WO2006131945A2 - Pointing device, or mouse - Google Patents

Pointing device, or mouse

Info

Publication number
WO2006131945A2
WO2006131945A2 PCT/IT2006/000374 IT2006000374W WO2006131945A2 WO 2006131945 A2 WO2006131945 A2 WO 2006131945A2 IT 2006000374 W IT2006000374 W IT 2006000374W WO 2006131945 A2 WO2006131945 A2 WO 2006131945A2
Authority
WO
Grant status
Application
Patent type
Prior art keywords
mouse
according
detectors
invention
movement
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/IT2006/000374
Other languages
French (fr)
Other versions
WO2006131945A3 (en )
Inventor
Nicola Narracci
Original Assignee
Nicola Narracci
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date

Links

Classifications

    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06FELECTRIC DIGITAL DATA PROCESSING
    • G06F3/00Input arrangements for transferring data to be processed into a form capable of being handled by the computer; Output arrangements for transferring data from processing unit to output unit, e.g. interface arrangements
    • G06F3/01Input arrangements or combined input and output arrangements for interaction between user and computer
    • G06F3/048Interaction techniques based on graphical user interfaces [GUI]
    • G06F3/0481Interaction techniques based on graphical user interfaces [GUI] based on specific properties of the displayed interaction object or a metaphor-based environment, e.g. interaction with desktop elements like windows or icons, or assisted by a cursor's changing behaviour or appearance
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING; COUNTING
    • G06FELECTRIC DIGITAL DATA PROCESSING
    • G06F3/00Input arrangements for transferring data to be processed into a form capable of being handled by the computer; Output arrangements for transferring data from processing unit to output unit, e.g. interface arrangements
    • G06F3/01Input arrangements or combined input and output arrangements for interaction between user and computer
    • G06F3/03Arrangements for converting the position or the displacement of a member into a coded form
    • G06F3/033Pointing devices displaced or positioned by the user, e.g. mice, trackballs, pens or joysticks; Accessories therefor
    • G06F3/0354Pointing devices displaced or positioned by the user, e.g. mice, trackballs, pens or joysticks; Accessories therefor with detection of 2D relative movements between the device, or an operating part thereof, and a plane or surface, e.g. 2D mice, trackballs, pens or pucks
    • G06F3/03543Mice or pucks
    • G06F3/03544Mice or pucks having dual sensing arrangement, e.g. two balls or two coils used to track rotation of the pointing device

Abstract

The present invention concerns a pointing device or mouse (1), comprising a housing containing detecting means (2, 3, 7) capable to detect at least one linear movement over at least one supporting plane of the mouse (1), selecting means (4, 5, 6) capable to make at least one selection, characterised in that said detecting means (2, 3, 7) is capable to detect one or more rotations about one or more axes orthogonal to said at least one supporting plane of the mouse (1). The present invention further concerns the method for controlling signals coming from such mouse (1).

Description

POINTING DEVICE, OR MOUSE

The present invention relates to a pointing device, preferably a "mouse", that allows to control, in a simple, precise, efficient, reliable, and inexpensive way, actions/commands on at least one graphic user interface displayable on a screen of a computer, the device being further capable to be used in a conventional way, being compatible with the users' habits and the existing programs.

The present invention further relates to the related method for controlling at least one graphic user interface displayable on a screen of a computer.

It is known that computers are provided with a display screen allowing the users to check their interactions with the same computer. In particular, the computers are provided with a set of programs, called operating system, that allows an optimised control of the computer electronic resources in a wholly transparent way to the user, receiving data and/or instructions, through a data input device, for instance a keyboard, and providing data and/or instruction requests through the screen. Presently, most computers are provided with an operating system provided with graphic user interface, or GUI, onto which a graphic pointer is mobile that is controlled by pointing, usually electromechanical or optoelectronic, means which transmits to the computer the related signals for controlling the position and/or the movement of the graphic pointer and one or more selection signals.

Presently most diffused GUIs consist in a so called "window" interface, wherein each window is an interaction interface of a specific application program comprising, besides displayed data which are not modifiable by the user, some selectable graphic elements which allow the user to interact with the same application program. By way of example and not by way of limitation, such selectable graphic elements may be command menu bars, selectable pull-down menu, window scroll bars, graphic buttons, checkboxes, hypertext links.

