Joystick controllers

Posted by Elaine at 2/16/2001 5:00 AM EST

Student on team #368, Kika Mana, from Mckinley High School and NASA Ames/Hawaiian Electric /Weinberg Foundation.

Is it okay if we use a nintendo style controller? Here is a picture…

http://mckinleyrobotics.tripod.com/joy.JPG

Elaine

Posted by Jon - T190 at 2/16/2001 9:34 AM EST

Engineer on team #190, Gompei, from Mass Academy of Math and Science and Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

In Reply to: Joystick controllers
Posted by Elaine on 2/16/2001 5:00 AM EST:

I think that if you can get a gamepad to interface, you’ll be fine. it just needs to use the standard gameport plug and you guys would need to get it to work but i think that it falls inline with the rules.

Posted by Joe Ross at 2/16/2001 11:21 AM EST

Engineer on team #330, Beach Bot, from Hope Chapel Academy and NASA/JPL , J&F Machine, and Raytheon.

In Reply to: Joystick controllers
Posted by Elaine on 2/16/2001 5:00 AM EST:

: Is it okay if we use a nintendo style controller?

Looking at the picture, it has the right type of connector (15 pin) but that doesn’t mean that the pinout is right. I would take a multimeter and check each pin on the connecter to see if it matches the pinout defined in the control system manual.

There are three possibilites. The pinout could match exactly and you would have no problems. The pinout might be almost the same (some switches do not connect to the right pins, etc). If this is the case you can cut off the connector and re-wire the gamepad the way you want.

It is also possible that it is a “windows-only” game pad and needs special software to be able to run even if it uses the standard 15 pin connector. In this case it would not work right with the OI.

If the controller does check out you are almost there. If you plan on using it on ports 1 or 3 then you should remove the pins that connect to the LED drivers on the OI.

Good luck.

PS I got an e-mail from another team that bought a cheap joystick that did not work. While it is more likely that a cheap joystick will work than a fancy expensive one, it isn’t guaranteed. Buyer Beware.

Posted by Al Skierkiewicz at 2/16/2001 1:21 PM EST

Engineer on team #111, Wildstang, from Wheeling High & Rolling Meadows High and Motorola.

In Reply to: is it legal? yes, will it work? maybe
Posted by Joe Ross on 2/16/2001 11:21 AM EST:

We thought about the same thing when one of our students brought a controller in for us to look at. Unfortunately, the Nintendo style controllers have other electronics inside to decode all the button presses and status changes. There are no real switches, but a series of resistive keyboard pads of the type used in tv remotes. The pads are then scanned by the electronics to see which button is being pressed. Those might be brought out to pins and might be decoded by an analog input but may not be low resistance enough to reliably decode on a digital input.

Posted by Elaine at 02/23/2001 4:51 AM EST

Student on team #368, Kika Mana, from Mckinley High School and NASA Ames/Hawaiian Electric /Weinberg Foundation.

In Reply to: is it legal? yes, will it work? maybe
Posted by Joe Ross on 2/16/2001 11:21 AM EST:

We tried the controller, and with a little programming, it worked.

Elaine

Posted by Gregory Ross at 02/23/2001 2:51 PM EST

Engineer on team #330, Beach Bots, from Hope Chapel Academy and NASA/JPL.

In Reply to: Re: is it legal? yes, will it work? maybe
Posted by Elaine on 02/23/2001 4:51 AM EST:

Posted by EddieMcD at 2/17/2001 12:54 AM EST

Student on team #121, Islanders, from Middletown High School and NUWC.

In Reply to: Joystick controllers
Posted by Elaine on 2/16/2001 5:00 AM EST:

We use one of those video game stearing wheels for our driving.