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« on: January 08, 2008, 01:03:34 AM »

Wiimote Whiteboard - FAQ and Adv Discussion

A lot of very smart people have written in questions and suggestions and I think a lot of them are very clever and worth sharing... and I'd like to add some of my own expansions on what I showed in the video. Like they say, 2 brains are better than 1.... it turns out several thousand brains are even better. This post will be REGULARLY EDITTED to add new ideas as they come in. I know it breaks the RSS model, but I don't want to make a new post for every new idea. Sorry.
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My Bluetooth adapter and LEDs - Though it is reported to work with many bluetooth adapters and chipsets, I've been using this one sold by SparkFun electronics. The IR LEDs I use are Vishay TSAL6400s running at 100mA available from Mouser.

Tip switch - Instead of pressing the side button to illuminate the LED, a tip swtich could be added to illuminate when pressed on a surface. Though, it's mechanically harder to make and finding the right level of pressure for activation can be hard, especially if your surface varies (ex: whiteboard vs carpet)

Can you do this with a webcam? - The wii remote contains a 1024x768 camera with built-in hardware for IR blob tracking of upto 4 points at 100Hz. This significantly outperforms any $40 webcam I'm aware of. It'll work with a webcam, just not as well and not as easily.

Pressure sensitivity - wacom tablets give nice pressure sensitive behavior. Doing this with the wiimote whiteboard will be tough, at least through the camera data. The brightness of the LED varies significantly depending on angle, surface reflectivity, and distance. Any pressure data based off birghtness will not be reliable. The data could be transmitted via a high-frequency IR channel (like remote contol data) to an IR reciever mounted on the wiimote. (see "Right click" for more)

Right Click - any right click signal based off brightness is not likely going to be reliable. Additionally, using multiple LEDs (1 - left click, 2- right click) won't work at all distances and orientations as the LEDs get too close for the wiimote to distinguish them. The RIGHT way to do this is to use high-frequency IR data transmission (like remote control data) to an IR reciever. This will also give you a way of potentially getting pen ID - which is VERY powerful and may be a future project. Though, this requires quite a bit more hardware.

Multiple wiimotes for better tracking - if you have a large surface, you could have multiple wiimotes covering different areas to keep tracking reslution high, or have the wiimotes cover the same area to avoid occlusion problems, or do some interpolation of the data for higher accuracy. All possible, just with the smarter software. Doing this myself is probably not going to happen, but the source is freely available.

Posted by Johnny Chung
« Last Edit: January 08, 2008, 01:08:27 AM by dice » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2008, 01:51:08 AM »

One thing I have grown tired of, it the dependence on a third party app to connect to the wiimote. I have got around this by changing the ReadCalibration(); line to look like this

Code:
try
{
    ReadCalibration();
}
catch
{
    // if we fail above, try the alternate HID writes
    mAltWriteMethod = true;
    ReadCalibration();
}

also commented out the following

Code:
remoteID = (int)index;
connectedRemoteIDs.Add(remoteID);

this allowed me to connect with the default windows driver for my Linksys USBBT100 class 1 device in both windows xp and vista.

hope it works for the rest of you guys as well.

also, this works on the multigrid and desktopvr app.
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« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2008, 05:03:11 PM »

Why don't you put FAQs on a wiki?
....so that ppl can follow it when it updates =)
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« Reply #3 on: January 13, 2008, 05:25:13 PM »

atomriot, I have some issues with bluesoleil too (it doesn't recognize my Belkin Bluetooth adapter) that's why I would like to edit some files to make the WhiteBoard work with any driver.
But I don't know the file to edit ? What file are you talking about ?
Thank you in advance for your answer.
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« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2008, 08:13:05 PM »

here you go, you can refer to this post

http://www.wiimoteproject.com/general-support/i-cant-get-my-insert-johnnys-app-name-here-to-connect-help-t119.0.html

comment on it. hold discussions about connecting and why this might not be the best, or how we could change it to be better.
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« Reply #5 on: April 04, 2008, 07:09:44 PM »

I've just started working on a WII Remote project with a fellow student. It projects aims at resolution increase by using multiple wiimotes. So if anyone is interested .. just wait. (The project will be written in Java.)
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« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2008, 01:29:24 AM »

ive been reserching this for a little bit over a month now after the head of the computer group in our high school saw it
she asked me if i wanted to try to make a whiteboard for the school and i said i would try
i realy like the idea but im not very hardware wise
if you could make a part list and mabey send instruction i would realy be greatful
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« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2008, 11:58:18 AM »

Welcome CpuCga!

