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Powerglove (Android application control of hands)

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Powerglove is a wearable, programmable glove that helps users to learn hand movement, by simple instructions that are provided by Android-based applications.  A user pairs their smartphone with the glove(s), runs an application downloaded from the Play Store, and hand and finger movement are automatically managed by the glove, according to instructions from the application.




Powerglove provides a platform for Android developers to write amazing applications that can automate hand movement.  It is expected that third-party application developers will be able to create unique applications, beyond the initial use cases provided below.  The following are the main functions and example applications.


Powerglove provides two main functions:


1. Guidance of the user through tasks requiring dexterity

  • Playing the piano
  • Soldering circuits
  • Proper typing form


2. If equipped with flex sensors, detection and stabilization of tremors in addition to a method of rehabilitation for those struggling with rigidity

  • Patients with Parkinson’s and arthritis.
  • Rehabilitation of sports injuries


And much, much more... application developers will be able to think of some awesome ideas beyond the above.  For example, imagine the Guitar Hero game on Android phones extended to supporting instructions that teach someone how to play a specific song on the guitar.  This is just one of many examples that Android developers will be able to build.



How it Works


For Developers:

  • Actions can pre-recorded using a LeapMotion or equivalent technology to store instructions/commands.
  • Commands are placed into an Android application.  When a glove is detected, the commands will be sent to the glove.


For Users:

  • An Android application supporting Powerglove features is discovered in the Play Store and downloaded.
  • When running the app with Powerglove, data would be streamed over Bluetooth and the glove responds to the commands.
  • The app assists with the development of fine motor skills.  The glove performs the detailed hand and finger movement instructed by the application to run the tasks such as rehabilitation, or learning instructions such as playing piano, throwing a curveball, or learning to type.
  • The app can be disabled, or the glove turned off, at any time.


Example (Prototype)


The following video highlights a demonstration of the Powerglove at the MLH Hackathon.


1.What product should be built?
A wearable glove that moves a user's fingers, with instructions Android-based applications from a paired smartphone (over Bluetooth).
2.What purpose does the product serve?
The product has multiple uses.  It can quickly teach user's user muscle memory, training for sports and arts, or help with rehabilitation.
3.Why will a consumer use it?
Either to learn trained skills easily, or for rehabilitation purposes.
4.How is it different?
There are no direct competitors for this unique product.  The most similar products in the market today are haptic feedback gloves.