Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2016 - 22

from Force Dimension, and two
well as the rendering of force and
customized HIPs for pinch and
torque feedbacks (output). The
The device-specific
grasp operations.
tactile sensor component adopts
function call converPrior to the proposed frameposition and rotation from its
work,
we managed to make the
peer kinesthetic sensory comsion routines will only
device work with various demos,
ponent (through intersensory
need to be written
yet its software implementation is
communications) and focuses
heterogeneous and inefficient. As
only on the tactile feedbacks.
once based on stanshown in Figure 3(a), the original
The two sensory components
dard dynamic linking
HIP on the Omega 6 device is conwork together to represent how
trolled through the driver provida fingertip interacts with exterlibraries (DLLs).
ed by Force Di mension. T he
nal objects and senses force,
add-on HIPs, on the other hand,
torque, and tactition. Commuare controlled through our customized hardware connications between the components are implemented
troller with its own driver and SDK. The two communiin thread.
cation pipelines run in parallel, but communications
The proposed framework supports up to 256 (8-bit)
between them are extremely difficult due to the distinct
manual-level MPHs, which provides the potential of supSDKs adopted. This implementation is more of a patch
porting large-scale collaborative tasks among people or
solution, without proper design and transparency
multimanual robots. Within each manual-level MPH, the
between the two communication pipelines.
framework supports up to 256 (fingers) HIPs, which
With the introduction of the framework, a revised
provides the potential of supporting complex multisoftware implementation creates a brand-new customfinger interactions. Within each HIP, the framework
ized MPH with three HIPs, as shown in Figure 3(b).
supports up to 65,536 (16-bit) sensory components,
Applications are able to directly control all three HIPs
including one kinesthetic component and up to 65,535
in a uniform way, without knowing the fact that three
tactile components as a tactile array. Although each
HIPs are physically heterogeneous. Under the bonnet,
human fingertip has only about 3,000 touch receptors,
communications among the three HIPs are based on
the framework leaves potential for future advances on
the standardized function call templates, which implesupersampling of tactition. In addition, these limits are
ment device-specific function calls according to the
soft limits provided mostly for memory efficiency and
conversion routines. A single request from the MPH
practicability reasons.
application may trigger multiple function call templates
to dispatch controller-specific function calls to each
Application Examples
controller, while responses from the controllers are
Based on the implemented framework, we have created a
uniformly processed before being sent back to the
number of demonstrations to validate the backward
MPH application.
compatibility with existing haptic devices as well as the
The proposed framework has cleared up the obstacles
extendibility with future customized devices.
for communications among heterogeneous HIPs and
provided a uniform definition and extension scheme for
Backward Compatibility
the composition of existing SPH devices and the creation
Case 1: A number of previous works have indicated
of brand new MPHs.
that the combination of two identical SPHs can be a
straightforward approach for implementing MPHs.
Based on this, we have implemented two MPHs based
Data Throughput Comparisons
on existing SPHs: a homogeneous MPH w ith two
Issues usually arise when the high-frequency device
Sensable Phantom Omni devices and a heterogeneous
updates pass through the function call templates and the
MPH with a Novint Falcon and a Phantom Omni. In
essential conversion routines execute through the
both cases, the device-specific function calls are conproposed framework. This is crucial for MPHs as there is
verted into the standardized function call templates in
no point sacrificing interactivity for the augmented functhe implemented framework, and the separate HIPs
tionality. SPH experiments on native SDKs and SPH sysare combined into a single MPH. The MPHs can postems (CHAI3D and HAPTIK) were done in [30], but no
sess either identical I/O DoF (in the case of two Phancomparisons on MHPs have been done previously. We
tom Omnis) or different I/O DoF (in the case of Novint
therefore have conducted a series of system performance
Falcon and Phantom Omni, which have 3 DoF in/3 DoF
comparison tests running on top of different frame out and 6 DoF in/3 DoF out, respectively).
works and focused on the primitive but crucial data I/O
Case 2: This case is based on a standard Force Dimenthroughput scenarios. Our comparisons are among the
sion Omega 6 and was initially proposed and implemented
native SDK [OpenHaptics Toolkit (OHTK) and Novint
in [12]. It consists of a standard SPH device, the Omega 6
SDK], SPH framework (CHAI3D), and the proposed
22

IEEE SyStEmS, man, & CybErnEtICS magazInE Janu ar y 2016



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2016

Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2016 - Cover1
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2016 - Cover2
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2016 - 1
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2016 - 2
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2016 - 3
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Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2016 - Cover3
Systems, Man & Cybernetics - January 2016 - Cover4
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