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The KidTrac trackball from Clearly Superior Technologies may be look like it is for children but users shouldn't be fooled by outward appearances. The bold bright colours—Yellow trackball with Red, Green and Blue buttons—is just a disguise for a highly functional trackball with capabilities suited to all ages.
Unlike most trackballs on the market, the high density 2.5" diameter phenolic trackball in the KidTrac has significant inertia. This provides far more tactile feedback than that normally offered with other trackballs, ensuring smooth response to even a light touch and requiring minimal dexterity of the fingers. Since the entire hand can be engaged in performing the trackball movements, the PC-Trac is a good solution for those who may have weakness or damage to the fingers, or for those who are seeking to avoid potential Repetitive Strain Injuries. Unlike some other trackballs, the trackball in the KidTrac is also safely secured in the housing to ensure that it cannot be easily removed, either by accident or deliberate action so missing trackballs or broken windows are not an issue.
The KidTrac also offers 'Dynamic Acceleration' which increases distance covered proportional to the speed of rotation. This feature ensures fine control as well as offering accurate rapid movement when required. (See the Features section on the Detailed Specifications Page for a deeper explanation of this feature.)
Since the low profile of the KidTrac housing acts as a natural hand rest, mirroring the natural contour of your hand, it can also reduce the risk of the wrist being inappropriately positioned and being injured as a result.The special 'Ambidextrous Trackball' feature allows switching from left to right-handed use by simultaneously pressing all 3 buttons, without the need to change system settings.
Users with vision limitations can especially benefit from the extra-large brightly coloured design which serves as an aid to clearly identify the button locations and functions. The light activation force and large dimensions of the buttons also mean that anyone with limited strength will be able to perform clicks as easily as any user. Users with motor function limitations may be interested in the Switch-Adapted version of the KidTrac which has three jacks for the connection of accessibility switches to provide easier access to the button functions.
Uses Less Space Than Conventional Mice
- The stationary nature of the KidTrac trackball also allows the user to conserve space on their workspace. It is ideally suited for space restrictive environments or narrower keyboard trays that can accommodate a keyboard with only a few inches extra to spare.
Reduces Strain on Arm, Elbow and Shoulder Muscles
- Like a touchpad, KidTrac Trackballs are stationary mousing devices. (Moving the ball with the fingers moves the cursor on the screen.) Limiting the repetitive movements of the arm and shoulder can greatly reduce the potential for injury and inflammation in these muscle groups. The housing of a trackball can also be angled in any direction, allowing the user to keep the elbow, wrist and hand in a straight line, and to limit ulnar and radial deviation. Learn More About Ulnar Deviation
Reduces Strain on the Hand, Wrist and Arm
- Trackballs effectively counter any tendency the user might have to grip the pointing device too hard. This often inadvertent static grip can cause pain and injury to the muscles and soft tissues in the back of the hand and in the wrist and forearm. Trackballs, by requiring a simple spinning motion accomplished with the fingers, eliminate static grip entirely. Learn More About Static Grip Force
Reduces Reach for Buttons
- KidTrac Trackballs have large oversized buttons surrounding the trackball, allowing users to use whichever finger minimizes reach and strain when pressing buttons. The available customizing software (Pro model only) allows the assignment of functions to whichever button the user desires.
Hardwired Drag Lock Feature Reduces Finger Fatigue
- The hard-wired drag-lock feature (the non-Pro versions of the KidTrac) allows users to activate drag-lock by simply clicking on the middle button without having to hold down the button while dragging the selected item on the computer screen. This will simplify using applications that require significant click-and-drag actions.
Scroll Lock for Ease of Scrolling
- The KidTrac Trackballs (non-PRO models) also have a scroll-lock feature that allows users to horizontally and vertically scroll without having to hold down a button. Scroll Lock is activated by holding the middle button down for 3 seconds.
Enables Load Balancing Between Left and Right Hands
- KidTrac Trackballs feature an ambidextrous design and can be placed on the left or right side of the keyboard in the traditional desktop layout. They can also be used between the two modules of a separated keyboard, on the arm of a couch, or wherever else the user might find convenient and comfortable. The ability to distribute the workload as desired allows the user to reduce the strain on the muscles of the dominant side. Non-Pro models of the KidTrac make this easy by offering a special 'Ambidextrous Trackball' feature which allows fast switching from left to right-handed use by simultaneously pressing all 3 buttons, without the need to change system settings.
Large Diameter Weighted Ball
- The 57 mm ball on the KidTrac trackballs is weighted to provide users with excellent response feedback. With the KidTrac there is no accidental movement as users have exceptional control. The weighted ball also supports rapid movement which enables users to adjust cursor position with exceptional speed.
Dynamic Acceleration Reduces Repetitive Movement
- The Dynamic Acceleration feature incorporated into all KidTrac models is especially beneficial to users working with large high resolution screens or those who need to rapidly move the cursor across greater distances. This feature ties the distance travelled to the speed with which the ball is rotated. For example, a 1/4 rotation of the ball at a rapid rate will cause the cursor to cover a substantially greater distance than the same 1/4 rotation performed at a slow rate. This can be especially beneficial for uses (such as CAD) where exceptional accuracy is required at one moment while still needing to move larger distances the next. Users are able to set the resolution of the trackball to a lower setting in order to achieve a greater degree of control, yet with a rapid movement of the ball can still cover the greater distances necessary for accessing menus. A 'fixed acceleration' trackball would require a greater degree or number of rotations in order to cover these larger movements, resulting in an increase in the amount of necessary finger movement.
