Pi Cap Robotic Operation Game
A hand gesture controlled robot powers the game Operation
The game operation is traditionally played by using a set of tweezers to extract ‘organs’ from a body shaped board game. However Sitraka, Michael and Tim decided to re-interpret this game with inspiration from the da Vinci Surgical system. The goal? To use the Pi Cap and Raspberry Pi to control a small robot with hand gestures.
The Pi Cap is Bare Conductive’s newest product. A Raspberry Pi add-on, it allows you to add precise capacitive touch, proximity sensing and high quality audio to your Raspberry Pi projects. It works with the Raspberry Pi A+, B+, Zero and later (any Raspberry Pi with a 40 pin GPIO connector). With the sensing precision of the Touch Board, and the computing power of the Raspberry Pi, the Pi Cap is a great tool for transforming analog data into digital outputs.
Using Electric Paint and a robotic arm, they created a design that would allow the user to control a tiny robotic arm to extract organs from their human shaped acrylic board. Their prototype doesn’t quite achieve the accuracy of the da Vinci robot, but it certainly demonstrated how quickly one can build a gesture controlled robot when equipped with the right tools!
Use the grapher to visualise the sensitivity and precision of the Pi Cap’s sensors.
Follow this tutorial to set up your Pi Cap with a Raspberry Pi 1 A+/B+, Raspberry Pi 2 or Raspberry Pi 3.
Follow this tutorial to set up your Pi Cap with a Raspberry Pi Zero.
Watch this short video to hear Tim explain the concept behind their project, and see how the different part of the mechanism were built.
The team decided to use two different platforms for their project. They used a Raspberry Pi 3, Pi Cap, and Electric Paint to design and build the gesture control input, and an Arduino robotic arm as an output
Michael created a sensing wearable that slips over the user’s index finger using Electric Paint as the gesture control for the ‘pinch’ and painted a board with the controls for Left and Right directional movement.
Using the Pi Cap’s proximity code example, the Raspberry Pi could interpret the readings coming from the Pi Cap’s different sensors and send those to the Arduino.
Sitraka’s robotic arm would then receive the data from the Raspberry Pi and mirror the movement instructions to pick up the organs.
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