That’s My Mouse

That’s My Mouse went live about a minute ago. I’ve installed it (copied a piece of javascript) on this wiki page.

ThatsMyMouse allows people to passively interact. Just by navigating through a web-page you can interact with the people on it. Since it’s written in JavaScript (and supports all major browsers) it works for 95+% of visitors after a website places a single line of JavaScript on their page. You can see, talk and interact with anyone who browses to the same page as you.

Let’s see how this works.

Interesting, although I have no idea how this would be useful. Ideas?

Update #2: Many of us had a chance to play with it today. It was quite fun. I’ve saved the chat transcript as there were a few ideas brought up as to how this could be used in some useful way.

Now that a few people have had a chance to play, please comment with what ideas you have. And @arthus, I noticed you had strong criticisms about this. I encourage you to voice your thoughts here.

  • Sorry… was travelling to the school and missed you. Will try it later and see what it can do.

  • Scratching my head too wondering, “why?” Maybe it’s to mouse over the waif like young models on the thatsmymouse site?

  • Has potential. However, it needs to be brought out somewhere in some way. Neat addition to sites, blogs especially if it’s used to add a real time perspective to things. For people with an intelligence that appeals more to IM type communication, but at the same time have no desire to get lost into the large unmanageable contact list or just enjoy spontaneity conversation.

    That’s my opinion. Btw, your blog rocks just by the name. XP Have fun.


    Bug me about Open Source someday, just as long as it’s not today. Recovering from finals still. Open thinking is something more people should do.

  • Yes, I am strongly critical of this for 2 reasons. Of course it is fun in an isolated instance. However, I see almost no use for this to be implemented on the general web.
    a) It is bad usability. I get a large pop up when I visit a page. What’s more, if I somehow do have it enabled then I see many people browsing the page, potentially blocking me from viewing the content I come to a page for.
    b) It is an infringement of my privacy and adds little value. I go to most pages to read the content there – not to be bombarded with unnecessary information AND have my mouse broadcast to anyone who visits the page.

    Sure, it is fun. However, I am highly skeptical of its value in a real world environment. There is relatively no gain with a high cost to usability and privacy.

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  • Jen

    1. Browser crashed 3 times.
    2. Made me dizzy.
    3. If you want to tour the web together, why not use

  • I have a problem with Arthus’ argument… he says that he gets a large pop up, this happens once, he also says that he sees many people viewing the page potentially blocking the content he wants to view. This is what the minimise button is for… it is minimised initially anyway.

    It is not an infringement of any privacy… he has nothing to back up that statement, if it was an infringement of this they wouldn’t be able to release the application… he also provides the same point twice (the reading content argument). The content is only unnecessary if the people participating start rambling… besides, as I’ve said you don’t have to maximise it in the first place, or can minimise it if you find the chat to be “unnecessary”.

    There is absolutely no cost to usability or privacy… as you’ve hopefully realised with my point. If you see no value in what I have said then you obviously have your inaccurate views firmly set in place… which is a shame.

  • Jen, me.dium is useful for most people… but for us students it’s not really, under 18’s aren’t allowed to use it

  • Jen

    Sean, thanks for pointing that out. I forget about that challenge.

  • Kimberly Brown

    Not sure if I can see an educational connection but it was darn fun for five or so minutes.

  • Sean,

    First of all: even if the popup is only once, once is too many times for a feature which you don’t really need anyways.

    Second: the widget is maximized at start.

    Third: this is all irrelevant, since there is no educational or real-world use. If you can come up with a concrete reason to use this on most websites, then I’ll reconsider. Since there is no gain, any cost (even a single popup) is too high.

  • Not sure I saw a massive benefit from the chat element, but I do like the idea of setting some ‘voting corners’, getting pupils to log in and justify their decisions, both on and off line.
    One of the other comments was that we should just log some pupils in and see if they can come up with any ideas. Not sure when I’m going to be able to do this, but it’s on my to do list. I’ll post my findings whenever I get them. Anyone else up for trying this?
    Arthus – I’m not sure I completely understand your problem with privacy. No-one is suggesting that anyone would add this as a compulsory element of viewing a webpage (are they?) and surely you wouldn’t just leave it on in the background to something else as it would be too distracting. Have I missed something?