Toro Mouse

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Consumer Products
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It’s been a long time since anything really new has been developed that improves the way we operate our computers. Pretty colors and soft-touch surfaces hardly qualify as innovation. It’s time we moved beyond the old puck-style mouse.

The Toro Mouse is uniquely configured to provide a totally new set of hand motions to perform the traditional computer mouse functions. The operational motions of the Toro Mouse are constrained to be rotational in concert with natural hand motions. Hand motions that cause repetitive stress injuries are blocked by the motion constraints. Without the stress bias of having to grip, the simple tilting of your open hand guides the cursor movements with more intuitive engagement than is possible moving a device on a flat plane.

The toroidal shaped underside of the Toro Mouse hand activated controller is supported by four functional polyethylene ball bearings. The silky smooth motion provides any combination of X-axis and Y-axis rotation while preventing Z-axis rotation and linear translation. A motion damping system provides tactile stability and smooth break-away friction to enable selecting a single screen pixel without moving it ? very important for working with CAD and graphics.

All operational functions are designed to be mechanically symbiotic to the body part that performs the action. This is achieved by configuring the motions to be rotational about a center that is located close to the activating body part center of rotation. The toroidal shaped motion interface provides separate phantom centers for X-axis rotation and Y-axis rotation where the combinations blend flawlessly. The result is a device that provides unprecedented intuitive cursor control.

The scroll wheel is positioned for effortless operation by the thumb. The rotational axis of the scroll wheel is configured to pass through the user’s first metacarpal joint which enables a simple rotation of the thumb to provide activation. The vertical orientation is naturally intuitive for scrolling left-right or up-down. The scroller is easily used at the same time as the cursor motion and selector keys, which makes it an excellent intuitive vertical axis controller for 3D applications and games.

The selector keys of the Toro Mouse are designed to be activated by a trigger squeeze motion. Each key pivots as close as possible to the knuckle of rotation used for activation. The snap-in keys are configured as rotary cams which provide an expanded comfortable activation range of motion against the short-stroke board mounted switches.

The Toro Mouse enables simple muscle actions to perform computer mouse functions instead of the complex muscle actions required by the traditional puck mouse format. The benefits manifest as a more direct hand/computer interface than previously experienced. Work gets done faster without extra effort. Repetitive stress does not occur.

The Toro Mouse is designed for efficient manufacturing. All assembly is snap-together with the exception of two screws. All electronics are board mounted. The electronic circuit is a simple optical reader. Manufacturing costs are comparable to that of an optical puck-style mouse.

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  • ABOUT THE ENTRANT

  • Name:
    Stan Coe
  • Type of entry:
    individual
  • Profession:
    Engineer/Designer
  • Number of times previously entering contest:
    1
  • Stan's favorite design and analysis tools:
    CAD
  • For managing CAD data Stan's company uses:
    None
  • Stan's hobbies and activities:
    music- guitar & vocal
  • Stan belongs to these online communities:
    none
  • Stan is inspired by:
    Old school "form follows function", i.e. the best aesthetic design manifests from the job being done.
  • Hardware used for this entry:
    Custom computer, Toro Mouse development model
    Software used for this entry:
    Autodesk Inventor
  • Patent status:
    pending