I'm pretty sure everyone has seen this thing $40 for what is basically a mouse scroll wheel minus the functionality of a mouse. Being as poor as I am, I figured I could build my own. I mean I have 4000 songs in my Winamp playlist and scrolling from top to bottom quickly gets boring with a regular mouse. This is just a prototype so its a little messy, so no calling me out on throwing this thing together with hot glue. So I found myself one of these: What is it? It's a video head out of an old VHS VCR. My friend was throwing it out after it ate his favorite "dirty" video, and any cheap modder in the know realizes that VCR's are freaking goldmines of parts. I stripped about 20 microswitches, 3 linear pots, some motors, a power supply, and some big capacitors out of thing, and of course the video head. Next step was to cannibalize an old optical mouse for its scroll wheel. You can see the rotary encoder next to the microswitch in the upper right hand corner of the pic. An interesting note is that this doesn't look like any other encoder I've seen in a mouse. Usually it's a slotted encoder with an infrared LED and a photo transistor. This is a 3 pin self contained device. No idea about the electrical properties, but it will still work. Now, here comes the fun. I removed the rubber wheel off the shaft that turns the encoder and trimmed off some plastic with an X-acto blade. That then got glued to the shaft of the video head. I folded up a shoddy little bracket out of an old PCI slot cover, and attached the encoder to the new shaft. At this point I was ready to test it. I had previously plugged the mouse in to see how my computer would respond with 2 mice plugged in, and it didnt seem to care. So I plugged it in and now I have a rather precise knob for scrolling through documents. I can now make it from the top of my Winamp playlist to the bottom in two good spins. Next step is to clean up the installation a bit and add a piece of plexi on top of the knob to "spiffy" it up a bit. That and a few LEDS. I'd like to lathe my own knob, but since I got out of school I dont have a machine shop at my disposal any more, which blows.