Browse Prior Art Database

Proximity Detector for Mouse Cursor

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000119305D
Original Publication Date: 1991-Jan-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Apr-01
Document File: 2 page(s) / 72K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Najjar, LJ: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

Disclosed is a software function that allows users of IBM's Presentation Manager* software and similar software to set the distance from an object that the computer user must position the mouse cursor to before being able to select that object. This software function allows the computer user to select an object by positioning the mouse cursor near, but not necessarily directly on, the object. The software function includes default proximity settings for each object. To suit person preferences, the software function also allows the computer user to quickly and easily change the proximity settings for each object.

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Proximity Detector for Mouse Cursor

      Disclosed is a software function that allows users of
IBM's Presentation Manager* software and similar software to set the
distance from an object that the computer user must position the
mouse cursor to before being able to select that object.  This
software function allows the computer user to select an object by
positioning the mouse cursor near, but not necessarily directly on,
the object.  The software function includes default proximity
settings for each object.  To suit person preferences, the software
function also allows the computer user to quickly and easily change
the proximity settings for each object.

      Users of graphical user-system interfaces, such as Presentation
Manager, sometimes have trouble using the mouse cursor to select
objects.  These objects include panel borders, characters, maximize
arrows, scroll arrows, and icons.  Users have this trouble because
the mouse cursor must be placed exactly on the object.  This can be
difficult and annoying to do, especially if the object is small.

      Proximity detection software solves this problem.  This
software function allows the computer to track how close the mouse
cursor is to objects on the screen.  If the user moves the mouse
cursor within a set distance to an object, then the user can select
that object -- even if the mouse cursor is not right on the object.
For example, if the user puts the mouse cursor within five horizontal
pixels of a panel side border, then the user can select that border.

      By changing the values in a table, the computer user can
quickly and easily change the pixel proximity range for an object.
If the user does not enter a preferred pixel proximity range, then
the default value will be used.

      Below is a sample pixel proximity table.  The table includes
objects, default pixel proximity values for each object, and
preferred pixel proximity values that were entered by the user.  For
example, the table shows that the computer us...