Input Devices for a 3D World

Mystery Devices

From Spacemice

Very little is known about these devices.
If you know anything about them, please contact me!.


A serial 6DOF joystick made by BASYS GmbH (circa 1998)
I have found linux libraries for it, and a few very grainy pictures.

"The SpaceMaster™ is an elastic device with a small range of movement (5 mm in translation and 15° in rotation), manufactured by BASYS GmbH, Erlangen, Germany." -- Shumin Zhai, Ph.D.

They apparently existed at one time. Would like to know if there are any still around.

WAYBACK MACHINE -- Basys Website 2001

CiS Dimension 6


So very little information about this device is online...
Image searches so far, have only returned vague patent drawings, tiny icon sized images, and eBay auction photographs. Hopefully that will soon change, now that I have added a Dimension 6 to my Collection.

However, information about it is still lacking. The pin-out of the proprietary connector is unknown. As are the mode settings controlled by the dip-switches in the bottom of the device.

Any additional information is welcome! Please contact me.

Axsotic (never mass produced)

This usb device was to be built by Axsotic.
There are even good videos of one (a prototype?) operating with 3d software, 3d gaming, and even remote-controlling a flying drone.

Originally developed under the name Globefish [PDF] at Weimar University.
The spinoff company Axsotic was created to commercialize it. -- see: Blog Comments
See Also :: Futuristic 3D mouse originally Arduino powered and 3D printed, article on Hack-A-Day.

Blog Article about the Globefish.

When the spacemice website was started, the Axsotic looked so promising, that it held a place in the Gallery as 'Not Yet In Production' but as of 2014, what had been Axsotic Homepage was reduced to being part of a business portfolio. [Now referred to as the '6D" and can be seen HERE] Unless someone can provide more information about it, or what ever became of it, it will remain here on the mystery page.

UPDATE -- Original website dissolved and domain is for sale.

Monkfish / Axiglaze (apparently Vaporware)

Made in Sweden? The design uses inductive springs as both suspension and motion sensing for the controller. However, the Monkfish website contained no actual photos of their controllers, only CGI renders. The site is no longer associated with the controllers. Did they ever reach production or were they only vaporware?

The last news update was "2008-05-21 Axiglaze AB changes name to Monkfish Instruments AB"

The [WEBSITE LINK REMOVED] had been updated more recently, however it was not much more informative. They even prominently displayed the same render of the 'Desktop' Monkfish model on their homepage.

There were more pictures scattered throughout the site of supposed new models, but they were all CGI renders as well. There were also two broken videos (AVIs embedded in links) which gave no further hints of actual working models. Both websites appeared to be hunting for investors, not customers.

UPDATE -- As of December 2013, the Axiglaze website address now points to a Japanese spammer blog.

UPDATE UPDATE -- Might not be dead yet. Reborn as the 'SpaceCat' by t2i Interaction Laboratory.

UPDATE ^ 3 YouTube Video Demonstration from 2015

Prototype Space-Tec Spaceball Avenger


Amazing what turns up on eBay now and then...

In this case, what claimed to be a prototype controller for the Atari Jaguar which never went into production. It appeared to be very similar in design to the SpaceBall Avenger, SpaceOrb 360, and ASCII Sphere360 for PS1.

From the ebay auction....
(images and text shamelessly lifted from the eBay auction)
This controller was found in a box in the Atari HQ when the company closed its doors. It was at one time in the Atari Museum, I eventually purchased it from owner of the Jaguar Sector. It is a very unique and one of a kind Atari Jaguar controller.

The controller has one button on the bottom, two buttons on the front, one of the overlays has been taped on to prevent it from becoming lost. There are two buttons on the top. The controller has never been tested and I have no idea what it was to be used for. I do not know if the ball spins, it does not seem like it.

Update: Jun-06-2012 -- A moderator from the 3DConnexion Forums commented...
Wow. I guess we left something behind. {at Atari}

This looks like a rapid prototype model that we made a few of for testing the feel and button layout. This was made of a very heavy plastic resin type material (probably from a rubber mold). We may have hollowed out some of them and put a circuitboard in. It would go on to become the Spaceball Avenger.

Update: Jan-11-2017 -- The moderator from the 3DConnexion Forums returns with clarification!
That was not only meant to be connected to a Jaguar, but was. In fact, when OJ was on his slow speed chase in LA, we were at Atari in Sunnyvale/Santa Clara/wherever it was, incorporating support for that device (maybe that very device) into the Jaguar libraries and some games. It was a pretty sad place--no one to be found. We had the run of the place, such as it was. Of course, nothing ever got released. But if you plug it into a Jaguar, it might do something, but probably nothing useful w/o a game that supports it.

3DConnexion SpaceNavigator Keyboard


I have found a few sales references to a SpaceNavigator Keyboard. (CDW, VRLogic, Broker Bin, VRDepot)

One includes the text...
"This product was discontinued as of Tuesday, October 05, 2004."
It appears to be a Multimedia keyboard with a 'navigator' cap molded on the left side.

Lower image from the article "Better Way to Navigate in AutoCAD" -- PCMag June 17, 2003

Update: Apr. 6th, 2012 -- A 3dConnexion Forum Moderator informs me that at least 2 forms of this keyboard were made in limited numbers.

Update: Mar. 3rd, 2014 -- Found an Press Release announcing the 'SpaceNavigator w/ Integrated Keyboard' Officially added it to the Gallery and History. We have yet to see one in the wild, so we only have old low res images of it.

Update: May 26th, 2015 -- We found one! We now have one of these in our Collection!