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Found 9 results

  1. I've been working on this project on and off since around June of 2015... I initially first appeared on Page 6 of the Simpit Repository where I showed off some really nice hardware I'd collected for the project. The goal is to create a controller using real instruments to provide readouts of orbital data, temperature, fuel, electricity, and other critical values. The controller will have joysticks and toggle switches and other controls to command the in game vessel. I'm using this project as an opportunity to force myself to learn C programming, and as a furthering of my electronics hobby. While this thread has a LONG way to go to catch up with my progress, I'll work on it over time. Part of why this has taken so long, is it's not only a learning process, but I've split my time with other projects. My custom mechanical keyboard was built to work with this Kerbal controller build, and will actually slot into the controller! The number pad magnetically detaches, so when my keyboard tray is extended, I have full use of the extended keyboard, but with the tray pushed in, I can set the number pad aside, and use only the core keyboard! This is the button that started it all. I was inspired by how AWESOME this button looked, and how big and red and "Aborty" it could potentially be! The Instrument panel enclosure is a re-purposed Harris Stereo 5 console that was saved from the local AM radio station. You can see several instruments here. On the right is my analog vertical velocity meter, and in the middle, my FDAI. The Flight Director-Attitude Indicator, more commonly known around these parts as a navball, is a real awesome find! I'm in the process of building a controller for it, but that is a daunting task... It requires nine 28 volt amplitude modulated sinusoidal outputs that are controlled by multiplying DACs, and a 115 volt sinusoidal reference source to provide both power and synchronization for all the 9 other signals. This is the keypad I made for my "DSKY", inspired by the DSKY (DiSplay KeYboard) of the Apollo Guidance Computer (AGC). It normally lights green, but can flash red if there is an alarm condition... Such as the "I'm about to pop like an overheated popcorn kernel" condition. My throttle lever (as well as the keys for my DSKY keypad) were salvaged from an old video effects controller board. I have a LOT of these relegendable, backlit push buttons, in two different sizes. My analog meters are inspired by the edgewise meters used in the Apollo Command Module, Lunar Module, and Space Shuttle. I'm taking the extra effort to print proper scales that use the Futura typeface that NASA used, and follow an overall design that visually resembles the Apollo instruments. Likewise, Tape Meters were also used as instruments on Apollo, and even more so in the first revision of the Space Shuttle, before the glass cockpit upgrades. Tape meters have a long tape on spools. The numbers scroll passed a stationary pointer, the opposite of what an analog meter does, where the pointer moves over a fixed scale. This allows very large scales to be depicted, limited only by tape length. The meter I have will be reprinted with numbers corresponding to the radar altimeter. This is the complete DSKY. I'm currently working on it, and getting it to the point where I can control all the LEDs right now. Current progress has all the large numeric LEDs controlled by MAX7219 controller chips, and the small 7 segment display and one of the three alphanumeric displays is currently functional. Flashy, isn't it! I've been making diode ROMs to decode characters for some of the LEDs. These cost me literally nothing but time to make, and they satisfy my interest in basic digital circuits. I also rather find I enjoy three dimensional free form circuitry! So yeah... I'm enjoying this part! In all honesty, I really should have started this post back then! I was just collecting parts back in those days, and always said I'd start a dedicated thread when I began assembling things... The Simpit Repository is now up to 23 pages at the moment I'm typing this... It just grew to incredible proportions, and a few times I felt a little bad for dominating the thread with build posts (that really belonged here), but at the same time, I knew my work was showing other people how to do things, and keeping the Repository frequently in the lime light. It just grew to a size that felt too big to abandon, and too big to move the content. I'm starting this post, because I think this build HAS started moving at an accelerated pace, and It should have a dedicated place. I'll build this post up gradually, to cover not only the new content, but to consolidate the content I posted in the Simpit Repository here as well, so the entire build process is properly detailed. I had debated whether I should move content (remove from the Simpit Repository, and replace it here), but I think that'd be unfair to those who replied or were inspired by that content. I'll eventually consolidate everything here, but I'll leave my old posts at the Repository alone. as for new posts, I'll still post at the repository, but I'll no longer post massive multi-image mega build posts... I'll keep my posts there a bit more basic, and put the details all in this post. I'll still offer my knowledge to answer questions people have at the repository. That won't change. It's just silly that I've taken THIS LONG...
