Now, even Apple's mouse is multi-touch

Continuing Apple's incremental shift away from button-based interfaces and toward multi-touch everything, Cupertino today unveiled the Magic Mouse, an acrylic Bluetooth mouse where "the entire surface is a button."

Apple has done to the mouse almost exactly what it did to the trackpad in 2008, it has turned it into a multi-finger reactive surface, where common navigation tasks are given iPhone-like gestures.

For example, the "scrollwheel function" has been associated with a two-finger drag on the trackpad since the 2007 Macbook Pro line. This move can now be done on the surface of the mouse, and has been expanded to allow 360 degree scrolling. Also like the updated trackpad, anywhere on the mouse's surface can be clicked, and though there are no buttons, clicking with the right finger brings up the "button 2" menu, making it a sort of virtual 2-button mouse.

Other gestures have been added to the Magic Mouse, such as two-finger swiping to "page forward" in Safari, iPhoto and iTunes. Unfortunately, the "pinch zoom" feature, which is undoubtedly the most defining Apple gesture (if such a thing could be said) has been translated into an action that requires buttons. To zoom, the user must hold down the Control key on the keyboard and scroll forward or backward on the surface of the Magic Mouse.

The Magic Mouse costs $69 and requires OS X 10.5.8 or higher with Wireless Mouse Software Update 1.0

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