PING Platform

An Exploration in Physical Computing

Proof of Concept: Week 2

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Here are the tentative goals for the week. When these change, or we do more, this post will be updated.

Goals for Week 2:

  • POC Hardware Rig v. 1.1: Vertical Sensor Adjustment
  • More Software Platform Dev
  • PingOS Interface Research

POC Hardware Rig v. 1.1: Vertical Sensor Adjustment

Because of the problems with interference, we realized we needed to be able to adjust the sensor mounting vertically, in addition to horizontally. So, we added more vertical mounting points for the sensors (see images below) Now, we can easily adjust the height of each sensor as we’re testing. Nice! We also discussed some more in depth testing we’ll need to do once we’re out of the Proof phase. This rig will be crucial for that.

Chris Adjusting the Sensor Location

fig. 2: Chris Adjusting the Sensor Location

Image of Sensor mounted on mounting block.

Fig. 1: The vertical lines of holes in the block are new mounting points.

More Platform Development

If we haven’t made this clear, we are building as much of the software platform as possible during our Proof of Concept phase. So rather than hacking out a quick solution during the Proof and then rebuilding from scratch later, we are spending the time to effectively architect the platform now. This makes our Proof phase longer, but saves us a bunch of time and headaches in the future. Even better, it also puts us in the shoes of the game developer from day one: we’ll be using the platform to build our first game. We then automatically get to test our architecture in a real world environment, and see how preforms.

So, at this point in the Proof phase, we’re working towards abstracting the structure of the software Platform. We’ll get more into this next week.


PingOS Interface Research

In an attempt to make the best use of our limited time resources, the two of us are trying to work in parallel as much as possible. I think they call that the phased project management model. Or is it spiral model? Anyway, since Chris is much more qualified and able to architect a software platform, he’s taking the lead on that thread. While that important work is happening, I’m hoping to knock out some of the preliminary work for other phases. One of those is the “OS” interface design.

PingOS? What?Alright, so this is a little awkward. PingOS is a term we’re using to describe the interface through which games will be accessed. It’s like the Dashboard on the XBox or the System Software on the PS3. As Chris pointed out, Wikipedia says that an Operating System does this:

  • Management and coordination of activities
  • Acts as a host for applications
  • Handles details of operating with hardware

That fits, right? Depending upon how literally you take some of those statements, that’s exactly what we’re building. Disagree? Sorry. It’s a development term, so it just might change.

This is an important part of what we’re doing, because it will provide an interaction framework for games to work from. Essentially, it involves defining the visual paradigms of this unique input concept. There will be more on this later.

Goals for Week 3:

  • Continued Platform Development
  • Continued PingOS Design
  • Begin installation material research

Written by tonydewan

September 10th, 2008 at 1:06 am

Posted in Proof of Concept

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