An Introduction to JoyToKey

Posted: August 14, 2010 in how to, programs
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

As mentioned in my previous post about Kylo, I had found myself needing a way to control my mouse from the couch without having to use a mouse (and without having to buy a trackball or any other pointing device). Though my Sidewinder controller had a built-in function to control the mouse, the controller itself never felt comfortable in my hands, so I ended up looking for a way to use an Xbox 360 USB controller instead. After reading up on some reviews and making sure that it wasn’t infested with spyware, I downloaded and instealled JoyToKey and although it was a bit confusing at first, once I learned how to use it I definitely was happy with the results. I even managed to set up a button combination on my controller to switch between mouse controls, Hulu/Netflix controls, and game controls for those games that either have a terrible controller interface system, or that just don’t support controllers at all.

I definitely like the fact that you can pretty much set up your controller to do anything, including inputting anything your keyboard or mouse can, customizing how sensitive you want your mouse cursor to be and even assigning a button to reduce or increase the sensitivity temporarily. One thing you need to be aware of that can be a bit confusing is the fact that unless you go into the preferences tab and check the option to enable POV input, you will be unable to assign anything to the directional pad. I always make sure to check that option first thing because even if you’re not configuring a profile for a game, you may still find it useful to be able to assign those buttons.

Luckily you don’t need to do all the work to set up a profile to control the mouse since the installation file comes with a couple of preset profiles which is very useful if you’re trying to figure out how the program works. You can also find some useful information on the JoyToKey website mentioned above. Remember that you must know which buttons on the controller correspond to those listed on the program. To find out you can always access your Control Panel, and then click on Game Controllers (classic View) and select properties. You can press each button to find out which number it corresponds to and write it down. This is definitely a very useful tool that not only allows you to control your own media center, but is also flexible enough to be used to do countless other things such as allow you to use a controller when playing a flash game online and whatever else you can think of! In fact, here’s a great flash game that really benefits from its use!

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