Date: 4th Nov 2010
ADI's ADCs power NI's eye movement based
user interface for gaming apps
NI selected Analog Devices' data converters in its interface
technology for hands-free, video game prototype which senses
movement of eye for playing games.
The new interesting user interface technology allows users
to control a system by merely moving their eyes. In a departure
from traditional gaming systems that use hand, wrist and
body movements to play video games, Waterloo Labs, a team
of engineers at National Instruments that creates experimental
projects using NI products, designed a first-of-its kind
video game. This hands-free, "eyes only" video
game prototype leverages a technology called electro-oculography
that records eye motion. The potential applications for
this technology go beyond the gaming world to include treatment
for amblyopia (or "lazy eye") and a number of
other uses for people who have lost the use of their hands
or have other disabilities.
"In its current state, this application is a sophisticated
next-generation video gaming system, but we foresee a number
of other exciting and valuable uses for this technology.
We are in the early stages of exploring some of these applications,"
said Hunter Smith, Waterloo Labs team member and applications
engineer at National Instruments. "A key component
of this hands-free, 'eyes only' video gaming system is Analog
Devices' high-speed ADCs. We plan to continue using ADI's
data converters to help us push design boundaries to develop
new applications and products."
How Ocular Game Control Works:
The hands-free video gaming system uses Analog Devices'
AD7401 isolated ADC and a National Instruments Single-Board
RIO daughter card that features a real-time processor, reconfigurable
FPGA (field-programmable gate array), and analog and digital
I/O on a single board programmed with NI LabVIEW software.
Eye movement is measured by placing four electrodes around
the player's eyes and a final reference electrode at the
base of the ear. The electrodes then measure the very small
electrical signals that are generated inside the eye when
a player shifts his eyes up, down, or side-to-side in correspondence
with the movement of the on-screen game character. Next,
a differential signal between the electrodes is amplified
by Analog Devices' AD8221 precision instrumentation amplifier
and low-noise amplifier before passing through the ADI ADC
and on to the daughter card for processing. For an explanation
of the signal chain, see video.
"This first-of-its kind hands-free, 'eyes only' video
gaming system is another example of how ADI's signal processing
technology continues to revolutionize conventional end-user
experiences," said Steve Hinderliter, converter marketing
director, Analog Devices. "ADI's data conversion and
signal conditioning technology continues to define the user
experience by regulating the quality and speed of the information
from the sensor and signal source all the way to the digital
world and back."