Recently I’ve been having a re-occurring problem with my laptop that’s been INCREDIBLY frustrating. For whatever twisted reason, whenever I’m in my University, with my laptop on and doing work, my mouse touchpad begins to malfunction after a while. This has never happened before and it was both baffling and annoying. It reached the point where my mouse became unusable as it would either spaz out become completely unresponsive, neither of which was fun to deal with. It first happened in a computer room in the morning, and subsequently in the same computer room days later. Associatively I was lead to believe the computer room was somehow responsible; the gods of computers had perhaps worked their magic to create havoc for my poor laptop. But to my shock in then occurred again in the Psychology labs where I’ve been doing my final year project study. Increasingly bizarre and increasingly worrying, I began to panic thinking that something was wrong with my laptop’s mouse however this didn’t make sense since at home it worked perfectly. Also, in one of the student common rooms it worked fine, so I was led to believe that certain Uni rooms were the cause. Was it a substance in the air that caused the touchpad to be unresponsive? Was it the temperature? Was it my own stress causing a galvanic skin response that didn’t agree with my touchpad? I thought hard about possible causes but none seemed conclusive. Today, i tried restarting my laptop, believing the problem to be some error in certain startups of the laptop itself. But the true shock came when before I could even reach my desktop the mouse was already unresponsive. At that point I knew it couldn’t possibly have been anything to do with the laptop’s programs or features. Devoid of options and about to give up, I unplugged my laptop from the wall socket and was about to turn it off when mysteriously…it worked perfectly. Then it hit me, the causal link is, and wait for it, the mouse only malfunctioned when plugged into a uni power outlet. WUT.
As strange as this is, it’s apparently a common issue, especially with people who have replacement adaptors like myself, where certain power outlets that might be old cause malfunctions in the laptop’s touchpad. By google searching ‘power outlets affect touchpads’ I got a variety of results showing user complaints along similar lines to mine. This forum in particular helped me realize my situation: http://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthread.php?t=1061910 , and made me realize that it’s nothing completely out of the ordinary but it does tend to happen. What this means for me is that I have to beware what outlets I use from now on, because for all I know the problem may not be as mild as my mouse going crazy. If you ever encounter a similar problem with an unresponsive mouse, I recommend you do the same thing, check the power outlet. Technology problems man, all I can say.