Hack Reactor Student Pilots Drone with Leap Motion and Node.js

Daniel Liebeskind finished the Hack Reactor program in January 2014 and is currently building a stealth-mode Unmanned Aerial Systems (drone) company for consumer applications. Daniel is also working on the Alpha Program at Myo, enabling the use of the Myo device with existing JavaScript-based applications. Myo lets you use the electrical activity in your muscles to wirelessly control your computer, phone, and other favorite digital technologies.

Because of his broad interest in the intersection of hardware and software, Daniel chose to focus on programming and drones for his Hack Reactor Student Project. Using Node.js and Leap Motion Daniel could control drones in a novel way. Here he demos the result:

“I created a Node server to interface between an AR Drone 2.0, my computer and a Leap Motion and I’m using Leap JS to recognize my hand motions across x, y and z coordinates and issue commands through my Node server to the drone.”

“To take off and land you use your right hand’s pointer finger and make a gesture as though left-clicking a mouse. You can then control the Drone, moving it forward, backward, left, and right. The degree to which your hand is displaced from the center determines the velocity. You can also rotate left and right."

In February Daniel was featured on the Leap Motion blog with "The Beginning of a Drone Revolution":

"Node.js is a framework built on top of Google's V8 JavaScript Engine and can be used as a server infrastructure for directing communication between multiple devices and a Leap Motion Controller. Node is asynchronous (non-blocking), so data streams can be sent and received simultaneously without interference. Node also leverages callbacks (functions that run upon success and failure to receive data) to chain instructions--so that you can create a series of commands that will run upon completion of the previous command."

Read the rest of the article here.

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