Wireless Mice with
Scroll Wheels
Wireless Mice with
Scroll Wheels
Logitech iFeel Optical
Mouse w/ LED
Apple Macintosh Plus
Mouse 1986
The underside of the
first mouse.
Not long before the San Francisco
demo [1968], Arthur C. Clarke came
by our lab. We showed him what you
could do with the NLS. As he was
leaving he said, "I write all kinds of
things about the science fiction future,
but I never thought of anything like

However, within three years he grew restless, feeling there was something more
important he should be working on, dedicating his career to. He thought about the
world's problems, and what he as an engineer might possibly be able to do about them.
He had read about the development of the computer, and seriously considered how it
might be used to support mankind's efforts to solve these problems. As a radar
technician he had seen how information could be displayed on a screen. He began to
envision people sitting in front of displays, "flying around" in an information space
where they could formulate and organize their ideas with incredible speed and flexibility.
So he applied to the graduate program in Electrical Engineering at U.C. Berkeley to
launch his new crusade (at that time there was no computer science department, and
the closest working computer was in Maryland).

He earned his Ph.D. in 1955, along with a half dozen patents in "bi-stable gaseous
plasma digital devices", and then stayed on as Acting Assistant Professor. However,
within a year he was tipped off by a colleague that if he kept talking about his "wild
ideas" he'd be an Acting Assistant Professor forever. So he ventured back down the
Peninsula in search of a more suitable outpost.

He settled on a research position at SRI (then Stanford Research Institute), where he
earned another dozen patents in two years working on magnetic computer components,
fundamental digital-device phenomena, and miniaturization scaling potential.

By 1959 he had enough standing to get approval to pursue his own research. He spent
the next two years formulating a theoretical framework for a new discipline, which
became the guiding force for his seminal work.

Then in 1963 he finally got the funds to start his own research lab, which he later
dubbed the Augmentation Research Center. He began by developing the kind of
technology he believed would be required to augment our human intellect, and also to
support the bootstrapping/augmentation process. Throughout the '60s and '70s his lab
pioneered an elaborate hypermedia-groupware system called NLS (for oNLine System),
most of whose now-common features were conceived of, fully integrated, and in
everyday operational use, by the early 1970s (see Pioneering Firsts below).

In the spring of 1967, it was announced that all the ARPA-sponsored computer
research labs, including Engelbart's, would be networked to promote resource sharing.
Engelbart was thrilled. He saw the ARPANET as an excellent vehicle for extending NLS
provisions for wide
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1.  A computer mouse
2.  Turkish
3.  Towards the end of 1968, D(ouglas) E(nglebart) created a new input device
subsequently called the mouse.  Englebart, with this interesting device made out
of wood, successfully performed cut, copy, and paste operations.
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Quiz #249 Results
See Results of
Our Seventh Occasional PhotoQuiz Survey
The First Mouse
Douglas Englebart
To see video of first mouse
demo, click
here and scroll to
Video #12.
On December 9, 1968, Douglas C. Engelbart and the
group of 17 researchers working with him in the
Augmentation Research Center at Stanford Research
Institute in Menlo Park, CA, presented a 90-minute
live public demonstration of the online system, NLS,
they had been working on since 1962. The public
presentation was a session of the Fall Joint
Computer Conference held at the Convention Center
in San Francisco, and it was attended by about 1,000
computer professionals. This was the public debut
of the computer mouse. But the mouse was only one
of many innovations demonstrated that day,
including hypertext, object addressing and dynamic
file linking, as well as shared-screen collaboration  
involving two persons at different sites
communicating over a network with audio and video
You have at least one of these in your house.

1.  What is this gadget?
2.  What language is this written in?
Bonus:  Provide a rough translation.

Please drop me a line if you need a hint.
-area distributed collaboration. He also saw NLS
as a natural to support an online directory of
resources, so he proposed a Network
Information Center (NIC), which he built up
and directed until around 1977, when it spun
off as an independent operation. Because of this
early active role in the formation of the
ARPANET community, his site was the second
host on the network.

