Wacom light graffiti


[Jon] wanted to have some fun with the Graffiti Research Lab’s LASER Tag. Unfortunately his computer wasn’t quite up for the challenge of detecting the laser pointer with a webcam. Not to be discouraged by this hardware limitation, he purchased a used Wacom tablet and threw together some code to make it work with the GRL display software. Now designs can be scrawled on the pad and the projector displays them with the familiar dripping paint effect.


  1. Hey there! Just to avoid some confusion — I’m not actually using the GRL software at all in this project. I believe GRL’s program uses Quicktime, which crawled on my machine.

    My software (which is a really small program) simply reads input from the Wacom via a serial port, and uses libSDL to draw on the screen. The dripping effect is done by randomly selecting some points in the user’s stylus stroke to “drip.” The “drips” are kept track of and are updated (i.e. redrawn a few pixels down) after some amount of time.

  2. Zymastorik says:

    Great for parties and maybe as a whiteboard.

  3. Hirudinea says:

    How portable is this and how bright, I want to do some graffiti on a big building.

  4. thedudefrommiamivice says:

    @Jon, great project man really cool hack. And don’t worry about the mix up this isn’t a real news site, the don’t worry about things like facts and checking sources here.

  5. digidev says:


  6. Jack says:

    @thedudefrommiamivice: I’m curious why you still visit and regularly comment on a site you so clearly hate. Perhaps it’s just out of spite.

  7. Will Richey says:

    Is your machine using XP? Just wondering, because if you got that old serial tablet to work in Vista, thats a much more impressive hack.

  8. Thedudefrommiamivice says:

    @Jack: Because it used to be a place I loved to visit should I just go quietly into the night and let these bastards rape something I used to love?

    I give credit where it is due and leave as many positive comments as I do negative, its just the negative ones tend to stand out a bit more.

    Thanks for your concern.

  9. therian says:

    wait, so he drawing on wacom table and displaying it on projector ? Do i miss something ? this hardware do exactly what it intended to do, input -> output, where is hack ?

  10. Ben Ryves says:

    @Will Richey: Vista doesn’t change the way serial ports work, does it?

  11. strider_mt2k says:

    It’s cool!

    I like it, and wish I could book some time on one.
    Not that I’m an artist or anything, it just looks like a lot of fun.

  12. anivisual says:

    How’s the latency?

  13. mr_hsu says:

    @Great project!

    I bet you could probably make a version that doesn’t need to be tethered to a computer if you use an arduino with a uVGA module.


  14. mr_hsu says:

    Whoops, meant “@Jon”. Must be getting senile.

  15. oky-graffiti says:

    light of our lives are made brighter, the art of graffiti is very suitable.

  16. Thegone84 says:

    Thats some great stuff. I was wondering how to do that myself after seeing the vid of those guys on youtube doing it with the laser pointer in DC. This looks alot better as i have a couple of tablets that i can mess with.

  17. brad says:

    Links dead to the wacom code? If anyone has it to share it would be much appreciated!

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