This Mouse Won't Spread Bubonic Plague (Or Your Germs)

from the just-to-be-safe,-bring-a-wet-nap dept

Remember the study claiming that computer mice at internet cafes carried more bacteria than public toilets? Well, if any internet cafe owners out there want to target the germophobe market, they can buy a self-sterilizing mouse and use that win customers. Or, they could keep the sterilized mice behind the counter and rent them out to hypochondriacs. The company claims that the $40 device uses nanotechnology, which should raise some red flags. Perhaps this company should merge with the one making a sterilizing phone charger.

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Comments on “This Mouse Won't Spread Bubonic Plague (Or Your Germs)”

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Chris says:

Will it Sell?

Well, I know that when the flu is going around in my neighborhood, I do what I can to prevent it’s spread if I am infected, or preven myself from getting it if I am not. To do this I wipe down and mouse and keyboard (with one of those clorax wipes or something similar) before and after I use them and I sanatize my hands before I eat. Why wouldn’t other people

Materials Science guy says:

Re: umm...

yeah, they probably used copper in someform or another. They’re also starting to change hospital door handles to the special copper doped door handles. For some reasons that i’m not completely sure of, copper has anti-bacterial properties. Theres a lot of research going into the biomaterials field about it…. it’s some pretty interesting stuff… but then again, a lot of marketing is just a load of BS so i could be wrong.

Charlie Potatoes says:

sterile wipes

i don’t know and i don’t care what nanotechnology is or is not… except that one time i saw a really nice Star Trek TNG episode about it…
but i do have a question for you hyper-geeks…if the clorox (or clorax) wipe kills 99% of all the germs on the mouse…what happens to the 1% which survive?
wait…don’t tell me…i’m not sure i want to know…

*sigh* says:

to #3

You do know that by “Preventing the spread” of the flu is actually going to make you get sicker the next time you get it right? Honestly. Our bodies build up a natural immunity to diseases over time. In my opinion, (and from what I remember of biology) The sicker you are at a younger age the less chance you have of getting sick when older.

Influenza for Everyone!!!!

Guy who reads before commenting says:

If any of you would acually take the time to read it instead of spewing jargon out of your a$$, then you can form a coherent, and valid argument.

The mouse has a titanium oxide coating which the article details its workings. The titanium oxide basically makes an unlivable surface for bacteria.

Secondly, nanotechnology is simply working with matter on a n ultra-small scale. Nanotechnology is not always little robots in your blood stream. While its very misleading to the general public who views star trek and the likes as what nano tech is, the mouse does destroy bacteria on an ultra small scale.

Jo Mamma says:

Re: Re:

Well, Guy who reads before commenting your reading the article is admirable, and you’re completely right to admonish us for not reading the article. But I generally just give these tech dirt articles a quick read at work and ignore facts, so admittedly I probably should be put in some ‘lazy ass’ category. But, for the record, after reading your explanation I still think it’s BS.

And of course everything in this physical universe uses ‘nanotechnology’ in some way… that’s why I made reference to my pencil using nanotechnology. It just depends on how broadly you define ‘nanotechnology’.

I would still say that nanotechnology, for better or worse, does conjure up images of “little robots in your bloodstream”. Those that market these products know that and are intentionally misstating the sophisticaion of their product.

THAT was my point, but I just condensed it into the pencil comment.

PhysicsGuy says:


Jo Mamma, i usually try not to be mean, but you’re a moron. You need to look up the definition of technology. A short one that’s good is as follows: the application of scientific advances to benefit humanity. so tell me, since making a pencil doesn’t require any manipulation on the molecular level, as in manipulating individual molecules seperatly, how does your pencil use nanotechnology? how does a rock use nanotechnology? how does anything aside from that which is manipulated on the molecular level constitute nanotechnology?

there is no “broad” defintion of nanotechnology… hell, since you seem too inept to use even google to look up a word, here: A precise molecule by molecule control of products and byproducts in the development of functional structures. i’ll even put it in bold for you so that maybe it will sink in. that’s as broad as the definition goes… you could be more precise and say the manipulation of atoms or molecules 1-100 nanometers wide… you CANNOT however say the manipulation of molecules 1 centimeter or 1 millimeter or even 1 micrometer wide…. maybe you’re just another dumbass who never learned the metric system but nano has specific implications to it…

charlie potatoes (profile) says:

reading the article

i seldom bother. i come here to read the comments. they range from the sublime to the ridiculous. all of us just like to see our names on the board. and we keep coming back to see if anyone after us has talked about us. then some of us keep commenting so we can keep stirring it.. and some of us just randomly sceam out, ‘fuck you, towel head’ to see what the others will say. oh well…. one day i intend to get a life..really i do.

