School of Art, Media, and Technology

The EyeWriter 2.0

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The EyeWriter is a low-cost eye-tracking apparatus + custom software that allows graffiti writers and artists with paralysis resulting from Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis to draw using only their eyes.

The original design featured a pair of glasses as the basis for the eyewriter design. Check out the video here. Since then they’ve been hacking on and developing the project, and now have a new design, dubbed “eyewriter 2.0” which improves the accuracy of the device, and allows for people who’s heads are moving slightly to also use an eye tracker. The original eyewriter, designed for a paralyzed Graffiti artist TEMPT1, is designed to be worn on a completely motionless head. The 2.0 design, which uses a camera and LED system mounted away from the head, can be used by people whose heads are moving slightly, such as MS patients, and people who wear glasses, etc. The 2.0 device was designed with help and input from Takayuki Ito, Kyle McDonald, Golan Levin and students of the eyewriter collab at Parsons MFADT.

This eyewriter system is cheap, and completely open source. At the moment, it costs about $200 in parts. Traditional commercial eye trackers costs between $9000-$20,000, so this is a magnitude of order cheaper, and is designed to help anyone who wants or needs an eyetracker.

This fall, they’ve been showing off and demoing the 2.0 device — check out the eyewriter 2.0 in action — they’ve even hooked it up to a robotic arm, to draw the artwork people make with their eyes:

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