Squishable Sidewalk Spiders – Kinect Multitouch Interactive Projection

This year’s Halloween project

A museum in town set up an interactive projection exhibit this summer, and it gave me this idea for a fun little game for our trick or treaters this year.

I came across ubi-displays, an open source multi-touch interactive projection project that a few guys from across the pond had very graciously shared. Their tool loads standard javascript enabled html documents and interacts with them through web standard mouse and touch display interface libraries. Very cool.

To create my spiders, I scoured the web for some code to make simple, javascript, mouse interactive critters. I didn’t find anything that would do what I wanted, so I grabbed an old open source fly-on-your-screen-gag widget as a template and built one, which I called¬†jFormics.

I made a few rounds of increasingly goofy looking spiders, as they kept turning out creepier than I had intended. My final html file and the spider templates I ended up with can be downloaded here.

I put a projector on the roof above the front path and hid the kinect sensor in the bushes nearby. It was a huge hit with lots of laughing and stomping. Several kids were so busy stomping away that they forgot to come ask for candy. I’ll definitely set this back up next year, and I’ll be keeping it in mind as it could be a ton of fun for different kinds of interactive games on special occasions for my little guy and his friends.

Again, my thanks to John Hardy and the guys for their software! Let me know if you have any questions!

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