Pen-shaped gStick mouse promises extra precision
By Dave Parrack
August 15, 2013
A normal computer mouse is an innovation many of us take for granted, especially those of us who use one all day, every day. This also means we may ignore the limitations of this device which has been with us for more than 40 years. That is until the dreaded carpal tunnel strikes or we come up against a task that requires an extra degree of precision difficult to attain using a conventional mouse. Mimicking a pen in shape and size, gStick is looking to join the ranks of alternative mouse designs that aim to address these problems.
Gordon Alan Stewart of Anchorage, Alaska, conceived of gStick after trying to sign a contract online using a traditional mouse and realizing quite how hard it is to make precise movements with that form factor. After three years of development and testing, he is now ready to bring gStick to the market, and is using Kickstarter to do so.
The gStick is not really designed for normal Web browsing, instead being focused on PC gamers, and for those who want to experiment with digital art or graphic design, or do some serious photo- or video-editing. It's also suitable for kids, who will find the transition between using a pen and the gStick a lot easier than jumping straight to using a conventional mouse according to the creators.
The mouse is designed to be more comfortable and ergonomic, and allow for more intuitive and precise control. It's about the size of a large Sharpie pen, making it compact enough to fit in your pocket, and is suitable for both left- and right-handed users.
The wireless gStick mouse works on PC, Mac and Linux and has a sensitivity of 1200 DPI. The gStick features a ceramic ball as its tip, with a removable end to allow for regular cleaning. It also features a scroll wheel that can be manipulated with a finger or thumb, with a button on either side of the wheel. It's claimed that a single AAA battery will power the gStick for between three and five months.
Stewart aimed to raise US$40,000 through Kickstarter but passed that goal within 24 hours. The final tally will pay for tooling, final testing, and the first production run. The final product is expected to have a more polished finish than the prototype, with smoother buttons and a rounder scroll wheel.
The retail price is expected to be $69, but Kickstarter backers can get the gStick for between $25 and $50. The Kickstarter campaign video below includes a brief demonstration of the gStick being used.