Eye Gaze Controlled Wild Thing

Ben is a 3 yr old with GNA01 neurodevelopmental disorder. His mom reached out to us to setup a Fisher Price Wild Thing to work with Ben’s Tobii Eye Gaze to give him some independent mobility.

You can find out more about Ben and GNA01 here:

For this eye gaze setup we decided to see if we could leverage some preexisting electronics. We went with the Wild Thing Adapter from Let’Em Play:

That gave us standard switch inputs, and then all we needed to do was bridge the eye gaze and a remote control to the switch outputs. For the remote control we went with a DualShock 4 Wireless Controller for PlayStation 4.

To bridge it all together we setup an Arduino with a USB Host Shield, a USB Bluetooth dongle as receiver for the PS4 controller, and some SSRs to act as switch closures to the Wild Thing Adapter.

In the end, everything worked well. One gotcha was using the version of Wild Thing Adapter we had with the Wild Thing we had. The directions were incorrect and the lowest speed function didn’t move in reverse. There seems to have been changes to the Wild Thing electronics over time so there’s a mismatch somewhere. For reference here’s the Wild Thing Model we had, and the corrected directions on the adapter:

Ready to go:

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