How Computer Mice Work

This Microsoft Intellimouse uses optical technology. See more computer hardware pictures.

Mice first broke onto the public stage with the introduction of the Apple Macintosh in 1984, and since then they have helped to completely redefine the way we use computers.

Every day of your computing life, you reach out for your mouse whenever you want to move your cursor or activate something. Your mouse senses your motion and your clicks and sends them to the computer so it can respond appropriately.


In this article we'll take the cover off of this important part of the human-machine interface and see exactly what makes it tick.