Archive for ‘Electronics’ Category
On May 17, 2011 Ryersons’ Interactive Computing Applications and Design Group (ICAD) demonstrated their latest projects. The session starts with a demonstration of using Microsoft Kinect hardware to control a computer mouse. Next, the group shows the use of a gestural interface to control Google Earth, followed by a demo of using Kinect to control a avatar in Second Life.
The session continues with a demonstration of a potential application to control a small arduino based robot over bluetooth using gestures. Following this the ICAD staff show the use of Kinect as a tracking and control mechanism for a Point-Tilt-Zoom (PTZ) camera. This approach allows them to track up to five people without active trackers. The data from the Kinect camera is used to instruct the PTZ camera where to “look”. Once a person is identified (by putting up their hand) the kinect will try to track the person around the room and make sure the PTZ camera follows the person as well. Switching the tracked person is done by raising ones hand.
Their last demo will show a gestural based keyboard that will eventually be tied into a interactive phonebook application where the user can type the name of a contact using gestures and automatically dial the number through a voip application (ie: google talk).
Individual project videos below….
1) Kinect Windows Mouse Interface
2) Kinect Google Earth Interface
3) Kinect Second Life Interface
4) Kinect Bluetooth Robot Interface
5) Kinect Tracker-Cam Interface
6) Kinect Interactive Phonebook
Posted on 10:17, July 19th, 2010 by Many Ayromlou
Absolutely awesome art piece by James Cochrane (who just happens to be from my hometown….Toronto). For the nerds out there following bits of technology make up the “orchestra”:
The USB-powered Beagle Board is a low-cost, fan-less single board computer utilizing Texas Instruments’ OMAP3530 application processor that unleashes laptop-like performance and expansion without the bulk, expense, or noise of typical desktop machines.
Beagle Board is based on an OMAP3530 application processor featuring an ARM® Cortex™-A8 running at up to 600MHz and delivering over 1,200 Dhrystone MIPS of performance via superscalar operation with highly accurate branch prediction and 256KB of L2 cache. Focal to Beagle Board experience is the high-speed USB 2.0 on-the-go (OTG) port that can be utilized to provide power to the board or to deliver highly flexible expansion. Standard PC peripherals can be connected to Beagle Board using the USB with a mini-A to standard-A cable adapter, DVI-D using an HDMI to DVI-D adapter, or through the MMC/SD/SDIO connector enabling a complete desktop experience. The picture below should give you a good idea of it’s size beside the tiny Pico Projector.
Hardware Specifications are as follows:
Looks very nice and complete, a good alternative to Gumstix Avero stuff we covered earlier . And did I mention it’s only $149. Perfect for your next project.
Posted on 23:13, May 23rd, 2009 by Many Ayromlou
Yep, you can do it now…..The open source hacker community GizmoForYou is shipping a Linux hardware/software kit for building a modular touchscreen smartphone. Using the OMAP35x-based Gumstix Overo Earth single-board computer (SBC), the Flow phone offers numerous customization modules including GPS, 3.5G cellular, Bluetooth, WiFi, and a camera. At around $1300 for the complete kitchen sink version, it’s not exactly cheap, but since they offer multiple choices for each component, you can pick and choose what you like to have inside your smartphone. Really neat stuff.
For those of you who are not tuned into Gumstix, the Overo line is a new line of Computer-on-Module devices designed by Gumstix based on TI’s OMAP Processor. Overo Earth comes with the following specs:
Processor: OMAP 3503 Application Processor with ARM Cortex-A8 CPU
Size: 17mm x 58mm x 4.2mm (0.67 in. x 2.28 in. 0.16 in.)
The core of the Flow phone is the Flow motherboard, which is designed to integrate the separately available Overo Earth module. You can also use the more expensive Overo Water, Air or Fire modules. Other modules attach to the motherboard, including a 3.7-inch 640 x 480 Sharp LS037V7DW01 touchscreen LCD and Flow Sharp LCD module.
