Technology used in The Fair Mouse
The Fair Mouse is an optical mouse with a scroll wheel and two buttons. On demand, a third button may be integrated into the scroll wheel. The buttons have been designed for a life span of at least 10 million clicks, thus they are especially resilient. The mouse has a sampling rate of 1000 dpi. Due to its flat form the Fair Mouse is joint-friendly and its symmetry allows for handling with both your right and your left hand.
This is what we can currently say about the single components:
The housing is what we hold in our hands when we use the mouse: It protects the technology that is inside. It consists of polyactic acid made from sugar cane. According to the Institute for Bioplastics and Biocomposites of the University of Hannover (IfBB), the cultivation and further processing of the sugar cane both are done in Thailand. From the sugar, the Dutch company Coribon Purac produces polyactic acid in China, which the IfBB uses to produce that unique bioplastics-alloy specially made for The Fair Mouse. Finally, Beoplast from the Düsseldorf-region in Germany forges this granulate material into the shape of the housing. This is done carbon-neutrally.
More on the bioplastics of our mouse, you may read here (in German).
As of late, our scroll wheels are made of native woods. They are shaped in lathe by Hauck (Germany).
The conductor board consists of a fibre-optic network on a plastic board, which is covered by a layer of copper and insulating varnish. It serves as carrier for all electric components of the mouse. These are soldered onto the board and connected to each other. Our conductor boards are produced by Hofmann LP (Germany).
There are five capacitors built into each Fair Mouse. They consist of aluminium, nickel, copper, tin and plastic and function as buffers and resistors. There are three companies that we receive capacitors from: WIMA and Frolyt (both Germany) and Vishay (Israel). Their products differ from each other and are used for different purposes.
There are three or four resistors in each Fair Mouse (this varies from mouse to mouse). They contain aluminium, nickel, possibly also chromium, copper, tin or silicon, among others. The resistors regulate electricity and voltage within the circuit. Our resistors are made in Germany by Microtech.
The LED consists of silicon and mineral oil. It illumines the underground and thus allows for the optical sensor to recognize the movements of the mouse. Our LED is produced by Nichia (Japan), though we do not know the exact site of production.
You find the microswitches under the buttons. They are comprised of several metals as well as synthetic material and they function as translators of the mechanical movements of our hand into electrical signals by means of opening and closing the electric circuit. We currently obtain our microswitches from Kaihua/Kailh (China).
The cable conducts the signals of the mouse to the computer. It consists of a copperwire and an outer layer made of synthetic material (mineral oil) and aluminium, which protects and insulates the copper wire. Our cables are made in China by UNO Electronics.
The chip is made of silicon, gold and plastic. It absorbs the light reflected by the LED and translates physical movements into digital values. Our chip is produced on the Philippines by Pixart from China.
The lense usually consists of acrylic glass, which is made from mineral oil. It bundles the light reflected from the LED for the optical sensor. Our lenses are produced in Malaysia by Pixart (China).