Fortunately, there is an application named xboxdrv that makes it possible to connect a gamepad when playing games on Linux, but des not configure the gamepad for a particular game.
Unfortunately for me, that package is not available from my distro of choice, but other distros such as Red Hat do offer it and do so in an RPM package, so installation was as easy as:
Since that installed without any problems, it would be easy to get the source RPM and modify it to meet Mageia's standards and then include it in a Mageia repo. I may do that as there are several applications that are not offered that I have found useful.
The homepage for xboxdrv also provides 10 links to other sires where use of xboxdrv is discussed.
I'll add more once I have worked out how to use the gamepad. I followed the HOWTO below and am able to verify that the gamepad and the OS are communicating.
There is a MS-Windows application named Xpadder that is fairly straightforward to use and might be useful under WINE. Also there is an other MS-Windows app name Qjoypad that might also be useful.
xboxdrv man page
Use a PS3 Controller on Linux (USB) HOWTO
Universal Controller Calibration & Mapping Using xboxdrv
Xpadder MS-Windows gamepad to keyboard mapper; should work with WINE.
Connecting PS3 Sixaxis Controller in XBMC Linux