Jul 13, 2008

Left pointing the other way

While using a mouse, I occasionally switch from a right-handed mode to a left-handed mode. Earlier versions of Windows used to call the relevant option under Control Panel -> Mouse as switch to left-handed mouse, but now they call it (confusingly, IMO) as switch primary and secondary button.

Which brings me to my point: software UI design, for all its comforts, still remains sinistral-unfriendly. On a typical GUI containing windows, there's no way to move the scroll-bar to the left (by default, the mouse pointer tends to rest on the LHS of the screen, but largely this could be a psychological perception of having to move to the right end of the screen). The minimise-maximise-close buttons will be on the top-right. Even the mouse arrow pointer continues to nod towards the north-west (IIRC, in earlier Windows versions, it would go north-east with a switch in mouse-handedness).

Here's an interesting little discussion between a left-handed user and a (left-handed) UI designer on the topic (look for the comment by "Sebastian").

And while on the subject, once again, all the main contenders for a US Presidential election are left-handed. The last time this happened was in 1992 when George Bush (the elder), Bill Clinton (the victor) and Ross Perot (the moneyed pretender) were on the ballot.

2 comments:

Lekhni said...

Are you ambidextrous, then?
I wonder if I can try that on my laptop too..

Ramanand said...

I'm a little ambidextrous, but not much.