Cordless Trackman Wheel

My brain knows what it likes – and it didn’t like this cordless trackball. My left and right hemispheres became bumbling wrecks after a few hours attempting to master this device. They didn’t recover until I reverted to my trusty mouse. Sadly, my working life is nothing but a series of mouse moves and clicks, and accommodating a new way of working was always going to be a tall order. The Trackman Wheel is a two-button trackball with a scrolling wheel. It comes with a USB receiver that allows it to communicate with your machine. \Logitech makes great play of the Web Wheel function. This can be selected in the control panel that comes with the device. The Web Wheel pops up on-screen upon clicking the scrolling wheel. It’s a sliced-cake arrangement of Web options – including Forward, Backwards and Favourites – that normally appear on browser title bars. Like so many of these fancy frills, it proved no handier than the orthodox method. Also, I couldn’t get the trackwheel to work for love nor money. Min specs: Mac OS 8.6; Mac OS 9.0.4; USB port.

OUR VERDICT

If your livlihood is underpinned by mouse skills, then a trackball will slow you down significantly at first. If you can be bothered to put in the hours in order to hit top gear, then I guess that’s fine. But I couldn’t – using a combination of two buttons and the trackball to create QuarkXPress pages was like ice skating in carpet slippers. There are also compatibility issues. For instance, it won’t work with any version of Mac OS 9 other than 9.0.4.

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