Mighty Mouse review:

Well, I went down to the Pioneer Place Apple Store to check out the new Apple mouse on my lunch break, and ended up buying one. Here’s my thoughts.

The good parts are the fact that there are fewer moving parts, although it remains to be seen how the scroll ball holds up under heavy Cheeto useage. I like the shape and feel, although that’s a personal preference and not everyone will share it. It does all the basics that I expect of it.

The bad parts of the Mighty Mouse are that the driver for programming the buttons will only install in Tiger. And the very latest version of Tiger, at that. Bah. Apple had to do something stoopid. I’m not sure I’m ready to upgrade from Panther yet. Fortunately all the basic functionality is working under Panther – left- and right-click, scroll ball (up, down, left, right, and diagonal, sort of).

But there’s a third-party person working on getting all the functionality under earlier versions of Mac OS. Behold USB Overdrive. The developer, Alessandro Levi Montalcini, says that an update for the Mighty Mouse won’t be too long.

The touch-sensitivity is only used to distinguish between a right- or left-click. The whole shell of the mouse physically clicks down, so there is still physical feedback – and the sensors in the mouse can differentiate whether or not I’m putting pressure on the left or right side. The “speaker” inside is very faint, apparently — I can’t hear it unless I’m right up against the mouse (comes from playing my music too loud, I guess) and it only clicks for the side buttons and the scroll button.

The fact that a click takes the entire mouse body makes it difficult to click-and-drag long distances; if I have to pick up the mouse to reposition it, it loses the click. A bit frustrating, but it’s the same deal with the Apple Pro Mouse.

Oh, and the cord is a bit short for my setup at home; there’s not enough room on my keyboard tray for the mouse, too, so I had to use a USB extension cord to route the mouse cable up on top of my desk.

And, this is how broken I am: I was bummed because I was the second person in the Pioneer Place Apple Store to buy one. Dammit! If I hadn’t stopped to pick up a DLO Flip Clip for my Shuffle, I would have been first!

That sounds all bad, doesn’t it? I admit, it’s possible that the RDF is wearing off faster than normal. Bottom line; it’s a mouse. Scroll ball is nice. And I’d rather give my money to Apple than Microsoft — time to ditch my MS Intellimouse Exploder.