Get Started with Skweezee

This ‘quickstart guide’ supports you in getting started with Skweezee. You will need a soft object, an Arduino, and a computer running Processing. Please note that although current Skweezee technology is developed on the Processing platform, alternatives involving other platforms will be released soon(ish). For questions regarding our roadmap, please contact us.

Soft Object

Create and/or fill a soft object with a soft conductive material. We use conductive wool in our projects, but more accessible materials include anti-static foam (the black foam used for packing electronic components, available through electronics shops). For questions regarding the wool or alternatives, please contact us.

Also insert a number of wires to connect the conductive material with the Arduino. You have two options here:

With Skweezee shield

Cut a standard UTP Cable, strip the ends of the wires, and fix these ends on several points in your object (for example by sewing). A Skweezee configuration using the shield results in 28 possible pairs between all wires. To make use of the full potential of Skweezee, make sure all 8 wires are interconnected with conductive material.

Without Skweezee shield

Fix 2 to 6 wires with stripped ends in the soft object (as the Arduino has 6 analog inputs). Using less wires is possible, but keep in mind that using more wires increases the signal stability. One wire serves as reference point to form pairs with the others, so make sure that all wires are connected with this reference point through the conductive material.

Soft object with wires
Fig 1. Soft object.

Arduino

We have created an optional Skweezee shield to expand possible measurements from 6 (based on the number of available analog input ports) to 28 (based on multiplexing 8 wires). The Skweezee shield details & schematics are available online (lisenced under a creative commons license), but Skweezee also works without additional hardware shield. For questions regarding our Skweezee shield, please contact us.

Skweezee shield for Arduino
Fig 2. Skweezee shield for Arduino.

With Skweezee shield

Download the Skweezee code with shield, and upload it to your Arduino.

Mount the shield on the Arduino and plug in the UTP cable. The shield + code will continuously (and sequentially) combine all possible pairs of the 8 wires (28), so there is no fixed reference point in this configuration. Connect the Arduino to the computer using a USB cable to send measured signals from the Arduino to the computer, the Processing library will read these.

Without Skweezee shield

Download the Skweezee code without shield, and upload it to your Arduino.

Connect the reference point to A0, and the other wires to the remaining analog ports A1–A5. The code will then measure all possible pairs between that reference point and the other wires continuously (so up to 5). Connect the Arduino to the computer using a USB cable to send measured signals from the Arduino to the computer, the Processing library will read these.

Processing

Download and install the Processing IDE.

Include the Skweezee for Processing Library: Download the Skweezee for Processing library, unpack the downloaded zip file, and place the folder (as a whole) in your Processing libraries folder (typically Documents/Processing/libraries). Now (re)start Processing and you are ready to start using the library.

Find working examples in Processing: File > Examples... > Contributed Libraries > Skweezee for Processing. The included set of examples illustrates the features of the library one by one.

Example Skweezee
Fig 3. Example Skweezee: squeeze the felt cube to change the size of the red ball on the screen.
More info on Skweezee: skweezee.net