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Author Topic: The Jootiq  (Read 12695 times)
Jooly
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« on: September 27, 2007, 03:10:25 AM »

Hey all-
As I said in my intro, my boyfriend, Ryan, and I have been following this site for a couple of months. He has a ton of electrical and computer experience. You can go to http://www.crazybump.com to see and use the awesome art/bump mapping tool that he has designed.  I am good with art, tools and making things. After looking at a bunch of the logs, both failed and completed, we decided on a few things prior to starting:

1) People seem to have the most success following Drewid's build and using a Wacom 12"X12" tablet with a Dell 1503FP. There seems to be the least amount of jitter and cable troubles with this combination.
2) People seem to also break their screens a lot trying to stuff them back into the Wacom case. We should probably build a custom case.
3) The Wacom tablet seems to be the most expensive part of this, so we need to find a one cheap.

So, the scouring on ebay began.


After a few weeks of looking at Wacom tablets, a reselling company started listing 12"X12" Intuos 2 tablets for a starting bid of 99 bucks. This seemed like a deal too good to be true and no one seemed to be bidding on these suckers. The major downside of these tablets was no pen included. Well, I already owned a Intuos 2 with the correct pen, so that was not a big deal. The post also said that there was no power supply included with the purchase of a tablet, but there was a USB clear as day on the photo of the tablet. So, the bidding began and we got the tablet for 102 USD. Awesome. When it arrived at the house, it was in good shape and could recognize the pen at really high levels. It actually could read through my half inch glass table with a stack of paper on it.

Next, was the monitor which was a much easier find. Again, we found one on ebay. It was local, so I could pick it up and save shipping costs. 70 USD.

After opening up our monitor, we noticed right away that it seemed exactly like Drewid's. The layout was similar and we had an easy time opening it up and it came apart quickly. We ordered two sets of cables from DIYbeamer after finding out that our monitor was a Samsung.  It was 60 or so USD for the 4 cables.

When the cables arrived, we hooked everything up according to the instructions on the website. The first issue that we encountered was that the when the monitor was hooked up, it turned on and showed the Dell test pattern, but there was a wacky stripe in the middle of it. First, we thought that the monitor was broken from taking it apart. Then, we looked at the cables. Lo and behold, one of the pins on the FFC cables was busted. We used one of our spare cables, and everything was in working order.
The tablet seemed to work really well and we really did not notice any jittering. We even had a piece of framing glass over it and it was reading fine.

Here is where the trouble begins.


The next day, after moving it around the table and trying it on another computer (my macbook) , the cursor begins to jitter. A lot. First, we tried moving the LCD screen around on the tablet which did not help. Then, we tried testing on the first computer (a pc) again. Still jittering. So, we began to try to shield the monitor using cling wrap, foil and gaffers tape. This did not stop the jittering cursor. The tape ended up sticking to a delicate part of one of the LCD boards and pulling out an important bit. Now, it did not work and we were stuck.

Again, I went on ebay and I located a lot of two 1503FP monitors. This time there was more of a bidding war and I ended spending a bit more than I wanted. On a side note, I really hate those automatic bidding programs. If you want something that badly, you should sit there and put in the bid manually at the last second. Don't send your computer lackey to do it for you. It was 140 USD for the two monitors. So now, our grand total is 372 USD. It is not great, but it is still way under the cost of an actual cintiq and we have parts to spare now.

The two monitors have arrived and both work great and there are no dead pixels. We opened one up and stripped it in 20 minutes flat. I think Ryan and I should look for work in Korea, putting together these things. Luckily enough, the new monitor was a Samsung and we could use the existing FFC cables. Again, we had the problems with the jittery cursor, but this time we took some different steps to solve the problem.

We noticed that if one of us was drawing straight on the screen, sans glass, the jitters were less. So, the electronic interference from the LCD seems to make the readable distance a lot lower. Ryan noticed that the thick plastic frame that holds the fluorescent lights, acrylic slab and papers actually takes up a lot of room and raises up the LCD a couple of millimeters. He ripped this apart and we set up everything under the glass. He also wrapped the light tubes in a bit of aluminum foil to help reflect the light back into the acrylic and shield them a bit. This made the jitter go away. If using a brush that is a pixel or two, you can still kind of see it.

Next, instead of using the auto mapping on the wacom driver, we figured out the portion of the tablet that the monitor took up by hand. This also seemed to help. We also played around with the refresh rates on the monitor. Now the jitter was gone.

