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Is there a decent desktop keyboard that has a mouse scroll ball in it? I find it extremely annoying moving from the keyboard to the mouse and back and my current mouse is giving me RSI.

I want a desktop keyboard like this:

enter image description here

Ideally I would like the J key to be the scroll ball (when in "scroll mode") but I'm happy to settle for a scroll ball I guess.

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  • That is what Page Up and Page Down are for. At first it might seem awkward to use them, but later you just want to "scroll" whole pages. Most applications also allow scrolling with the arrow keys. – ayckoster Sep 4 '12 at 1:16
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It's unclear whether you want that keyboard you posted a picture of, but if you do, Lenovo actually does still sell a version of it:

http://shop.lenovo.com/SEUILibrary/controller/e/web/LenovoPortal/en_US/catalog.workflow:item.detail?GroupID=38&Code=31P8950&current-category-id=9B7E41BDCE704020B8E567C67D3FA082

The tradeoff is that it does have the short-travel ThinkPad notebook style keys as opposed to full desktop keyboard style keys, so it depends on whether you like that feel or not. I personally prefer full travel "clicky" keys, so I would agree with Kyle's answer that the Unicomp products are probably the best option in that case. (Their EnduraPro is the closest thing I've found to the ThinkPad model with "real" keys.)

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Jonathan, Unicomp (who owns the old IBM Model M keyboard patents) makes a nice keyboard with an integrated trackball. I think there's a few variants if you prefer a slightly different keyboard layout.

If you're looking for a replacement mouse, I am a huge fan of my Evoulent VerticalMouse3. I have bad RSI injuries in my right wrist (to the point where I can't use a standard mouse for more than a few minutes). I can actually work with the VerticalMouse!

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  • The keyboard you linked to is a classic! I don't see any point in a trackball on a keyboard unless it's in the middle otherwise you still have to move your hand away from the keyboard to the mouse and then back. For those who use the VI editor they will know that navigation etc. with the keyboard is quite nice. Thanks for the link to the vertical mouse. It looks good. – Jonathan Parker Jul 17 '09 at 1:11
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AutoHotKey - Map something like Win-J to the scroll action.

Edit: Umm n/m, try that wierd chinese key and J.

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