Tags : :
Originally Posted by EricN on February 3, 2010 at 11:26pm
Axiotron has dropped the ball on Quickflip, their proposed screen rotation utility that would, like the iPhone, automatically adjust the orientation of the display to match the way the user is holding Modbook. They announced last January, a full year ago, that this would be a free download for Modbooks that support display rotation (which so far are only those with Nvidia graphics chips). Well, we are still waiting.
It occurred to me recently that unlike Axiotron's other broken promises for 2009, the Modbook Pro and Synergy Touch, Quickflip is relatively easy to do. In fact, with Amit Singh's AMSTracker (download here) and my meager AppleScript skills, I think this is doable.
The catch is the Modbook's Sudden Motion Sensor(SMS) that detects forces on the Modbook and makes Quickflip possible may need calibration, may work work differently in Modbooks made from different Macbooks, and, to make matters more complicated, I'm concerned that the SMS in my Modbook may not be working properly.
But no problem. We can make this a community effort. I've downloaded AMSTracker and noted its readings for different orientations of my Modbook. If bunch of other Modbook users do the same, I'm confident that we could put together an AppleScript that runs in the background and re-orients the display in response to movements of the Modbook.
The AMSTracker reads the forces (accelerations) on the SMS in the x, y, and z directions.
For example, when my Modbook is flat on the floor, AMSTracker generates the following output:
Last login: Wed Feb 3 17:11:47 on ttys000
$ /Volumes/AMSTracker\ 0.34/AMSTracker ; exit;
AMS hardware present and initialized
-5 -1 12
So for flat, the readings are x: -5, y: -1 z: 12.
I've made a bunch of other measurements.
First, rotating around the x-axis:
For +90º rotation about x-axis, x=-7 y=-1 z=11.
For +45º rotation about x-axis, x=-14 y=-1 z=-51.
For -90º rotation about x-axis, x=-10 y=-1 z=10.
For -45º rotation about x-axis, x=-7 y=-1 z=81.
Then, rotating around the y-axis:
For +90º rotation about y-axis, x=-11 y=0 z=7.
For +45º rotation about y-axis, x=-79 y=0 z=14.
For -90º rotation about y-axis, x=-2 y=-2 z=14.
For -45º rotation about y-axis, x=63 y=-1 z=13.
As you can see, my SMS doesn't measure much force in the y-direction. Perhaps this is normal, but I'm guessing not.
Please contribute to the effort. Download AMSTracker, get the readings for these orientations, and post them in a reply below along with the model and processor of your Modbook. Let's make this happen.
Oh, yes, my Modbook is 2.4 GHz core2duo 800 MHz bus speed (from System Profiler or About This Mac) made from an early 2008 Macbook.
Questions and Tasks
Get this SMS/orientation data for a variety of Modbooks:
2.4 GHz core2duo 800 MHz bus speed, early 2008
2.13 GHz core2duo, 1066 Hz Bu,s Nvidia Graphics Mid 2009.
Is there better info on the SMS than Amit Singh's site?
Where is the SMS? Is it on the disk drive? If you replace the hard disk with a solid state drive, will it still work?
Certainly, we could build a GUI script to rotate the display, but there is probably a property list (.plist) file somewhere that controls the display, that would make the script faster and easier. Where is the .plist file and what is the property list key controlling display orientation?
What else should we think about?