Computers & Mobile Craft & Design
The patented 18 button OpenOffice mouse?

It’s not April 1st, so I’m going to guess it’s real. The patented 18 button OpenOffice mouse –

In partnership with the community, WarMouse announced the release of the OpenOfficeMouse, the first multi-button application mouse designed for the world’s leading open-source office productivity suite. With a revolutionary and patented design featuring 18 buttons, an analog joystick, and support for as many as 52 key commands, the OpenOfficeMouse is intended to provide a faster and more efficient user interface for applications such as Writer and Calc than the conventional icons, pull-down menus, and hotkeys presently permit.

“You can do far more with this mouse than most people are likely to realize at first,” said mouse designer Theodore Beale. “You can launch applications from the desktop, and in your browser you can fire up a specific Internet site with one button, then close it with a double-click on the same button. In Writer and Calc, you can have your most powerful and complicated macros on one row of buttons and simple functions like Bold, Undo, and Format Cell on another. It’s very useful in games like World of Warcraft, because even without taking the joystick into account, you’ve got 16 commands within one click, 40 within two, and all 72 icons on the six action pages within just two double-clicks or less.”

I’m hoping they consider the Chumby-style patent so others could improve on the hardware, perhaps adding more buttons.

20 thoughts on “The patented 18 button OpenOffice mouse?

  1. I have a 16 button digitizer puck that works well for some games.. don’t doubt for a second that you could make a USB mouse with a few extra buttons on it. Not too comfortable I imagine.

  2. Is anyone in so much of a hurry at work that they need this? I wouldn’t be surprised if it actually promoted carpal tunnel syndrome…

  3. Once you have so many buttons, you no longer need a keyboard.
    Allocate 8 to the keyboard function, and you have a chord keyboard.
    That was an element of Douglas Englebart’s work on computers back in 1968 when he introduced the mouse to the world.

    Instead of pressing “A” on a standard keyboard, you’d have 8 buttons,
    one for each bit of the ASCII code, and you’d press 01000001.

    I don’t know whether this has ever been done on a mouse, but there
    have been some attempts at introducing a chord keyboard, and the photos I’ve seen aren’t that different from a mouse with extra buttons.


  4. Yes… except this mouse has nothing at all to do with the people behind Open Office. It is a gamer mouse that some marketing guy at the company figured he could sell more of by slapping the OO.o logo onto it. The very first entry in their FAQ is:

    Is the OOMouse part of

    No, the OOMouse is produced by a private company called WarMouse. is a open source software community. The OOMouse comes with profiles designed specifically for use with the five primary applications utilizing information gathered by’s Usage Tracking group.

    The actual people behind OO.o have asked them politely to back off their statements of affiliation.

    1. JabberWokky is right. OpenOffice has nothing to do with this. The guy from WarMouse behind that scheme is Theodore Beale. He also goes by Vox Day.

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