In Pictures: The good, bad and ugly history of Microsoft hardware

Microsoft built its identity on software development. Just refer to the name, and pay special attention to the "soft." But throughout its storied history, the company has progressively become much more of a multi-discipline workshop, producing physical gear alongside ethereal software code. And now we have the Surface RT tablet, the perfect springboard to recount some of the most memorable (and forgettable) products in Microsoft's hardware history.

In Pictures: The good, bad and ugly history of Microsoft hardware prev next

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1996: IntelliMouse

Microsoft released the IntelliMouse at the end of 1996, using it as a platform for a variety of mice showing off truly innovative features. You can thank the IntelliMouse lineage for the scroll wheel, the optical sensor, forward and back buttons, modern ergonomic designs, and the trackball design. The last IntelliMouse Microsoft made was the Explorer 3.0, which was recently discontinued.

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In Pictures: The good, bad and ugly history of Microsoft hardware

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