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Make way for the next generation of multifunction pointing devices.

By Jill Amadio

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

The smallest piece of computer equipment on your desk--themouse--may look insignificant, but, as you know, its functions aretremendously important. Yet it's so often taken for granted,most of us expect it to respond year in and year out without somuch as a squeak.

Well, today's mice are roaring--they've got lots of newfunctions, a better fit, a variety of shapes and even rubberizedside grips. Some have been flipped on their backs, with the movableball on top of the mouse instead of underneath; other models arecordless; and a few don't even require a mouse pad. Touchpads,too, have made the leap from laptop to desktop, and, for those morecomfortable with this type of pointing device, a touchpad can nowbe bought as a peripheral, plugging in to your computer the way astandard mouse would.

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