- Middle Button Hardwired for Drag-Lock (for non-Pro models): The middle button defaults to drag-lock - this means that there is no need to hold a button down to highlight, select or drag an item. This is a real plus for individuals with trigger finger, who are constantly having to click, or for those with motor skill difficulties.
- Middle Button in Scroll-Lock Mode: The middle button can also act as a scroll-lock. To have the button perform a scroll-lock (instead of the default drag-lock), press and hold the button for 3 seconds. An indicator light in the upper right notifies the user when Scroll Lock is activated. To leave scroll-lock mode, press any button.
- Ambidextrous Design: The KidTrac trackballs encourage ambidextrous use with a special 'Ambidextrous Trackball' feature which allows fast switching from left to right-handed use by simultaneously pressing all 3 buttons, without the need to change system settings.
- Dynamic Acceleration: The Dynamic Acceleration feature incorporated into all KidTrac models is especially beneficial to users working with large high resolution screens or those who need to rapidly move the cursor across greater distances. This feature ties the distance travelled to the speed with which the ball is rotated. For example, a 1/4 rotation of the ball at a rapid rate will cause the cursor to cover a substantially greater distance than the same 1/4 rotation performed at a slow rate. A 'fixed acceleration' trackball would require a greater degree or number of rotations in order to cover these larger movements, resulting in an increase in the amount of necessary finger movement.
- Universal Compatibility: The universal compatibility of this design means it works well in a multi-user environments with a range of individuals.
- Wired Reliability: KidTrac Trackballs employ a wired USB connection which eliminates the potential for wireless to 'drop out' at a crucial moment. It also ensures the fastest communication - eliminating any potential for lag from wireless.
- Low Profile: The low profile of the KidTrac trackball case acts as a natural hand-rest, mirroring the natural contours of the hand.
- Robust Design: Employing strong ABS plastic construction, a virtually indestructible phenolic trackball and stainless steel rollers, Clearly Superior Trackballs are designed with durability a key consideration.
- Large Weighted Trackball: The large 57 mm ball provides increased accuracy and control. The weight also enables rapid movement across large distances as it can be spun.
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- Width: 3.75" (9.5 cm)
- Depth (front to back): 6.75" (17.1 cm)
- Height: 1.75" (4.4 cm)
- Ball diameter: 2.25" (5.7 cm)
- Ball type: High density phenolic
- Bearings: Dupont Delrin with Teflon
- Ball Suspension: Nickel plated brass alloy
- Tracking: Mechanical Optical
- Resolution: 300 CPI (counts per inch)
- Case: High impact ABS
- Cable Length: 6' (1.8 m)
- Compatibility: PC: 98SE, 2000, XP, Vista, 7
Mac: Mac OS 9 (or later)
Linux: most versions
Other: any HID 1.0 compatible operating system (e.g. Sun Solaris)
- Interface: USB 1.1 (USB to PS/2adapter included)
- Warranty: 1 year
- Package Contents: KidTrac Trackball, USB to PS/2 Adapter, Quick Start Guide
- If you are new to a trackball expect that it will take a while to get accustomed to the different style of control. It is also a good idea to limit the amount of time you use it in the first while. Rather, build up to longer periods of usage by interchanging with a different mousing device or by Load Balancing (see next point).
- Load Balance Your Use: The freedom of an ambidextrous trackball lets you easily switch between left and right handed use. Make a point of using it with your non-dominant hand. Not only is this good for your dominant hand, which gets a break from working, it can slowly build dexterity and endurance which your non-dominant hand generally does not have. As a bonus, it is also a way of stimulating the other half of your brain, which is never a bad idea. The KidTrac (non-PRO) trackballs encourage ambidextrous use with a special "Ambidextrous Trackball" feature which allows fast switching from left to right-handed use by simultaneously pressing all 3 buttons, without the need to change system settings.
- Take Regular Breaks: If you find that you are experiencing discomfort in your fingers, especially in the learning stages - that is a good sign that you may want to take a break by switching to a different device or by swapping to the other hand. As with any device, make an effort to regularly change your usage, take breaks, and perform stretches. Some users find that the fingers can benefit from occasionally flexing them through a full range of movement, both extending and contracting them fully.
- Employ the "Dynamic Acceleration" feature to reduce unnecessary repetitive rotation movements when needing to move across large distances. Moving the ball quickly will cause it to cover a much greater distance than it will if rotated slowly for the same amount of rotation (i.e. a quarter of a rotation at a higher speed will cover a much greater distance than a quarter of a rotation at a slow speed).
- If you have a PRO model consider installing the Superior-X Button Control for Windows or USB Overdrive Software for Mac downloadable from the manufacturer
Note: Follow the manufacturer's instructions for removing other input device software prior to installing the Superior-X package.
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|CST1350|| White case, blue, red, and green buttons, beige cable, yellow ball, basic model (middle button hard wired as drag lock), quick-switch ambidextrous function. USB interface.|
|CST1345-PRO|| White case, blue, red, and green buttons, beige cable, yellow ball, PRO model (programmable middle button). USB interface.|