Thursday, July 31, 2008

FiiWa Fun

I met Tracy and Marcus of FiiWa while visiting SUNY Brockport's Camp Abilities. They were demo'ing their FiiWa devices including the ball and vest seen in the picture. More pictures and details of how the devices work and about their company. Truly innovative and problem solvers.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Augmented reality game environment (270-degree)

Originally conceived as a rehabilitation device for stroke patients, this "virtual reality treadmill could have lots of other applications.
[Via Crave]

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

5 Axis Riding Bull

Ride your way to a stronger core with this 5-axis "mechanical exerciser" A.K.A. riding bull in 15 minute programs.
The saddle tilts back and forth, left to right, up and down, and twists in preprogrammed sequences, building core muscle groups that are neglected by traditional training regimens.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Simsailing Away

Move over Christopher Cross, the sailing you sang about was never like this. Simsail is two full-sized land yachts that can be programmed to compete on the streets of London or even Sydney. The parent company, Simsation specializes in customizing the experience for the client by branding the installation with corporate logos, slogans, per the special event.
[Via Gizmodo]

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Hyper Jump to Health

After speaking with Daniel Botwinick, Director of Marketing at Wild Planet Entertainment and makers of Hyper Dash, Hyper Jump, and Animal Scramble, I'm very excited to see how all the products compare and see how children respond to the games. Thanks Dan.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Samba (Super Accelerated Motion and Body Activity)

Chanda Dasgupta and his fellow grad students in MS Human-Computer Interaction, Learning by Design Lab
at the Georgia Institute of Technology put this idea overview of integrating a heart rate monitor, accelerometer into a game. They call it SAMBA (Super Accelerated Motion and Body Activity) because it encourages and rewards children for being active throughout the day. More to come...
Although there was no proof of concept or game developed, the idea of Samba and some of their other solutions for combating childhood obesity is commendable. 

DS My Weight Loss Coach

Here is a recent review of the DS game My Weight Loss Coach. Included with the game is pedometer that plugs into the DS and if you've taken enough steps it'll allow you to play more features. And here is the rest of it.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Jinsei Game Puchi (AKA - Game of Life) Pedometer

Living, getting a job, buying a house and having kids are all part of life. Like the board game, Game of Life, the quest is However, to be able to do the simple and difficult things in life you must take 300 steps. Ingenious yet simple, the integration of a game built into accumulating more steps is a coup especially given that the Japanese government is currently measuring waist circumferences and battling 'metabo".
[Via Gizmodo and Trends in Japan]

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Funky Moves and Funky cones

Scottish engineer Ralph Klinnert designed Funky Moves which consists of wireless cones and programming unit. I'm not sure if they're using RFID (like Hyper Dash), or other RF controllers.  I will update once I find out.  I really like the concept and the possibilities to use them for interdisciplinary learning, however I cringed and was quite saddened to see elementary students in Scottish PE doing simple relay races while dribbling a basketball.  What about all the wait time and performing in front of others...:-(

Groove Motion DDR

I hadn't seen these pictures before and I know Konami is not the only one to have a group DDR game. Imagine a health club game that combines DDR, EyeToy Kinetic, and Yourself! Fitness and have everyone wear accelerometers to keep track of calories burned and then you would have Groove Motion DDR. Apparently there are six programs that include yoga and martial arts (Kung Fu a la EyeToy). As we speak this may be in many of the 100's of Konami's fitness clubs in Japan.
[Via Kotaku &

Friday, July 18, 2008

Wii Balance Board Hack (WoW & Google Earth)

Created by Simon Bergweiler and Matthieu Deru at the DFKI (German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence) in Saarbr├╝cken - Germany, this widely viewed video shows how they hacked the Wii Balance Board to navigate World of Warcraft and Google Earth.And here is the rest of it.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Hyper Dash to better health

What many of todays kids are lacking is the opportunities to play spontaneously. Hyper Dash may fill the void for those who don't know how to play or for those looking for a different challenge. More to come

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

jOG to game by New Concept Gaming

Imagine your game character only moving when you do....with the jOG from New Concept Gaming (NCG), this is now possible Using the jOG device that is clipped to your belt (wire attached to belt unit and plugs into PS2), if your device is not detecting movement your game character will not move in any direction. The solution...jog in place. I hope they are working on a wireless version and one that works with the many wireless controllers including dual-shock, six-axis, etc. It looks likes they also have a working jOG prototype for the Wii. Orders are being placed in the UK for £14.99, no news about North American release dates or prices.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Wii Sqweeze

Demo'd by Greg Merril, CEO of InterAction Laboratories, Inc. at the GFH 2008, the Wii Sqweeze brings exergaming to the upperbody in the form of near-isometric movements The rubber handles allow for shoulder abduction and adduction (Max Range of Motion-ROM ~2-3 inches). On the device I tried, they hacked the Wii and were running it via USB on a PC. However, I'm told that it will be a fully operational Wii controller by its 2009 launch. To start playing the demo-games IA Labs designed, each player self-calibrates the device by squeezing 50% of your maximum. Game 1 (Bowhunt - Bow action shooter) and Game 2 (Bopple = Ball crushing game).

[Photo thanks to Ernie and screenshot IA Labs & Garth DeAngelis]

"Wii"ll you buy Motion Plus?

Nintendo announced at E3 2008 the Wii MotionPlus, a plug-in accessory for the Wii-mote. Blogger and people attending the E3 still don't know if it the MotionPlus blocks the nunchuck port and how much more senstitive the add-on will make the Wii-mote. The press release says it has 1:1 sensitivity and will make games with fine movements easier to play....even light saber fights!
Nintendo's upcoming Wii MotionPlus accessory for the revolutionary Wii Remote controller again redefines game control, by more quickly and accurately reflecting motions in a 3-D space. The Wii MotionPlus accessory attaches to the end of the Wii Remote and, combined with the accelerometer and the sensor bar, allows for more comprehensive tracking of a player’s arm position and orientation, providing players with an unmatched level of precision and immersion. Every slight movement players make with their wrist or arm is rendered identically in real time on the screen, providing a true 1:1 response in their game play. The Wii MotionPlus accessory reconfirms Nintendo’s commitment to making games intuitive and accessible for everyone. Nintendo will reveal more details about the Wii MotionPlus accessory and other topics Tuesday morning at its E3 media briefing.

[Via Gizmodo]

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Bang a Gong! Ion Drum Rocker Kit for RB - Gamer to Drummer

For those about to rock, we salute you with a new drum kit from Ion. For all of us drummer-gods in waiting, playing the Rockband drum kit is good...but not quite good enough. With this new Drum Rocker kit from Ion for Rockband and RB2, you can unplug it from your console and plug it into a drum brain and use it to play and record for real. Bang a Gong for $300! The line starts here!

[Via ScoreHero and Ion and Engadget]

Thursday, July 10, 2008


Exergame Fitness just released their Exerbike in collaboration with Hoggan Health. According to their press release, the newly stylized bike with hidden cables and easy to mount/dismount design uses magnetic resistance technology is somewhat reminiscent of the older MOG bike marketed a few years ago. However, I don't see the 3 points of vibrations and hydraulics to mimic in-game movement/actions.

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