Trigger Video/Audio via Max/MSP

Hi Guys,

Trying to set up a simple project which involves wireless triggering of AV material using Arduino Uno and XBee shields.

Ideally am looking to use Max/MSP (or any relevant suggestions) as the basic software engine that receives serial data from the Arduinos position and uses this data (converted to MIDI?) to set off a series of audio and video material.

So far what I have is a Mac running OSX 10.5 and the following hardware

  1. Arduino Uno X2
  2. Arduino XBee Shield X2
  3. XBee 1mW chip antenna X3
  4. XBee Explorer USB X1

The other option is to use pressure pads to trigger MIDI but would really like the triggers to be wireless from a remote Uno to a base Uno attached to a Mac running Max/MSP/Pure Data/Quartz Composer and QLab.

If I can get data from a remote Arduino to another attached on the Mac (and be able to convert this to MIDI) then half the work is done.

Am not very good at electronics and am finding this daunting so your help will be highly appreciated and will acknowledge relevant contributions when project gets off the ground. Both here and elsewhere.

(Any code relevant to this and compatible with OSX will be highly appreciated)

Cheers

Start by sketching what each Arduino is going to be doing. From your description, I only see the need for 2 XBees and one Arduino, along with the XBee explorer.

What kind of data is the Arduino going to be sending? Where will it get the data to send?

What series XBees are they?

The Xbees are Series 1 which ive just realized from one of your previous post are for point to point setup and not mesh as we had intended.

Ideally we were intending to have a three point reference system consisting of two arduinos each loaded with an XBee and the third XBee loaded on the shield, we were hoping that would send data for front to back and sideways positions of the actor.

With help from a friend we managed to get two XBees to communicate by sending small data packets but there was some sort of interference when the line of sight was blocked (maybe time delay.)

So we need a very simple system which involves positional tracking of an actor within a set range.

The positional data would ideally be transmitted wirelessly from the actor to a base computer which would use this data to fire off cues pre set to go off when the actor is on a specific spot.

(there was a suggestion to use some sort of receivers that would help measure the wi fi signal strength, the actor wears the transmitter component which would affect the signal strength of the receivers when they move about or something like that )

Problem 2 is finding an alternative to X-CTU to configure the XBees, we really prefer to work with OSX.

Being absolute newbies with this technology we are completely open to workable suggestions.

Cheers

One of the XBees can be setup to broadcast to the other two XBees. Those two would communicate with the broadcaster. Messages sent would need to include some sort of indicator to tell if the data came from the front or back.

As long as the front and back XBees don’t also need to be able to talk to each other, this will work.

but there was some sort of interference when the line of sight was blocked (maybe time delay.)

XBees don’t need line-of-sight visibility. Of course, they are not terribly high power, so the signal won’t go through a lot of stuff before it is attenuated too low to receive.

So we need a very simple system which involves positional tracking of an actor within a set range.

Unfortunately, there is no such thing. This need comes up quite often, and there is no easy answer.

Problem 2 is finding an alternative to X-CTU to configure the XBees, we really prefer to work with OSX.

The XBees only need to be configured once. After that they just send what the Arduino tells them to send, and tell the Arduino what they received over-the-air. Doing the configuration once on a Windoze box is your only real solution.

Although why Digi doesn’t make the software multi-platform is beyond me. They are ignoring a large number of potential users.