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Ground Immersion System Integration with Oculus Rift

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Posts: 49
I must say, I've enjoyed the C.E.S coverage of the Oculus Rift over the last week, simply to see the lucky people who's had the chance to give it a go and the way they expressed there enthusiasm and genuine delight as the camera rolls, It's given me a lot of faith that this product will come to fruition and will take gaming to the next level.
My love of gaming started way back when I first got my little hands on such games like Space Invaders, Asteroids and Donkey Kong. To see the delight on the faces of the reporters after they removed the Oculus Rift, kind of Reminded me of the feeling I had back all those years ago when I seen my first video game for the first time and being able to control pixels on a screen, Anyway that's enough of my rambling of the past and on to the subject of the future.
There's been a lot of talk about how different controllers would interface with the Oculus Rift, and I've got a little idea which has been bouncing around in my little grey matter for months and would like to share with this community and would love some feedback. My technical abilities are not the best when it comes to sensors and how user interfaces work and what i would need to get this project going. so I've decided to look towards the oculus community to give me some advice and direction, all I have is a general idea so be patient with me when I try to describe what I envision.

Think of a user interface which requires full use of our limbs in our every day lives, say driving a car for instance, once you learn to operate all limbs in different timings it's just like riding a bike, so why not create a user interface for controlling forward, backward, left and right movement using your feet, this would take away the use of the wasd keys on your keyboard, also it would work very well with the oculus head tracking, as it would be a more natural feeling of movement for moving in a fps game.
So let's talk about how your feet would control this movement, it's quite simply really, the use of balance would be a perfect way, Think of a analog stick that you get on a standard gaming pad then place a board on top of it with the analog stick dead center, your feet would then be placed on the board either side of that stick. Then while sitting in your chair with the oculus rift strapped to that pretty little face of yours with your feet place on the analog balance board you would have a more intuitive control of left, right ,forward and back movement and the head tracking would also feel more instinctive with this type of control method.
The next step would be to add tactile feedback under each foot, why because our feet are the best shock absorbers money can buy and are very sensitive to vibration, so for example lets take a game like Hawken which is being developed for the oculus then!
Your in the game, seated position, oculus on, feet on Ground immersion balance board and your ready for battle, you look around your 3d head tracked cockpit and then you decide to move out ,you then shift you balance forward on the board and the mech moves forward, then right foot receives vibration input of mech's foot hitting the ground, then the left foot would receive vibration, then as you move your balance further forward on the board the mech would then break into a run, at this point the vibration timing between each foot would get less creating the sense of running. Anyway I hope you kind of get the drift where I'm kind of leading.
All this technology is available right now!!
All I can say is, that three's the magic number,oculus Rift head tracking, nun-chucks with ten button inputs, and a analog controlled balance board with tactile feed back for the ultimate V.R controller experience. Let me know what you think fellas? becoz I just run out of space. :D

Posts: 6
I think it's a cool idea but i also wonder if this would ruin some of the immersive experience as you are standing in the game and sitting in reality? Of course many people are thinking about this problem and potential solutions. Have a look at the videos below for some ideas.

Posts: 49
Thanks for the post Medium much appreciate! But the limping free man video seems a good idea if you want to take part in a zombie game and actually be the zombie lol. I'm in the process of making a prototype using either a xbox 360 pad or a track ball for a quick setup so I can test my theory out as soon as. Here's another way to explain how this would work using a model, and you could try this yourself. Find yourself a audio cd then take a small marble or ball bearing which would be slightly bigger than the hole in the center of the cd, then place the ball on to the under side of the cd and glue, now get four small magnets and place them on the outer edge under side, Stick one at 12 O'clock, one at 3 O'clock, One at 6 O'clock and one at 9 O'clock. Then get yourself another cd making sure it's something like the spice girls, well that's what I used because I felt I had to move on with my musical influences lol. Then making sure the other 4 magnets which you stick to the other cd are of the op-posit poles at 12, 3, 6 and 9 then put the two cd's together like a sandwich. The reason for doing this would ensure that the surface of the board would always level it self out and would have a smooth feel when tipping your balance in any direction. I know this all seems crazy but this is how I roll and kind of think!!lol, this is just a hypothesis mind. How I'm going to add the controller board and sensor and hold the two pieces together while the magnets are pushing in the opposite direction, who know but that's for another day. Here's a link of what I'm trying to get at!!!!


Posts: 1
Very interesting concept! I think a Wii balance board will be a good place to start, then if you really want to, you can stand while playing... although loosing your balance and bouncing your head off a desk would be a very real possibility.

Posts: 49
Thanks for your reply Fluffy. At this moment in time I'm researching on how to make the board read a analog stick off a Xbox 360 pad, as for loosing balance and causing yourself damage the board will not tip to those extreme angles which is shown in the video of the wobble board, I have been thinking of using a off the shelf accelerometer, it depends on price and laytancy. This could then sit in the middle of the board.
Last edited by plasmaquark on Mon Mar 11, 2013 9:34 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Posts: 49
Just found a nice HID interface board which should do the trick!!!
Last edited by plasmaquark on Mon Mar 11, 2013 9:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 49
Here's a little video demo of the HID working with Counter Strike. Sorry about the commentary I get nervous when speaking on camera! Just need to integrate this board to my Build. Might take a week or two.

Last edited by plasmaquark on Mon Mar 11, 2013 9:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 70
Location: Minnesota
plasmaquark wrote:
Here's a little video demo of the U-HID G working with Counter Strike. Sorry about the commentary I get nervous when speaking on camera! Just need to integrate this board to my Build. Might take a week or two.

This is awesome! I have to ask, have you tried just attaching this to a shoe?
Forgive the grammar/punctuation, i'm using my phone!

Posts: 49
Thanx for the reply. The whole point of fitting this to a balance board is to give you a natural sense of motion with your feet , using your natural balance and being able to sit down and be comfortable with the Oculus Rift. It also serves as a nice and easy interface for people who find it difficult using the wasd key's for character movement in pc gaming , like my console playing friends. Lol

Posts: 93
It's a really cool idea using the balance board as a controller, very impressive!


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