXT machines were soooooooooooooo far ahead of their time. I watched a video of Jobs showing a demo of NeXT and it blew my mind when I realized it was from the early 90s :eek: ! Jobs really knows how to make an OS that can impress.

Blackheart
Jun 1, 2005, 10:39 PM
Those NeXT machines were soooooooooooooo far ahead of their time. I watched a video of Jobs showing a demo of NeXT and it blew my mind when I realized it was from the early 90s :eek: ! Jobs really knows how to make an OS that can impress.

Yeah, I watched a video like that too. It was crazy nice compared to the competition. After I saw the video, I was dumbfounded how they never became popular... but then, I guess they have with OS X.

berol
Jun 1, 2005, 10:41 PM
Jef Raskin said years ago that there was a study that proved one-button mice were the most productive. I just found an interview from last year where he says it was 1 button largely due to user confusion and he'd give mac mice a 2nd button if he designed it today.

screensaver400
Jun 1, 2005, 11:38 PM
All I want is the current Apple mouse with some scroll device... The one button on my Powerbook works fine, but I couldn't imagine using it if it didn't have the scroll function. Why can't Apple take their current mouse, and put on one of those trackpad-like devices that Logitech uses for their v500?

SuperVillain
Jun 2, 2005, 10:22 AM
as a editor i can tell you the one buttton slows me down a lot!
for casual computer use i could see the reason for a one click mouse, but in the pro. feild a 2 button mouse is 10x more productive.
I still have a brand new apple pro mouse, untouched because i use my pc mouse on my mac.

yellow
Jun 2, 2005, 10:24 AM
For grandma and the kids!!

Ever heard of K.I.S.S?

Willy S
Jun 2, 2005, 10:34 AM
I dont care so much for the second button. A scroll-wheel is more inportant IMO.

ksz
Jun 2, 2005, 10:42 AM
Rosco Peco Train not withstanding, there is no justifiable reason left to adamantly support the one-mouse-button ideologue. The rest of the world has moved on and they are not moving back (though most of them never tasted the one-button contraption). Apple, on the other hand, may be gravitating away from their age-old attitude. Many Macintosh users have already abandoned the one-button mouse and it makes sense for Apple to standardize on the 2-button mouse (with scrollwheel) and leave the one-button fashion statement to the aftermarket industry for those who really truly must have their one glorious button.

:end of rant:

Tamer Brad
Jun 2, 2005, 10:42 AM
I got to go to the Apple store and use the Apple Mouse, and I was enthralled *_* I've never used such a simple mouse or one that felt so good to use.

173080
Jun 2, 2005, 11:09 AM
I love the single button mouse.

I hate scroll wheels because due to the way I place my hand on the mouse almost every time I click I hit the scroll wheel lightly and it messes up things. It gets annoying really fast.

The Apple Mouse is extremely comfortable and stylish. I don't see how they could achieve the seamless design with more buttons or a *gasp* scroll wheel that doesn't mess things up.

Tamer Brad
Jun 2, 2005, 11:11 AM
I hate scroll wheels ... they're completely inefficient!

Arrows and page-up and page-down are much better!

martin1000
Jun 2, 2005, 11:32 AM
Is there a way to use a two-button scroll wheel mouse with the mac?

yellow
Jun 2, 2005, 11:40 AM
Is there a way to use a two-button scroll wheel mouse with the mac?

Yes. Unplug your 1 button mouse. Plug in your multi-button mouse.

That's all.

EDIT: My office set-up (DP MDD w/ MS Optical Intellimouse)

strider42
Jun 2, 2005, 11:48 AM
besides the belief that a multibutton mouse was confusing and unnecessary when the MAc OS was first designed, people should realize that Mac OS was designed so you don't need it. If you look at windows, when you have nothing but the desktop showing, you can't do a lot of things without the second mouse button and contextual menus. meanwhile, Mac OS has a global menu bar at the top so all of those functions are always available. Mac OS does not need a second mouse, windows absolutely does. This wasn't just done to make a multibutton mouse unnecessary, it was done to ensure consitency at all times in all applications. Its an often overlooked fact in the differences between the two operating systems.

That all said, I love my 4 button and scrool wheel trackball (which funnily enough is made by MS). A multibutton mouse may not be needed, but it sure makes things easier once you understand computers a little bit.

Blackheart
Jun 2, 2005, 12:08 PM
Yes. Unplug your 1 button mouse. Plug in your multi-button mouse.

That's all.

