Motor control - Spaceball

I'm running into motor control problems (Parkinson's). Would the Spaceball facilitate some functionality? Which one is best?. I need usb. Serial not an option on my notebook.


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Naturally, you're looking for anecdotal evidence, someone who's been through exactly what you're going through and can ease the way for you with some experience and advice. Hopefully, someone like that shows up. In the mean time, it's amazing how much good info is available by googling "parkinson's spaceball". Seems like the problem is strength and they recommend some settings.

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David Janes

Yes, that's a good idea. Less moves with hands/fingers, better and faster control. Spaceballs can be "hard" and "soft". I have the old-fashioned spacemouse plus, pretty stiff. No idea how softer are the FLX-es, but this may also be important to you, as it needs operating just with fingertips.

Didn't you think about some kind of glove with sensors? Konrad

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A co-worker recently won the latest/greatest spaceball product at a regional Pro/USER conference. It works with very little tactile effort, and is very adjustable. Much softer feel than the old spaceball I used when learning Pro/E v20. Sorry, that's all I know about it, but if you have specific questions I'm sure he'd be happy to contribute answers.


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my Pro/E seat is equipped with a Spaceball 3003 and it allows to adjust sensitivity for all 6 DOF. Can´t say if this is of help to movement-impaired users, but IMO this way of computer control with fingertips is superiour to the whole-arm-approach aka mouse.

Another great input device I´d like to suggest is the optical (unfortunately out-of-production) Logitech Trackman Marble FX.

Once you get accustomed to it - that happens fast - you won´t want to miss it. No pain in under arm from RSI syndrome any more.

There are always a lot of these at ebay, newer models are USB and only have a little USB-to-PS/2 adaptor.


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Walther Mathieu

I have one of the new spacepilot controllers. Very easy to move and adjust the software to fit your needs. It is also USB driven and has a smaller hand controller than the Spaceball. The downside to the controller is the cost and application refresh. The spacepilot has programable menus for the different modes, assy or part mode. You have to wait a few seconds when switching between windows before you can input anything. Overall I really love it.

Eric Mills

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Hallo Eric, I think also that this is a nice tool. If you get the newest driver from them the switching while be faster.

Ingo Hochmuth

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Ingo Hochmuth

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