One Switch access to PCs and Consoles...

Finally cracked this access barrier with huge thanks to others (JoyToKey, vJoy, Clive Galway, William Pilgrim).... More to follow...

William Merritt Centre: Accessible Gaming for All event

Accessible Gaming for All event at the William Merritt Centre, Leeds. Thursday 30th of October 12pm - 3:30pm.  Image of accessibility switches, a C-SID/Dreamcast Arcade Stick, Xbox 360 with Kinect and PS3.

Accessible Gaming for All event at the William Merritt Centre in Leeds on Thursday the 30th of October between 12pm and 3:30pm. Contact Paula Spencer or Colin McDonnell for more info. Should be a lot of fun I've no doubt.


Game Accessibility Statistics

1. "Throughout the world, an estimated 650 million people, or 10% of the population, have a disability. As one of the 10%, I want to see the companies that make these video games, make them accessible, so people like me can enjoy them too." (2009 Stevie Wonder).

2. There is said to be over 11.6 million disabled people living in the UK and 6.9 million of working age. The figure is rising (2011/12 UK Government Statistics)

3. The so-called UK disability pound, or purple pound, is worth £80bn and one in five business customers are likely to be disabled (2013 Department for Work and Pensions)

4. In 2011 in the UK, 8.43 million adults had never been on-line. Over half of those (4.25 million) were considered to be disabled people (36% of all disabled adults therefore had not been on-line). One reason given: "Often it's because it is not accessible to them" (2011 Office of National Statistics)

5. "The right to play" is enshrined in Article 31 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, ratified by the UK government in 1991. The government has a duty under this convention to protect and promote play opportunities for all children and young people.

6. "Among US computer users who range from 18 to 64 years old, 57% (74.2 million) are likely to benefit from the use of accessible technology due to disabilities and impairments that may impact computer use" (Making Video Games Accessible: Business Justifications and Design Considerations - Microsoft 2013)

7. AbleGamers estimate 60 million disabled people playing video games in the USA (2012 Joan Leotta).

8. Game Accessibility Guidance can now be easily found on-line (2012 OneSwitch list)

9. There are many people pressing for better game accessibility from all walks of life around the globe (2009, 2014 OneSwitch Blog).

10. "Why Game Accessibility Matters?" (2014 Polygon).


Switch Dice Roller

One of the first items I sold at OneSwitch was an adapted Electronic Dice for switch access. Sadly you can't get those little ElectroDice any more, but the system above looks like a really good alternative.

They can get people of a wide range of abilities playing games together, such as Snakes and Ladders to Adventure Game Books. They can also be used to help people make their own random choices in art and music creation.

The style of electronic dice above comes with either a removable or sliding cover, and you can change how many dice go into it. You can get these on eBay (search for "Automatic Dice Cup") for £8.21 at the moment and elsewhere too.

If you'd like to know more, I recommend contacting who created the video above. Alternatively, I'm happy to look at adapting one for you. If interested feel free to get in touch.

Electric Switch Dice Roller

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Adapting Ultra Light Switches

MERU custom ultra-light digital joystick, on velcro surface beanbag with Marblesoft Ultra-Light switch adapted for small target area.

Ultra-Light switch adapted with small surface Playstation Cross button.

Atari Space Invaders played with Ultra-Light joystick and Ultra-Light adapted push-button / switch.

This suggestion (inspired by the brilliant MERU for someone I'm supporting at the equally brilliant SpecialEffect) creates an affordable adaptation to the likes of a MarbleSoft UltraLight HD switch. The aim is to make them low-profile, with a more precise target area.

The option above requires a piece of foam or polystyrene, into which you can cut a supporting hole for your switch (ensuring it can still freely activate). To create the small round target area, salvage the shape or ABXY buttons from an old Playstation or Xbox joypad, and then glue them into place. I've probably got quite a few knocking around so if you need any, just ask. That's it!

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MoJo zSensor: Work in Progress Video

Very promising early glimpse at Graham Law's MoJo zSensor work at Celtic Magic. One or more of these can be hooked up to a PC (through an Arduino Leandro) seen as various joystick functions. Alternatively it can be used to drive switch accessible devices via on/off relays.

Specs wise from Graham: "less than 0.1 milligrams force is required at maximum sensitivity. Most users would be using higher pressure and the MoJo self-tunes to accommodate higher force."

Huge benefits for those unable to comfortably use conventional switches. This stuff will tie up with JoyToKey too for huge additional powers such as latching and profile switching (example one and example two). Switches offer a lot of benefits over the likes of eye-tracking, face and voice control as there is often no noticable lag between you activating the control and something happening.

Very interested to see how a joystick will be built out of this set-up. Following with great curiosity.


Deep Under the Sky

Deep Under the Sky: Green botanical world. Yellow star and other worldly creatures.

Deep Under the Sky is a beautiful one-switch exploding seed propagation game. Initially, you require three taps: One to launch your seed pod out into a botantical world, Two to trigger a burst of momentum to change your direction. Three to explode into a short-range of scattered seeds.

The game requires very accurate taps to play well, and deeper into the game you'll need to also hold the switch down at key times. The Android version also throws up some Google Play alerts which kills the one-switch mechanic.

None the less, I love the design, and for one-switch players who can time their presses very accurately and quickly, I highly recommend this. If you're short on cash, the developers, Rich Edwards and Colin Northway, are also offering an Art to Play "cashless society" means for obtaining the game. 

Deep Under the Sky: Brown botanical world. Seed pod flying towards a blue mushroom like plant.

Deep Under the Sky: Green botanical world. Blue eyes look down upon the seed pod.

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Push the Button

A Light in Chorus

Recently in one of my four jobs, we used a DJ projection stand with a projector where you could place a couple of bean bags and have interesting and beautiful images wrap around you with high quality sound and a vibration speaker placed under the beanbags.... Just imagining what that might be for people able to explore the world of A Light in Chorus using a single switch, or joystick/switches, or speech, or eye-gaze, or face movements or any combination of that.

A Light in Chorus. Beutiful blue on black particle cum x-ray image of a ghostly stag running through a forest.

A Light in Chorus. Beautiful screen shot of the out skirts of a forest with pylons and hanging filament light bulbs suspended in rows from up high.


MoJo (Modular Joystick) and zSensors: Ultra-Light Controls

MoJo Modular Joystick using zSensors. From Celtic Magic for highly accessible computer and game console controls.

Graham Law of Celtic Magic recently sent me details of a very exciting project he's working on. Ultra-light analogue/digital controls, that can be used as switches, sensors and if combined as a joystick (the MoJo).

What's really exciting about Graham's set-up is making extremely light pressure adjustable controls, that should be reliable and easily repeatable once set-up. Read more here. Lots of possibilities for this with JoyToKey and profile switching to give access to a huge range of controls.

As a side note, I've since discovered that Origin Instrument's Breeze sip/puff interface can be used to act as up to four joystick on/off buttons as standard (although more like two, as it's hard to get your pressure right I found), as well as a diagonal axis. Using JoyToKey you can convert that to act as the X-axis (left-right) or Y-axis (up-down) if you wish. With a Cronus Max/Titan One you can link this to PS3/PS4/XB360/XBone.



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