EDIT: My office set-up (DP MDD w/ MS Optical Intellimouse)

Wanna send me your extra RAM?

mac 2005
Jun 2, 2005, 12:09 PM
Rosco Peco Train not withstanding, there is no justifiable reason left to adamantly support the one-mouse-button ideologue. The rest of the world has moved on and they are not moving back (though most of them never tasted the one-button contraption). Apple, on the other hand, may be gravitating away from their age-old attitude. Many Macintosh users have already abandoned the one-button mouse and it makes sense for Apple to standardize on the 2-button mouse (with scrollwheel) and leave the one-button fashion statement to the aftermarket industry for those who really truly must have their one glorious button.

:end of rant:

I have to agree. As someone who spends most of the day editing copy, the "right click" is far more intuitive than reaching for the control button and clicking for a contextual menu.

Even if Apple stands by the one-button mouse, is a scroll wheel too much of a departure?

Sharewaredemon
Jun 2, 2005, 12:10 PM
Everyone that complains about the one button mouse is either a power user or someone who uses computers a lot.

My grandparents use a dell laptop and only understand the left click. I told them the computer will break if you right click, so it was easy to teach them.


Hahah nice one!


I'm on the fence about this, I love the Apple mouse, but I never use it.

That having been said, I still think Apple should ship these with their computers, for the majority of people, it's enough.

yellow
Jun 2, 2005, 12:12 PM
Wanna send me your extra RAM?

:D

I have hundreds of extra (worthless) sticks.

maelstromr
Jun 2, 2005, 12:13 PM
Everyone that complains about the one button mouse is either a power user or someone who uses computers a lot.

My grandparents use a dell laptop and only understand the left click. I told them the computer will break if you right click, so it was easy to teach them.


L O L

nw43
Jun 2, 2005, 12:22 PM
When I got my new mac a few weeks ago I first assumed that I'd soon be buying a new 2 button mouse to go with it. However, after reading (numerous) threads on here about the apple mouse I decided to give it a trial and I have to say that I'm very happy with it. Agree that a scroller would be nice though.

Has anyone else noticed though that in some things (eg the dock or firefox links) it is possible to bring up a 'right-click menu' by holding down the mouse button? I think that this would be a great alternative to a second mouse button and should be available everywhere. Seems odd that it can be done on some occasions but not others.

yellow
Jun 2, 2005, 12:29 PM
Has anyone else noticed though that in some things (eg the dock or firefox links) it is possible to bring up a 'right-click menu' by holding down the mouse button? I think that this would be a great alternative to a second mouse button and should be available everywhere. Seems odd that it can be done on some occasions but not others.

Yes.. also note, Control-Click = Right-click.

nw43
Jun 2, 2005, 12:47 PM
Yes.. also note, Control-Click = Right-click.

Yeah, I knew about this but I meant as an alternative that still only requires one hand.

jazzmfk
Jun 2, 2005, 01:15 PM
At work, we have two button mice with the little scrolly wheel deals in them (Windows boxes). I understand the (supposed) convenience of the wheel, but the reality is (at least for me) is that it just hurts. I'd be afraid of carpal tunnel or something down the road. My hands are kinda big, so the one button (actually, no button on the Apple "the mouse IS the mouse button" mouse) works really well for me.

As to the people who say surfing is easier with a scroll wheel - I use a Griffin PowerMate. Again, for me, the motion is more natural between the thumb and index finger of the LH than the front-to-back motion on the RH. I simply place my LH on the Powermate, RH on the mouse.

(of course, I can see how this might be inconvenient for those that usually surf with one hand.......) :eek: :D

Sharewaredemon
Jun 2, 2005, 01:29 PM
(of course, I can see how this might be inconvenient for those that usually surf with one hand.......) :eek: :D


LOL ack!

those surfers need a back button too on their mouse.

Applespider
Jun 2, 2005, 01:56 PM
Agreed on power users like to have more mouse buttons but casual users really do get confused.

When my mother/sister had their PCs, I'd be talking them through a problem and tell them to right-click. After that, whenever I told them to click, they'd ask whether it was left or right. There are people in my office who don't know there are contextual menu items under the right mouse button on windows. They insist on copying and pasting from the Edit menu :eek:

doubleraven
Jun 2, 2005, 03:16 PM
Is there any reason why Apple couldn't have both a 2+wheel mouse (which I'd buy in a heartbeat, if it were bluetooth) and keep the "classic" one button mouse? Everyone seems to be acting like the introduction of a 2 button mouse would mean that everyone who uses Apples would need to use this, when they could continue with their standard one button, and offer a 2+, and on new computers, just make it an option which one you want.

