The mouse is probably one of the peripherals that has changed the least in the computer ecosystem. They have gotten rid of that little ball that accumulated fluff like a vacuum cleaner bag, they have removed the cable and, encouraged by the gaming, they have been armed to the teeth with buttons and even carry sets of lights worthy of a Christmas tree, some have even turned around. But the basic idea is still the one that was born with the first commercial versions, towards the end of the seventies: we drop our hand on it and we wriggle our wrist from side to side to achieve an identical movement of the cursor that we see on the screen.
The traditional keyboard will outlive us all
Forty years of life prove that the device fulfills its function and that we do not have, for now, a better alternative. But just because the mouse is immortal doesn’t mean it’s perfect. The way in which it forces us to flex the wrist and the repetitive movements that its use and that of the keyboard entail are among the factors that contribute to the development of conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome, which derives from compression of the wrist nerve when We support the hand in this device and according to data from Mutua Universal, it affects 3% of workers. In this context it fits Carpio, a stand designed by the Slovenian startup Deltahub to allow a more ergonomic use of mouse and whose version 2.0 has gone on sale this summer.
Carpio 2.0 is literally a piece of plastic, but not just any: it combines a Teflon base that is finished off on the surface with two silicone pads. Figuratively, these little pieces are a pair of skates for our hands. The idea is that its pads adapt to that of the palm, specifically the outer part and the area of the scaphoid, at the base of the thumb. Teflon, on the other hand, is responsible for freeing the wrist from that fixed point of support that forces us to do forced bends to the sides and allows us to do those slides with arm movements. The set of both is placed at the foot of the mouse and raises the hand a little more than half a centimeter, so that less pressure is exerted on the table. Do they keep these promises?
The fit of the silicone parts is correct, although not perfect, at least for the hand used in this test (mine). These skates are sold in two sizes: S for palms that are less than a credit card width and L for those who exceed this measurement. Although my hand is actually smaller than the card, the difference was very small, so someone with smaller hands (I would say mine are medium), could see more of the Carpio 2.0 sticking out to the sides. The pads are, however, soft enough that the hand rests very comfortably on them.
Teflon does its job perfectly. Despite the lack of custom of using the arm to move the mouse, the movement is made naturally the second the hand is placed on the piece. The elevation, without being noticeable, lightens the weight that is applied at that point, so that we stop painfully smearing the base of the wrist on the table and, although it is not among the promises of DeltaHub, it avoids at least in my case, the irritation produced by that constant rubbing.
Compared to existing alternatives, which consist of pads attached to the mouse pad to allow the hand to rest on them, Carpio 2.0 allows for greater mobility, puts less pressure on the wrist, and is much more portable (fits in a pocket).
Although Carpio 2.0 was born as a complement for the mouse, from DeltaHub they explain that it can also be indicated for the use of the keyboard, another common suspect in the worsening of wrist injuries. But before opting for the couple, some considerations must be taken into account: on the one hand, it is not valid for the use of laptops, where the base of the trackpad –The rectangular area that doubles as a mouse– moves our wrists away from the table. On the other, it requires more effort to adapt to the user.
The creators of Carpio admit that under normal conditions and according to the experience of its users, getting used to using this add-on can take between one and two weeks. In my case, the acclimatization process to the mouse and skateboard set was a working day: on the second day I was missing it. At the time of writing, it has been more costly for me to get used to keeping my mouse hand close to the table to bring the skateboard to the keyboard, although I have to admit that, for some reason, I live that longer glide with the pride of who just did a stunt fit for a Las Vegas dealer.
Also, although the scrolling on the table is as smooth as a mouse (or maybe more), it is advisable to use a mat to muffle the sound of rubbing. And, if we want to use a couple of carpi for the keyboard, the latter would have to be somewhat larger than the area occupied by both peripherals on the table.
The potential need to also purchase a mouse pad to free our wrists from the tyrannies of the modern office is moderately offset by the fact that we do not need to buy a new mouse in order to use these add-ons. On the other hand, carpios are not exactly cheap, considering that we are talking about a couple of inanimate pieces of plastic. One only costs 29.90 euros and the pair sells for 49.94. If we also decide to buy the mats manufactured by DeltaHub, we would be talking about between 29 and 39 euros more, depending on the dimensions.