Introduction

Overview

An Open Hardware pair of datagloves developed as part of the Mi.Mu Gloves for Music project. These musical gloves are both an instrument and a controller in effect, designed to connect the user fluidly with gear performers usually use, such as Ableton – think minority report for musicians brought to you by the DIY/maker revolution.

This DIY version of he gloves are made from off-the-shelf parts and documented in step-by-step instructions. Bend sensors in the fingers of the glove and the Arduino Inertial Measurement Unit (ArduIMU) module mounted on the cuff capture movement and gestures of the hand and send this information via Serial communication to a computer. The data is interpreted by the custom software Glover, and forwarded to Music software as Open Sound Control (OSC) messages. The gloves also include an RGB LED light and a vibration motor for visual and haptic feedback, allowing the user to send information back to themselves from the software.

This step-by-step tutorial takes you through the process of building (and customizing) your own pair of DIY Data Gloves.

If you are thinking about making a pair of these gloves for yourself, please keep in mind that there are still some issues!
Issues with the current DIY design include:
– Calibration of ArduIMU is not something anybody can do easily. We had an expert (Seb Madgwick) do the calibration of the IMU sensors on the ArduIMUs that we used, and there is currently no simple documentation on how to replicate this process yourself. The uncalibrated ArduIMU will work, but not nearly well enough for what you probably expect.
– The Bluetooth module wireless option is not very stable.
– The wired option is a bit akward.
– The solder joints between the wires and the ArduIMU break easily in this current design.

If you have any questions about the process, please email me: hannah@plusea.at

Flickr set with original size images of all photos and illustrations shown in this tutorial:
>> http://www.flickr.com/photos/plusea/sets/72157632680779240/

PLEASE NOTE: this design is no longer supported in either hardware or software and you are strongly advised against building this glove at present. Please join our mailing list for updates on a future DIY design.

License

Creative Commons License
The DIY ArduIMU gloves design by mi.mu is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

 

3 Comments so far

  1. Christoph Mann on March 19th, 2013

    I bet putting this tutorial together was quite a bit of work.

  2. Tony on March 26th, 2015

    I was wondering if there had been any updates or solves to these problems before I actually start building my own pair:

    “The solder joints between the wires and the ArduIMU break easily in this current design.”
    Could this be solved by adding some extra strain relief/board support to the neoprene cuff? Would hot gluing the board (or double-sided tape) to the cuff keep it from moving? Or, is the solder joint issue occurring because of how the wires are soldered to the board? Any suggestion on how this can be avoided?

    “The Bluetooth module wireless option is not very stable.”
    Does this have to do with the specific bluetooth module used in the parts list? I recently purchased the newest model of the SparkFun Bluetooth Mate Silver, but haven’t tested it out. Would a wifi module (like an Xbee) work better?

    “The uncalibrated ArduIMU will work, but not nearly well enough for what you probably expect.”
    I know that the newest version of Glover is still being worked on, but would using Seb’s patch for getting glove data directly into Max/MSP work towards calibrating the gloves in some fashion until Glove v2 is released? How unwieldy can the uncalibrated-with-Glover ArduIMU gloves be?

    Thanks so much for your help with all of this, and I’m sorry for asking so many questions. I’ve been gathering the parts for a while now and I just want to make sure that if any solutions to these issues have been found, I can return or swap out any parts before I start building.

  3. Hannah Perner-Wilson on March 26th, 2015

    Hello Tony, thanks for all these questions. They are great questions!

    WIRE TO BOARD CONNECTION
    Adding extra proto-board to make a kind of shield that the ArduIMU sits on is one of the ideas I have been thinking of. Then the wires can be woven in and out of a few holes for strain relief for soldering. This would also add some prototyping space if you ever wanted to add more sensors…
    The current design is optimized for minimal bulk, but the connections don’t hold because even just a little movement at the solder joints causes them to break over time. So this needs to change.

    BLUETOOTH
    The most problems I had with Dluetooth was when I wanted to connect both gloves at once and then both would disconnect. The issues I’ve heard from people about the Bluetooth are all so different that I’ve no real idea where it lies.

    IMU CALIBRATION
    The IMU calibration is something done separately from the use of the Glover software. I am no expert, but this is how I imagine the procedure: the IMU sensor data is collected during a calibration routine and then reference values are calculated from this data that are then used to calibrate the sensor data. These reference values are stored on the EPROM memory of the ArduIMU. Here my knowledge ends….
    We need to come up with a better solution for this, but not sure what it will be yet.

    Hope this helps….

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