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I spent most of my early 20s pounding a 10-key adding machine. (Yes, adding machine, not calculator.) As a result, I developed wrist problems that plague me still. Finding a keyboard/mouse combination that doesn't cause pain has been a challenge over the years. Until Apple released the current low-profile style keyboard and the Magic Mouse, my standard procedure was to switch out mice/trackballs every week or so. Once I started using a Magic Mouse, that stopped. It caused zero pain. I love it.

Now, with the release of OS X 10.7 (Lion), while I still love the Magic Mouse, it can't handle all of the new multitouch gestures that can be used for navigating. Time for Magic Trackpad. I have a new love! After just a few hours of working with (and adjusting to) the Magic Trackpad, the mouse was turned off. And it hasn't been turned on again. I've used the Trackpad exclusively for a full week now, and I'm hooked on it. 

I'm slowly but surely adjusting to the 2-, 3- and 4-finger swipes. On the rare occasions that I can't manage something that normally calls for a mouse-click, buttons are embedded in the feet on the front edge, so it just take a light press. While I haven't tested it, I understand that under Snow Leopard the feet can actually be assigned to right- and left-click. Sorry, not going back to Snow Leopard to test it out. Lion is definitely growing on me. I'm using it full time on both of my Macs. 

One undocumented goodie that I found by accident concerns one of my favorite utilities, MenuCalendarClock. MCC puts a little calendar page with the date in the upper right part of the Finder menu bar. Tapping on it drops down a monthly calendar, and below that all of my iCal entries for the following week. I use it on a daily basis. I discovered by accident that a double-tap with 3 fingers anywhere will drop it down or put it away, even if I'm doing something in full-screen mode. Neat. For those using the Entourage calendar instead of iCal, there's a version for you, too.

I have no idea, yet, about battery life with the Magic Trackpad, but if I can get by with changing rechargeables every couple of weeks, I'll be happy. It's a great addition to my iMac. The Magic Mouse? It takes advantage of more multitouch gestures than the trackpad on my 2008 MacBook, so I have a feeling that it will end up in my laptop bag.

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  • chrisw

    I’ve been using my trackpad now for about 6 weeks, and System Preferences show that the batteries it came with (yes, there were batteries pre-installed) are at 78%. I estimate that I would have changed the batteries in my wireless mouse at least once, and possibly twice, in that time.

    Nothing but good things to say about the trackpad. And it really does come into its own with Lion.

  • Patrick

    I’ve been using a mouse since 1985 and my Mac 512Ke. Until two months ago I had never used any alternative input device that worked as well as a mouse.

    Switched to Lion with the developer preview, played with it for 30 minutes, stood up, went to the Apple Store, bought a Magic Trackpad, came home, plugged it in (how do you plug in a wireless device?), and have used the trackpad exclusively since.

    I wouldn’t say I have a new love [ok, wife is gone, I do have a new love].