The various windows of a GUI may be alternatively enabled to interact and, when disabled, they may be graphically represented by a corresponding icon. When the interaction with an application program is enabled, the related window becomes the work area through which the user may interact with the program by means of the graphic pointer (besides the keyboard). In particular, the selection of a selectable graphic element within the active window, that constitutes the work area, generally occurs by placing the graphic pointer over the selectable element and simultaneously generating, by means of the pointing means, a corresponding selection signal.

In the following explicit reference will be made to a computer provided with an operating system provided with window GUI. However, it should be considered that the pointing device according to the invention, and the related method, may be applied also to other types of graphic user interfaces comprising graphic elements which are selectable through graphic pointer controlled by pointing means.

The pointing means comprises a pointing device, connected to the computer, that generates signals for controlling the position and/or the movement of the graphic pointer, by generating proper control signals, and that is capable to generate one or more selection signals.

Presently, the most diffused pointing device controlling the pointer position is the one commonly known as "mouse", developed in its first electromechanical version at the end of the sixties of the XX century at the Stanford Research Institute in Menlo Park, California, and subject matter of the US Patent No. US 3541541 to Douglas Engelbart.

The electromechanical mouse, that became famous on 1984 with Macintosh® computers by Apple®, is substantially a pointing device with "relative" control, and it comprises a housing, that is shaped so as to be manipulatable by a hand, from which a rolling ball partially protrudes downwards, that is centrally located in a position that is slightly shifted towards the mouse front end. The movement of the mouse over a surface, such as a suitable mouse pad, causes a corresponding rotation of the ball within its seat, where proper transducers generate signals representing the distance and the direction of the two-dimensional path run by the mouse, whereby the ball and the transducers constitute a motion detector. The mouse is connected to the computer through a proper cable and it is further provided with one or more buttons, usually two or three, by pressing which corresponding selection signals are generated. The linear movement of the graphic pointer over the screen is controlled by the relative movement of the mouse along the two x and y directions over the supporting plane. Also, since some years, the mouse have been further provided with a wheel allowing the active window to be vertically shifted. In other words, the mouse serves for easily interfacing with a two-dimensional graphic environment, and, depending on the specific applications, even types of mouse with 5 or 6 buttons have been developed, which are to be configured, mainly used for games and/or command recognition through the so called "mouse gesture", wherein specific combinations of mouse movements and button selections correspond to specific commands.

Afterwards, the electromechanical mouse, the movement of which is detected by a ball, has been accompanied by pointing devices similar to the mouse, which operate in a similar way, such as for instance, the optical mouse, wherein the signals representing the two-dimensional path run by the mouse are generated by LED, laser, or photoelectric cell devices, or still the infrared mouse, or tailless mouse, wherein the wired transmission of the signals to the computer is replaced with an infrared transmission.

Other pointing devices are those usually applied to laptops, such as the trackpoint and the touchpad comprising, respectively, a cylindrical bar that is inserted in a keyboard, an end of which may be pulled towards various directions, and a small flat that is electronically sensitive to the touch of an object. A further pointing device is the so called track-ball, that comprises a ball that is housed in a fixed seat from which a portion of the ball protrudes upwards for allowing its manipulation.

At the beginning of the nineties, with the appearance of the first videogames known as "first-person shooter" (FPS), and with the three- dimensional (3D) CAD design, mouses have turned out rather limited as to the number of actions/commands which they allowed to select and/or as to the selection speed. As a consequence, the aid of the keyboard, or of dedicated pointing devices, as the lever devices called joystick and the console devices or joypad, is necessary in order to be able to operate in a 3D environment.

On 2000, Logitech company, through its controlled 3Dconnexion, puts a series of products called "motion controllers" on the market, comprising substantially joysticks to hold by the left hand while the right one uses the old mouse, which ensure a high manoeuvrability in 3D- CAD environments.

