Difference Between Trackball vs. Spaceball

Primary Difference

Using a mouse to perform out tasks on the computer has become a common thing, and we all have become dependent on them. New technologies have given way to advanced tools that have replaced the previous systems, and two such ones are known as a trackball and Spaceball that have replaced a conventional mouse. A trackball gets defined as the computer cursor that controls all the actions in a notebook or laptops. On the other hand, a Space Ball is a 3D device that is used to move the models created in such dimension without any issues and dependency on angles.

Comparison Chart

TrackballSpaceball
DefinitionThe computer cursor that controls all the actions in a notebook or laptops.An artificial cursor that controls all the actions within a program.
UsageAn upside-down mouse that gets placed within a socket and keeps on rotating at the same point.A 3D graphical input device that gets fixed on a spherical ball.
ScopeSuitable for computer devices along with notebooks and laptops.Suitable for computer software such as AutoCAD, Solid Works, Ansys, and others.
ActionsClick, Open, MoveRotate, Pan, Zoom, etc.

Definition of a Trackball

A trackball gets defined as the computer cursor that controls all the actions in a notebook or laptops. The trackball mostly is found in the front of a keyboard and is shaping towards the user. Another way of defining it is that it is an upside-down mouse that gets placed within a socket and keeps on rotating at the same point. A person using the device has to use the ball and then roll it to direct the cursor towards the point or the object they require. Once they point towards the exact thing, then the person using it has to click one of the two buttons near the trackball to select the objects present on the desktop. It is a ball that holds itself in a socket that contains sensors, and therefore the rotation is detected and then displayed on the computer. In comparison to a typical mouse, it has many benefits; the main one is that in the case of the mouse a person has to roll it and take at the end of the screen, then they have to lift the hand, reposition the device and then scroll to the next page. With a trackball, they just have to roll it, and the pages will keep on changing and moving. These types of devices have low friction and get made with dense materials such as glass.

Definition of a Spaceball

A Space Ball is a 3D device that is used to move the models created in such dimension without any issues and dependency on angles. It is similar to how a mouse works in a 2D system but has more options such as rotating the object in three degrees. These kinds of device got introduced so that the user gets to manipulate the controls of the system for various computer programs. The main benefit they have over a conventional mouse is that we get to pan, zoom, rotate and view the object with a lot more options and do not have to change the direction of the item manually. These types of balls are compatible with the most common software that exist in the world such as solid works, AutoCAD, Autodesk Inventor, Solid Edge, Google Earth, NASA World Wind and many others. It also gets termed as a graphical input device that gets fixed on a spherical ball. The user can enter six different values defined by the orientation and the pressure with which the direction applied changes. It lets the complex and new objects to place themselves in a complicated environment using a single device for input and get several outputs at the same time. One interesting thing about their construction is that they are made from strain gauges and therefore give precise readings.

Differences in a Nutshell

  1. A trackball gets defined as the computer cursor that controls all the actions in a notebook or laptops. While a Space Ball is a 3D device that is used to move the models created in such dimension without any issues and dependency on angles.
  2. A trackball is an upside-down mouse that gets placed within a socket and keeps on rotating at the same point. A spaceball gets termed as a graphical input device that gets fixed on a spherical ball.
  3. A person using the device has to use the ball and then roll it to direct the cursor towards the point or the object they require. The user can enter six different values defined by the orientation and the pressure with which the direction applied changes.
  4. A trackball is suitable for computer devices along with notebooks and laptops whereas a Spaceball is appropriate for computer software such as AutoCAD, Solid Works, Ansys, and others.
  5. A trackball is accurate for 2D models and helps to move the cursor at a fast speed. A Spaceball is correct for 3D models and contribute to moving the cursor at a fast speed.
  6. Key benefits of a trackball are moving and clicking whereas the main advantages of a Spaceball include pan, zoom and rotate.

Conclusion

There can be various types of input instruments, although it gets termed as universal. Most people have their favorites and want to use those types. Others, like to explore new and the varied types to get a better idea. This article does the same. Give people a better understanding of the two kinds of new mouse technologies which they can explore.

Posted in: IT

Author:

Harlon Moss

Harlon currently works as a quality moderator and content writer for Turpy Media. He graduated from the University of California in 2010 with a degree in Computer Science. Follow him on Twitter @HarlonMoss or on Pinterest @HarlonMoss

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