First post in a new writing series: Bloomberg prompted cards: When I went to clean out my desk last week, I found a stack of cards, which I got from a workshop at work entitled “The Title of Your Next Tech Talk.” The stack of cards was given at the workshop and each has a prompt, obviously with the intention of inspiring one to give a tech talk.

cards

I think such writing prompts are really great, so I’m going to be using them to encourage me to blog more.

Here’s the first:

Prompt: “Favourite gadget or piece of hardware to use/work with”

This one was easy: Logitech MX Master 2S Wireless Mouse

I’ve gone between many keyboards (and “my setup” is a topic for another post), but this one mouse is one I’ll probably never replace and should actually buy a pre-emptive replacement now, before it gets discontinued or replaced with something worse.

Here’s my use-case:

  1. I switch between 3 computers regularly: work Mac, personal Mac, and personal PC
  2. I prefer Bluetooth over dongles, but my PC needs a dongle.
  3. No batteries.
  4. Needs more than the bare minimum # of buttons. I don’t quite need an MMORPG mouse with 12 buttons, but I like having at least three for forward, back, and Expose (where Mac shows all windows and you can select one)
  5. 101% reliability. I use a wired keyboard because I cannot stand my keyboard not connecting. I have to use a wireless mouse, so I need it to be as reliable as a wired mouse.

The Logitech MX Master 2S delivers all of that and more:

logitech app

  1. Switching is EASY between three computers. There’s a button on the button that toggles between 3 different MAC addresses. No fiddling with bluetooth once it’s all configured the first time.
  2. Amazing battery life. I’m pretty sure I go weeks or even months without needing to plug it in. Even if when I do, the plug is on the front (unlike some idiodic mouse designs), so you can use it while it charges. Wild huh?
  3. Gestures: there’s a side button that you program to do different things by moving. Mine is configured for:
    • Press: Open Chrome
    • Left/Right: Move workspace left/right
    • Up: Email
    • Down: App Expose (expose the windows of the current app, just like Ctrl+Down on Mac)

logitech app gestures

Cons

The only issues I’ve had are:

Con #1: Occassionally the Expose feature breaks (Fix: restart daemon)

When this happens, the middle button goes back to its default setting of changing the mouse wheel scrolling from smooth to clicky.

This doesn’t at all interfere with how it functions as a normal mouse, just the “nice” button features, so I give it a pass. It also seems to happen if I use the Expose feature a lot with many windows. Maybe some kind of bad timeout handling? It’s definitely something broken in the Logi->MacOS calls.

As a workaround, quitting the Logi Options Daemon from Activity Monitor causes that daemon to restart and it works again.

logitech quit

Con #2: Hard to clean mouse wheel

I won’t even include a photo of what my mouse wheel looks like.

I’ve tried cleaning it with rubbing alcohol but the rubber finger-tread starting coming off. At some point it will be the part of the mouse that fails first.

However, given that I’ve used this mouse for well over 6000 hours (3 years * 50 weeks / year * 40 hours / week), it’s fair that some rubber parts would start coming off.

The rest of the mouse has held up incredibly well. Even the rubberized plastic coating, which in most electronics starts coming apart eventually, shows no ugly signs of wear; just normal smoothing from lots of use.

Honorable gadget mentions:

  • Every-day Carry: Leatherman Style CS. It’s always a good idea to always have a bottle-opener and knife on you at all times. For fun times and not-so-fun times. Here’s one that’s actually in-stock Leatherman Skeletool RX. A knife is important for safety, not strictly in the self-defense sense of “safety” but in terms of cutting free a caught pet leash (for example).
  • Kitchen: Instant Pot and this multi-chopper. I don’t need to sell you on an Instant Pot. But this chopper saves A TON of time when it comes to chopping potatoes and onions.