Is the touchpad pointer annoying?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by coolbreeze, Jan 23, 2003.

  1. coolbreeze macrumors 68000


    Jan 20, 2003

    Recent switcher here (at least tomorrow when my powerbook arrives). I have an IBM Thinkpad for work and it has the little "eraser tip" in the center of the keyboard...very easy on the wrist/fingers/hand to use. I use a desktop at home too (which I'll be selling next week).

    Anyhow, what are your opinions on the eraser tip pointer vs. the mouse vs. the touchpad (on the powerbook/ibook)? Is it hard to use/rough on your fingers/wrist? Is it hard to drag 'n drop things? (when using the laptop touchpad)

    I know I could just get an external mouse, but that isn't my question. I am asking about your opinions on using the touchpad.

  2. LethalWolfe macrumors G3


    Jan 11, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Re: Is the touchpad pointer annoying?

    Mouse is by far the best. The touchpads on Macs are good, IMO. And I hate "eraser tips" w/a passion. :)

  3. yzedf macrumors 65816


    Nov 1, 2002
    o boy here we go!

    I recently bought a ThinkPad 600X that has the little eraser stick thing.

    It took me a while to adjust to it. It seemed odd to use my thumb to mouse click.

    The huge advantage the touchpad has... the ability to mouse click via tapping the touchpad semi-briskly. You have to turn this on in your system settings (mouse section) and it can be set to ignore tapping while typing (usefull at first).

    With a little use, you will never look at the IBM style nubbin in the same way again.

    Good luck with your new kit! :D
  4. ShaolinMiddleFinger macrumors 6502a


    Oct 12, 2001
    I'm with Wolf, I hate the eraser things.... I like the touchpad more. If you're going to be doing a lot of video on your powerbook, you should buy a mouse, though.
  5. coolbreeze thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jan 20, 2003
    One more thing. Can you scroll up and down webpages, documents, etc by running your finger up and down the very right-hand edge of the touchpad? I've seen laptops with this feature and it seemed very easy to scroll up and down, rather than having to place your pointer on the "down button" and click to advance down a webpage? This would seem very annoying.

    And why I'm on the subject of scrolling, I have a two button mouse with a scroll wheel on it. It is super easy to scroll up and down webpages, documents, etc....almost like second nature. Is this mouse (Logitech USB) and the scroll wheel compatible with Mac OS? I understand apple has a single button mouse and will keep it forever! (I don't understand this)??

  6. idkew macrumors 68020


    Sep 26, 2001
    where the concrete to dirt ratio is better
    unfortunately, apple is still of the notion that they want their input prephreprials (spelling?) as simple as possible. one button only. mouse movement only. no second, third button, no scroll sensor. unfortunately, but can be solved with a third person mouse.

    one this good that apple has done, is impliment two button scroll whell mouses natively to Mac os X. no driver is needed for your mouse to work .
  7. JupiterZen macrumors regular

    Jul 17, 2002
    Reality Maingrid 23 Subjunction 42A
    Re: Is the touchpad pointer annoying?

    I have never understood the fiddling with a little clit-like thingy on a keyboard to operate a computer ;)

    To operate is smoothly and get it where I want my hand and fingers cramp stiff. I can't use it for more than a few minutes before my hand's all f*cked up.

    I use a trackpad daily on my notebook at work and right after the mouse it's the best thing out there for laptops. It just takes a month to get used to. Most of my collegues claim it's unusable for long periodes if time, but they never take even take the time to learn it. You can't ride a bike either the first time you are on one ;)

    The clicking by tapping is very convenient. But you should really spend time adjusting the sensitivity of it for the best results. This also goes for the touch sensitivity (how hard do you need to press the pad before it responds). I like it very light, so I only barely have to touch it. It keeps my hand relaxed and avoiding RSI .This only creates one problem. Everybody else trying to use my laptop is always accidentally dragging, dropping and clicking all sorts of things ;)
  8. gschumsky macrumors member

    Jul 16, 2002
    San Diego (Jamul), Ca
    As far as the scrolling using the trackpad, I have no idea. Haven't tried it yet, but I have an older Powerbook Wallstreet.

    Now for the two or more buttoned mice, they are no problem on the Mac. All of the Microsoft, MacAlly, Kensington mice work well. The MS mouse works when you plug it in, and you can get drivers for additional features (programmability) from the MS site.

    Yes, one button is nice (I like it), but for other stuff, having extra buttons (besides right-click) is great for repeated functions in different apps. You can program the buttons for copy/paste/ running scripts in Photoshop, and have them do something different when you open After Effects, Premiere, FCP. etc. etc.

