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476

This is because of a flaw in the way Windows 95 generates events, and the fact that many applications are event driven. Windows 95 applications often use asynchronous I/O, that is they ask for some file operation like a copy to be performed and then tell the OS that they can be put to sleep until that operation finishes. By sleeping they allow other ...


104

Yes, it's a real effect resulting in causing a measurable speed up and can be reproduced at will: Try opening a large file with Notepad on a contemporary machine. The window must not be full screen. When loaded, mark all text using the mouse (the keyboard works as well, it just needs more manual skill). While still holding the button down (and marking) move ...


66

XORing a cursor into a frame buffer (which is what you seem to be calling "inverted cursor") is actually simpler than ORing it in there: when the cursor has to be removed again (to move to another position) you simply draw it a second time, with the same pixels, and it will vanish, courtesy of the XOR logic. If you have ORed the cursor into the ...


58

The first mouse tracked relative motion along two axes, and as far as I know all standalone mice produced since have followed suit. It would be difficult to build and use a mouse relying on absolute positioning: it would have to track its movement very accurately, with no slippage, or else allow for regular recalibration; as you mention, it would only be ...


39

It wasn't just Windows 95, but Windows 3.x as well, even though they work very differently. Other answers talk about pre-emptive multitasking, so let's first clarify this: Window 3.x was using cooperative multitasking where each app would release the cpu for the other apps to use it. Windows 95 uses pre-emptive multitasking where each app is allocated a ...


31

On Windows (1.x), at least, it's no more work to have this style of cursor than the normal sort. A Windows cursor is formed of two bitmaps: A mask that blanks out the shape of the cursor, and a pattern that is then drawn in the same place using the XOR operation. There are thus four possible combinations for any pixel: Mask bit Pattern bit Resulting pixel ...


28

It was by no means a mass market device, but Hayward and Ramstein's Pantograph (1993) encoded linkage positions as absolute coordinates. It also provided force feedback, and could ‘drive’ itself based on screen content


25

The reason is because of how WM_TIMER is limited to 15.6ms intervals by default. If you call SetTimer() with a 1ms interval it will still be called in 15.6ms intervals. WM_TIMER drives a lot of stuff in Win32 applications like network packet processing and such. Moving the mouse causes WM_TIMER events to fire more often on Win95. So some applications will ...


20

Raymond Chen from Microsoft has a great answer on his blog: One danger of the MsgWaitForMultipleObjects function is calling it when there are already messages waiting to be processed, because MsgWaitForMultipleObjects returns only when there is a new event in the queue. His blog is a great read!


19

The pre-ADB Macintoshes use a simple quadrature-encoded mouse input, no formal serial protocol. Quadrature encoding is a simple, physical process, that lends itself to a convenient cheat if you're synthesising input. Picture a cog, with an optical sensor pointing through the grooves. If you observed the digital output of that sensor, you'd be able to tell ...


18

One alternative to the trackpoint was a trackball, either below the screen (as in the Macintosh Portable), or next to the screen (as in the Compaq LTE Lite). When the trackball was next to the screen the mouse buttons were typically on the back (you would roll the ball with your thumb, and press the buttons on the back of the screen using index and middle ...


18

Some of the most available adapters which allow to connect a "modern" mouse to an Amiga are: Real USB mouse and joystick: The Ryś MK II. This is a very flexible device which supports not only USB mice (including but not limited to PS/2 ones) but also digital and analog USB joysticks. It is even capable of outputting joystick signals compatible ...


17

I think you are referring to what was back then called a digitizer. I believe they were mainly for CAD, but maybe someone who has experience with one could explain how they were used. At first when I read your question I thought of the old optical mice (not opto-mechanical mice that had a mouse ball) that used a special mirrored mousepad with a grid. Sun ...


16

Graphics digitisers like this were not optical, they were magnetic. The tablet contained a grid of wires which encoded a small magnetic signal. You moved either a stylus or, as you say, a device with cross-hairs over the tablet. As you pressed a button on the stylus, it picked up the coordinates and fed them to the computer. The coordinates could be picked ...


15

Some of the HP Omnibook series of laptops and sub-notebooks from the mid 1990s had a curious pop-out “mouse on a stick”: While hardly part of the original mouse timeline dating back to the 1960s, this HP mouse used encoders built into the computer body. The encoders — as shown in this Omnibook repair video from 10' 40" on — appear to track the extension and ...


