Don’t want your tablet to go walking?

Most of our clients come to us to because they don’t want their tablets to move.  At least not very far.  That’s why here at Sprocket we spend a lot of time locking tablets down.  Of course, Sprocket X’s patent pending tilt-and-rotate mechanism is designed for both dynamic rotation between portrait and landscape [crucial for the full utilisation of many app features] and tilt, allowing on-the-fly adjustments of the screen angle for more comfortable viewing and interaction.  For most scenarios, these two planes of movement are perfect!  But occasionally, they just aren’t enough.

Moving with the virtual times

Take the National Motor Museum in Birdwood South Australia, who approached Sprocket when they had built a virtual reality app that took advantage of the iPad’s advanced movement sensors and allowed patrons to drive a virtual lap of a race course.  Pretty cool, huh?

It was a reminder of just how advanced today’s tablet technology is.  An iPad has both an in-built accelerometer and gyroscope, and uses Sensor Fusion to combine the information from these sensors to quickly and accurately detect motion of the tablet.  Which means for game and app developers, there’s a whole means of possible interaction to utilise beyond just touching the screen.

Now of course, while the museum wanted patrons to be able to pick up the iPad and use it like a steering wheel, they didn’t want the iPad racing out of the building!  The answer was X Flex, Sprocket’s neat solution which allows for handheld usage while keeping the tablet both securely tethered, and permanently charged.  With X Flex, you can set it and forget it, while patrons can grab it, not nab it.

ACMI game enough

A similar scenario presented itself recently down at Federation Square at Melbourne’s excellent ACMI museum.  Apart from being a centre of film culture, ACMI is also Australia’s national museum of video games, digital culture and art.  As part of a fascinating exhibition called “Code Breakers”, celebrating the achievements of Australian and New Zealand women working in video games, ACMI wanted patrons to play video games on an iPad.  Since the games also took advantage of iPad’s advanced movement sensors, X Flex was the obvious choice again.   In the exhibition environment, there was an extra requirement – ACMI needed custom wall brackets so that the iPads, when not in use, could be hung on a metallic mesh.  Here at Sprocket we eat custom jobs for breakfast, and within a matter of weeks the required wall mounts had been manufactured and delivered to Fed Square.

The other little fun non-standard job for the exhibition was some custom height X floor stands.  The idea was to allow patrons to sit on the Ottoman while interacting with the iPad.  Sprocket’s flexible X system allowed this without issue, and we think they turned out to be very cute [flick through the photos and see if you agree]!  The long and the short of it is, if you are in a tight spot, or have a little room to move, any of X Desk, X Wall and X Floor can be supplied with a stem of virtually any length you need.

Photography: Mark Walsh

  • Simon Rashleigh