Touch sensor - Arduino - Isadora

  • Hello Izzy World,

    I am in need of some advice triggering a video in Isadora using a touch sensor via Arduino.

    I am thinking of using this sensor:

    I have installed the Arduino app on my Mac and I know that I have to upload code into the Arduino to get it to work.

    I understand that Isadora has a serial input watcher.

    Everything else is a mystery! Please could someone advice on the following:

    • Most appropriate Arduino Unit
    • How I connect the touch sensor to the Arduino - a drawing would be useful
    • How the Ardunio connects to my Mac - USB / Ethernet / WIFI? What are your recommendations 
    • The code that I enter into the Arduino app
    • An example Izzy patch

    I know that I am asking for a lot of information but this forum always delivers!

    Best wishes


  • Hello Simon,

    for this kind of project you can stick to the arduino Uno board.

    To know how to connect your sensor and the arduino sketch to run to get info from it, most likely a quick google search with the name / ref of your sensor will give you a lot of results!

    If you want to receive the infos trough serial, the most direct way will be to connect the arduino board to your Mac with a USB cable.

    To use ethernet you'll need to get an ethernet shield for your board and the use of OSC instead of Serial might be more relevant (At least that's what I would do :) )

    If you choose to use serial communication, just make sure to match the baudrate in your arduino sketch and your Isadora input (in communication => serial Port setup)

  • @Maxime thank you really useful and simple to understand!

    If I go for the unit you suggest and get the additional Ethernet shield, does the Arduino app and the Arduino unit still communicate over USB?

    Any additional info from other Izzy users would still be much appreciated.

    Best, Simon

  • @Paz yes, every shield is an expansion that let all the rest working. You can have ethernet, wi fi, DMX, MIDI on the same device.

  • @Maximortal @Maxime if I connect Isadora and the Arduino Uno via ethernet what additional code do I need to input so that they communicate over OSC?

    I want to tell the Arduino Uno to send an OSC message to Isadora: stating "Play Video" when the Arduino recognises that the touch sensor has been triggered.

    Many thanks!

  • @Paz Start with the serial first, and then implement the OSC if necessary.

    You just need to read the value of the sensor (google your sensor name + arduino) and send it trough serial (

    The arduino website is really full of examples, you just need to separate your project into little steps, look example for each of them, and then combine :)

  • I'm not good in coding, but what is easy to do is ctrl+c and ctrl+v ;-). Web is full of code for arduino, and most of coders comment very well their code so you can easily grab just the lines you need. I agree with @Maxime, start with a low number of feature then add in one by one, this let you more control in what you are doing and teach you more than a pre made full feature solution.

  • @Maximortal Good advise, thank you.

  • Hi paz
    I have been configuring an Arduino board with a Pixart sensor. I was also collecting information from the web and then making modifications. I chose the Arduino MKR1000 because it comes with Wi-Fi, so I can send the data using the OSC protocol. You can put the sensor together with the Arduino board on the stage and receive the wireless data. You only need to power the Arduino board without connecting through the USB port.
    I attached an Arduino sketch in case it serves as reference.


  • @jandraka et al thank you for your swift responses the advise has been so valuable. 

    I purchased an Arduino and touch sensor to try out in our rehearsal this afternoon and I was able to trigger Isadora successfully with this little system. During the workshop we actually decided that this approach was not ideal for the performers to interact with so the Artistic Director has opted for a small i cube x system. Should be with us on Monday to test. I'm sure I'll be back on the forum with new questions very soon 😄

    A great day of new learning, thanks Izzy community!