The “Mouse,” which appeared in 1968, was the first mouse for a personal computer. Engelbart designed a trackball-like gadget at his lab, which consisted of a little plastic ball with holes for the user’s fingers to hold. This was the first mouse, and it was designed to be a “universal” mouse that could handle several devices on a desktop. Engelbart was interested in utilizing the computer more like a pencil, drawing or writing on the screen and on the board. He sought to aid his study by developing a new medium for doing research as well as a more effective mode of data collecting and transfer. The computer, he said, lacked the ability to “know” what people were thinking and would be less valuable than a pencil.
On August 9, 1968, he utilized his first mouse with his “Mother of All Demos.” Engelbart was on the lookout for a new technology that would both aid his lab’s work and get acceptance from the scientific community. This encounter inspired Engelbart to construct “The Mother of All Demos,” a collaborative endeavor designed to demonstrate the power of the new medium. The Mother of All Demos was an interactive system that delivered the first ever display of hypertext in the summer of 1968. It showed a working model of an interactive television system.
The “Mother of All Demos” employed a mouse and a cathode-ray tube (CRT), with a cathode-ray tube video display called a VisiSonics Video Display Unit as its primary output. The mouse prevented the user from touching the screen. Engelbart was able to pick text with his mouse, point to a link, and click on it. There was also a scrolling wheel on the mouse. Because it could perform comparable functions to the device that is now known as a computer mouse, Engelbart dubbed his invention the “mouse.”
Engelbart was concerned about losing his research as it progressed. Engelbart created the first “mouse guard” to keep the “mouse” from leaving the lab. This was a patentable concept. In August 1969, Engelbart designed the ball-mouse, which he first utilized in his lab with the “Mother of All Demos.” Engelbart wanted a device to move around the desktop when he was giving a presentation in an auditorium, so he designed the “ball-mouse.” The ball was designed to mimic a “miniature typewriter ball” to signal that “a mouse was here,” as he described it.
As of today, we don’t see any trackball mouse anymore. Part of the innovation is letting go of the past without forgetting it. In Redington, we distribute high-tech mouse, it only shows how far we are in technology now.