The Mouse BT

January 30, 2005

In Mouse Blues I chronicled my first steps towards having a Bluetooth enabled laptop and a Bluetooth mouse. Here, then, is the next chapter in this ongoing saga.

The Mouse BT After returning the Targus Bluetooth mouse I returned to MicroCenter and bought a D-Link DBT-120 Bluetooth UCB adaptor. This it appears is the only after market device to enable Bluetooth on older Powerbooks that didn’t come with Bluetooth originally. It’s a tiny little dongle, maybe inch and a quarter long. It worked instantly when plugged into the laptop.

Unfortunately, none of nearby computer retailers had in stock a Bluetooth mouse without an adaptor. I even went back to the MicroCenter where I had purchased the MacAlly Bluetooth mouse to see if I could re-buy the one I had returned in haste the day before. It had already been shipped back to the manufacturer. Looking online I discovered that while I could order a MacAlly mouse, their only available shipping method would require a signature upon delivery. Living as we do, in an apartment, getting deliveries is tough enough without requiring a signature. Time for Plan B.

I had seen ads in the print magazines for “The Mouse” from MacMice. This mouse is made to look like an original Apple mouse, but with a scroll wheel and two buttons. As an added enticement they had a model that was silver to match my Powerbook. I order one immediately.

The Mouse BT is visually appealing, and its size, shape, and heft are all perfect. However, I find that the having the entire upper shell form the buttons makes it hard to move the mouse without random clicks. The scroll wheel is a thing of beauty, smooth and quiet. After initial pairing with the Bluetooth dongle on my Powerbook everything seemed to be working fine. It did take me a day or two to figure out the best sequence of events for transporting the computer daily to and from work. I didn’t want to leave the dongle sticking out of the back of the computer while in transit, and pulling it out before turning it off seemed to lock the OS.

Once I had the proper on/off connect/disconnect sequence down I started enjoying the new mouse. Only its behavior has been quirky, and so has my Powerbook’s. The right-click menu for whatever application has focus randomly appears - when I’m not even touching the mouse. The mouse pointer jumps to the top of the screen all by itself, and there seems to be a conflict between the mouse and the screen saver that totally freezes the computer force a cold reboot. I visited the MacMice support forum and followed all of their suggestions.

All to no avail. So I have contacted MacMice to arrange a return of the mouse. Their support page notes that some percentage of The Mouse BT users are experiencing all the problems I am having, and further that, the mice in question when used on other machines work perfectly. So they feel there is no point in exchanging the mouse. Maybe soon they’ll have a solution, but for now this mouse is going back.

The Search Continues Today while we are out exploring I hope to swing by the MicroCenter and purchase a(nother) MacAlly BT Mouse Jr.

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Mark H. Nichols

I am a husband, cellist, code prole, nerd, technologist, and all around good guy living and working in fly-over country. You should follow me on Twitter.