Once upon a time, the computer mouse didn’t exist. Early computers used a variety of other input devices, from the typical keyboard to more esoteric options such as joysticks or light pens. While the mouse as we know it dominates all, it doesn’t mean other tools can’t find their place. One such device is this hat mouse, from [Jacek Fedorynski].
The mouse consists of an Adafruit Feather nRF52840 Sense, mounted upon a basic baseball cap. The development board packs in a 9 degree-of-freedom motion sensor package featuring the ST LSM6DS33 acceleromater/gyro and LIS3MDL magnetometer. Through a robust sensor fusion algorithm, this enables the board to measure the orientation and motion of the wearer’s head with a great degree of finesse. This allows the user to look at different parts of the screen to move the mouse cursor, with the system working in an absolute rather than relative fashion. Commands are sent to the attached PC with the Feather’s built-in Bluetooth, avoiding the need for dangly cables running down the user’s neck. Files are available on Github for those eager to spin up their own.
Combined with some built-in accessibility aids in Windows, the setup allows the user to move the mouse well, with foot switches used to activate the left and right mouse buttons. For those who find using a traditional mouse difficult, this could be a great tool for better productivity. Of course, if you wish to learn more, it pays to take a look back at the very earliest days of mouse technology. Video after the break.