The last possible fix, thought up by a friend, was to find a driver designed to deal with jitter. This is a driver for people with hand tremors and designed by IBM. It is supposed to smooth out a cursor that moves around. Unfortunately, we could not test it, since I want to use the sim-tiq on my apple and the driver is for XP. Having to run parallels all of time would drive me crazy. We might try it later. Here it is though.
http://www.alphaworks.ibm.com/tech/mousesmoothing

Now, I have a lovely and happily jitter free Jootiq. It works wonderfully and I have a nice range of pressure sensitivity. The only problem is that it is in bits on my desk. So, finally I am on the fun and difficult part of the project. I am in the process of designing and building a case.

Any thoughts, experienced tablet makers?

~Jooly


Some picture and video of the Jootiq to follow...
« Last Edit: September 27, 2007, 05:17:28 AM by Jooly » Logged
paintiq
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« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2007, 03:22:33 AM »

off topic i know but that 3d program looks awesome!

tell him to make an osx version =P
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Jooly
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« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2007, 03:29:53 AM »

Paint-

He says that he will after he does a commercial release. "Gotta do an OSX version," he is saying right now. It does work running in Parallels. Not quite as nice, tho.

~Jooly
« Last Edit: September 27, 2007, 03:34:18 AM by Jooly » Logged
Jooly
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« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2007, 04:57:03 AM »

Here is the mess-o-bits that is the Jootiq right now:

The set up:


Look! I can draw my hand.


It works swimmingly, but takes up my whole drawing desk. So, no using the drawing table (or moving the boards) until the Jootiq is snuggled safely into a protective case.

~Jooly
« Last Edit: September 27, 2007, 05:21:01 AM by Jooly » Logged
Drewid
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« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2007, 05:24:47 PM »

Good grief, You've only just arrived 00

Top marks for speed and good tips on jitter.

As for building the case my original use the wacom case with longer screws and spacers.  I've seen some full-on CNC machined stiff going on as well which was mighty impressive.    From a style point of view I'm going through a steampunk stage at the moment so stained wood with brass fittings and a pen mounted in a fountain pen barrel ?  Grin
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Jooly
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« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2007, 03:33:00 AM »

Drew-

We are actually not all that speedy. Neither of us really felt like posting something until the tablet was working reliably. And I am leaning toward something steampunkish as well, after seeing all of those great mods on Boing Boing and Make recently. I figure that I won't be able to make something that looks nice in metal or plastic (since finish is more of an issue with those materials) and I would have a lot easier time working in wood.

Plus, I am a printmaker, so I can etch a copper or brass plate with the best of them. I wouldn't mind a bit of copper etched inlay. It would be pretty sharp.  I have to think of some design things to take up some of those extra inches around the edge of my monitor.

Any thoughts on arranging the boards underneath the shielding though? Right now, I have them off to the side and they do not seem to be causing any interference, but I am a bit uncertain about what havoc they will wreak underneath.

Thanks.
~Jooly
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Nas`
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« Reply #6 on: September 29, 2007, 04:12:51 AM »

OMG!!?!!1!111one!!1!!!

A steampunk cintiq!
that wud be so unbeleivably freakin awesome!~

if you manage to do it please please post HEAPS of pics.

man thats so cool

*gasp*

*dies*
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Jooly
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« Reply #7 on: September 29, 2007, 10:10:51 AM »

Hey all-

Here is a short video (Quicktime7) of the Jootiq in action, as promised:

www.juliegilberg.com/JooTiq/jootiq2.mov

Time to go to American Science Surplus http://www.sciplus.com/ and see what cool bits we can find for the case.

~Jooly





 
« Last Edit: September 29, 2007, 10:17:11 AM by Jooly » Logged
Drewid
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« Reply #8 on: September 29, 2007, 02:00:36 PM »

For steamy inspiration may I heartily recommend www.brassgoggles.co.uk and the attached forum. Several rather talented makers hang out over there and preview their new builds.  There's a whole bunch of other steampunk intereat stuff.     
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Jooly
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« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2007, 06:36:43 AM »

Thanks Drew.

I have been looking it over to get some ideas.

~Jooly
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Nas`
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« Reply #10 on: October 06, 2007, 08:36:18 PM »

drew my heart skipped a beat when i visited that site, the things people have done are absolutely astonishing, im honestly in awe, holy hell i cant freaken wait to do it!!!!!!!

*explodes*
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Drewid
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« Reply #11 on: October 06, 2007, 10:33:33 PM »

It's a stunner innit.  Datamancer and alexcf make their living from doing that stuff.
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Jooly
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« Reply #12 on: October 17, 2007, 08:00:15 AM »

The cake is completely a lie, Drew.

And after you get baked, we will have cake.

(Portals was awesome, BTW)

~Jooly
« Last Edit: October 17, 2007, 05:30:34 PM by Jooly » Logged
Drewid
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« Reply #13 on: October 18, 2007, 06:23:50 AM »

GLaDos is the new HAL9000    Grin
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