A COMPUTER MOUSE
Is it everything or nothing?
This is by far the most expensive mouse I have ever bought at $24.99. It is also perhaps the loudest piece of computer equipment — peripheral or otherwise — that I have ever encountered in my entire life with the literal volume of its clicking noise, lighting effects, and the quantity of accompanying bloatware. Then again, it is also my first piece of gaming gear — a moniker to which I am technically new. A world in which a $50 peripheral is considered “thoroughly affordable” is not mine anymore (it never was, but only because of my limited adolescent income,) but that’s okay. Perhaps this purchase will prove to be the gateway to my very own Sick Build. Regardless, my adult life is still full of plentiful clicking, and a high-quality, “variable resolution” mouse should have some sort of place when doing my taxes, repeatedly applying for health insurance, reading daily news for hours, and accurately liking Joke Tweets. And — for the sake of a more thorough gamer perspective — I downloaded all 10GB of Eve Online and clicked around in space for an evening, just in case.
After fifteen minutes spent looking for the end of the G203’s 6.6-foot USB cable, I plugged it in to my Spectre and made the mistake of manually seeking out its Windows drivers. I thought the 115mb installation file was comically excessive for a mouse, but after inadvertently joining The G Team, enhancing my new Gaming Gear, and appeasing the prompt’s request for a reboot, the complexity of the software more than justified its footprint, if not its existence.
Naturally, I was thrilled to opt-in to let my new mouse speak to its mothership, hoping that it would eventually mention my hands, which are by far my most flattering feature (also, it would be nice if it told them how awkward it is to use its software as long as it remains exempt from UI scaling.) Then, the one hundred and seventh edition of my mouse’s update tool suggested that I download higher performance! (Apparently “DPI” means “Dots Per Inch,” and I’m sure 8000 of them is an upgrade from my old rollerball!)
By default, the hugely bright LEDs on the G203 cycle smoothly through the colorband, which is desirable to someone on Earth, I’m sure, but I do not know of them. Come to think of it — out of all of the many Gamers I’ve known and conversed with about every topic imaginable, I’m almost positive that their own mice — or computer mice as a whole, really — have never come up. Even for these, life is too short to search Consumer Reports for computer mouse reviews, but perhaps all of us are in error. I only purchased the G203 because all of the majesty of Columbia’s Best Buy (apparently the holder of the “Worst Best Buy Store in the World” title not so long ago) was sold out of all mice within what I then considered to be a reasonable price range, and it was the one of the remaining “expensive” but still doable options with the highest reviews upon a briskly skimmed Google search. Now, I think I can see why. There is a certain quality in the way it feels that I’ve clearly been missing out on amidst my as-yet-lifelong habit of using the cheapest, knockoff-brand peripherals.
First: that serrated scroll wheel! Wow! Incremented scrolling was the shit, wasn’t it? Can you actually read while you two-finger gesture scroll? I’m pretty sure I can’t, regardless of how seamless the experience may or may not be. I can neither imagine nor hope this sort of engagement — with the web, anyway — will be viable for much longer, but it is a nice option. To be forceful, notice that options being sort of a theme, here: out of a lack of cheaper options, I spent a bit more on this, very option-saturated mouse, and now I can’t move my laptop’s pointer from over six feet away — should I wish — albeit with the obligatory anxiety over the destructive potential such a tether includes, left exposed to the whims of whirling pets or limbs. Of course, you are no doubt wondering why a wired mouse? Isn’t that your whole original limitation?
Like the smart-minded PC gaming enthusiast, I find the potential advantages of bluetooth peripherals to be overshadowed by their disadvantages in a big way. Not so much the inevitable delay of wirelessness as was commonly lamented upon by the competitive elite first-person-shooters, but the little slice of burden stacked on top of the pile of battery-operated devices I already own. Even sans-Tesla, quartz or smart watch, portable gaming console (or, console of any kind with wireless controllers,) tablet, wireless headphones, portable speakers, ereader, smart glasses, and smart jacket, the power cells in my laptop, iPhone, and flashlight generate plenty of charge anxiety enough, and I’d like to hold out for as long as is reasonably feasible before multiplying my existing duress. However, as per my own observations (though not measurable numbers,) the G203 seems to be increasing the drain on my Spectre’s batteries, whether by its huge, always-running software presence, its physical USB draw, or both. Quantifying the subsequent hassle of charging my laptop more often so that it could be measured against that of charging an equivalent bluetooth mouse is neither straightforward nor interesting, but it’s not as if I’ll be using this machine off the charger for very much longer after over a year of extremely heavy use.
As long as tools have existed — certainly as long as they’ve been sold — they have been divided primarily into two categories: products for amateurs, and products for professionals. I come from a time when “professional gamer” was an oxymoron (unless you count stuff like snooker, I guess,) yet now I’m using such a customizable mouse that its hotkeys can be mapped to hotkey mapping and its sensitivity (the dots per inch spec) can be switched “on the fly.” How I’m going to make full use of these functionalities within my word processor has yet to be determined, but when/if it is, it will be completely implementable in absolutely no time at all. The Logitech G203 is neither amateur nor pro — it is a “prodigy,” which from my perspective has to be an inherently nostalgic angle. Topically, more than anything at this moment, I would like to bring the core characters of Halt and Catch Fire to life just to show them this mouse, its software, and all that they are constantly begging to do together — like “controlling [my] Discord client,” whatever the hell that could possibly mean.
The Logitech G203 is officially “gamer gear,” but it’s important to clarify the term’s meaning in both hardware and software for an adult in 2018. And yet, at least it remains overwhelmingly clear that we will all eventually die.The Logitech G203 is officially “gamer gear,” but it’s important to clarify the term’s meaning in both hardware and software for an adult in 2018. And yet, at least it remains overwhelmingly clear that we will all eventually die.The thing that got us to the thing did so a long time ago — it’s full of nazis and captcha-trained, Presidency-making Russian robots, now, and my new computer mouse is taking the initiative and handling all of my correspondence for me. Everything is possible, but the end is nigh. The same practices we once used in our youth to bide our time and hide from the truths of our finite existence have grown to encompass them as well and left no sufficient distraction with which to replace or reverse them — even obnoxiously loud clicking and bright spectrum-crossing light shows. Now, we must proceed wholeheartedly under the weight of the knowledge that we will soon reach the ultimate finality of the infinite rest, our USB mice in hand.