However, due to the extreme diversity of the way of controlling such motion controller with respect to the simplicity of the mouse that is established in the users' habits by now, and also because of their high cost, so far they are a niche product (250.000 sold items) that is reserved to users who are expert in the 3D-CAD field.

In this regard, the growing processing power of computers is leading the capacity of operating systems to very high complexity levels, capable to control 3D graphic interfaces. By way of example, it may be cited the first step made by Mac OS X 10.3 "Panther", wherein the "Fast User Change" function displays the passage of user through the animation of a rotating cube. This will entail difficulties, since the use of traditional mouses is not efficient in exploiting the enormous potentialities of the 3D graphic interfaces, and because the new pointing devices are too much different and complex with respect to the traditional mouses for most users.

In this context, it is included the solution proposed according to the present invention.

It is therefore an object of the present invention to allow to control, in a simple, precise, efficient, reliable, and inexpensive way, actions/commands on at least one, however complex, graphic user interface, so that the user may also control such actions/commands in a conventional way.

It is specific subject matter of the present invention a pointing device or mouse, comprising a housing containing detecting means capable to detect at least one linear movement over at least one supporting plane of the mouse, selecting means capable to make at least one selection, characterised in that said detecting means is capable to detect one or more rotations about one or more axes orthogonal to said at least one supporting plane of the mouse.

Always according to the invention, said detecting means may comprise two or more detectors for detecting linear movements over a supporting plane of the mouse, preferably located downwards with respect to said housing.

Still according to the invention, said detecting means may comprise two detectors for detecting linear movements located along a central longitudinal axis of the mouse. Furthermore according to the invention, said detecting means may comprise two detectors for detecting linear movements located along a latitudinal axis of the mouse. Always according to the invention, said detecting means may be capable to detect one or more rotations about one or more orthogonal axes selected from the group comprising the two axes passing through the two linear movement detectors, an axis passing through an intermediate point, preferably the mean point, between the two detectors, and an axis not passing through the segment linking the two detectors.

Still according to the invention, said detecting means may comprise three linear movement detectors, preferably located according to the vertexes of a triangle, more preferably equilateral. Furthermore according to the invention, said detecting means may comprise four linear movement detectors, preferably located according to the vertexes of a square or a rectangle or a rhombus.

Always according to the invention, the linear movement detectors may be located according to the vertexes of a regular polygon. Still according to the invention, said detecting means may be capable to detect one or more rotations about one or more orthogonal axes selected from the group comprising the axes passing through the linear movement detectors, an axis passing through an intermediate point, preferably the median point, between the detectors, and an axis not passing through the polygon described by the detectors.

Furthermore according to the invention, the linear movement detectors may comprise electromechanical and/or optoelectronic detectors.

Always according to the invention, said detecting means may comprise one or more gyroscopic sensors capable to detect their own spatial orientation.

Still according to the invention, the mouse may be capable to wirelessly communicate with a computer, preferably through infrared transmission. Furthermore according to the invention, the mouse may be further provided with at least one selectable button capable to enable said detecting means to detect said one or more rotations about one or more axes orthogonal to said at least one supporting plane of the mouse.

It is still specific subject matter of the present invention a method for controlling signals coming from a mouse, characterised in that the mouse is a mouse as previously described, and in that it associates a corresponding command with each one of said one or more rotations about one or more axes orthogonal to said at least one supporting plane of the mouse that is detected by said detecting means.

Always according to the invention, the method may discriminate said one or more rotations form each other on the basis of the rotation direction and/or the rotation speed.

Still according to the invention, the method may discriminate said one or more rotations from each other on the basis of at least one selection made by said selecting means.

Furthermore according to the invention, the discriminations of said one or more rotations may be settable.

The present invention will now be described, by way of illustration and not by way of limitation, according to its preferred embodiments, by particularly referring to the Figures of the enclosed drawings, in which: Figure 1 shows a first embodiment of the mouse according to the invention;

Figure 2 shows a second embodiment of the mouse according to the invention; and

Figure 3 shows a third embodiment of the mouse according to the invention.

In the following of the description same references will be used to indicate alike elements in the Figures.

