Today’s generation of kids is in a prime position to be the recipients of their parent’s obsession with computer technology. When I was a kid, home computers were only just starting to hit the market. My brother immediately figured out how to hack into Activision’s “Ghostbusters” PC game, however, my dad stayed as far away from the digital monster as he could for as long as he could. Today, tech geeks have had 30 years to tinker with their desktop toys, so it is no wonder that mobile developer Jim Rutherford created the Minecraft Hue Project for his son.
Rutherford and his son created an application that syncs the day and night cycles of Minecraft with Phillips Hue light bulbs to create an immersive gaming experience that goes beyond anything my dad could have ever created. Although, he did manage to scare me on April Fools Day with a giant spider while I was playing the text-based computer game of “The Hobbit.”
Rutherford and his son created a code hack on their iPad that allows them to connect the interface of the Hue controls with an app that lets them change the time of day on their Minecraft game. It is quite clever, if not excessive.
The program is set to increase and decrease the illumination of to bulb as the sun rises and sets on Minecraft. This is easy to achieve since a 24-hour period goes by in about 10 minutes in the game. When it is pitch black outside and difficult to see more than a few pixilated feet in front of you, even with a light, it is pitch black in your room as well. Watch out for those zombie villagers.
The time of day in Minecraft is controlled by an app created by Rutherford. After all, he is a developer. The iPad app gives you a heads up display showing the time of day. You can calibrate the time in Minecraft and even adjust the sun’s position by dragging it across the screen. Of course, all of this is connected to the Phillips Hue light bulb so that it will adjust the illumination based on what time it is in the game.
Check out the video below to see Rutherford’s description of the Minecraft Hue project. Click here for a direct link to YouTube if you can’t see the clip. He plans to launch the app in the App Store someday.