The Duo is a 3D motion sensing controller, much like the Leap Motion Controller and the Kinect – but with a DIY twist. Whereas the Leap Motion Controller comes in a small and elegant package, the Duo is meant to be tinkered with.
A $20 contribution on their Kickstarter page is enough to nab detailed instructions, a comprehensive list of the off-the-shelf components, and CAD files – enough for hardcore DIYers to jump right in and assemble their very own motion controller. For the less courageous, a $140 contribution will get you a fully assembled Duo, ready for plug and play out of the box.
The Duo uses two PlayStation Eye cameras (a webcam for Sony’s PS3 gaming console that is readily available in stores) to detect motion. The demo videos on Duo’s website show that the webcams, coupled with Duo’s motion tracking software, work just a well as the Leap Motion Controller. The minimum operating range seems to be further away than the Leap, although that’s purely based on observation and I couldn’t find any concrete specs on their website. The video also shows the Duo breezing through Windows 8’s gesture based interface, just as you would with a Kinect. And of course, the Duo passed the prerequisite Fruit Ninja test with flying colors.
Given that the Leap Motion Controller will soon be hitting retail stores for $79.99, it’s true that you’re paying a premium for a device that has pretty much the same functionality. Motion sensing technology is red-hot and there are plenty of other projects we’ve chronicled that are also worthy of your attention. If anything, the one thing that Duo has going for it is that you can take it apart and mod it to your heart’s content. If you’re willing to pay a premium for that ability alone, you can check out Duo’s Kickstarter page here.