The inventors have developed a mouse provided with means for detecting its rotation about one or more vertical axes. The preferred embodiments of the mouse according to the invention comprise at least two detectors, preferably electromechanical or optoelectronic ones, for detecting movements over a plane, i.e. two-dimensional movements.

With reference to Figure 1 , it may be observed that a first embodiment of the mouse 1 according to the invention comprises two detectors 2 and 3 for detecting two-dimensional linear movements over the supporting plane of the same mouse 1 , which detectors are preferably electromechanical (for instance one ball and motion transducers) or optoelectronic (for instance LED and/or laser and/or photoelectric cells).

As it will be illustrated in greater detail in the below, the combination of the movements detected by the two detectors 2 and 3 indicates whether the mouse movement is following a circular and/or linear path. The mouse 1 further comprises, in a conventional way, a left button 4 and a right button 5, capable to be pressed for making selections, and a central wheel 6, capable to be rotated for making the active window vertically shift and possibly capable to be pressed for making selections. The two two- dimensional movement detectors 2 and 3 of the mouse 1 of Figure 1 are located along the longitudinal axis of the same mouse 1 , the first one in correspondence with the front buttons 4 and 5 and the second one in correspondence with the rear part of the mouse 1 , preferably at a distance that is sufficient for making the rotation detection sensitivity adequate (since the detection precision is directly proportional to the distance between the two detectors 2 and 3).

With reference to Figure 2, it may be observed that a second embodiment of the mouse 1 according to the invention still comprises two detectors 2 and 3 for detecting two-dimensional linear movements over the supporting plane of the same mouse 1 , which detectors are preferably electromechanical or optoelectronic, located along a latitudinal axis of the mouse 1 , in correspondence with the rear part thereof, where the width of the mouse 1 allows a sufficient distance between the two detectors 2 and 3.

With reference to Figure 3, it may be observed that a third embodiment of the mouse 1 according to the invention still comprises two two-dimensional movement detectors 2 and 3 located along the latitudinal axis of the mouse 1 , as in Figure 2, and a third detector 7 for detecting two-dimensional linear movements over the supporting plane of the same mouse 1 , the three detectors 2, 3, and 7 being located at the vertexes of a, preferably equilateral, triangle. Advantageously, the third detector 7 is located along the longitudinal axis of the same mouse 1 , in correspondence with the front buttons 4 and 5.

In order to better understand the present invention, the operating modes of the embodiment of the mouse 1 of Figure 1 will be described in the following, similar modes being valid for other embodiments.

In particular, if the detectors 2 and 3 moves along the same direction, it is possible to detect the movement along the x and/or y axis(axes) of the mouse in one out of three modes, according to which the mouse controlling application software, or driver, operates.

In the first mode, the driver takes only account of one detector, 2 or 3. In this case, the use of the mouse is identical to that of a conventional mouse.

In the second mode, the driver calculates the equivalent movement of an intermediate point (preferably the median point) between the two detectors 2 and 3 to associate with the combination of the movements detected by these ones. This second mode allows a use of the mouse that is virtually identical to that of a conventional mouse, but also allows mouse gesture to be implemented.

In the third mode, that is also the preferred one, the driver calculates the mean of the movement vectors detected by the two detectors 2 and 3.

A second movement of the mouse 1 according to the invention is the one about a fulcrum that is central with respect to the detectors 2 and 3, i.e. the rotation along the same (either clockwise or counterclockwise) direction of the detectors 2 and 3 about a vertical axis. In such case, the detectors 2 and 3 moves along opposite directions, the combination of which is, preferably, recognised by the mouse driver as a rotation about a central fulcrum if the movements detected by each one of the two detectors 2 and 3 are larger than a, preferably settable, minimum threshold. This allows to detect the either clockwise or counter-clockwise rotation about the vertical axis of the mouse 1.

