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Messages - zainey

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IR Pens / GLOVEPIE Software for Dual IR LED IWB Wii Mouse Pen
« on: September 09, 2011, 05:17:41 AM »

I have written and tested the final GlovePie software for the Dual IR LED IWB Wii Mouse Pen.

Although this specific Dual IR LED, Rocker Switch, Mouse Pen is required for it to work, the aim is to show that a Dual IR Led Interactive Whiteboard Pen can be made to work.

The software was more complicated to develop than I anticipated, and I am sure others will encounter the same difficulties and challenges to make this basically simple concept work. 

Thanks for your interest.

IR Pens / Dual IR LED IWB Wii Mouse Pen - Software
« on: July 03, 2011, 10:08:23 PM »

I am still refining the GlovePie software and the implementation of mouse button commands for the Wii Mouse Pen.

It will basically use the same GlovePie Wii Whiteboard Software I previously wrote.

The calibration of the screen corners will be the same, however some extra camera view area will be required for detecting the other IR Led when its activated. This will depend on the setup of the Interactive Whiteboard and the way the Pen is used.

Essentially, the software needs to detect when one or two LEDs are displayed. The Wii Remote sorts this out already.

The next critical problem is determining the actual pointer LED when two LEDs are activated. This is a fairly simple problem to solve once the general pen orientation is known in the setup.

The main task is to assign the IR LED indications with the required mouse commands, without them interfering with each other.

The basic mouse commands to be assigned are:

Mouse Pointer

Left Button Press
Left Button Click
Left Button Double Click

Right Button Press
Right Button Click
Right Button Double Click

Some of the mouse commands cannot be mapped directly because the IR Pen operates differently to a conventional mouse.

There may be a work around such as using the Right Mouse Button Press on the Pen, as a Left Mouse Button Press - for drag and drop, or cut and paste as the case may be.

Also, the Right Mouse Button Double Click may be used for something as this does not seem to be normally used.


IR Pens / Dual IR LED IWB Wii Mouse Pen - Construction
« on: July 03, 2011, 09:43:30 PM »

I have included photos of the mockup, exploded assembly and testing of the IR functionality of the Wii Mouse Pen for your information.


IR Pens / Dual IR LED IWB Wii Mouse Pen - Electrical Schematic
« on: July 03, 2011, 09:32:33 PM »

The electrical circuit for the Wii Mouse Pen is basic, but clever in a way.

To provide one or two IR LED functionality from the same 1.5 Volt battery is tricky.

If electronics were used there would be little margin between the battery voltage (1.5V) and the IR LED Forward Voltage (~ 1.25V) for performing logic and getting sufficient voltage and current through the LEDs to make the pen work effectively.

Therefore the switching is perfomed mechanically through a Double Pole - Double Throw (DPDT) switch.

This switch isolates the One LED and Two LED circuits so that they can operate independently, and use the full voltage difference between the battery and IR LED forward voltage to provide bright indication from the IR LEDs.

The Electrical Schematic circuit diagram for the Wii Mouse Pen is attached.

IR Pens / Dual IR LED IWB Wii Mouse Pen
« on: July 03, 2011, 09:20:33 PM »

I have constructed a prototype whiteboard IR Pen which can provide left and right mouse button functionality.

The pen uses a bidirectional finger switch to turn on either one, or two IR LEDs.

The LEDs are wired to indicate whether the switch is pressed forward or backward, and this can be mapped to mouse button commands.

A Wii Remote is used to detect the IR LEDs from the pen, and software is used to determine the corresponding mouse command to be issued. I use GlovePie to act as the intermediate software between the pen and the computer application that is driven by the pen mouse.

The basic specification of the mouse pen is as follows.

1. Its made from a Sharpie Pen.

2. It has a fixed pointer IR LED at the tip.

3. It has a second IR LED mounted in the pen body.

4. The pen is ambidexterous for right and left hand users. The second IR LED is mounted in the pen cap so that it can be pulled off and turned to face the other side, so the Wii Remote camera can see it from the other direction.  

5. The IR LED switching is performed through one rocker switch with the Index Finger.

6. The pen is powered with a single 'AAA' 1.5 Volt battery. The battery is removable and replaceable using the battery holder provided. Just pull the cap off, and take the battery out.

7. The pen weighs under 40 grams.


Wiimote Interactive Whiteboard / Re: Pressure Sensitive Pen
« on: May 14, 2011, 03:35:55 AM »

The pressure sensitive pen you have demonstrated is quite slick, and its simplicity and elegance shows a lot of thought.

I liked your Instructable as well. It seems Teachers makes great Salesmen as well.

