View Full Version : Up Mouse

07-30-2012, 09:14 AM
Up Mouse
A mouse to help people with arm and wrist pain. You click by lifting your fingers so it uses different muscles and tendons than normal mice.
This campaign will only receive funds if at least $7,200 is raised by Tue Aug 14 at 11:59PM PT


The Up Mouse lets you click by lifting your fingers instead of pressing down. It has helped relieve my arm pain.

My name is Dan Benamy. I've been tinkering since before I can remember. As a kid I was always taking things apart and (usually) putting them back together :-) I'm lucky that I have the skills to work on a solution to repetivite strain injuries which can help myself and lots of others.

If clicking a mouse hurts you, try this simple test: put your hand on your mouse and lift each finger 10 times. If that hurts, the Up Mouse isn't for you. If that feels ok, it might be just the thing you need. If you get one and it hurts though, stop using it immediately!

The Up Mouse is for righties and lefties. I'm pro-choice concerning your mouse hand :-)

The Plan

1. Come up with the concept. Done.

2. Build and test a hand-made prototype. Done.

3. Line up suppliers for all needed parts. Done.

4. Have the plastic case for a production version designed. In progress.

5. Raise money. In progress. The money will be used to:

finish designing the case,
build and test the design,
iterate on the design if any changes are needed,
do a production run,
buy packaging, and
ship out the mice.

6. Get the word out! In progress.

If the Up Mouse might help you, pre-order one and help fund the project. You need your hands to enjoy life and often to make money so it's worth spending some money to try to keep them healthy.

If you know others that would benefit from the Up Mouse, share the project!

Thanks for your help getting this idea off the ground!

The Backstory

A few years ago I started getting pain in my forearms. It was the beginning of an unpleasant journey with RSI, which stands for repetitive strain injury. I've been to all kinds of doctors and physical therapists. I take breaks and do stretches. I've overhauled my workstation to be very ergonomic and tried many different mice. Some of them are definitely helpful, but I realized that no matter how they're shaped or where the buttons are, I was always using the same muscles and tendons to click: the flexors.

The flexors are what pull our fingers closed, and they're used to push buttons on a keyboard and click a traditional mouse. The extensors are the opposite: they open our fingers. The idea is to use the extensors for clicking.

In the Up Mouse, the buttons are above your fingers and you click by lifting each finger. This spreads around the wear in your arms so that one group of muscles and tendons isn't overused. As a bonus, the extensors don't go through the carpal tunnel, so using them for clicking may reduce the stress in that injury-prone area.

To test the idea, I built a (crazy looking) hand made prototype:
Up Mouse Prototype

I've been using it for about 3 months and of the mice that I've used so far, it's the best one for me.

The Up Mouse has 2 buttons: right and left click. There's no scroll wheel. Originally I planned to add one, but I couldn't figure out how to do it in an easy-to-use way, and after using the prototype with no scroll wheel for a while, I realized that I didn't miss it.

It took me about 2 weeks to get used to using the Up Mouse. If you get one, please give it some time before you decide whether it's working for you. If it hurts though, stop using it immediately!

About Me

I've been tinkering and building gadgets since I was a little kid. I've worked at Red Hat, Columbia University, and New York Public Radio (New York's NPR station). I've built a robot car that drives itself and worked on robots to play musical instruments and clean up dog poop :-)

Lately I've been especially interested in working on something that makes people's lives better, and I'm excited to do that with the Up Mouse.

Outside the Continental US

Shipping to outside the continental US is more expensive and can be more complicated. While I get things going, I'm going to stick with continental US backers only. If you live somewhere else and are interested in an Up Mouse, please send me a message and your email address by clicking the "send message" link above, just below the project title. Once I get production going and figure out international shipping, I'll get in touch with you. I promise not to use your email address for any other purpose or share it with anyone.

07-30-2012, 09:31 AM
Ten out of ten for coming up with something of real practical value.

I can imagine many thousands of Americans making use of such a mouse, and if you did take it globally even millions.