Interacting with Rift is pretty cool. Interacting with Rift AND Myo to drive a mini car would be even cooler. So we decided to create this.
What it does
VRoom-VRoom is an immersive user experience that integrates virtual reality via an Oculus Rift. The user controls a miniature vehicle trapped inside a tabletop maze with the objective of finding the treasure hidden at the center of the labyrinth. With a first-person view through Rift, the user guides the vehicle by sending directions through a Myo armband. The user’s movements are translated into instructions for Spark Core which causes the car to move in the direction desired by the user.
How we built it
The final version of the vehicle consists of a body built with stacked Jenga blocks secured with duct tape. Two servos lie beneath the main body and are attached to wheels that we salvaged from a box of old Legos. The vehicle is completely wireless as it is powered by a 9V battery and controlled through a wi-fi connected Spark Core. The user can determine the car’s path through Myo by using hand gestures that correspond with different directions.
The maze takes the up the entire top of a circular table with a 6-foot diameter. The walls were constructed with cardboard and duct tape and are taller than the user’s line of sight when viewing through Rift.
The back of the car holds a smartphone that streams the live video feed to a computer, which is then viewed by the user through a connected Oculus Rift. This cockpit view is intended to give the user the feeling of physically being inside the maze.
Car: Jenga blocks, duct tape, servos, Spark Core, wheels for Lego, more tape Maze: Cardboard, duct tape Visual Simulation: Oculus VR and Virtual Desktop, Thalmic Myo armband, video conferencing software
What's next for VRoom-VRoom
We wanted to create an engaging experience for a first-time user of Rift and Myo while providing a fun, simple objective for them to accomplish. This project will encourage new users (including us!) to further explore the growing applications of virtual reality technologies. For example, VRoom-VRoom could be used to inspect spaces that are too small or dangerous for human beings like air conditioning vents or unstable terrain caused by natural disaster. With further development, the use of a Myo Armband could even allow technicians to provide remote repairs and emergency responders to deliver medical treatment and crucial supplies. From a recreational standpoint, activities like VR Drone racing already exist, and many more are popping up. This project suggests the possibility of VR RC Car racing and other mini-vehicle activities.
What we’d like to improve about VRoom-VRoom
Better control of the car. More immersive VR UX.