What is the Gargoyle?
The Gargoyle wearable computer is a project I am undertaking to study and
improve apon current technologies and adapt them for use in a wearable computer
application and a environment of every-day, practicle use. I am naming the
prototype I am building "Gargoyle". This name comes from Neil Stephenson's
popular cyberpunk novel "Snow Crash". In this a book, a Gargoyle refers to
a person who wears a wearable computer of sorts, and is constantly collecting
information or intel about his/her surroundings, and is near-constantly
jacked into the Metaverse (a futuristic MUSH-like version of the Internet).
How I plan to use the Gargoyle
There are a wide range of applications for a wearable computer system today.
Many people who use a wearable computer, do so with a single use or purpose in
mind (computing aid for disabled persons, manufacturing, laptop alternative)
I plan to use the Gargoyle in multiple applications, including:
- Information gathering.
- Near-fulltime connectivity to the Internet (my job requires this).
- Situation Awareness.
- Navigation Aid.
- Eventual replacement for my desktop-based workstation.
The Gargoyle is still in the planning stage, but I have begun to piece together
subsystems that I've already planned out. Below is a rough list of features
and functions I plan to integrate together.
CPU and main systems:
- Motherboard: Ampro LittleBoard P5i. Includes:
- 133Mhz Pentium CPU, 32MB of RAM
- On-board IDE, SCSI, Ethernet, IDE, serial, and parallel.
- PC-104+ (PCI/ISA) connectors for add-on cards.
- Seagate ST9385AG 2.5" IDE Hard Drive
- PCMCIA (PC Card) slots for ethernet/analog modem and other accessories.
- Enclosure case.
- Linux OS.
- Liquid Image M1 320x240 QVGA (256 grayscale) Head Mounted Display.
- A KeyGlove-type keyboard.
- Head-mounted Connectix Quickcam II, modified to see IR.
- DelLorme Tripmate GPS.
- Ambient temperature and humidity sensors, maybe even barometric pressure.
- Wavelan wireless ethernet for when I'm at work.
- Starship CDPD modem for when I'm out and about.
- Mono headphone speaker with boom mic.
- Lightwieght Lithium-Ion battery pack. My goal is 10 hour uptime before having to recharge.
- Home-made NiCd battery pack for my M1 HMD.
- Solar Panels?
- Army surplus GI Pistol belt to mount most of this stuff on.