The Evolution of a Mouse

BusinessWeekis Arik Hesseldahl has written a new column looking at the evolution of Appleis mouse, the latest version of which debuted on Tuesday in the form of the Mighty Mouse. He describes it as "a bold stroke: The computer maker best known for its innovative designs has broken with a single-button mouse tradition that dates back to the 1984 launch of the original Macintosh computer ... Naturally, Appleis outspoken adherents are either aglow or aghast."

Mr. Hesseldahl quotes analyst Rob Enderle of The Enderle Group, who noted that "adding a second button and a trackball to the mouse is neither innovative nor unique. These are things that others were doing in the mid-1990s." Still, Mr. Enderle praised the move as one that will help bring more switchers to the Mac fold.

Compared to the "hockey puck" mouse that Apple debuted with the first iMac in 1998, of course, Mr. Hesseldahl feels that Apple has taken a smart, iterative step forward from the single-button optical mouse that Apple released in 2000. A wireless version of that one appeared in 2002. When asked about a wireless Mighty Mouse, Apple product manager David Moody would only reply: "We havenit announced one yet."