    Although I find when I use a two button mouse for long periods of time, I start to get middle finger twitches. : (
  9. rainman::|:| macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2002
    ah, "clit-like". good definition... heh... anyway i do hate them, they make your finger sore after a while. we just bought a used powerbook, and i love touchpads... i'm actually awaiting a bluetooth touchpad to drive my home theater. the absense of the right-edge scroll part is a blessing, i think, it just makes things too confusing for a lot of people. i personally use arrow keys during web browsing, almost exclusively. Helpful hint: command-(back arrow) will take you back a page. up and down to scroll, page up and down keys, home key takes you to the top of a page. i hate even using a mouse when i don't have to, keyboard is so much easier. the iBooks and TiBooks have inverted-T arrow setups, and tho they're only half-sized keys, it's very convenient...

    you'll like the touchpad once you get used to it.

  10. JupiterZen macrumors regular

    Jul 17, 2002
    Reality Maingrid 23 Subjunction 42A
    Don't get me wrong. I have nothing against fingerfiddling with a clit, on the contrary ;) It just doesn't work as "computer operating skill". On the other hand ... the internet is the largest distribution platform for porn ... ;)

    I totally agree. I have a Compaq notebook and tried the scrolling thing for a while, but it's absolutely not intuitive. Scrolling is much faster using the keyboard.
  11. mymemory macrumors 68020


    May 9, 2001
    The touch pad is the best...

    After a real mouse and before a Play Station controller.

    I have been using powerbooks for 10 years now and the touch pad is a clasic and the best solution if you think about it.

    I can do all what I do with a mouse just with one finger.

    Actaully, the touchpad is better than a mouse because:

    1. Doesn't take any desktop room.
    2. Doesn't get damage or it last for ever (mouse doesn't).
    3. You do not have to clean it (you vahe to do that with optical mouse).
    4. It is more igienic (the mouse get peoples hands oil).
    5. It is more configurable and very accurate.

    So, many things can evolve around the touch pad but it have been here for a few good years now and no one complains about it.

    -Keyboards changes.
    -Mouse changes.
    -Monitors changes.
    -Touch pad... still the same.

    Actually is the most consistant piece of electronic hardware in the market.
  12. losfp macrumors regular

    Jul 16, 2002
    I guess it's what you're used to :)

    I have an IBM ThinkPad 600E and I'm now much more used to the twiddle-stick pointing device. As far as I can tell, it's easier to move large distances with a trackpad, but slightly more accurate with a trackpoint. A nice feature that the Thinkpads have (most solid and reliable PC Laptops by far IMHO) is the 3rd button for scrolling. You hold it down and scroll up and down using the trackpoint.

    I used to hate them too, but it's the same with everything that you have to get used to. A lot of people here would not own any non-mac computers, so may not have had time to get used to it.

    I'm sure I'll get used to a trackpad when I get a notebook WITH that feature :)
  13. orangefoodie macrumors member

    Jan 17, 2003
    Entirely TOO FLAT Ann Arbor, MI
    Scrolling doohickey

    Actually, there is a little hack you can do to make the scrolling strip on your trackpad work... I can't live without that feature after using a Dell laptop for a while.

    Here's the URL:

    And I'll just leave out of the whole fondling clit issue :)
  14. daveg5 macrumors 6502a

    Nov 28, 2001
    Re: Is the touchpad pointer annoying?

    i hate all trackpads i wish they would bring back the trackball(an updated solidstate optical one) they are 10 times better however we are stuck with pads (cheaper to make better looking)so get used to it as much as possible or get a small mouse/trackball
  15. lmalave macrumors 68000


    Nov 8, 2002
    Chinatown NYC
    Re: Scrolling doohickey

    Ooooh! So trackpad hacks actually exist! Anyone seen a trackpad hack that'll give me a right mouse click? (like tapping one of the corners)
  16. janey macrumors 603


    Dec 20, 2002
    sunny los angeles
    down with eraser tips!!!!! Oh my god. After like 10 minutes of using it my hand was like all tired and screwed.

    I prefer using a pro mouse because i really don't have to "click". It's much better on my already tired and sore wrists and hands.

    The touch sensitive touchpads are great as well...
  17. voicegy macrumors 65816


    Jan 1, 2002
    Sandy Eggo - MacRumors Member since 1-1-2002
    Ergonomically speaking, I detest the clit-like little eraser tip thingies because they're awkwardly hands and fingers don't "naturally" fall into place for use.

