I knew all that time spent playing Call of Duty on Wii would pay off. The newest issue of Make Magazine (#33) offers an interesting and relatively easy project that turns a Wii Nunchuk into a gesture-based computer input device. Now I can be just as much of a deadeye in Excel – C2, bam; F7, bam – but at least in Excel everyone’s a winner. The guide was written by Gabriel Bianconi, an impressive Brazilian teenager, who appears to have been working on the project for a few years now.
The project pairs a Nunchuk with an Arduino to provide serial input interpreted by a custom Arduino library and a straight-forward Python script available on Make’s website that drives mouse events via win32api. Best of all, the project is non-destructive – Wii Nunchuks accept regular jumper wires so you can try the project at no cost (assuming you already have an Arduino and Nunchuck), and later disconnect the controller for gaming use at any time.
The web link to Make’s online tutorial appears to broken at this time, but you can refer to Gabriel’s original tutorial if you can’t find a hard copy. For further reading, check out this guide detailing the underlying method to read Nunchuk data into Arduino over at Wiimeadow Labs.