NLS was first demonstrated in public at the 1968 Fall
Joint Computer Conference in a remarkable
90-minute multimedia presentation, in which
Engelbart used NLS to outline and illustrate his
points, while others of his staff linked in from his lab
at SRI to demonstrate key features of the system.
This was the world debut of the mouse, hypermedia,
and on-screen video teleconferencing.  (See
companion video at
; selected footage is also on display at the
Smithsonian Museum Exhibit on The Information
Douglas Carl Engelbart has a thirty-year track record in
predicting, designing, and implementing the future of
organizational computing.

The grandson of early pioneers of the West, he grew up
during the Great Depression on a small farmstead near
Portland, Oregon. After graduating from high school in
1942, he went on to study Electrical Engineering at
Oregon State University. Setting his studies aside, he
joined the Navy during World War II, serving for two
years as an electronic/radar technician in the Phillipines.

After completing his Bachelors Degree in E.E. in 1948,
he settled contentedly on the San Francisco peninsula as
an electrical engineer at NACA Ames Laboratory
(forerunner of NASA).
Original announcement of the
1968 Demo, courtesy of
Christina Engelbart and the
Bootstrap Institute. Click on
thumbnail for larger view.
How Collier Solved the Puzzle
The first computer mouseDouglas
Engelbart receives a patent for the
first computer mouse. (US No.
3541541) The patent, titled “X-Y
Position Indicator for a Display
System,” is a simple hollowed-out
wooden block, with a single push
button on top.
Douglas Englebart demonstrates the first word processor, 1968.
This is video #1 of 9.  The whole set are accessible at   
I just Googled "Aralik translation" and this was the first hit:
I'm surprised it hit because it's not an "i" it's a "ı". :-) I love languages. was the
last month...not the last day...Dec 9, 1968. So maybe month and year are the same
depending on context in Turkish.                                                        
    Mary South

Well...........I used my  mouse to copy, cut and paste........then I went to Google and
typed in   I tried to translate every since language,  including
Armenian, which is not on their site...............Turkish had the most words,  although
not all of them.  I also found the very same photo on a Turkish through the
process of elimination,  I came up with my answer.........haha                     
Edee Scott

Oh, BTW, "You have at least one of these in your house." Hm, mechanical mice are a
near-extinct species...but yes I do still have a few, including a Mac mouse with a four
or five digit serial number :-)  I just checked; my NeXT mouse has a leading zero
followed by a six-digit serial number, which is a bit silly, as NeXT is believed to
have shipped no more than 50.000 computers.                                     
Tamura Jones

Very interesting...cuh a common item today, but a revelation not that many years ago.
Evan Hindman
Mice in our lives: Mickey, Jerry, 2 button optical mouse,  and other nefarious
multifooted critters.  Back in those days, Annette Funicello was my favorite
Mike Dalton

I would have thought Swedish or Norwegian but I only got a rough translation in
Turkish - "first the mouse" "the mouse will brand-newly more later take ordinary one
she entered your tool" "wooden her tool entered and cut" From that I knew it was an
early computer mouse. I did try all the languages on the Babylon translation site. That is
the best I can do. I started programming computers in 1969 in undergraduate school.
                           Sherry Marshall
WOW! Have they changed since this one appeared on the scene! Think of all the fun
people have had drawing cartoons of these "mice" and including them in fun photos!
Just think - these are well-behaved mice!                                                
Grace Hertz

I did not have a chance to vote in survey, but this would have received my vote for the
best quiz so far. Of course, being a second-generation computer nerd might prejudice
me some. I can remember my father having a mouse almost this like this, however, his
was not made of wood. This was a fun quiz because it required me to use some
internet tools that I use in my job doing the translation. While it is easy to understand
what the intent of the capyion was, this translation is an exact translation from a
website I have used. Although I have been in this business over 20 years, and a user of
the internet before it was graphical, I am fascinated by what new things I can find on
the web. Thanks to your quizzes, I have found new tools to use for pleasure and work.
Jim Baker

I cant imagine the mouse is 40 years old. Huh, 1970 was just a week or so ago wasn't
Jim Kiser

Have a good weekend - or should I say "Iyi bir hafta sonu!"                     
Nicole Blank

Teşekkür ederim, ama önce Türk Lokumu yemiş hiç. Ben ahududu yoğurt razı olmak
Karen Kay Bunting

N.B.  LOL  Bon appetit!

