By now, hopefully, most of you will have seen Steve Hoeffer’s Tacit haptic wrist rangefinder project in MAKE Vol 29. MAKE regular David Prutchi recently saw it, and just sent me a link to this functionally similar device built by his daughter Hannah back in October.
While Steve’s rangefinder goes “all out” with an embedded microcontroller, “stereo” ultrasonic distance sensors, and matching paired haptic servos, Hannah’s design keeps it super simple: An off-the shelf IR distance sensor, an easy analog circuit, and a pager motor. Unlike ultrasonics, IR sensors can be confused by sunlight or other strong IR sources in the environment, but if you just want to experiment with “bat glove” technology, or if you want to make a large number of sensors, Hannah’s SharkVision design may be for you. The Prutchis are talking about building an entire suit covered with them! [Thanks, David!]