Today we were having a discussion about aircraft control via different flight modes. Personally would prefer to change the way input happened when controlling the UAV directly, so that the input is more intuitive in nature. I have seen allot of really well designed controllers recently however little that changes much of the traditional levers and dials, and nothing a single puck. Maybe there is something to that Star Trek control. Above is just a quick conceptual collage. The base was squished as you can see the original here, and was quickly modified to stimulate thought on how a typical RC twin 2 axis stick design could be evolved so that a more intuitive control can be developed. The center puck above is a true integrated 6 axis control, all that can have coordinated intuitive movements for the UAV. 


Here is some of the verbiage from the 3dconnexion.com:

"Superior 3D Navigation

SpacePilot Pro’s patented 6-Degrees-of-Freedom (6DoF) sensor is specifically designed to manipulate digital content or camera positions.

Simply push, pull, twist or tilt the 3Dconnexion controller cap to intuitively pan, zoom and rotate, while your other hand simultaneously uses..."

Ordered one today to take it apart, and see how I can hack together a solution, possibly integrating a board computer and a small wifi-bridge/ap so that it can be used as a integrated base station. 

It seemed obvious since the object we are controlling actually operate in a 3D environment that the controller especially when operating FPV or "First-Person-View" should be able to translate that intended movement as turn left right, up down, and with a few that could be atypical due to the way and coordinated function of the device and its ability to tilt or go sideways, possibly to engage linear thruster type dives. 

The Myo and the 6-Axis mouse will be a fun combination, it will be interesting to integrate tactile and and virtual gesture based movements. 

Dev Team



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  • https://youtu.be/hBfUw1LHtvE
  • has anyone tried this one for $25 , includes a free drone:



  • Hi Scott,

    i am not sure i understand very well what you are talking about when you mention to be more " open" ? If you mean to open the software code, it is unfortunately for the moment not possible for a simple reason : we use the genuine keyboard of the 3d connexion mouse( buttons) and this hardware is a closed source. Also, just to explain, many companies in France are willing to get their hands on the controller, and some try to get some government funds to so called " develop" new controllers based on our work. I made the luxury gimbal,and gave informations, our motors with small PCB connector have become generalized in china for the gimbals, then our designs have been taken and we lost our investor because of this, and believe me we have been running ( and still are) through pretty rough times, so now i protect a little what i do. Execution of the idea has been done already, meaning the system is 100% operational and now we would like to industrialize it. This takes time enduring that time we must rein a little careful ( past lessons learned). But one thing i can say is, that the platform will be " opened" in some ways i know that we will need to offer something " open minded" at a " friendly price" for the open source community if we want it to be successful.Open source is something i highly respect but behind the open source there is, unfortunately, a reality of product production and banks are everything but open source ( lol ). In a few words, i do not want to share some work we did since over 2 years now to see it thrown on a crowdfunding platform by some people claiming they had the idea of the century because this is what we see everyday on the crowdfunding sites for many " ideas" unfortunately. I hope i expressed myself in the right way, i do not mean to hurt anybody, i'm just a small company, i know how vibrant the scene can be by nice actors helping things to move forward, but i know also that this scene is so vibrant that we see some guys building mikrokopter hexacopters and selling them 25 000 euro ( yeah !) and they would do anything including rip off other people's ideas and try to get money over it. So things are not that easy, sure thing is, we try to make it right and faire but not only for others, for ourselves a little also for once... :)

  • Fabien, I like the fact that people are rethinking controllers but I do wish you would be a little more open.  The fact that the UAV scene is so vibrant has a lot to do with open source software and hardware and the reality is ideas are a dime a dozen, it's the execution that matters. 

  • Nils, looking forward to your contribution. In the next few months we should have the developer units availible of our base layer smart shirt. This is position and vibration sensing without the need for optics or camera may make it a bit more mobile. If you want to get on the developer list for these pm us your info, info@digi-dna.net

  • Very interesting thread. I have plans to try out the Sixense STEM (http://sixense.com) or Hydra for controlling a drone and interaction with my oculus rift project, http://diydrones.com/m/blogpost?id=705844%3ABlogPost%3A1799765.
  • And this control mechanism is the way Curtis is world champion over and over. (well one of the influencing factors)

    What you are doing here guys is amazing, i imagine a meld of this and 'leaf' type technology and we will all be commanding our drones from our wizards sleeves :=)

  • Fabien: I do have a Multiplex that has twist on the right stick, - this 3d puck affords much more movement, as I am sure you can attest

    Jake: form to this point is following function, ascetics will be considered later, up to this point I think the beauty is in the collaborative and inspiring nature of this thread, the solutions presented and the progress that is now realized, for me at least the education was very helpful to my efforts and can only assume it is to other as well.  

    Received a very encouraging email from Paul # 3dconnexion.com, looking forward to the continued development.

    What is the controller could be mounted to a forearm? Somewhere I have some crutches I will scab together for a POC, this mad solve a few things for me...

    POC setup

    Thinking a board computer as a host, then USB to a space mouse. BBB Board comp running digi-mint (really just a personal port of the Linux mint line) with Bluetooth on-board. I have several Edimax usb modules. Once I get it working I will post the solution. Use the MP and set the ip pass through for the joystick inputs. 

    Integrate the myo armband so that with VR goggles a virtual reality arm is projected in the field of vision, using a few leds for optical positioning  of a texture mapped open gl model. Not quite sure how to track all the movement without a few secondary vision systems, I will have to cross that bridge later.

    The interface in this movie was also intriguing, and quite possible if the 360 virtual screen is replaced with VR goggles and positional tracking it should be quite possible. I do think I will add a few additional accelerators for vibromyographic input positions. I do not think this movie was very popular, kinda glad I caught it even though Anthony Micheal Hall, the nerdy kid as I remember of movies growing up snaked the girl I thought I chance with in College. Then again at least I can say I dated her before and not after.



  • Hi, this is simply Curtis Youngblood who uses a JR transmitter ( standard) modified by himself, this is the way he flies :). 

  • This has to be the ugliest controller I've ever seen!

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