Keyglove, an Arduino-based controller

The Keyglove is a portable Arduino-powered glove that uses touch combinations to generate keyboard and mouse control codes using only one hand. Once learned, the glove can easily be used without looking, making it perfect for embedded/wearable environments. The glove is thin and light, built to allow other activities (such as writing or driving) without being in the way.

Because the glove design allows for multi-sensor combinations, the keyglove provides exponentially more possibilities than many other glove-based input devices (prototypes or commercial products). 34 strategically placed contact sensors and smart controller software make it possible to implement the entire English alphabet using simple one-to-one sensor contacts. When you include multi-sensor contacts, there are many hundreds of ergonomically usable combinations.

As of October 2010, the glove is currently in the prototype stage with no fully working unit, but I’ve done a lot of development and testing on it. At the moment, I’m only waiting on a little more hardware to arrive in the mail before I should be able to complete a working model. The source code is logically sound and works as much as possible without the remaining hardware to test it.

[Via the Arduino Blog]

10 thoughts on “Keyglove, an Arduino-based controller

  1. So do you envision typing by flexing (rather specific muscles of) the one hand, or pressing points on your gloved hand with your other hand? And no “chording”, right?

    1. You have to touch two (or more) sensors together. The idea is to make everything done by one hand only, so you aren’t pressing points with your other hand. Everything is done with the gloved hand. The sensors are merely conductive fabric, and not buttons or pressure-sensitive at all. Finger position or hand orientation doesn’t have any effect (for keys anyway, the mouse is a different story). All that matters is which sensors are being touched together.

      If by “chording” you mean using multiple sensors at the same time (and not just one-to-one), then the glove DOES make use of chording. I have tried to allow software customizations for virtually every ergonomically possible combination. This even includes ones that aren’t that easy to do, and obviously these will be rejected in favor of easier ones unless you actually need all the combinations for a very complicated character set.

      Hopefully this answers your question.

      BTW: thanks, Makezine! I appreciate being mentioned in your blog!

      Jeff @ Keyglove

  2. Just to clarify, the sensor diagram above doesn’t represent the actual letters that would be typed by using those sensors. They are merely there for programmatic and visual reference. Since keys are “pressed” by touching multiple sensors together, I needed some way to define which sensor is which.

    For example, the top thumb pad is “Y” and the index fingertip pad is “A”. The sensor combination “AY” indicates touching those two sensors together. “ABY” would be the thumb pad and both index/middle tip pads. You can (or will be able to) use software to customize exactly what you want each combination to be for your preference. I am referring to a full set of these configurations as a “touchset.” I don’t have one yet, but I will be creating one shortly.

    Jeff @ Keyglove

    1. I said “ABY” would be the thumb pad touching both the index and middle tip pads, when in fact that should read “ADY”.

      I changed the sensor labeling a while back and got it mixed up; the middle tip used to be “B”, and now it’s “D”.


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My interests include writing, electronics, RPGs, scifi, hackers & hackerspaces, 3D printing, building sets & toys. @johnbaichtal

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