    Functionally speaking, I detest the clit-like little eraser tip thingies because it seems to have a mind of its own...I have to "guide" it carefully, and if I jostle a bit it flies away, or moves agonizingly slow. My finger is working against it, and tires it out. (my finger, not the thingy)

    Aesthetically speaking, I detest the clit-like little eraser tip thingies because it gets filthy rather quickly and detracts from a clean environment.

    On my Ti Power Book, my hand rests half-off and half-on the right wrist rest, and my thumb and forefinger take care of the "mousing," effortlessly gliding my forefinger around on a nice, smooth surface, then dropping my thumb down to click. I don't have to "reach" up to the thingy.

    To me, it becomes second nature very quickly.
  18. zarathustra macrumors 6502a


    Jul 16, 2002
    Philadelphia, PA
    Can I please use this as a future signature? :D

    I don't think I have laughed so hard since I was a little girl. It's perhaps the funniest mistype I have read. ;) Prephreprials, and third person mouse, what soon to be classics! :)

    BTW, touchpads are better than the nubbin/clit/eraser head. There is less of a chance for overshooting your target. One gripe with the g4 trackpads (I don't know how the 17" is) is that it's hard to tell where the edge is, and you either run out of trackpad, or accidentaly move the cursor with your thumb/palm. I liked the old g3/lombard/Pismo trackpads better.
  19. petee macrumors newbie

    Aug 23, 2002
    Asheboro, North Carolina
    synaptics pad

    I have had three or four PC laptops. My latest is a Compaq with a synaptics trackpad. It is incredibly configuarable (sp). I love the scroll function on the side. Its been more convient than using the arrow keys... never have to take my hand of the pad. I like the fact that there is a hack for the powerbook. Gotta try it out when I get my PB. I don't like the fact that Apple is stuck on the one button mouse. This is no big deal for desktop users, but for a PB user (like I am soon to be) it is a bit of a pain in th arse. I have read several posts in past subjects of the 'one-button' complaint. Is this pure blind stubborness on Apple's part? Apple is all about fuctionality... this seems to refute that.
  20. Mr. MacPhisto macrumors 6502

    Jan 16, 2003
    The touchpad on the iBook is great - and far superior to any pad I've used on PC laptops. It's larger and does not have high ridges on the edge, and that just makes it feel better and work better for some reason.

    I used to like the IBM eraser, but this touchpad is wonderful. I like it better than the mouse because I can work faster with it. Besides, I haven't owned a real mouse for years. I use a Logitech Marble on my PC (an old one two, owned it for six years - the Marble that is) and prefer the thumb-trackball to the mouse. I like the iBook's pad better than any of them, but I use the iBook more than anything now.
  21. Chimaera macrumors regular

    Nov 15, 2002
    Personally I don't much like either although with a bit of practise both are usable solutions, although the trackpad is easier to get to grips with, so is a better choice for laptops as a rule, although personally where possible I use a mouse, specifically one of my trusty Logitech MX500 opticals.

    I can't believe Apple don't make a scroll-wheel mouse - *anyone* that has had the chance to use a scroll wheel sees almost straight away how useful they are and once they go back they'll be screaming :)
  22. benixau macrumors 65816


    Oct 9, 2002
    Sydney, Australia
    how bout apple innovate and put some of that iPod 10/20 style stuff in the middle for a scroll pad.

    put finger on it. move up a bit, scroll up. move up further, scroll faster. and vica versa.

    BUT, if i had never used a comuter before, i would not want it there. it should be an option at time of purchase. it should also have a second button.

    Step 3: Select Mouse -

    Apple (marketing_ploy_for_easy) Mouse (as is now)
    Apple Pro Mouse (2buttong + scrool pad)

    do ya think itd work??
  23. gschumsky macrumors member

    Jul 16, 2002
    San Diego (Jamul), Ca
    Back to the trackpad thing. I use mine on a daily basis while building 3D models in Animation Master. I have had to use Windows laptops when configuring client's machines for presentations...what a pain the butt that is. Most of them, the trackpad barely works..I can hold my hand about 1/8 of an inch above the pad (not touching), and the arrow moves just from the heat of my hand. Kinda hard to point to things when it's jumping all over the place. The nub works a bit better on PC laptops, but is slow, and you do get a sore finger (unless you use it a lot, then you probably build up a nice callous).

    Nothing beats the way Apple's trackpad works. It is extremely precise, precise enough for modeling (patch based), Photoshop, etc.
  24. JSRockit macrumors 6502a


    Aug 24, 2002
    My preference: Mouse, then Trackpad, then Nipple.

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