Connectivity modules include GPS, USB, and a choice between a plain GSM cellular module and a HSDPA-ready 3.5G/GPS/GSM/GPRS module. (WiFi and Bluetooth are already supplied by the Overo SBC.) Additional options include a 1GB MicroSD card, camera, power supply, battery, and enclosure, with various options available on several of the modules. Flow motherboard features include:
GizmoForYou does not say much about software, but there are a growing number of Linux development platforms supporting the Overo Earth and OMAP35x platforms, and according to a project member, the group is working on an Android implementation.
Posted on 11:16, May 6th, 2009 by Many Ayromlou
Great video showing a bizarre and novel way of creating a gesture based interface. You literally touch nothing….Air…..and the interface does the rest. Pretty interesting project. According to Justin Schunick of the team at Northeastern University, the interface uses an array of copper electrodes to sense a certain change in the electric field created by the device. The black material covering the electrodes shows how the interface can be hidden beneath surfaces to create a completely invisible interface. It is simple black felt you can buy at any fabric store. The total cost of this prototype was around $60.00 USD.
They created custom software to communicate with the microcontroller running the show with C++. This enables the use of the device as a new type of XYZ computer mouse. Think nintendo wii controller without the controller — or minority report without the gloves. This can potentially be revolutionary as far as HCI goes.
The stuff that Linus Akesson and his buddies have come up with are actually brilliant in that they are very analog in nature. Don’t get me wrong, it is a micro doing all that, but the thought process behind the algorithm is very analog…..here is a excerpt of what it all entails:
One display line takes 24 μs, and is followed by a 7.75 μs break called the horizontal blanking period. After 480 such lines, there’s a longer break (1428.75 μs, equal to 45 full display lines) before it all starts over. Two digital signals are used to synchronize the sender (graphics card, custom demo hardware etc.) and the receiver (monitor).
Have a peek at the video…..It’s mind blowing :-)
The people over at 5VoltCore have put together a PD installation that really tests your courage and trust in machines. The installation sets up a feedback loop between computer, robot and the user. The user is right in assuming that the machine can fail, the machine can fail because the user assumes.
Let me explain, it all starts with a PD patch that controls a knife held by a robot that will try to hit the space in between the users fingers. Once the user places his/her hand under the robot, the program takes over and the knife movements slowly speed up. At this point the user will either trust the machine or they will get nervous and start sweating. The sweating will then trigger a series of short circuits inside the computer that will cause the knife to move in a more erratic manner. The question is, will the user manage to hold still and not break into a sweat as the machine is doing it’s thing. Pretty scary stuff…….
Posted on 12:08, July 19th, 2007 by Many Ayromlou
We’ve been covering quite a bit of Opensource/Linux/Hack-your-own GSM phones (some even with GPS), but here is the ultimate phone for the N.E.R.D’s out there….From the Press Release:
“Portola Valley, Calif., July 10, 2007 – Gumstix, Inc, today announced its integrated, open source cellular communications platform: the GoliathTM line of expansion boards. The Goliath-vx board provides GPRS/EDGE function while the Goliath-GPS-vx board combines GPRS/EDGE and GPS. Each Goliath board attaches to a gumstixTM motherboard (verdex only) using a 60-pin connector and includes audio, LCD, touch screen, USB host, 3D-accelerometer, and battery management. General availability is planned for late July and the company will begin taking pre-orders at gumstix.com starting on 16 July.
The Goliath boards are by far the largest gumstix products at 105.5mm x 67.3mm, the same dimensions as the Samsung 4.3” LCD touch screens that Gumstix will also sell. Goliath gives verdex motherboards full-speed USB access to the Siemens MC75 GPRS/EDGE module, the u-blox NEO-4S GPS module, and one external USB device.”
For those of you who don’t know, Gumstix has been manufacturing a couple of different embedded platforms around the XScale processor family. Their boards runs an opensource embedded Linux exclusively. Recently they have branched out into building lots of expansion boards. These expansion boards when combined with their motherboards can truly allow you to create just about anything. Sounds like you’ve got everything you need to build the “real” Iphone :-)
If this is boring you it is not my fault….Here are some more Goodies :-)
More to come later….
Posted on 22:37, July 12th, 2007 by Many Ayromlou
Okay this is more for me since I keep having to digg this stuff up…..but if any of it is useful to you please help yourself:
Okay enough for now…..I will add more stuff as I come across them…