Wii hack makes light work of mowing the grass

University researchers mod a Wii-mote so it can be used to control an industrial lawn mower.

Casmobot uses a standard Wii remote control that communicates via Bluetooth to a robot built into the mower.

Casmobot uses a standard Wii remote control that communicates via Bluetooth to a robot built into the mower.

When Mary Poppins talked about turning chores into games it's a good bet she didn't expect Casmobot.

Researchers at the University of Southern Denmark have modified a Wii remote control so that it can control an industrial lawn mower.

"The Casmobot project is about making grass cutting more efficient," said Kjeld Jensen, a robotics researcher at the University of Southern Denmark who developed the system.

It uses a standard Wii remote control that communicates via Bluetooth to a computer and robotics module built into the mower. Actions of the mower are matched to tilt actions of the remote. For example, if you tilt the remote down the mower moves forwards, tilt is up and it moves backwards and so on.

The Wii-mote can be used to control the mower manually or in computer-assisted mode, where the mower is guided around the edge of the area to be cut and then left to finish the job automatically.

The Wii and its motion sensitive remote controller, dubbed the "Wii-mote," have won the hearts of millions of consumers since they first went on sale in 2007 -- and also stimulated the minds of many developers. They've hacked the remote so it can be used to control other things and there are several Web sites where details of such projects are posted.

On Hackawii.com hacks include a Web cam remote control, Wii-controlled coil gun, a self-balancing "SegWii" and a Wii-mote used as a spirit level.

While on the Wii Hacks blog visitors can see Google Earth controlled with the remote and a head-tracking virtual reality system using the Wii-mote.

There's no word from the university on whether the Wii-controlled mower might be turned into a commercial product, but it's apparently had a good reception so far.

"We have been introducing this to the professional workers at the municipalities and the minute they got this Wii-mote in their hands and started cutting grass they were smiling and laughing all the time so I guess I'm not the only one that thinks this is a very good idea," said Jensen.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Nintendowiinintendo wii

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?