A third movement of the mouse 1 according to the invention is the "callipers" one, in which one of the two detectors 2 or 3 draws a (more or less regular) arc the fulcrum of which is the other detector that remains still. In such case, the mouse driver recognises the movement of the mouse as either a clockwise or counter-clockwise rotation about a vertical axis passing through the detector 2 or the detector 3, i.e. it recognises four possible rotations. Preferably, the mouse driver recognises the signals coming from the detectors 2 and 3 by taking account of the rotation irregularities due to the fact that a user's wrist hardly succeeds in keeping the fulcrum still. As a consequence, the driver recognises that one of the two detectors is still if the movement that it detects is smaller than said minimum threshold. Moreover, each "unintentional" fulcrum shift directly affects the irregularity of the arc followed by the mouse, whereby the driver interprets the two irregularities by calculating the combined rotation. A fourth movement of the mouse 1 according to the invention is the "windscreen wiper" one, in which the rotation fulcrum is far from the segment linking the detectors 2 and 3, which draw pairs of arcs, by way of example and not by way of limitation, assuming the four angles of the quadrilateral within which the mouse 1 is inscribed as fulcra, the mouse driver may recognise eight possible rotations. These windscreen wiper movements may provide the mouse driver with the richest functionalities, having N possible fulcra and 2*N possible rotary movements about them, where N depends on the processing granularity of the mouse driver in calculating the fulcrum position and the rotation speed.

Preferably, the mouse according to the invention comprises optical detectors (LED, laser, or photoelectric cell ones), so as to have reduced weight and almost null friction, and it transmits information to the computer via wireless infrared, so as not have hitches due to the cable during rotations. In particular, the mouse according to the invention could comprise a sole optical laser detector capable to determine one or more rotations about one or more orthogonal axes of the same mouse, for instance through adequate processing of the signals detected by the laser.

Other embodiments of the mouse according to the invention may comprise also more than two detectors as in Figures 1 and 2 and than three detectors as in Figure 3. For instance, they may comprise four detectors positioned according to a square, rectangle or rhombus, or even five or more detectors.

Moreover, the movement sensors may be different from the conventional electromechanical or optoelectronic detectors; for instance, they may comprise gyroscopic sensors capable to detect their own spatial orientation. As mentioned before, the mouse according to the invention is usable in a conventional way as a mouse of the prior art with one movement detector. The new operating modes offered by the mouse according to the invention are preferably automatically recognised by the mouse driver, that reads data from the two (or more) movement detectors and, by comparing with each other, it determined if their combination defines one of the movements corresponding to the new functionalities of the mouse.

Alternatively, in order to enable the new operating modes offered by the mouse according to the invention, this may be provided with a further button for enabling and disabling the function of detecting through more than one detector.

Preferably, the operation of the mouse according to the invention is configurable.

By way of example and not by way of limitation, its base configuration, preferably for a window operating system and common programs (such as for instance text editor, datasheets, email programs), advantageously takes account of present mean habits of the users. In particular, the users may continue to use the mouse according to the invention as a conventional mouse, with the only addition of detecting the rotation about a vertical axis (that is a movement to which conventional mouse do not associate any action or command regarding the graphic interface) that provides two settable mouse gestures.

For instance, rotating the mouse over a selected graphic interface corresponding to an editor or a datasheet, the driver could make the following menu sequentially accessible:

- in case of clockwise (or counter-clockwise) rotation: save; save as; and save all;

- in case of counter-clockwise (or clockwise): save; save, print and close; save and reduce to icon.

Still by way of example, rotating the mouse over a graphic interface corresponding to an email program, the driver could make the following menu sequentially accessible:

- in case of clockwise (or counter-clockwise) rotation: reply; reply to all; forward as enclosure;

- in case of counter-clockwise (or clockwise): copy in; move in. In addition, the mouse according to the invention allows some mouse gestures which may be enabled through the buttons with which it is provided. In particular, when a button is kept pressed, the mouse driver could, as it occurs at present, drag the file or selection, or, in combination with one of the possible mouse rotations (about a central fulcrum, or as callipers, or as windscreen wiper), it could enable a corresponding mouse gesture that would enable an action or command regarding the active graphic interface.

The advantages offered by the mouse according to the invention are numerous.

