Darrell Huff, “No Buttons Headset” Inventor, Visits CATEA Today

Today, we had a special Innovation Meeting. You know its special because it happened on a Tuesday instead of the usual Thursday. Today Darrell Huff came by to talk to us about his two AT inventions. The first is a modification of a Blue Ant bluetooth headset which removed the existing on/off/sleep push-button with a magnetic proximity switch. The details of the device are available at his site NoButtonHeadset.com but from looking at and holding the headset, I can really see his craftsmanship. There was zero evidence that he had opened up the original device, which is about the size of a quarter, removed the mechanical push button, replaced it with a magnetic proximity switch, and repackaged everything. Its true when they say “Fit and Finish Sells”.

Darrell’s other invention was a Wiimote hack to allow for hands free navigate of a computer. The user holds in their mouth a modified bite switch with two infra red LEDs attached. One LED is always on and the second turns on when the switch is depressed. The wiimote is stationary and pointed at the user and communicates with a PC via bluetooth. Special software then translated the position of the always-on LED to move a cursor and the relative position of the on/off LED to mimic mouse clicks. A single bite is treated as a left click. A hold bite is similar to a click and drag. The coolest part is that when the user tilts their head and then clicks, the software recognized that as a right click because it senses the presence and position of the on/off LED.

Darrell Huff definitely had his inventions together and most of the meeting was about how to best get his product on the market. Its good to see he’s made it this far and not fallen into the traps that affect many individual inventors.


1 comment so far

  1. paulboyd on

    I am a tetraplegic (paralyzed from the neck down with no use of arms and legs) that uses the NoButtons Headset along with an iPhone 3GS. I am amazed at the freedom that this offers me. I am able to call anyone in my phone book or call out a phone number digit by digit. No able-bodied person can truly understand how much this helps someone with a disability. I am impressed by the engineering and the flawlessness with which it works. Truly amazing! Kudos Mr. Huff, kudos!

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