Doesn't seem too difficult to me...

feakbeak
Jun 2, 2005, 03:42 PM
Is there any reason why Apple couldn't have both a 2+wheel mouse (which I'd buy in a heartbeat, if it were bluetooth) and keep the "classic" one button mouse? Everyone seems to be acting like the introduction of a 2 button mouse would mean that everyone who uses Apples would need to use this, when they could continue with their standard one button, and offer a 2+, and on new computers, just make it an option which one you want.

Doesn't seem too difficult to me...Now, you're making too much sense. Stop that!

I think most people who do not wish Apple to make a mutli-button mouse is not because Apple would stop offering the one-button mouse but that the 1st party software might start requiring more right/ctrl-clicking. They think it'll alter the nature of the software - I disagree. I think in software it is fine to have more obscure, but faster/efficient ways of accessing menus, options, etc. as long as there is still a consistent and intuitive way to use it for beginners. Most Apple users are big fans of keyboard shortcuts and those are more obscure and more efficient ways of doing things that could be done other ways. I don't see the harm in offering a multi-button scroll mouse in addition to the one-button mouse myself. Tons of 3rd party apps already make heavy use of right-clicking and many Apple apps already have it sparingly as well.

Above all, one-button, multi-button, scrolling, no scrolling, keyboard shortcuts, not keyboard shortcuts... it is all a matter of preference, type and frequency of usage, etc. It has nothing to do with better or worse or right or wrong - it's a personal preference. I say offer a variety of products that meet the markets demands and there is certainly a demand for an Apple multi-button mouse with scroll wheel, so why not offer it?

I bought the wireless Apple mouse for my Mac mini and gave it a good solid tryout for two months. I could use my mini alright with one button, I even got use to control clicking. I couldn't stand mouse-gesturing in Firefox that way though - but I stuck with it - two solid months without a right-mouse button on my Mac. I did not grow to enjoy the experience. I plugged in an MX510 and I was moving along much faster and was much more comfortable with my Mac user experience. Im now scrolling through webpages, mouse gesturing to navigate, using the extra mouse buttons on the MX510 for Expose and Dashboard functions. I love it! I'm not saying everyone would prefer it this way, but I do and I wish I could buy an Apple mouse to match my Apple keyboard - is that so wrong?

kwajaln
Jun 3, 2005, 12:13 AM
The answer = THINK DIFFERENT!!

feakbeak
Jun 3, 2005, 12:23 AM
The answer = THINK DIFFERENT!!Was that in response to my question(s)? If so, I am thinking differently. I'm thinking different than the product managers at Apple, doesn't that count or does "think different" only apply when it is in agreement with Apple's products and marketing propaganda?

Bern
Jun 3, 2005, 02:17 AM
:confused: I'm not quite sure what some of you consider a "power user" to be.

I use Adobe CS2 and Painter IX everyday. I don't have a multi button mouse, just the Apple one. It's a lot more efficient using the left hand for actioning menu commands and the mouse for navigating than it is to depend on the mouse for everything IMO.

I also use a Wacom tablet in the same manner as my Apple mouse.

To sit here driving my pen or mouse all over the screen searching menu options or right clicking this and scrolling to that is a lot of wasted time when I can do all this in half the time putting my left hand to good use :)

weg
Jun 3, 2005, 02:24 AM
A right click might be nice, but Control-Click is really not that hard to get used to.

But a right click is much more intuitive! I mean: Guess I want to open the context menu. On a two button mouse, there are 2 options: Either pressing the left mouse button (uh - oh, no context menu?) or the right one (aha!). On a one button mouse where you have to press a key in addition to the mouse click, there are about 102 possibilities. Apart from that, you can't convince me that it's easier to teach a computer novice to press a key and the mouse button at the same time than to teach him a right click.

Bern
Jun 3, 2005, 02:29 AM
But a right click is much more intuitive! I mean: Guess I want to open the context menu. On a two button mouse, there are 2 options: Either pressing the left mouse button (uh - oh, no context menu?) or the right one (aha!). On a one button mouse where you have to press a key in addition to the mouse click, there are about 102 possibilities. Apart from that, you can't convince me that it's easier to teach a computer novice to press a key and the mouse button at the same time than to teach him a right click.

I'm not questioning the abilities (or lack there of :rolleyes: ) of the novice user, my point was in regards to the "Power User" that some people mentioned. IMO a Power User isn't using the most efficient method with a multi-button mouse and so can not be regarded as such.