I just moved from Dos To Mac. On my old laptop I could configure the touchpad to "glide" with the synaptic driver. That is the pointer would continue to move a bit after I lift my moving finger off the touchpad. Is there a way to achieve the same thing on Mac OS X? It kind of simulates a track-ball.

  • Why would you want a gliding effect? Is it because the mouse cursor moves too slow? – Ali Apr 2 '13 at 14:12
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    I have mobility issues. Speeding up the pointer makes things worse for me. But it's easy for me to make little flicks. I need the pointer slow for more accuracy. – gogators Apr 2 '13 at 21:57
  • I think none of the better known 3rd party mouse/trackpad utilities (USB Overdrive, Steermouse, BetterTouchTool, Jitouch, MagicPrefs) do this, but they might be worth a closer look to be sure. BTT Remote supports inertial pointer movement according to its website, so maybe as a feature request for BTT...? – Daniel Beck Apr 3 '13 at 20:20
  • Yes, I found BTT and put in a feature request. Thanks. – gogators Apr 5 '13 at 1:09
  • Look on the Mac App store- most likely there is a software on there that can do this. – Ben Franchuk Aug 9 '13 at 3:37

I have tried to find a solution to this problem for years now. There are three answers to this question, and none will make you happy:

  1. Create custom touchpad drivers yourself

    Sadly, this is the only sure way at the moment to get inertial pointer on OS X.

  2. Create an incentive for somebody else to create custom drivers

    Send emails to BTT, Overdrive, etc. Comment on blogs that talk about inertial pointer on OSX. Talk about it on Twitter. Upvote posts about it on StackOverflow.

  3. Buy a trackball

    Trackballs have natural inertia. You can flick the ball and it will keep gliding as the ball decelerates.

PS. Here's a way to try what inertial pointer on OSX would feel like.

There is a bug in OSX 10.8 that can trigger inertial-like behaviour.

  1. Grab a window by touching the window header using three fingers on the touchpad.

  2. Move the window just a bit while keeping all three fingers on the touchpad.

  3. Now, use a fourth finger to flick the window around.

| improve this answer | |
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    I spoke with the BTT developer and he says it's difficult, if not impossible. But he's mentioned he'll try. Hopefully he can come up with something. – gogators Aug 20 '13 at 14:30
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    Regarding the so called bug, I cannot reproduce it on my iMac (with Magic Trackpad and OSX 10.8.4), but I can do something similar: doing steps 1 and 2, and then moving only 1 of the 3 fingers that I used to start the move operation (you can even remove it from the trackpad, provided that you do not remove the other 2). – rsenna Sep 5 '13 at 23:59

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