Using the TrackMan Marble Fx with Mac OS X

I have been trying to use my decade old Trackman Marble Fx . This is a great deal less stressful than the traditional pronated (plams downward) position. I had tried a standard USB adapter. The iBook had no idea anything was connected. The death of my Marble Trackman Wheel forced me to go from casual search to active hunt, or continue using the dreaded mouse.

I needed a converter not an adapter to inform the system that a ps/2 device was connected. I briefly tasted success with a $50 converter advertised at Memory Express’s website. The server was puzzled as the computer listed the part available, but none were to be had. The server’s puzzlement extended to condolences but no actual reordering. I am not sure what they are teaching the kids in the store these days to let a $50 sale disappear.

It worked out well as I bought a $14 Sabrent USB to 2-Port PS/2 Splitter Cable Converter . This worked beautifully. I was using the trackball in minutes, without any need for additional drivers. It lasted a day.

I really missed the scroll wheel. I had no idea how much I used the thing. I tried to use streemouse, to see if I could emulate a scroll, but was not successful. However, I am using a newer model of the trackman wheel, also ordered from Tiger Direct, which is a ergonomically better than the older model. It places my hand in a more supine position, although less so than the Marble Fx, but I have the scroll wheel back.

I like using trackballs, because I am not picking something up and driving all over my desktop. With two screens this becomes even less fun. I am not really sure why mice seem popular and trackballs seemed to have languished. Logitech’s current line up of trackballs is quite inadequate. What is the point of a wireless trackball ? Anyway, I am glad to be using a trackball again.


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