OpenOfficeMouse: more options for the keyboard-impaired

By Sterling “Chip” Camden
Contributing Writer, [GAS]

Holy rodents on steroids, Batman!  A mouse with 18 buttons?  How could you possibly know which one you’re pressing without looking at it?  Someone will have to invent home-row mousing!

Warmouse announced the OpenOfficeMouse yesterday (November 6), a mouse specifically designed for use in conjunction with OpenOffice, but also handy for any mouse-centric applications like AutoDesk AutoCAD, the GIMP, or World of Warcraft.  This mouse comes pre-loaded with profiles for the OpenOffice applications based on 662 million datapoints of usage tracking data from OpenOffice 3.1.

Just reading through the features makes me dizzy:

  • 18 programmable mouse buttons with double-click functionality

For a total of 36 different single-key operations, I presume.  Sounds more like a keyboard to me.

  • Three different button modes: Key, Keypress, and Macro

I guess that means sending a “key down”, a “key down/up” sequence, or a series of mouse operations, but I’m not clear on that.

  • Analog Xbox 360-style joystick with optional 4, 8, and 16-key command modes

In case the mouse wasn’t enough, it has a joystick, too!

  • Clickable scroll wheel

Uh, I would have been a little surprised if they’d left that out.

  • 512k of flash memory

What about those folks who’ll need 640K?

  • 63 on-mouse application profiles with hardware, software, and autoswitching capability

Never mind trying to remember 18 buttons – try remembering 63 different profiles for what they do!

  • 1024-character macro support.

Send a KB at the click of a button.

  • Open source support software for creating, managing, and customizing application profiles

This is starting to sound even more complicated.  At least it’s open source.

  • Import and export of custom profiles in XML format

So you can have the same profiles in each of your eighteen mice?

  • Optional audio notification of profile switching with customizable wave files

“Now assuming identity SpreadsheetÜbermaus.”

  • PDF export of profile button assignments

PDF?  Really?  I guess that’s so you can print it out to paste on the wall so you can remember how to save so much time with all these button assignments.

  • Adjustable resolution from 400 to 1,600 CPI

For when you need your mouse to be able to detect your heartbeat through your fingertips.

  • Default profiles for Writer, Calc, Impress, Base, and Draw based on actual usage statistics compiled for 3.1
  • 20 default profiles for popular games and applications, including Adobe Photoshop, the Gnu Image Manipulation Program, World of Warcraft, and the Call of Duty series.

This isn’t a mouse, it’s the Rat King.

Okay, I know I’m biased.  I’m not a big fan of mice in general – I find the keyboard to be a much more precise and expressive device for all but the most graphically-oriented tasks.  What say you, readers of the GUI persuasion?  Would you rush out and buy this mouse?  At least it isn’t terribly expensive – retail $74.99 USD.

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