14

On the Alto, the buttons’ functions vary with the program currently being used and the location of the cursor. The Users’ Handbook describes the functions in the default applications, using colours for the buttons: red for the left button (or top button), yellow for the middle button, blue for the right button (or bottom button). In Bravo, the text document ...


14

Arguably, this is a common bug in early software based on an event-processing loop rather than a Windows bug: if some DD-paths of the loop only process a single event, then every time when two events are generated simultaneously, only one is processed and the other gets stuck. Moving the mouse generates more incoming events and restarts the loop. "Mouse move"...


13

Is there a way to connect the 1983 Microsoft "Green-eyed" mouse to a modern PC or preferably Mac (running Windows on virtual machine)? That depends a lot on the type of green-eyed mouse and OS to use it with (or not). If it's a bus mouse (DB9 or mini-DIN connector (*1)): No - as that would need a way to plug in the controller card (*2), which was only ...


12

I want to find a way, using software, to interface my laptop and the PS/2 keyboard/mouse using the adapters I bought. Assuming you want to use the passive PS2-to-USB adapter you just bought to plug it into a USB port on your Windows 10 PC, then this will not work. The passive PS2-to-USB adapters require the keyboard or mouse to be multi-protocol: The ...


12

By the time mice wheels became widely available (starting with the Microsoft IntelliMouse; the Genius EasyScroll was earlier, but we can ignore that here), support for DOS was a secondary concern, and the “standard” DOS drivers and tools never supported them. As a result, there are limited avenues for wheel support in DOS itself, and DOS emulation ...


11

One uncommon pointing device was the J Mouse. Zenith had it on some of their laptops. I remember seeing a laptop with this back in the early 90's. Another uncommon pointing device was the mouse on the HP Omnibook 300. My work gave me an AST PowerExec laptop which had a trackball that clipped on the front edge. The ball was so small it constantly got gummed ...


11

No, the original BBC Micro came with no peripherals at all. It came in a box with room for the computer itself: and a cable and introductory material: The cut-out in the lower part that seems to be unused above is intended for the power cord, which you can see hanging from the computer. (Image source.) As Brian H pointed out, the BBC Master 512 shipped in ...


11

That makes me wonder if there was some reason for it other than individual preferences? Oh yes! Historically it even predates modern desktop systems, as the inverted mouse cursor was already part of the original Star design - as a UI feature for better usability. And it was/is really a necessary one. With an inverted 'inner' area, it offers maximum contrast ...


10

For the mouse ball, remove it and clean the rollers with some rubbing alcohol and a q-tip or if its really grungy, pick the crud off with your fingers first. The ball itself can usually just be wiped off with a dry cloth. As for the yellowing of the casing that's normally a problem with the casing discolouring due to flame retardants oxidizing the plastic. ...


10

I am experimenting with a graphics pen and tablet and it got me thinking about the difference between it and my mouse. One huge difference is that the tablet's working area covers the whole screen, No, that's scaling of your software. The tablet has its own coordinate set, which gets adjusted to your document and/or screen. Usually by the drawing ...


10

On systems without hardware sprites, this technique allows to avoid storing/redrawing the background without any backbuffer thanks to XOR properties. On the Amiga, on the other hand, the cursor is made with a hardware sprite. In that case, it's not possible to achieve the XOR effect, but the mouse move takes virtually no CPU. In that case, choosing a very ...


9

The Ryś MKII adapter by Retro 7-bit allows connecting USB mice and joysticks/gamepads to the 9-pin Amiga port. It's a true USB device so it's not restricted to PS/2-compatible USB mice like other devices mentioned here. It's available from a number of Amiga specialist shops (there's a listing of resellers on the page linked above).


9

Trying to get more into the specifics of the BBC connection, there is a substantial hint in the user guide: However only 5 bits of the [user] port, and CB1, CB2 are used: This leaves bits 1,3 and 4 available for other uses. Which is backed up by the schematic provided by Simon Inns in the doco for SmallyMouse2; comparing that to the user port's pinout ...


8

The Commodore 1351 mouse, created as an afterthought for the C64 and C128 and (ab-)using those systems' analog paddle inputs to transfer mouse position data (since no mouse support was planned when those computers were designed), maintains an internal sort-of-absolute position on a wrapping 64x64 pixel grid which it then provides to the computer. While mouse-...


7

Some of the early digitizers were off-line machines. In the 1970s We used to have one made by DMAC (sorry, I can't find a picture on the internet). This was basically a stand-alone device the same size as a desk, with a glass top and the mechanism visible inside. The drawing to be digitized was taped to the glass. The operator used a device about the size ...


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