Your pen can be distinguished from others on these points:

1. It is simple in concept with a linear assembly of components.

2. It is constructed from inexpensive and readily available components.

3. There are no unnecessary components, therefore saving cost, weight and labour.

    I liked the soldering of the battery terminals to the wires (never thought of that...)

4. The fitting up between the IR LED and Tactile switch is original too.

One small detail I could suggest an improvement.

Perhaps you could spiral the wires around the tactile button shaft when soldering to the legs of the IR LED. This would put less strain on the wires and solder joints, and means it would be less likely to break from long-term use.

Anyhow, great work, and good to see the bar being raised.



Could you please describe the method of your Wii Pen construction, to get the pressure sensitive function. According to your video, it seems to work well.

I have thought about some pressure sensitive tip methods, but they seem finicky and not well engineered.

One idea is for a 'zero-displacement' pressure sensitive tip.

Its possible to make a very simple, very low current transistor circuit which turns the IR LED on when the pressure tip contacts open.

In this way the pen activation pressure and required displacement to operate it can be made very low.

I have demonstrated such a test circuit on a breadboard, but I have not built it into a pen so far.

There is still some design potential left in the Wii pen.


Programmers Den / Re: 4 ir led tracking
« on: April 07, 2011, 10:24:26 PM »

It seems the wiimote is losing the IR points because the sensitivity of the IR camera is too low.

Its tricky to fix this problem, but the wiimote camera can be programmed to increase its sensitivity from the default setting you may be encountering.

There are a number of things you can do to check this.

1. Is your wiimote genuine. Non-genuine wiimotes have poor tracking peformance.

2. Do the LEDS operate at 940nm, which seems to be optimum for IR sensitivity.

3. Do the LEDs have enough current. I like to put 1.5 Volts, or 100ma across each one for extra brightness.

4. You can check the LED performance independently using FreeTrack. There is a sensitivity slider and IR camera view feature that shows whether your wiimote is detecting these points properly, and whether the sensitivity can be improved.

5. If you are good at programming, the FreeTrack open source software has the sensitivity improvement code in it. You can also consult WiiBrew about it as well.

6. I have implemented a sensitivity improvement code in Glovepie for use with a whiteboard program.

See here (registered members only)

Good luck.

General Hardware Talk / Re: Wii Remote Motionplus extension cable.
« on: January 28, 2011, 11:31:42 PM »

I examined the Nunchuk extension cable at the Nunchuk connector and found something interesting.

Pin 1 is bridged with solder to Pin 3.

Therefore connecting Pin 1 to Pin 3 WONT WORK for connecting the Nunchuk extensuion cable between the Motionplus Dongle and the Wiimote.

Sorry about the earlier misinformation on that point.

So, it seems the only way to get the MotionPlus Dongle working through an extension cable is to wire across pins 1, 2, 3, _, 5 & 6 individually, as it seems Pin 4 is not connected through at all.

If you are desperate for a circuit board to wire into the MotionPlus, the connector from the Nunchuk extension cable has all the pin pads available on a microboard, so its just a matter of piggy-backing on those and debridging Pin 1 and Pin 3 as well.  



There is some interesting information in the Nintendo Wii patents found at the US Patent Office -

Do a "quick search" for the relevent patent number.

For information on the connector technology of the Wii, search for this patent number - 7722409

For information on the MotionPlus technology of the Wii, search for this patent number - 7867089

Its good reading.

General Hardware Talk / Re: Wii Remote Motionplus extension cable.
« on: January 28, 2011, 08:03:14 PM »

I haven't been able to work out whether the Pin 3 wire from the Wiimote should go all the way to pin 3 on the Motionplus (this will work) , OR whether Pin 3 could be looped back to Pin 1 at BOTH the Wiimote and MotionPlus ends respectively.

The Pin 1 and Pin 3 is looped back at the Wiimote end of the extension cable already.

My guess about the purpose of the extra Pin 3 wire is to let the Wiimote know an attachment is plugged in, and to provide extra current for attached devices such as the Nunchuk or MotionPlus.

Another Doh! possibility, is simply to modify the Nunchuk end of the Nunchuk extension cable so that Pin 1 is connected to Pin 3. But I haven't tried this method, and it may not work. If so, it would be way cheaper than buying an expensive 6 pin firewire cable.

Let us know how your mod goes.


General Hardware Talk / Re: Wii Remote Motionplus extension cable.
« on: January 27, 2011, 08:49:22 PM »

I have got the modified MotionPlus connector in front of me. But no pictures.