First of all, the mouse according to the invention is compatible with all the mouse of the prior art, independently from the number of buttons and from the manner the movement is detected, and it may be combined with the "motion controllers" as main mouse, being easy and immediate to use. In particular, the mouse according to the invention may be used in the most diffused software programs which do not require a 3D interaction (for instance, text editor and datasheet) as a conventional mouse, hence in full compatibility with the established software and habits. Moreover, the mouse according to the invention allows in 3D programs as first-person shooter (FPS) videogames, drive simulators, and in 3D-CAD design, to add new functionalities on the basis of the mouse rotations about one or more vertical axes. The mouse driver may for instance: combine these rotations with view shift and/or with actions or commands of objects which are selectable within the graphic interface; rotate an object in 3D-CAD; rotate a scene in 3D-CAD; operate a steering wheel or a control stick for drive or flight simulators; operate knobs for video and audio editing; simulate the handle of a tool, as a tennis racket, a foil, a fishing rod, a pair of skis, a snowboard, a paintbrush, a fountain pen. The mouse driver may still associate new mouse gestures with the movements of the mouse combined with pressed buttons, such as for instance: rotating the mouse over a graphic interface could determine new actions (open and reduce to icon, run in background, open with a secondary program). The combinations among mouse movements, in particular rotations about one or more vertical axes of the mouse, and pressed buttons multiplies the functionalities which are activable with the mouse also in programs with two-dimensional or 2D graphic interfaces.

Furthermore, the mouse according to the invention, allows to make precision movements, for instance for enlarging or reducing, with micro-movements, a pre-selection: of file, in a folder; of perimeter, in 2D graphics; of area in 3D-CAD design.

Still, the mouse according to the invention allows to set the rotation intensity and/or the speed of making the movement or gesture, for instance: for combining the mouse movements with actions and commands in videogames where it is significant to adjust the gesture intensity (tennis, billiards, golf); or for comparing a rotation with the next counter-rotation in order to determine if it is sufficient to oppose an effect associated with the preceding rotation (for instance, in a drive simulator, turn and counter-turn of the wheel). The rotation intensity measure and/or the speed of making the mouse movement may be important, for instance, in case of a zoom operation requiring a plurality of turns of a knob, or when, being close to the desired zoom level, there is a slowing down to a stop.

The preferred embodiments have been above described and some modifications of this invention have been suggested, but it should be understood that those skilled in the art can make variations and changes, without so departing from the related scope of protection, as defined by the following claims.

Claims

1. Pointing device or mouse (1), comprising a housing containing detecting means (2, 3, 7) capable to detect at least one linear movement over at least one supporting plane of the mouse (1), selecting means (4, 5, 6) capable to make at least one selection, characterised in that said detecting means (2, 3, 7) is capable to detect one or more rotations about one or more axes orthogonal to said at least one supporting plane of the mouse (1).
2. Mouse (1) according to claim 1 , characterised in that said detecting means (2, 3, 7) comprises two or more detectors (2, 3, 7) for detecting linear movements over a supporting plane of the mouse (1), preferably located downwards with respect to said housing.
3. Mouse (1) according to claim 2, characterised in that said detecting means (2, 3, 7) comprises two detectors (2, 3) for detecting linear movements located along a central longitudinal axis of the mouse
(1).
4. Mouse (1) according to claim 2, characterised in that said detecting means (2, 3, 7) comprises two detectors (2, 3) for detecting linear movements located along a latitudinal axis of the mouse (1).
5. Mouse (1) according to any one of claims 2 to 4, characterised in that said detecting means (2, 3, 7) is capable to detect one or more rotations about one or more orthogonal axes selected from the group comprising the two axes passing through the two linear movement detectors (2, 3), an axis passing through an intermediate point, preferably the mean point, between the two detectors (2, 3), and an axis not passing through the segment linking the two detectors (2, 3).
6. Mouse (1) according to any one of claims 2 to 5, characterised in that said detecting means (2, 3, 7) comprises three linear movement detectors (2, 3, 7), preferably located according to the vertexes of a triangle, more preferably equilateral.
7. Mouse (1) according to any one of claims 2 to 5, characterised in that said detecting means (2, 3, 7) comprises four linear movement detectors, preferably located according to the vertexes of a square or a rectangle or a rhombus.
8. Mouse (1) according to any one of claims 2 to 7, characterised in that the linear movement detectors are located according to the vertexes of a regular polygon.
9. Mouse (1) according to any one of claims 6 to 8, characterised in that said detecting means (2, 3, 7) is capable to detect one or more rotations about one or more orthogonal axes selected from the group comprising the axes passing through the linear movement detectors (2, 3), an axis passing through an intermediate point, preferably the median point, between the detectors (2, 3), and an axis not passing through the polygon described by the detectors (2, 3).
10. Mouse according to any one of claims 2 to 9, characterised in that the linear movement detectors (2, 3) comprises electromechanical and/or optoelectronic detectors.
11. Mouse (1) according to claim 1 , characterised in that said detecting means (2, 3, 7) comprises one or more gyroscopic sensors capable to detect their own spatial orientation.
12. Mouse according to any one of the preceding claims, characterised in that it is capable to wirelessly communicate with a computer, preferably through infrared transmission.
13. Mouse according to any one of the preceding claims, characterised in that it is further provided with at least one selectable button capable to enable said detecting means (2, 3, 7) to detect said one or more rotations about one or more axes orthogonal to said at least one supporting plane of the mouse (1).
14. Method for controlling signals coming from a mouse (1), characterised in that the mouse is a mouse according to any one of claims 1 to 13, and in that it associates a corresponding command with each one of said one or more rotations about one or more axes orthogonal to said at least one supporting plane of the mouse (1) that is detected by said detecting means (2, 3, 7).
15. Method according to claim 14, characterised in that it discriminates said one or more rotations form each other on the basis of the rotation direction and/or the rotation speed.
16. Method according to claim 14 or 15, characterised in that it discriminates said one or more rotations from each other on the basis of at least one selection made by said selecting means (4, 5, 6).
17. Method according to claim 15 or 16, characterised in that the discriminations of said one or more rotations are settable.
PCT/IT2006/000374 2005-06-08 2006-05-18 Pointing device, or mouse WO2006131945A3 (en)

