Aiken Labs shows off modular motion-sensing game kit, we give it a swing (video)
In this article: 9DOF, Aiken Labs, AikenLabs, ces, ces 2011, ces2011, Chris Aiken, ChrisAiken, gaming, hands-on, head tracking, HeadTracking, IMU, inertial measurement units, InertialMeasurementUnits, motion controller, Motion sensing, motion tracking, MotionController, MotionSensing, MotionTracking, video
If you're looking to get your motion-controlled gaming fix, there are plenty of ways to go -- cameras, electromagnets and accelerometers, for starts -- but most figure you'll buy a single peripheral, a few plastic accessories, and call it a day. That's not the Aiken way. North Carolina startup Aiken Labs wants to sell you a set of tiny boxes that you can stick on any body part or toy you own, each with a full inertial measurement package (three-axis accelerometer, magnetometer and gyroscope) inside. The boxes connect to a base station over 802.15.4 wireless that doubles as a USB recharging unit for the lot, and you can connect up to eight modules to track 24 degrees of freedom at a time. It's not an elegant solution, to tell you the truth, particularly given the hacked-together nature of the prototype devices we saw on the CES 2011 floor, but we love the idea of simply affixing a box to a helmet to get instant head-tracking support in our favorite PC titles. Inventor Chris Aiken tells us a starter set will ship for about $300 with two sensors and the base station in the second quarter of this year -- additional sensors should run $100 each -- and you can see what it looks like in a video right after the break.