Head-mounted computer with spit, bailing wire

Oh, for crying out loud! While we were all giddy reporting on yesterday’s wonderfully done head-mounted computer, [Andrew Lim] of recombu.com comes along and essentially does the same thing with an HTC Magic handset and three dollars worth of Harbor Freight crap. Linux kernel, WiFi, accelerometer, the whole nine yards. Consider our collective ass handed to us.

Funny thing is, either of these could be considered The Consummate Hack. One flaunting the creator’s know-how with its custom-designed parts and delicate engineering, the other exhibiting a more punk flair with random scraps and off-the-shelf technology achieving much the same effect — a solution so obvious we were blind to it. Whatever your outlook, this is a great day to be a hacker!

[via slashdot]

Comments

  1. monkeyslayer56 says:

    hacking a hack :) i like it

  2. Andrew Moyer says:

    Might I suggest either painting the inside of the box black or lining it with something like flat-black felt?

  3. Ben Ryves says:

    I’d have thought that the immersive aspect of the ViewMaster came from the fact that it was stereoscopic, not that you had the thing crammed up right close to your face. Cool project, though!

  4. David Holsclaw says:

    ya, it is a good hack, but i think Ben Ryves is right.

  5. compukidmike says:

    @Ben Ryves
    You could write a custom application to show stereoscopic views side by side and put a divider in the middle of the box to achieve a similar effect. Granted, that’s a lot of work, but I guess it depends on just how immersive you want it.

  6. aztraph says:

    wtf?

  7. sly says:

    “the goggles… they do nothing”

  8. svofski says:

    “the goggles… they do nothing”

    the goggles do the job of “impedance matching” between the hard box and the soft face. certain type of people wouldn’t need them.

  9. colecago says:

    needs forward and reverse controls

  10. jim says:

    App 1: “augmented finding the toilet after eighteen beers.”

  11. r_d says:

    I don’t see how having a 2″ screen right up against your face is “immersive”. In fact, I don’t see how this is any different than using the same device in a dark room.
    If it had head tracking or stereoscopy he might be able to argue that it was “virtual reality” (which is an ill-defined and meaningless term, anyhow), and if he wrote some code that made use of the phones camera he could have said it was augmented reality. But he didn’t. It’s a phone taped to the end of a cardboard box. It doesn’t seem to have any purpose beyond making the wearer look silly.

  12. XD says:

    Just this: Because we can. XD

  13. Another XD says:

    Yes, we can!

    For me, that’s totally a hack!

  14. YAWN! says:

    I just checked…. Did you know Hackamonth.com is available? Im just saying….a bit of quality over quantity would be appreciated and maybe the name change would take some of the pressure off you guys.

  15. sly says:

    I quoted it wrong…
    “My eyes! The goggles do nothing!”

    http://megamansgogglesdonothing.ytmnd.com/

  16. Phil says:

    Hmmm… I might just have to try this with my iPhone. This coupled with some red/blue glasses and a magnetometer equipped iPhone running AirCoaster could be quite fun!

  17. Phil says:

    Back and I just tried exactly what I mentioned above. A bit of cardboard, my safety goggles, 3D red/cyan glasses and an iPhone 3G S with AirCoaster. Probably the best “VR” experience I’ve ever had!

  18. AnthonyDi says:

    I would like to see this use the camera to give you HUD like terminator view.

  19. therian says:

    It just plain stupid, having screen near you eyes does not make it into virtual reality glasses

  20. derwin says:

    I’m going to track down a cheap camera phone, buy two of them, tape them together, and create a really disorienting, low-res 3D VR helmet with this same exact formula.

  21. Tragos says:

    Nice. If I find a spare cardboard box here at the office, I’m going to build a similar thing right away using HTC Hero. I must see how augmented reality software (Layar, Wikitude) work with this setup.

  22. teck monkey says:

    this is cool for a starter VR/AR atempt..h3!! with a hacked psp and a few other componets could be a really good VR experince…
    need a usb hub
    cam
    and a usb compass

  23. Wonginism says:

    That would not work as well if the phone used did not have the functions.
    Improvements:
    1) create an easy release phone holder
    2) get a better camera for macro cause it ’twas blurry.

  24. i did it with my psp and it was awsome!!!!!
    i hacked my psp once to get it to run windows and when it was running windows i put a usb camera and usb lazer sensor into the psp and made an program that sensed specific radio waves and gave me a heads up display (hud) and made a bunch of fake weapons that looked like the ones from halo 3 and then started shooting at my friends and had a huge halo war wearing lazer sensors and putting my (12) VR goggles under our halo helmets.

  25. ENKI-][ says:

    This is lovely and straightforward. I have built similar things. Unfortunately, they are always front-heavy. I always end up using counter-weights (which make it slightly less unpleasant for short uses but far more unpleasant for long uses). Perhaps he just has better fitted goggles — I always ended up using sunglasses instead and homebrewing the head-band to hold it on.

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