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Citations (6)

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Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4887230A (en) * 1987-02-18 1989-12-12 Hitachi, Ltd. Cursor display apparatus
US5512920A (en) * 1994-08-17 1996-04-30 Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories, Inc. Locator device for control of graphical objects
US6164808A (en) * 1996-02-09 2000-12-26 Murata Mfg. Co., Ltd. Three-dimensional data input device
EP1164538A2 (en) * 2000-06-02 2001-12-19 Hewlett-Packard Company, A Delaware Corporation Pointing device having rotational sensing mechanisms
US6369794B1 (en) * 1998-09-09 2002-04-09 Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. Operation indication outputting device for giving operation indication according to type of user's action
US20030189166A1 (en) * 2002-04-08 2003-10-09 Black Robert A. Apparatus and method for sensing rotation

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* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US4887230A (en) * 1987-02-18 1989-12-12 Hitachi, Ltd. Cursor display apparatus
US5512920A (en) * 1994-08-17 1996-04-30 Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories, Inc. Locator device for control of graphical objects
US6164808A (en) * 1996-02-09 2000-12-26 Murata Mfg. Co., Ltd. Three-dimensional data input device
US6369794B1 (en) * 1998-09-09 2002-04-09 Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. Operation indication outputting device for giving operation indication according to type of user's action
EP1164538A2 (en) * 2000-06-02 2001-12-19 Hewlett-Packard Company, A Delaware Corporation Pointing device having rotational sensing mechanisms
US20030189166A1 (en) * 2002-04-08 2003-10-09 Black Robert A. Apparatus and method for sensing rotation

Non-Patent Citations (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Title
"ENHANCED MOUSE TO DEFECT ROTATION" IBM TECHNICAL DISCLOSURE BULLETIN, IBM CORP. NEW YORK, US, vol. 39, no. 1, January 1996 (1996-01), pages 365-366, XP000556433 ISSN: 0018-8689 *
"MOUSE DEVICE FOR INPUTTING ORIENTATION" IBM TECHNICAL DISCLOSURE BULLETIN, IBM CORP. NEW YORK, US, vol. 35, no. 4B, 1 September 1992 (1992-09-01), page 200, XP000313907 ISSN: 0018-8689 *

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