[ExI] wii controllers

spike spike66 at att.net
Mon Jun 27 17:37:57 UTC 2011


I am so annoyed with myself for not having thought of this sooner.  Today I
was playing Mario Carts with my five yr old son, and being beaten like an
ugly stepchild, when an idea occurred to me.  The Wii controllers must have
some kind of fiber optic rate sensors in there, or at least a two axis
accelerometer to do what it appears to be doing.  If so, a controls engineer
could take the signals off of one of those things and use it to write
feedback control scripts for household applications, or hobby kinds of
stuff.  For instance, if they are angular rate sensors in there, we could
mount one on the handlebars and one on the axis of a motorcycle, take the
signals off of both, write a Kalman filter script to control a single
actuator, build a motorcycle that can ride itself.


Questions please, instrumentation hipsters.  Does a Wii controller have
double integrated accelerometers?  Or did they somehow figure out how to
make a two axis angular rate sensor cheap enough for consumer electronics
and are doing a single integration to get angular position and a single
differentiation to get angular acceleration?  Does anyone here know where I
can find technical info on a Wii controller?  I see it has a ground and six
pin data output.  Does that mean I can get up to 64 positions?  How the hell
did they make something like this cheap enough to be a toy?  How could even
a simple rate sensor be made so small and light?  Couldn't we make a
torsional pendulum and reverse engineer the data output from a calculated
angular acceleration?  Surely other controls and instrumentation guys have
had the same ideas years ago, and have some kind of internet group trying to
use Wii controllers to do this kind of stuff?  


When I google on Wii controllers, all I get are sites trying to sell them.
I have half a mind to cut one of these things open and see what kind of
technology is in there, but I can imagine my son wouldn't care for that




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