As far as the translation goes...that's the best I can get !!!!!!. I was never good at
foreign language translation to English; Word/phrase order or "thought order"(more like
it)-> I guess that's my American ethnocentrism poking it's ugly head out. Anyway I
recognized the device for what it is (Serial port connector on light wire, red button
(switch) and internal rollers were a great hint), then I picked out the word tahtadan at
random out of the puzzle and found that it translated to wooden or wood-made, and
took a Turkish track on the puzzle (I don't know why I picked that word!), but as far
as a useable translation, Not enough time this week!!!!!!!! Cool Quiz though !!!!
Robert W. Steinmann, Jr.
Bonus: This device will behead your troublesome mouse painlessly: you won't feel a
thing. The translation, of course, is governed by the terms of the Poetic License I have
hanging on my wall (no joke!), and may bear no obvious similarily to a literal one.
Peter Norton
I think it might be a mouse trap!                                                         
Jinny Collins

Was working my way down the Google translator  when I took a shortcut and looked
up "Aralik".  It was Turkish, and that was that.                                   
Marilyn Hamill
I recognized the device was a computer mouse, so I Googled "wooden
computer mouse" with no luck on matching the image. Then I thought
of "first computer mouse" and the top result was this image, but not
the correct language.

So then I picked out 5 or 6 more or less random words from the text
and Googled all of them at once, and the majority of the results were
Turkish pages.

Google translator says the text means:

"Like the first mouse 1968 Gap Last 1968 years of gunlerinde d_____
e______, then your mouse will take the name of a new input tool tanitti.
With this tool made of wood entry Engelbart ilginc cut, copy and paste
gerceklestirdi successfully islemlerini."

Collier Smith
Answer to Quiz #249
March 22, 2010
Comments from Our Readers
Suggested by long-time Quizmaster Mike Dalton.
Congratulations to Our Winners

Of course, our Grand Champion Puzzle-Solvers
Mr. Rick and the Quiz Kids!!!

Tamura Jones                Richard Wakeham
Stan Read                Mary South
Elaine C Hebert                Mike Dalton
Edee Scott                Marilyn Hamill
Diane Burkett                        Alan Lemm
Beth Long                Carl Blessing
Nancy Lear                Milene Rawlinson
Nicole Blank                Donna Jolley
Evan Hindman                Dale Cheetham
Karen Kay Bunting                Collier Smith
Peter Norton                Janice M. Sellars
Maureen O'Connor                Joshua Kreitzer
Ben Truwe                Robin Spence
Judy Pfaff                Talea Jurrens
Karen Petrus                Mike Swierczewski
Carole Cropley                Jinny Collins
Sherry Marshall                Jocelyn Thayer
Matthew Fitzpatrick                Jim Kiser
Dr. Charles F. Coats                Gary Sterne
Suzan Farris                Gerald Vanlandingham
John Sims                John Chulick
Grace Hertz                Margaret Paxton
Deborah Lee Stewart                Jim Baker
Daniel E. Jolley                Laurel Fletchner
Frank P. Nollette                JoLynn Pfeiffer
Debbie Sterbinsky                Tim Fitzpatrick (Bro of the Q. Gen.)
Diane Burkett                Robert W. Steinmann Jr.
How You Could Figure Out the Text on the Image is Written in Turkish
Working with a foreign language is not that difficult these days thanks to the availability
of online translators and Google searches.

The way I figured the language was Turkish is that I typed in a few of the words into
the normal Google search box:
You will come up with a few websites in the langauage:
Click on one of the sites, and look for the extension to indicate what country's website
it is:
In this case, I came up with a site that is a
collection of websites about something.  Note
that the extension shown for this sites is .tr.  
This is the extension for Turkey. The writing
on the image is in Turkish.
For do the bonus translation, you can type the test into and online translator, either by
copyng and pasting into the translator the special characters of the Turkish alphabet
found on Wikipedia, or by using a translator that has a built-in Turkish typewriter.
You should come up with a loose translation.  That's all we asked for.
Copy and pastable characters from the Turkish alphabet on Wikipedia. allows you to type Turkish characters directly.  You can then
copy and paste them into a translator.