Vinnie says:


back to microbiology…a typical mouse surface may harbour tens of millions of bacteria. this 0.01% is still a large portion of livable bacteria which can migrate to your hand and populate. this effectively lengthens the interval of time before your hands would culture the same quantity of bacteria than with, lets say, a regular mouse. additionally: how thick is this coating? does it not wear off after prolonged usage? it is true that we become much more resilient to infection upon exposure to various micro organisms. this is why peoples of various global origins tend to get sick more often when travelling overseas or abroad. bacteria constitute a constant presence in human, in varying degrees and it is generally an antibiotic relationship.

Anonymous Coward says:

Some would argue that you should be exposed to germs to make your immune system stronger. This idea is not entirely false, but its best to be exposed to bruised and battered bugs. Influenza is not something that I would want to contract from someone else unless it comes in the form of a shot. CDC’s website states “The single best way to prevent the flu is to get a flu vaccination each fall.”

MY GOD! says:

Buncha trolls!

TO: PhysicsGuy

Arent you just a stuffed full of knowlege… Perhaps you should chronicle your findings and sell a famous book about nanotechnology and how it doesnt apply to a pencil! I’d buy it! (just to burn it)

TO: Jo Mamma

Who’s to say you dont have some NASA enhanced perfect tip nanotechnology pencil. Because it IS possible that makes mr. smarty pants physics dude completely irrelavent. ANYTHING is possible with nanotechnology.



Jo Mamma says:

Re: Re:

Look Physics guy, I’ve read your posts and they all seem to make pretty good sense to me and you seem to be a pretty intelligent dude, so please try to understand that I am pointing out the interpretation of this stuff by “marketing”… not “scientists”.

Judging by your semi-flame posting, I’m thinking you’re on the younger side of life which probably means you don’t have a ton of hands on working experience. I’ll sum up one of the conclusions I’ve reached… marketing is full of shit.

They’ll call anything anything if it makes money… and if it takes broadening your “broad”, purely scientific definition they’ll do it. Physics isn’t the only place where things are relative IMO… all of life is relative… relatively full of shit. Life doesn’t revolve around what scientists think.

And yes, my pencil was made by NASA, the NSA, KGB, and LMNOP. If someone gets way out of line, it’s got a mini nanite at the tip that I can shove straight up … [end flame]

I actually enjoy reading your posts, just give me a bit of respect dude 🙂

flamebait says:

Actually yes you can define a pencil as nanotech and specifically a pencil for what it is. Cause a pencil is made of some special arrangement of carbon atoms which otherwise would not be helpful in writing. If you get stuck on the word “technology” tough ok, diamonds are the “nanotech” version. and btw; titanium is already sort of hygenic, that’s why they use it for surgical implants isn’t it?

skibumski says:

Re: Re:

Because it is considered to be physiologically inert, the metal is used in joint replacement implants such as hip ball and sockets and to make medical equipment and in pipe/tank lining in food processing. Since titanium is non-ferromagnetic, patients with titanium implants can be safely examined with magnetic resonance imaging (convenient for long-term implants).

Thank you Wiki.

PhysicsGuy says:


don’t get me wrong, i completely agree that nanotechnology marketing borders on absurd. it’s a new byword for most people and the people who market new products will surley abuse it. i’m just a stickler for precision in wording when it comes to certain things. i got into an argument with my calc teacher today because she was using the word velocity when she should have been using the word speed. i was somewhat insulting to her as well and she’s my professor, so don’t take offense to anything i say.

and i shouldn’t respond to a person with the name flamebait, but we don’t arrange the molecules in the graphite of our pencils molecule by molecule, therefore it’s not nanotechnology.

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