I suggest a better method of connecting the wired motionplus module in order to avoid damaging it and fussing about.

Use a small PC board called the WiiChuk. This was made for an Arduino connection and it costs a few dollars.

WiiChuk Adapter -

Pin 3 has to be connected to Pin 1 (3.3V) at the motion plus connection, to enable the motionplus.

Wire the male/male 6-pin firewire cable to the Wiichuk board, and its finished.


Project Ideas / Re: 6 DOF based physics games
« on: January 09, 2011, 09:15:03 PM »

The sensitivity of the Wiimote is not always the best when started.

Have you tried maximising the IR sensitivity settings for the camera.

This can be programmed into the Wiimote during initialisation.

Look at these examples:

Adaptation from WiiBrew and FreeTrack:

Whiteboard use:

In my experience this can make a huge difference to the detection range.

In another experiment to get a wide field of view for the Wiimote I have used a fish-eye lens from an SLR camera for testing. The Wiiremote is positioned very close to the back of the lens and it works nicely. It has the advantage of a wide field of view (up to 180 view) and improved IR sensitivity from the big aperture, as well.

However, apart from testing the basic idea, I put the concept on the shelf - but it does work, if you can sort out the calibration issues.

Good Luck.


Your idea seems promising.

Using just one IR light and a top-down wiimote camera to track the x-y position of an actor on stage, doesn't really require any sophisticated hardware or software. Just read the IR Dot coordinate straight out of the Wiimote and display it on a screen.

If using a side-on whiteboard-type method of detecting the IR dots on stage, then it will be important to calibrate the stage corners beforehand with the IR lights mounted at the right height (the actors head). See this thread for more details about how technical this gets.

For multiple IR lights, there may be a problem getting the Wiimote Camera to distinguish which of the IR points belongs to which of the actors, should the IR dots somehow go out of synch with the actors moving on and off the stage, or crossing paths.

The IR lights need to be fairly bright to be seen from the top of the stage, and hopefully the wiiremote camera  won't be confused by stray reflections from other ordinary lamps being used as well.

If the Wiimote is set up properly, then it should track each IR dot internally without user intervention. However some means of manual correction may be needed from time to time to maintain actor and IR dot correspondence.

Its a simple and practical idea, and worth a go. A software script could be simply coded in GlovePie, using "fake cursors" on the monitor to indicate the position of the IR Dots seen on the stage by the Wiimote camera.

The "fake cursors" can be given labels to indicate the actor they apply to.  

Alternatively, a tracking system based on the glowing coloured ball of the Sony Move may be a better option for tracking, as the lights can be independently coded by colour so, in theory, any number of actors or props could be used. The use of glaring coloured lights may be contrary to the original purpose of your stage idea though.

Happy tracking.

Wiimote Glovepie projects / GLOVEPIE WII WHITEBOARD
« on: October 25, 2010, 11:02:18 AM »

I wanted to code my own whiteboard application because no-one really explained how the code worked. I found some useful math on the web and cobbled my program together.

I used GlovePie because its relatively simple to program, and a challenge to get it working with some of the math involved. I don't think anyone has written and published a script quite like this for a GlovePie Wii Whiteboard program. I would like to know if someone has though.

For Math teachers, this program uses a spectrum of math elements such as matrices, vectors, linear equations and perspective projection. Its at advanced high school level, and you can demonstrate to your students why math is relevant and practical.

Since I am not a whiteboard user, I have only tested the operation of the pen/mouse/cursor with a home-made IR pen on my CRT.

The IR tracking works really well, and the mouse button operation is so far limited to the visible cursor and the left mouse button click.

I have got some other Wii Whiteboard related ideas and this program will serve as a basis for that.


The full program script is published here -

Logged in users can download this program -   GlovePie Wii Whiteboard ver1.txt  (22.12 KB).


// Version 1.0 for Public release, 24 October 2010
// By M.A.V. Brisbane, Australia

// Please use and modify this code to suit your application or educational needs


// SOURCE 1:
// Citation:
// "Fundamentals of Texture Mapping and Image Warping"
// Paul Heckbert
// pp 17-21, Masterís thesis, UCB/CSD 89/516, CS Division, U.C. Berkeley, June 1989.

// SOURCE 2:
// Citation:
// "A Planar Perspective Image Matching using Point Correspondences and Rectangle-to-Quadrilateral Mapping,"
// Dong-Keun Kim, Byung-Tae Jang, Chi-Jung Hwang,
// ssiai, pp.0087, Fifth IEEE Southwest Symposium on Image Analysis and Interpretation, 2002

**** END OF EXCERPT ****

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