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spanielgita 25th July, 2006 02:46 AM

control you pc using xbox remote and voice
This project is to complement my diy projector. I find it rather tiresome to be playing about with the pc when i have freinds round to watch a movie. i would rather sit on my rear and control the pc remotely. So i had a look to see if someone had done it before and sure enough, they had.

The xbox remote control, it turns out, can be hacked so it will be compatible with pcs. Once you have rewired the reciever with a usb cable and installed the xbox remote driver/utility then you are ready to do basic remote control of media applications.

with the addition of a program called autohotkey this simple control can be expanded into something much more complex. instead of just using the controller to play, pause, mute media applications it is possible to write scripts to basically do anything! including emulation of the mouse and the ability to shutdown the computer.

the original idea;

links on that site give explanations of how to wire up the remote
and where to download xbox drivers + autohotkey

All of this has been done already. My aim is to improve on what has been done already and add my own ideas, namely the addition of a push to talk voice button and more complex scripts. One button on the xbox remote will be dedicated to the voice control interface which will, of course, require a mic and voice recognition software. This will enable me to use the remote to control things like mouse emulation and volume control and have the ability to use voice commands for things like shutting down the computer.

The voice software is a program called shoot which uses the voice regoniton software which comes with XP. It enables you to create scripts which will trigger certain hotkeys when a certain word of phrase is detected by the program via the mic. i have played about with xp's recognition software and after training it for 5-10 mins its is very accurate in picking up phrases. I even tried singing the phrases today and they were working each time!

The xbox utility allows you to use the xbox buttons to trigger hotkeys also. Autohotkey is then used to detect these hotkeys and run the corresponding scripts to do pretty much anything on your pc.

I am also thinking to install xp media centre on my pc to make things easier to navigate. I dont have any experience of the interface and don't know exactly what it does. Any comments from users with this edition of xp would be greatly appreciated. Microsofts site seems to pretty vague about what the real benefits of media centre are, maybe there arent many at all? well i would like to know either way.

also i will be dealing with moving things between a dual monitor setup remotely, which may prove quite difficult. Time will tell i guess.

The best thing about this project is the cost, which is minimal - epsecially if you already have an xbox remote controller system as all the software used is free. i will be posting my scripts as a guide to others, so hopefully you can just adjust them or expand on them. i will try my best to make the scripts concise and well commented so you know what is going on.

hope all is clear, i will be posting my progress on this progress as it happens. Feel free to add your thoughts and ideas or just general comments! :)

cadaveca 25th July, 2006 06:21 AM

What will encode your voice?...something will have to, if the mic is on the remote. 'Suppose if the mic was well placed in a room tho, you wouldn't need concern yourself with that. Guaranteed the remote will work with pc, as does the xbox controller. The two aren't that different.

spanielgita 25th July, 2006 11:11 AM

I was thinking of getting a wireless mic and fitting it to the remote but i cant seem to find anything that will suit the job. At the moment the mic on my headset picks up the sound from quite a distance so i'll maybe look at a wireless mic for a future upgrade.

yeh i suppose you could even use the wireless xbox controller as a remote, if you wanted to.

Samuknow 25th July, 2006 01:13 PM

This is an excelent project.

When you get it all worked out you should do a step by step tutorial on it.

I look forward to seing your progress.

Got EpOx 25th July, 2006 05:50 PM

What about an Xbox 360 playback kit, would that be worth trying out?

Daniel ~ 25th July, 2006 06:17 PM

Front Page spanielgita

spanielgita 25th July, 2006 07:02 PM


Originally Posted by Got EpOx
What about an Xbox 360 playback kit, would that be worth trying out?

i dont think there are any drivers for the 360 remote at the moment. i could be wrong of course, but you definately need the drivers to make it work on the pc.

Yas!!! FRONT PAGE :) i feel so honoured.

Daniel ~ 25th July, 2006 07:45 PM

So do we! See how that works! Everybody benefits! ":O}

spanielgita 28th July, 2006 10:47 PM

A quick update:

Moving flat on monday so i am pretty busy at the moment, but as soon as i have a free moment i will do more on the remote. Will prob come up with a how to in the near future.

managed to get an official xbox remote from ebay for 6 pounds including delivery which is nice. :) hasnt arrived yet but i should have it soon.

thinking about how i am going to organise all my media in the one interface, this would affect what buttons do what on the remote.

Installed windows xp media centre but unfortunatley, there is no support for my tv card. I would recommend it if your tv card does support it though, its a nice interface... maybe not worth the money though if you already have xp.

I had a look for an alternative media interface solution which will support all my media. Found something called media portal, a great free open source media centre type application for xp.


its supports quite alot of tv cards, including mine which is a bonus. The interface is really nice also, almost as slick as media centre.There are a few different skins included(something that i didnt see for media centre). More skins can be downloaded and there is a program which allows you to create your own skins.
Media portal basically does all media centre does and more, and the main sites forum great for finding solutions to any problems you may have.
It isnt a full release yet and has the occasional bug, im sure these will be ironed out with future releases though ;)

Daniel ~ 28th July, 2006 10:55 PM

So like, Good things are coming! ":O}

spanielgita 7th August, 2006 02:38 PM

another quick update:

still have no internet, ordering it today though...

Soldered the xbox receiver with the usb cable, and it works perfectly with the pc now! programmed it to do volume control and file navigation. it also uses the top display button to make the voice control software listen and "unlisten" so to speak. so i press display, then say a command, it'l do it and i press diplay again so it aint listening.

So far got it doing my shutdown and starting programs. works well with the media portal interface also. :)

more to come soon (hopefully)


Daniel ~ 7th August, 2006 05:17 PM

We haven't forgotten you! ":O}

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