Multiple mice/cursors for a single computer

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Gabfly1, Jun 1, 2010.

  1. I came across this Microsoft site:

    Does anyone here use this feature, whereby a user can employ more than one mouse/cursor on a single machine? If so, please provide some feedback, as I would like to know what to expect before I download it. Thanks.
  2. I haven't used it, but it looks like it's just an SDK (software development kit), so you need to develop the application yourself.
  3. Well, I guess that places it squarely out of my reach. Thanks.
  4. You can run all the mice you want; plug them in. Since you only have one ps/2 port, use usb mice.
  5. Great! Now I can play "Pong" between my left hand and my right hand.
  6. I am talking about each mouse having its own, independent cursor.
  7. Have you tried it? I remember once hooking up multiple keyboards and mice and it worked fine. But I did not have two people working concurrently on the same box. If that's what you're trying to do, how about mice with unique drivers where one driver does not work on the other mouse and vice versa, where you can control the mouse settings through the driver/ software for that mouse?
  8. There's no built-in system for having more than cursor on the screen - the operating system will just choose one mouse and one keyboard to use from what's plugged in.

    Does seem odd though, that it's taken so long for for software to provide for multiple cursors and multiple users on the same application.
  9. No, I haven't tried it. I don't even have a mouse because I prefer the touch pad on my laptop. However, I am using two screens. I was just thinking how convenient it might be to have an independent cursor on two different buttons, one on each screen, at the same time. That way, I can click faster on the one I choose and not have to scroll from one to the other as I would have to do if I were only using a single cursor. It was just a thought. Hence the thread.
  10. Paul Rose

    Paul Rose

    Think about the implications of 2 cursors:

    It would be one thing to adapt the operating system to handle 2 cursors, but applications are another thing altogether.

    Programs written 15 years ago for Windows 95 still have to run on Windows 7 today. Those applications make calls into the system to do things like:
    * change the mouse cursor shape (crosshair, arrow, hourglass, etc.)
    * set the mouse cursor position
    * hide/show the cursor
    would these apply to both cursors or the "main" cursor? That would be up to the OS because the app code was already written.

    Even worse, consider apps that hilight items that are under the cursor. They figure out where "the" cursor is by asking the OS where it is. What if both cursors are over 2 parts of the same app? An old app can't magically know what to do.

    My example was for Windows, but the same concept applies to MacOS or linux.

    Finally the niche is just too small to make it worth the effort. How much more are you willing to pay for this support? Is it enought to move you from Windows to Mac (or linux)? Compared to the other 500 features on the todo list for the next Winodows OS, and considering some of the thorny issues, how likeley is this to ever make it to the top of the list.
    #10     Jun 3, 2010