Tag Archives: gesture-based computing

From Muggle Mouse to Magic Mouse: Fixing the Little Bug in Apple’s Magic Mouse

Quick post here: bought an iMac in the summer, a nice 24 incher.  Got a good deal b/c it was a certified refurb (used for Apple demos and what not).  Shipped the bad boy to Israel with all our other stuff.  Little did I know, Apple was coming out with a new version of the iMac in October.  This one came with more speed, memory, and toys, the crown jewel of which was the Magic Mouse.

What truly magical device: it is basically a touch response mouse, no buttons, no scroll wheel; just a sleek surface that you can click, scroll, squeeze, slide, and gesture on to make things happen.  Reminds me of what I love the iPhone for.  Check out this demo:

Problems in paradise.  My “older” iMac was not seeing the mouse as “magic.”  It picked up the bluetooth signal and functioned like a regular old wireless mouse, but no multitouch or gesture recognition, the whole reason I bought it in the first place.  This was frustrating.  The reason I pay so much for Apple products is they usually just work, right out of the box.  This was not going to work for me.

I went digging through the ether for any explanation of how to fix my new toy.  Found this great article Give Your Magic Mouse More Gestures and even downloaded the demo version of a software that adds extra gestures (will let you know how that goes once I get the magic back in my mouse).  Google also revealed this article about Magic Mouse Not Working for Some (mainly those of us who bought free standing Magic Mice, rather than new iMacs).  But it was on YouTube that I found this great video and a new blog that I plan to frequent: Technizmo.

The issue is this: if you own an Apple computer that did not come with the Magic Mouse, your copy of Snow Leopard needs a firmware update to work with the magic mouse.  You can get it here.  Many thanks to Technizmo for showing me this (would have been nice if Apple included this little fact in the instructions).

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Will Gesture-based Computer Make e-Content Feel More … Human?

Wired magazine’s article, Gestures of War, got me thinking: one of the main issues with e-content by the traditionalists (or pulpists as I call them), is that they like the tactile feel of the book in the hands. It’s the turning of the page and the intimacy of printed books that make them superior to anything they have seen on screen. I am inclined to agree with them; coming from a Yeshiva (Jewish seminary) world, I love printed materials (book smell ranks #2 on my list, ahead of gasoline, vanilla, and snow). But in a connected, mobile, digital world are we just being nostalgic about the only experience we are familiar with?

The battle over touch-based computing now raging between Apple, Palm, and others cites IP rights to gesture descriptions used in patents to interface with the device. Wired posits these gestures are ones that “humans have been making since we developed opposable digits.” It would be impossible to develop competing technologies without using some of the same intuitive gesturing that makes Apple’s iPhone such a pleasure to use (this is similar to Microsoft’s failed attempt at holding onto an IP monopoly on cascading windows). As gesture-based computing goes mainstream it will change the way we feel about the intimacy of our e-content.  Similar to mothers no citing the health benefits of Wii and seeing their chunky little monsters get up off the couch, gesture-based computing may garner the acceptance e-content needs to become the standard in education.

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more about “Microsoft Surface“, posted with vodpod

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