Computer pointing device icon Logitech reports that it manufactured its billionth mouse a few weeks ago, in Mid-November.

At a time when advocates of new human-computer interface technologies (such as touch screens) are predicting the iminent death of the mouse, Logitech remains optimistic about the future of the device.

Logitech General Manager Rory Dooley told the BBC, “The fundamental functionality of the mouse has not changed for 40 years and that is one of the keys to its success. We do not envisage unlearning all those years of learning but that doesn’t mean to say there will not be a place for touch interfaces. … Touch will augment the things you can do today with the mouse and keyboard interface.”

While other ‘pointing’ technologies are currently hogging the spotlight, Dooly points out that the mouse celebrates its fortieth birthday this week — and, in that time, may other technologies have come and gone and failed to unsurp the mouse’s traditional role.

The first mouse, legend has it, was first tested on December 9, 1968, by researchers at Standford University. The name ‘mouse’ is said to have been suggested by a cleaning lady who remarked to a technician that the cable coming out of its rear looked like a tail.

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