  2. A little while ago I took the serial experience I'd picked up hacking the venerable KSPSerialIO mod, and started working on a new alternative. This mod, tentatively titled KerbalSimPit, takes the asynchronous serial handler I wrote for the cross-platform KSPSerialIO fork, links it against a widely-available alternative mono serial library, and adds a new light-weight data protocol heavily influenced by the work the Flat Earth Games folk have done for their game Objects in Space. It's still heavily worked on, and not ready for real-world usage. But it's getting close! What does it do? This plugin maintains serial connections to one or more hardware devices. Each device can register to receive information that it explicitly wants to receive (for sending to a display, setting off an alarm, triggering a PC shutdown when your vessel runs out of power, etc). A device can also send commands back to the game (stage your rockets with a big red button, build a custom HOTAS to pilot planes, control your EVAing Kerbals with your treadmill, etc). The plugin comes with a companion Arduino library, to make it easy to get started building interactive Kerbal hardware. What does it run on? This plugin works with both 32 bit and 64 bit KSP on Windows 10, MacOS and Linux. There are some caveats though, particularly when it comes to hardware device support on Windows - refer to the README for full details and known working hardware. What sort of information can I send and receive? None, yet. Remember the part about it not being ready? But eventually the plugin will be capable of sending most of the telemetry you'd expect from stock KSP and mods such as KER. It will allow full control of vessels and Kerbals, and some limited interface control. Where can I get it? There are no binaries available yet, because this really isn't ready for primetime use. Source is available from The README contains information on getting and building the serial library this plugin depends on. License: This project is licensed under the Simplified BSD License.
  3. I was wondering which SI prefixes KSP uses in game, and are there any that are skipped? I ask because I know it skips km on your altimeter... (I'm so wrong! i guess I must typically timewarp from LKO to any other body and never noticed Km before! LOL ). It just goes from counting hundreds of thousands of meters and then rolls over into, if I recall correctly, Megameters. After that, I know I've seen Gigameter measurements before in the map views. Does KSP skip any other units than km, or is it just that one unit that gets skipped? I think I recall seeing km used in map view for distance to target, and in standard view to show distance to other objects. I just don't know if km is used for any orbital data... Altitude, Apoapsis, Periapsis, etc. I'm currently in the process of building a digital orbital data readout to fit into a larger scale custom controller for the game. I'd like to keep the units displayed on the controller matching the units displayed on screen. It'd be disorienting to have my readout show 100 km, and the altimeter on screen say 100000 m. I know they are the same, but it's not consistent. I'm occupying myself with continuing my controller build, since my motherboard unfortunately died. It's hard to run KSP to check for units of measure when your computer ain't even functioning. Who knows... Maybe I can get some progress in before the motherboard is repaired/replaced. Adittionally, I also wonder how high do the SI prefixes go? I want my readouts to go as high as they need to go to cover whatever KSP can throw at it... m, km, Mm, Gm, Tm, Pm, Em, Zm, Ym... What's the largest SI prefix KSP actually supports? Are there any other prefixes that KSP tosses out due to the number of digits the altimeter displays? Does the map view use km for any orbital characteristics? I got some nice 14 segment alphanumeric displays that are smaller than my main numeric displays. They are at the end of each relevant numerical display, and will show the correct SI units. I can make the displays support all units (as well as "m.S" and "ΔV"), but it will require more work to add the extra characters. Don't ask me why, but I'm doing a diode matrix ROM for them. It'll be kinda retro, but extra work to have extra characters supported. So... yeah... Just curious if I should plan on supporting them? Thanks in advance. *UPDATE* So, apparently, I am just blind. I never noticed the use of Km as an altimeter measurement, likely cause it occurs in a range that I rarely orbit at (or stay at for long). I can salvage this post though, as now I need to catalog the transition points. Where does KSP switch from m to Km, Km to Mm, Mm to Gm and so on. When I get my motherboard back from being serviced, I'll fire up KSP and check it out, recording the transition points here (unless someone beats me to it).