To get started with the Whiteboard application you do not need to mess around as you can start using it as it is.

Of course you need a few things

1 Wiimote handcontroller (buy 1 separately - no need for Wii console)
1 Computer with Bluetooth(this can be tricky due to BTdrivers)
1 IR pen to use as your mouse, to draw and to have fun (or 2 pens for multitouch)
1 projector if you are going to use a big screen (ie classroom)

Once you got this list sorted you are ready to go big screen Smiley

Don't hesitate to ask anything else
//UndCon
« Last Edit: May 02, 2008, 12:00:43 PM by UndCon » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: May 20, 2008, 06:32:18 PM »

Thx we have got one up and running and found a very useful key chain light that u can easily replace with a IR light
http://www.garritylites.com/page75.html
Thx for you help and i hope this helps others.
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« Reply #9 on: May 20, 2008, 08:35:53 PM »

I'm glad to hear that it worked out!

I hope you have lots of fun with this setup and finds many useful ways - please report all your experiences for all of us
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« Reply #10 on: April 09, 2009, 04:53:24 AM »

I have a question.  I am trying to be "green".  I want to use a program (looking for a suggestion) to help my kids with specail needs.  I am really interested in the Wiimote projects.  I am trying to get it set up on my computer.  Here's what I'm not seeing though...

Can I save what I draw on the screen?  Using a "smartboard"  when you draw you can save what you did. I would like to do this with my students.  As they do tracing I want to save it. Save paper as we do drawing/tracing several time a week. 
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« Reply #11 on: April 09, 2009, 06:35:45 AM »

Not directly,  but you could save the image you want to be the e-paper as a .bmp or .jpeg and open it up in Paint or some other digital editor.

Simply open the the file in Paint-the student does his work and then you rename and save the file,

Or you could use one of the cool web20 dabbleboards that are out there.
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« Reply #12 on: April 09, 2009, 07:53:14 AM »

retopp
Download 'linktivity' from the downloads will do all this and more. You can also download camstudio from majorgeeks to record screen movies with audio.

benpaddlejones Smiley
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« Reply #13 on: April 09, 2009, 08:00:12 AM »

I was wondering how people have solved the issue of left and right click?

i was thinking about gutting a laptop mouse, then somehow modding the left click button to be depressed when the IR pen is pushed down on to the table, and then i guess you could have a separate button for the right click
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« Reply #14 on: April 10, 2009, 06:53:40 AM »

I have a question.  I am trying to be "green".  I want to use a program (looking for a suggestion) to help my kids with specail needs.  I am really interested in the Wiimote projects.  I am trying to get it set up on my computer.  Here's what I'm not seeing though...

Can I save what I draw on the screen?  Using a "smartboard"  when you draw you can save what you did. I would like to do this with my students.  As they do tracing I want to save it. Save paper as we do drawing/tracing several time a week. 

saving what you draw would not be hard at all. you could set up a window with transparency set to .01 and capture that as a bmp when you save. you would have to handle mouse painting which isnt hard either but that gets outside of the traditional whiteboard app and into custom implementation.

or you could start a new app, put a picturebox on there and capture the mouse movements so when you click it puts a pixel or small square or whatever shape and then save that as an image. .net has many formats built in, the only hard one is an animated gif but its doable.  then once your "paint" app works, import the wiimote library and add the few additional things to handle wiimote interaction.  then you have a savable painted area. i can help but i wont write it for you, that takes away all your fun.

as far as left and right click, that issue has been "resolved" many ways. it just depends on which way you want to deal with.  there are many posts and youtube videos about this. pick one that works for you
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