The Birth of the Mouse

From The Independent:

Mouse This week in the magazine, Malcolm Gladwell writes about the creation of the computer mouse. As the creation story goes, Steve Jobs got the idea for the modern mouse after visiting Xerox PARC in 1979. Within a few days, he met with Dean Hovey, who was one of the founders of the industrial-design firm that would become known as IDEO. Hovey described the meeting to Gladwell from his old office in downtown Palo Alto, which he was borrowing from the current tenant “just for the fun of telling the story of the Apple mouse in the place where it was invented.” Gladwell writes:

He had brought a big plastic bag full of the artifacts of that moment: diagrams scribbled on lined paper, dozens of differently sized plastic mouse shells, a spool of guitar wire, a tiny set of wheels from a toy train set, and the metal lid from a jar of Ralph’s preserves. He turned the lid over. It was filled with a waxlike substance, the middle of which had a round indentation, in the shape of a small ball. “It’s epoxy casting resin,” he said. “You pour it, and then I put Vaseline on a smooth steel ball, and set it in the resin, and it hardens around it.” He tucked the steel ball underneath the lid and rolled it around the tabletop. “It’s a kind of mouse.”

Hovey has shared some of his photographs and sketches from the days of development, presented here with excerpts from Gladwell’s piece.

More here.