Kids type with their eyes, robot arm prints their words

F.A.T. took it to the next level, combining a couple of their projects for the Cinekid festival. This contraption lets kids write their names with their eyes for printing by a robot arm. The first part is a glasses-free version of the EyeWriter, originally developed as an assistive technology. The system uses some IR LEDs to generate a reflection on your eye that a PS3 camera can pick up and use to¬†precisely track your gaze. Just look at each key on a virtual keyboard to spell out your message. From there, a robot arm used previously in the Robotagger project prints out the name on a big sheet of paper the kids can take home. This is cool, but more importantly it’s a great way to inspire the next generation of hackers and engineers. Check out the video after the break.


  1. Julien says:

    That’s really cool!
    I love the eye tracking!

  2. ThatGuy says:

    Nice a fancy X,Y plotter.

  3. ChalkBored says:

    The next generation in gaming. When people get sick of jumping around like a tool, yet still don’t want to hold a controller.

  4. xef6 says:

    i really wish people would try using dasher with eye-tracking.

  5. Alex Rossie says:

    How comes this isn’t on the front page?

  6. Casey O'Donnell says:

    dasher is great for this sort of thing.

  7. blah says:

    there is a not front page?

  8. nonygons says:

    totally beat me to dasher

  9. Oren Beck says:

    Some things that appear at “first glance” to merely be entertainment and/or artistic devices can be -more.

    Mentioning this optical tracking project as having adaptive/assistance potentials is an understatement. For the Psych Boost that a person feeling trapped in their body could get from this unit and it’s descendants is inestimable. This is not only a credit to it’s creators- it’s emblematic of how Hackerdom can use our arts tools as a life enhancement system.

  10. Tech B. says:

    Did anyone notice this article being gone last night?

  11. xef6 says:

    @Oren Beck

    I completely agree in every way. However, if you actually try and use the direct map key-lingering approach yourself, you’ll soon realize that it’s a fatiguing and frustratingly slow method of text input (especially if you intend to communicate in realtime).

    Try looking up dasher on youtube. It might blow your mind. It can easily be mapped to an eye-tracking input, and makes for an almost painfully intuitive way of “typing” without hands. And as an extra plus, it’s pretty much guaranteed to be *much* faster! (try up to 30wpm)

    OSS wheee!

  12. asdf says:

    Would it be unreasonable to think that dogs/cats other animals may be able to communicate using this method?

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