Double your productivity by connecting a single mouse to two computers! It's simple: one mouse, two USB connections, infinite possibilities. Each click of your pointer finger will be twice as powerful with this mouse mod. This is a low cost, no soldering, HOW TO that will double your clicks per hour in minutes.
Step 1: MATERIALS / PARTS LIST
Part: PS/2 Mouse (serial)
Vendor: Radio Shack
Cost: $9.97 or less
Notes: You only really need one mouse but you need two serial cables. I ended up just buying an extra mouse because at RadioShack they are cheaper then a serial cable. Old serial mice are just llaying around everywhere waiting to be used, they can often be found on ebay.com for $1 or less.
Part: QVS USB-PS2Y USB to Dual PS/2 "Y" Converter
Notes: You are going to need two of these. There are cheaper options but this is the only one that I know works for sure.
Part: Duct tape
Vendor: Any will do.
Tools: A sharp Xacto blade and/or wire cutters.
Step 2: CUT CABLES
- Cut one mouse cable at the midpoint.
- Cut the second mouse cable an inch or so away from the mouse. This mouse is no longer needed, hide it in a drawer for later use.
- You should now be left with one longer serial cable, one shorter serial cable, and one mouse. Cut away 1.25" of the outer cable from the ends of all three cables.
Step 3: EXPOSE WIRES
Inside the serial cable you will find smaller red, black, white, and green cables. Cut away 3/4" of the outer rubber and twist the exposed copper for each of the individual 12 cables.
Step 4: TWIST AND TAPE
Twist together groups of three wires consisting of the same color. Tightly wrap them in tape so that none of the copper is showing. If you have a soldering iron handy you can make a better connection, however I've been using a tapped version for weeks and it seems to works fine.
Step 5: WRAP CONNECTIONS
Once all four groups of red, white, black, and green wires are wrapped together tightly wrap them all in tape. When you're done you should have a dirt style Y cable.
Step 6: CONNECT USB ADAPTERS
Connect the adapters to the serial cables. The connection for the keyboard will just remain empty for the purposes of this tutorial (yes, I'm leaving room for the DOUBLE KEYBOARD sequel instructable). Plug in one of the USB connections into a PC. When you have one cursor moving properly then plug the other USB connection into another PC. If everything goes as planned then you should now have the power of two PC's in the palm of your hand.... use this power wisely.
You can match the mouse speeds between your two PCs by opening the Mouse Properties:
Start Menu -> Settings -> Control Panel -> Mouse, and then hit the Motion tab.
Step 7: USES?
9 to 5 Paintings
There are many possible uses for the Double Mouse ranging from useless to pointless. The first series I have done using this new technology is the 9 to 5 Paintings. I, like much of the working world, find myself with less and less time for creative projects and more and more time spent writing emails. 9 to 5 Paintings are a way to create art and send emails, write reports, and do work all at the same time!
The set up is simple, you will need two computers connected to one Double Mouse. On one computer run a drawing / painting application at full screen. GIMP is an open source free image editing program that can be downloaded for free. On the other computer just go about your daily business. As you click and drag your way around email, the internet, and your regularly frequented applications you will leave brush strokes on the other computer. 9 to 5 paintings are a visual representation of your daily computing routines.
You can see a screen capture of the process in the attached .mov file.
Step 8: THINGS THAT DON'T WORK
The smaller PS/2 USB adapters didn't work for me. I'm not sure why this is but if anyone knows please feel free to leave a comment. A common error for a non-functioning Double Mouse is for both computers to go into a cycle of mouse recognition and non-recognition. It will work on one computer for a few seconds and then on the other for a few seconds, etc. etc.