Digital Jump Rope

This is our Digital Jump Rope which has been created in the Playing Out with IoT project. This prototype will be shown at the upcoming Great Exhibition of the North. We think this is a great example of an outdoor game that you can create with IoT devices.

This version of Jump Rope encourages us to use our imagination. In the picture above, you can see the person in the middle jumping over the rope. When the IoT devices think the jumper has been “caught out” the light in the middle changes to red as they “snag” the invisible rope.

The current source code for this demonstration is available on our GitHub repository. To create this demo we used the PlayStation Move Controllers and the small framework we have created. However, we are ordering some blocks from the SAM Labs kit to remake this in time for the exhibition. What sensors might we need to find out that someone is jumping around – could you even use a pressure sensor on the floor to make it really accurate? We also think the bright lights here provide an engaging spectator interface – allowing those not directly part of the jump rope game to see what is going on.

A game of jump rope is especially interesting because it’s about movement. In designing this prototype, we originally thought about flashing the lights at the end to count how many times the jumper had been hit. However, we think its more fun to get people watching to count how many times they have been caught. This also best represents the way that children play, as often when someone is “caught out” the roles in the game swap. How many times do you think they have been snagged above?