10 Unusual Uses for the Wii Remote

For most of us, the Wii remote was cool because it let us swing our arm to bowl or play tennis, but for the more technically minded, the Wii remote was a cool, inexpensive piece of bluetooth, motion-detecting hardware that could be used in a variety of ingenious ways.

Wii remotes
Lnk.Si via Flickr

Did you know you can use the Wii remote as a PC mouse? Me neither, but apparently if your Mac or Windows PC can connect with Bluetooth devices you can put your Bluetooth software on discover, press the 1 and 2 buttons on your remote, and you’re connected.

Wii Theramin
Ken Moore

Once you’ve connected a Wiimote to a computer there is no end to the clever things you can create. For example, connect a laptop, synthesizer, and Wii remote and you can create a Theremin synthesizer. It sure looks like more fun than playing Wii Music.

Wii white board
Johnny Lee

The first Wii Whiteboard was mocked up by Johnny Lee, who has come up with a number of ingenious uses for the Wii remote, and his design was given a makeover by other users.

Mojowijo Wii remote sex toy
Mojowijo

A phone company’s advertising slogan used to be, “reach out and touch someone,” but it took the Wii remote and some ingenuity to do just that – kind of.

The Mojowijo is a sex toy you attach to a Wii remote. You can connect it to another Wii remote via Skype, and when the person with one remote shakes it, the other remote starts rumbling.

Mojowijo launched this at the height of Wii-mania, but now that it's in the past, the site is advertising a similar product that can be controlled via apps.

Wii Remote Head Tracker
Johnny Lee

Another Johnny Lee Wiimote creation, a head-mounted sensor bar allows a Wiimote under the TV to keep track of your head placement. A computer uses this information to move things on screen so that users can look at objects from different angles as they move around.

Wii Remote Optical Tracker
Seoul National University College of Medicine
Scientists are working on a way to use a Wii remote as a low-cost diagnostic tool for kids with ocular torticollis, an eye disease that affects the angle of a sufferer’s head. This is quite similar to the head tracker mentioned above, but with a very different purpose
Wii Remote Finger Tracker
Johnny Lee

Remember in Minority Report how people could drag things across the screen with their fingers? Well, this isn’t much like that, regardless of the claims of its designer (once again, Johnny Lee).

Some doctors found they could replace a mouse and keyboard with the Wii remote when they wanted to analyze CT and MRI images. The goal was to simply find a way to do so more comfortably, allowing doctors to cycle through images with a twist of the wrist.

Wii Remote Hologram Machine
Shinoda Lab

Some folks at the Shinoda Lab in Tokyo combined a Wii remote, a computer and a tactile device that blows air to allow users to interact with a holographic image and actually feel it as well.

Hold your hand out and see a holographic ball fall on it as a puff of air gives you the sensation of a ball hitting your hand. When are we going to get video games that do that?

Wii Remote Flight Hoax
Floris Kaayk

Sure, you can use the Wii remote to create some sort of ingenious technology, but you can also use it to pretend to create some sort of ingenious technology.

That’s what some Netherlander did, creating a video in which it appeared that he was flying using a winged apparatus attached to his back that he controlled by waving his Wii-remote-equipped arms up and down.