Mastering the art of Twitter.

I set up an auto-twittering plugin early on so my twitter account had some activity but it wasn’t really very busy. I few people followed me but not a huge amount, despite the fact that I was updating from my blog a couple of times a day…. that changed this week when I revamped my pictures and realised that you’ve got to give before you can receive. So I followed a bunch of people and some of them followed me back… so I followed more and it kept working. I didn’t just add anyone, but anyone interested in VR, AR, Oculus, startups, Star Citizen, Elite and the like all were put in on my list and quite a few reciprocated.

Now I don’t think this is going to make me the the top hash tag of the year but it’s a start, I don’t have to impress everyone just the right person who puts me on the right blog at the right time…

I also made a strategic post to the Oculus board on reddit which resulted in a nice spike in traffic. I kind of missed the wave when my blog was discovered on reddit, the DK2 was released and then someone noticed my blog… which was buried under the DK2 excitement. If I had launched just a week earlier… :p Someone posted his site to the fitness sub-reddit and it netted him 140K hits in 24 hours!! Suffice to say if I got that much traffic my raffle entries would explode past what I think I need and I could begin the kickstarter the next day…

Speaking of which, I think it’s time to submit my kickstarter campaign for assessment. It doesn’t have to be complete but if you do it earlier you won’t have to wait when you’re really ready to launch….

Less talk, more torque

Over on the Star Citizen website I’m experiencing some feedback and not all of it good. Apparently it is quite impossible to do what I want to do without hydraulics, industrial servos or $3k linear actuators… it just cannot be done. Over at x-sim.de, where the people who actually make stuff, they’re saying nothing, but the star citizen ‘space engineers’ with nothing better to do than wait for a game that won’t be out for another two years are hard to please with mere words.

I was contacted by an American engineer last night who had some ‘concerns’ about my design. My heart sank for about 5 seconds as I wondered what he was going to say, but he only pointed out the problems of tapping aluminium and suggesting countersinking bolts that point to the inside of the sphere. A good point. When someone says ‘it will never work because…’ they’ve already made up their mind, only a working model will change it and then they’ll hate you for making them look foolish. When someone say ‘how are you going to overcome…?’ they’re actually helping you to justify your design decisions, and hopefully making you realise you have more problems to solve.

So I will spend the weekend oiling up the rusty maths parts of my brain and figure out how much power it’s going to take to move this crazy idea.
As per my previous thread I guess I’ll see if I can mimic the other platforms rotational speed. I expect to find that the $30 motors I’m hoping to use will not work at all, so TWO $30 motors will also not be enough, three might start to get there, and four would be perfect… so I solve the ‘impossible’ engineering problem by throwing money at the problem. $120 is pocket change when you look at all the simulators on the previous post.

The Motion Simulation TL1 is £41,000 and is doesn’t even move!! 😛

 

Hello Reddit :p

I go to bed leaving a private video uploading and youtube makes it public !

So the site and the design are not quite ready to go mainstream so I’d appreciate you go easy on me 🙂

The sphere doesn’t tip upside down, it’s more suited to Star Citizen than Warthunder 🙂

If you’re interested in my thoughts on the whole design process please read the start of the blog and work your way up, it’s not that much text 🙂

If you like the idea then please Subscribe on the left panel, I’ll let you know when the kickstarter launches, which will be quite soon!

Beginning the project

I originally started off designing a six degrees of freedom joystick for a few upcoming space games : Elite Dangerous and Star Citizen since there weren’t any available.

I ended up creating something that worked and interfaced fine in windows but I still wasn’t completely happy.

After rejecting the idea of using a standard stewart platform as an input at the beginning of the project I went back to take another look.

This led me to investigate all of the 6DOF platforms available but while I was trying to create a simple, compact controller I spent more time thinking about the full motion platforms. I started on the premise of building something from extruded aluminium and using weights to counter the mass of the chair and user. I quickly reduced it to only 3 degrees of freedom and came up with this :

Using cheap (£4 per meter) material and wiper motors I could possibly produce a kit giving about 40cm of heave motion and about 90 degrees of roll and pitch. The problem was it looked quite ugly and would need some major modifications to be made completely safe.

I went back to the idea drawing board.