Dr Destruct-o takes apart a couple of Microsoft Explorer Optical "IntelleMice", to see if there are any useful goodies inside.
Step 1: Here we have a couple of still-together mice
These seem to show up with some regularity in the E-waste bins at work. I don't know if the Microsoft mice are more prone to failure than other mice, but they're certainly more recognizable in the waste bin.
One of these says "version 3" on the bottom sticker, and the other doesn't. They're USB mice, although apparently they'll talk PS2 as well, using a merely physical adapter (these adapters don't actually translate between PS2 and USB protocols, they just connect the wires differently. The processor inside the mouse detects which kind of connection is in use, and reconfigures its pins as appropriate.)
Step 2: Find and Remove the Screws.
A lot of "consumer" products with "no user serviceable parts inside" will hide their screws, both to discourage dis-assembly, and to make the product look better. In this case, there are four screws hidden underneath the little teflon "slider" pads on the bottom of the mouse. The pads can be pried off with a knife or small screwdriver, exposing normal philips head screws.
Step 3: Remove Mouse Guts
Once the screws are removed, the top and bottom of the mouse separate relatively easily. Since I wasn't planning on putting them back together, I didn't pay a lot of attention; sometimes there are interlocking plastic bits that you wouldn't want to break if you WERE attempting a repair rather than a salvage...
The two mice, despite being outwardly "identical", had significantly different internals. The one in the photos here had three circuit boards, and some additional screws to remove. The other (older?) mouse only had two boards, and was had its internals held together entirely by plastic tabs and slots.