USB slingshot controller is for the birds

This USB slingshot controller really brought a smile to our faces. Part of it is the delightfully silly promo video you’ll find after the break. [Simon Ford] combined nature and technology to bring this USB-enabled slingshot into existence.

The frame itself is from a branch he found in the Epping Forrest of London. He whittled away the bark, and hollowed out an opening in at the base of the ‘Y’ to receive an accelerometer board. It has a pair of female pin headers to interface with the mbed seen in the image above. But the real hack here is the code he wrote to translate accelerometer data into appropriate mouse movements. His success in the area makes this translate the virtual world of Angry Birds in a visceral experience of killing things with a slingshot.

We’re suckers for this type of project. Two examples that pop into mind are these musical instrument hacks for Rock Band 2.


  1. atomsoft says:

    Now this is AWESOME! lol great job! Wait until my wife sees this :)

  2. japkin says:

    That is an awesome idea. I read through most of the page at the link, but I didn’t see anything on how you “click” while the birds are in flight (accelerate the yellow bird, split the blue bird, drop the egg from the white bird, etc). Is that functionality present?

  3. austin says:

    i see he uses another sensor on his wrist for the pull back, had thought he would have used a stretch sensor on the cord to keep it all contained in one device.
    never the less, a pretty awesome build.

  4. F4R4D4Y.dc414 says:

    I loathe this game, but what a cool hack!

  5. Steve-O-Rama says:

    W A N T ! ! ! ! !

  6. HanSolo says:
  7. HanSolo says:

    the video of angry birds

  8. pRoFlT says:

    reminds me of this angry eagle build that was at NIWEEK 2011 using labview. skip to 7 minutes to see in action

  9. Malikaii says:

    GREAT video.

  10. denizcan says:

    nice but needs upgrade.. you may put an accelerometer on the handle of elastic band.. that way you may measure the angle of the band and the release of the handle.. it matches with game much better..

  11. lol that’s awesome….
    @denizcan +1 for the accelerometer

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