Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Is It A Mouse?

Last week I went to the store to buy a new mouse for my computer. As I approached a man who worked there to ask if they carried ones that would work for a Macintosh I stopped to think.

Should I ask if the store had "mice?" Or should the computer kind, unlike rodents, be referred to as "mouses?"

I asked the man that question.  He laughed and told me he didn't know, either. But I was happy to learn from him that they all worked on either Macs or PCs.

Way back in the 1980s I got my first computer. It, too was a Macintosh. It was a big contraption that stood over a foot high on the table and had a separate keyboard. I also had a single floppy disc to use for saving things, and thought I'd probably never fill it up as long as I lived.

It was easy to see why the contraption to move the cursor was called a mouse. It was shaped sort of like the animal kind of mouse, and the wire connecting it to the computer could have been a tail.

I used a permanent marker and drew eyes and ears on it.

But most of the modern ones don't even have wires and the shapes don't resemble rodents very much.

So, let's vote. Do you think the plural of a computer mouse should be mice or mouses?

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