Japanese crave symmetry

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At least when it comes to their mice, Japanese crave symmetry, according to the Microsoft hardware development team responsible for the company's notebook mouse.

Speaking at the Innovation In A Wireless World conference in Redmond, US last week, Edie Adams, manager, user researcher, and ergonomicist, said that Microsoft experimented with dozens of prototype designs for its small notebook mouse.

The prototypes included a number of asymmetrical designs, which were specifically tailored to the posture of the hand when gripping a small object, with the locations of the buttons in the ideal spot for comfortable use.

However, during prototype testing in Japan, the feedback was overwhelmingly in favour of a more conventional small mouse design - and for no other reason than it looked better because of its symmetry, Adams said.

As such, Microsoft abandoned the asymmetrical design and the production mouse was along more conventional lines.

Microsoft has recently updated its range of wireless keyboards and mice, and the new notebook mouse is an evolution of this symmetrical design.

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