i was wondering around uni and saw one of my tutors using one of these today. without knowing what it was, i was initially very curious about this heavy, shiny, usb-attaching object with a blue light coming from it.
he then explained it was a space mouse. apparantly he got it initially to stop getting rsi's from using a mouse too much in 3dsmax and solidworks, but found it to be a now essential piece of kit for any 3d software. i only used it for about 30 seconds but was immediately convinced and now am going to get one as soon as i get solidworks for myself.
from their site:
'The key advantage of a 3D navigation device over a mouse and keyboard is the ease of performing intricate adjustments to camera views and models. Using mouse and keyboard require separate steps, increasing clicks and interruptions, to perform all three maneuvers . Our devices are typically used in the non-dominant hand, freeing the mouse to access commands and objects within the interface.'
they're only £39 for the space navigator (shown above), which seems like a bargain for what it does. if the pictures below don't explain it better than i have, go to the 3dconnexion website.