SmartNAV or TrackIR - Gaming and More?

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jonaan
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jul 12, 2005 5:00 am

SmartNAV or TrackIR - Gaming and More?

Post by jonaan » Tue Jul 12, 2005 5:48 pm

Hello, I came across a similar product a few years ago when I was still playing a game called EverQuest. It allowed for 'looking around' by use of a headband which unfortunately didn't seem very practical for me. Well, recently I've begun experiencing an increase in muscle weakness which has impacted my gaming, namely World of Warcraft and now Battlefield 2.

To explain my situation, I have a form of Muscular Dystrophy. So in terms of how it affects my use of the computer I have only so much mobility in my arms, hands, and fingers. If I'm using the keyboard alone, I can function quite well. However to use the mouse I have to grasp mouse with right hand while gripping my right forearm with left hand to stabilize my mouse control. That means I can't do keyboard/mouse combinations at all for games or other software (I do video editing as a hobby.)

So this results in my depending mainly on the mouse and only putting my hands to keyboard when I need to type. This really ruins my productivity all around because there are so many keyboard shortcuts being unused along with keyboard/mouse combined actions. Imagine playing a RTS (Age of Empire) with just the mouse. And many games require both to be used, an example being FPS (Battlefield 2.)

I've gotten around the requirement on Battlefield 2 by using a Saitek P880 gamepad to control my vehicle and infantry movements. For the vehicles it is perfect, but as infantry the fine precision of aiming my gun is difficult using the thumbpad on the controller. And so I'm wondering if a NaturalPoint product might be the answer to my woes in the BF2 case, using the TrackIR or SmartNAV to aim. Which, if not both would be good for this?

As I think about this further, my main concern is precision. Be it in gaming or controlling my mouse cursor in fine movements over the desktop for whatever I may be doing. Eventually, as things are with Muscular Dystrophy, I will have further muscle weakening and may become even more depended on a product such as this.

For everything I listed above, what are the differences between the TrackIR and SmartNAV? Let me also point out I�m willing to spend the extra money for the better product if it�ll truly make a difference. The possibility of controlling my mouse cursor while keeping both hands on the keyboard is something I can�t even begin to express in words, because my computer is practically my life. It is my escape from the physical constraints reality has imposed on me and being able to regain my freedom again (with mouse) would almost be on the same level of walking again, I dare say.

If anyone would be willing to answer my questions and concerns I would greatly appreciate it. And I fully intend to advocate for these products if they truly do make a difference in the quality of my life, as I suspect they may.

Thanks again,
Brian H

kevin
Posts: 315
Joined: Fri Sep 24, 2004 5:00 am
Location: Corvallis

Re: SmartNAV or TrackIR - Gaming and More?

Post by kevin » Thu Jul 14, 2005 8:24 am

Hi Brian,

I think the SmartNAV would be an ideal solution for you. You can use the SmartNAV to aim in games like BF2 and use your hand to shoot. To see how another user with mobility issues utilizes his head tracking device I would check out this site: http://www.csnation.net/articles.php/71/

It is an interview with Bobby, who uses a head tracking system in conjunction with a sip/puff switch and Voice Commander and plays CounterStrike totally hands free. Here is a link to his personal site, it has some cool stuff on it as well: http://www.wudup.net/

We recently sent him a SmartNAV, which btw he says is better than his tracker, and he is putting together a demo video that I will post here when done.

The SmartNAV is very dependable and precise and I am sure you will not be disappointed.

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