  4. i am resuming an old project i had but did not document. it was to make a custom ksp cockpit In Real Life and use it to play the game. there was also a mission control. it wasn't that good. my new version will feature a 2 person cockpit, electronic flight instrument system, switches, and buttons etc. there will be an external mission control as well. i will document all my code and mods that i use so that if any one would like to try and build it them self they can. 1. design phase main switch board images SAS mode light board: Control section Engine control section i'm going to add a fuel pump section that will not let my engines start till the fuel pumps are switched on
  5. Here we go again. I built a hardware controller for KSP a year ago using KSPserialIO by zitronen, and was pretty proud of it. However, it had several construction flaws, based on my complete lack of practical knowledge of electronics, and during autumn I started shopping for parts for a replacement. I learned about shift registers and display drivers, and started to build a 7seg readout, but eventually abandoned the idea. I used shift registers to replace the internals of my first controller, but around Christmas it started to give out. I think I burned some pins through excessive drain, and connection became a matter of luck around the advent of 1.0. But then end of semester came pressing, and the project went on back burner until May. Now, however, all exams are past, and I have used my spare time to plan, test concepts, and do the initial woodwork for a second generation flight control panel. Following features are planned. Included features from the go: Separate unit housing dual joystick and two single direction joysticks, throttle and stage button. Included is a rotary knob to adjust strength of RCS as well as attitude. Stage comes with a lock and red/green status LEDs 144 x 80 7" monitor. Holds a max of 10 lines of text, possibility of simple graphics. This is going to replace the HUD1 unit from KER, a long standing ambition. Keypad to specify exactly what will be displayed on the monitor. Toggle control for action groups, SAS, RCR, light, gear, brakes. All toggles have a red/green single LED to indicate status at a glance. Lockable big abort button. Pushbuttons for map, camera, cycle active ship, time warp. These are done by wiring up a USB keyboard controller, as they cannot be controlled by KSPserialIO. Select rocket or atmospheric craft control scheme: This will switch roll and yaw controls, depending on whether I need to fly an airplane (roll on prim joystick), or a rocket (yaw on prim joystick). I might include a separate mode for rovers as well, but they handle pretty well in the rocket config already. Analog gauges for Charge/Current, Fuel, Monoprop and Radar Altitude (3/30 km, log scale) Warning LEDs for speed (slow/fast on descent and ascent), ressources, temp, connectivity. These will be done in red/green single LEDs. Additionally, I have following ideas: Recalibrate joystick on the fly by keypad. (Hard as it does not scale linearly, but doable) Advanced input to the monitor: While I initially just aim for ten default display schemes, I want to customize the output on the fly, using some input scheme. This takes inspiration from the various DSKY projects out there. Rotary knob for selecting SAS control scheme. This hinges on zitronen including it in KSPserialIO Limited autopilot functions, most importantly an optimal descent assistant for vacuum environments. Ascent velocity assist for atmospheric takeoff is desirable, but until I get my hands on a proper drag coefficient calculator for my craft, it remains a wish. A way of calculating the correct orbit to hit a waypoint for a contract, taking into account the rotation of a given body. All of these should provide plenty of time to waste on the project. Shouts should go out to zitronen for making this possible, MrOnak, Mulbin, AmeliaEatYaheart, stibbons, T.A.P.O.R., Sputnix and everyone else who posted a question or an answer in the KSPserialIO thread, as well as the highly inspirational controllers you have shown to the rest of us. Current status: The flight control unit is done. It communicates with the main unit by an old SCART cable, with a few pins to spare. The big red button is staging, and just above it the lock in active position. After this picture was taken, I added a rotary potmeter to scale the input of the joysticks. A view into the unit. You can see the primary and secondary joysticks, as well as the