The inventor of the computer mouse, Doug Engelbart, died late Tuesday, July 2. He was 88.
The first mouse was a wooden contraption and was patented in 1970. This was incredible foresight in a world where computers were still enormous and ran with knobs and switches and data cards. He was so far ahead of his time, that he never really profited from this amazing invention. Although Apple started using the mouse in 1984, Engelbart’s patent ran out just 3 years later. So for all the years that the mouse was used by millions, Engelbart was unable to collect royalties on his invention. Basically …. he invented it “too soon”.
Below is a video which is part of a presentation Engelbart and others made in 1968. He throws out for consideration the astounding idea of a computer at an individual’s work place, and continues on to demonstrate the most basic of functions that were at the time … well, Magical.