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You are here: Home > Assistive Technology > AT ClassificationsPhysical Impairment > Trackball or Rollerball Mice

Trackball or Rollerball Mice

Trackball or Rollerball Mice

Trackball Model A

Model A

Model B

Trackball Model C

Model C

 

On a traditiional mouse the ball that controls the cursor on the computer screen is on the bottom. On a Trackball or Rollerball the cursor is controlled by the user moving a ball located on the upper surface of the trackball. Consequently, the mouse itself does not move on the surface of the table and there is no need for a mouse mat. The user selects items by using 'click' and 'drag' buttons on the trackball.
Trackball or Rollerball Mice frequently come with software drivers that allow you to use and adjust other features such as:

  1. Lock the Menu. Click once and the menu stays open.
  2. Change the click actions. Open file directories with a single, precise click. No more double clicking.
  3. Change the drag requirements. Click the beginning and the ends of phrases or graphics. You no longer have to hold down the mouse button.
  4. Set a default point on a special location of the screen.
  5. Slow the cursor down even more. Provides pixel-by-pixel cursor control for detailed work.
  6. Change the speed of the pointer. This option delivers a slower slow and a faster fast than the control panel options, giving you even more efficient cursor control.
  7. Create commands (from printing to saving) to execute with a single click.

An alternative to the ‘Trackball’ mice shown in Models A and B above and considerably cheaper are the ergonomically designed type shown in Model B. The ergonomic design is suited to either hand. The example shown above comes with a wheel device making it easier to browse the internet. They are available from most computer supply stores (off the shelf) and are considerably cheaper.

Similar to using a Joystick, a Trackball user has the added advantage of being able to rest his/her hand on the device while moving the cursor. It provides a stable base, and as a result, may prove useful for individuals who find that their hand/arm movements are unstable when using a standard mouse.

Technological Requirements

Compatibility: Windows 95, 98,ME or NT Apple Mac ® OS 8.5 or later (with USB port)

Cost

Model A above which is a very recent model with advanced features costs approximately €80. Models B and C cost approximately €20 and €40 respectively.