small board routing the input. Originally I wanted to use a VGA connector, but it turned out that I ran out of pins, and had to replace it. The joysticks are artifacts from an ancient age. A gameport joystick for attitude, and a C64 digital joystick for RCS. The monitor. The main panel is build as a frame with bolted modules for easy service and replacement. The individual modules are painted black, and the frame the same grey as the controller. While a lot of modules around here are made of fine looking materials like printed dibond, 3d prints or aluminum, my budget says plywood. Labels will be paper prints in negative, with a bit of touch up around the corners once fitted. The monitor itself has kept me occupied for the last couple of days. The TVout library is very processor intensive and interupts the timer of the Arduino, so I dont think it is going to play particularly nice with KSPserialIO. The solution I use is to use a spare Arduino Uno (clones come at less than €10) and transfer bytes over 8 pins from my Mega to the Uno. I cannot use SPI or I2C as a sane individual because TVout hogs the SPI pins and interrupts I2C, but after some fiddling and a full day of not being able to communicate with my family I got the results I wanted at some 20 FPS, enough for practical use. Last unknown part is the keypad, but glancing at the documentation it does not seems so difficult. Then, it is just a matter of connecting the parts and writing the actual coding af the Arduinos, but that will not require anything but stuff I already have tried before by now.
  6. Well this thread is inspired by this cute video thumbnail, generic theme and lyrics: Mister Trouble never hangs around When he hears this Mighty sound. "Here I come to save the day" That means that Mighty Mouse is on his way. Yes sir, when there is a wrong to right Mighty Mouse will join the fight. On the sea or on the land, He gets the situation well in hand. rule: pretty simple share stuff about your mouse and eventually comments about yours or others contributors mouse keep things fun and cool. (non mouse users are welcome to because well evolution is like that ; ) 1 - : Mine really start looking like this and this are it's best friends because well getting old is hard even for a computer mouse but who said lifting rocket in ksp is an easy task ? ; )
  7. Hi there! Some mates and I participated in this year's SpaceApps contest by NASA on the Jet Set Mars challenge. We focused on developing a complete solution for a Mars-suitable jetpack which included an exoskeleton and a custom HUD. It seems NASA liked it, because we are currently Top-5 on Best use of Hardware category. Aaaaaand, of course, we used KSP to simulate it! Here is the video: The official NASA project page: Our website: In our prototype, the helmet included a IMU to sense the orientation of the wearer's head. This information was then sent to KSP via a custom HID USB device the game interpreted as a joystick input. Besides the helmet movement, our prototype had two joysticks which enabled full use of KSP's EVA functionallity (and the prop-pack reacted moving the nozzles and illuminating) Hope you like it! Germán PS: if you want to see more, our github repo is on NASA's website. We are part of, a student community on the Universitat Politècnica de València, Spain.
  8. Hey guys, I'm looking at getting myself a Das Keyboard to replace yet another keyboard that I've abused to death. I'm pretty sure that it will suit me (coder and gamer) but I wanted to get some feedback from someone who actually has one and uses it in anger (or at least under duress). In particular I can't decide if I should go for the Cherry MX brown switches (softer) or the more "clacky" Cherry MX blue. They say that the blue is good for increased typing speeds, but I'm just not sure if I want that much clack! Other Q's I've got. - How easy is it to clean? do they keys come off easily or do you feel like you're forcing a flimsy plastic clip each to you take them off? - Is it as tough as it looks in the pics. Could I defend my office with it?! - something I look for in IO hardware - Any Linux users know if the media keys work out of the box, or if that requires some key-mapping. Thanks!
  9. Using an ESP8266 and Telemachus to create a WiFi Kerbal controller. I'm mostly focusing on buttons here, since tablets work great for display. Currently just a proof of concept, it connects over WiFi so you're no longer tethered to one computer. Source and a compiled binary available on Github