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Yea Baby! 18 November 2007

Posted by David Wilson in USB Missile.

Houston we have a new launcher! Our friends at DreamCheeky have released a new launcher! Actually it looks identical to the old launcher.USB Rocket Launcher So, how do you know if you’ve got an “old” launcher or one of the “new” ones. Well that’s a challenge while the launcher is still in the box. It turns out that when you connect the launcher to your computer it identifies itself as a “Rocket Baby”.So here’s some information that I have been able to obtain about the launcher:

// USBVendorID  = 2689 (0xa81)

// USBProductID = 1793 (0x701)

// Controls 

// 01  – down

// 02  – up

// 04  – left

// 08  – right

// 10  – fire

// 20  – stop

// 40  – request status


// 1. To fire, Send 0x10

// 2. The motor keeps working now, keep sending 0x40 to ask for status (say, every 100~500ms)

// 3. If 0x00 received, then the missile is not fired.

// 4. If 0x10 received, them missile is fired.

// 5. If the missile is fired, send 0x20 to stop it. 

OK, so that’s all good news. The question you want answered is when will the launcher work with the Mac Missile Launcher software? Well, I’ve been trying… It’s difficult to get it working when I don’t actually have one of these launchers (even when I have the details of the launcher control codes). I’m working with some internet citizens at the moment who have offered to help with the testing. No luck yet, I’ll post again when a new version is available. 



1. ian0 - 20 November 2007

Hi there,

have you heard if anyone has got the Dream Cheeky roll-up piano working on a Mac yet? Even just to get it outputting key-presses would be great, could re-map from there using MAX/MSP or something.



2. David Wilson - 21 November 2007

Hey here!

I’ve seen these things… and was tempted to buy one. haven’t yet though.

I always thought that they would be some form of generic device or HID class device and generally be recognised by the USB subsystem.

I’d be keen to see some ioreg output from the terminal if you can do that with the keyboard plugged in.

Run terminal and copy and paste in the following line…

ioreg -l -n IOUSBCompositeDriver -w 200 > Desktop/ioreg.txt

Then mail to me the file ioreg.txt on your desktop.

– David

3. Nils - 1 December 2007

Stopped working 30 minutes after I got it, software freezes and when the software does work for 10 seconds, the firing system broke.

4. Dustin Kick - 1 December 2007

What kind of debugging output would help you code for the new Dream Cheeky? I just got one, and the limit of my IOKit programming has been to recognize connected IOHID devices, so I can’t claim to know how to fix it myself. I’ve changed the numbers in the .kext (and prefs), and rebuilt that project, which allowed the Missile command program to recognize when the launcher is connected, but it crashes when I try to control it. Let me know what output you would like to see. If it’s at all possible I’d like to get it to work, even a little bit, by Xmas, since it is intended as a gift. Thanks for any help.

5. Dustin Kick - 1 December 2007

Oh, if needed, I can make screen movies, as well.

6. Joey - 26 December 2007

Just got one of these gadgets (rocketbaby version) and spent an hour trying to get it to work on Linux, starting with your code.

I’ve never done any USB programming, so I’m a little lost. Current problems include:
1) This invocation returns -1:
ret = usb_get_driver_np(control->handle, 0, dummy, sizeof(dummy));
2) This invocation also fails (returns -1):
ret = usb_set_configuration(control->handle, 0x0000001);

Any ideas? Is there a bug tracker where I should be posting this stuff?


7. Joey - 26 December 2007

Also, if it’s not too much trouble I’d like to know (high level) how you plan on updating the code, for my own education.

So far I’ve updated the vendor/product id and control codes (going off the info you posted above).

The program is now opening the device, but I’m still getting these two messages:
usb_set_configuration failed
: Operation not permitted


8. Joey - 26 December 2007

Nevermind, just saw that this is in active development on your home page.

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