Recently we have been teaching Dynamo to be a more effective listener.

Tom Vollaro had this great idea of driving Dynamo and Vasari parametric models via alternate user interfaces like iPads. We’ve been hacking with Arduinos and a WiFi connections recently and it turned out to be pretty easy to hook up an iPad app called ArduMote to Dynamo:

I finished hooking up the ArduMote iPad app to Dynamo last weekend but did not get a chance during the week to write a blog post. In looking at this again a bit now the possibilities are pretty amazing!  This setup lets you create UI like sliders and drive the parametric model from across the room not tied to a computer at all. Imagine setting up a ‘dashboard’ on the iPad and then passing it around a conference room for people to take turns adjusting the model while showing it on a big screen projector.

ArduMote uses UDP packets to communicate. These are stateless little packets that broadcast over your LAN and can be used to talk to a specific machine or more broadly to any machine that is listening to a certain port. In our case one machine is talking and the other listening, so as you drag a slider the values are sent real-time across your LAN to the listening machine. We were talking about implementing this through Arduino connections and a WiFi shield but because it’s just sending UDP packets I figured it would be easy enough to just make a UDP listener node in Dynamo and cut out the middle-man.

Like the previous post about new Arduino nodes, you can take this result and wire it up as input parameter to drive the parametric model.

So now Dynamo is now a better listener, what do you want to say to it?


BTW, these little WiFly units from Remote Networks are really awesome, more on them later.