How can I convert an Atari 2600 Paddle (knob) controller connect to my old laptop

I am working on modding my old laptop inside a destroyed Atari 2600, and i'm running into a problem adapting the Paddle controllers to be visible to Windows, and I don't have the money to buy 2 of the adapters that are sold online.
I know it's possible to convert a pentiometer to a PC (which is what's inside the Paddle controllers, a 5v pot) and I just need a way to make it seen on my PC (either as a joypad through software or modification of something)
I have plenty of old hardware available, including keyboards (which will be used to adapt the Joysticks) and ball mice (which I think might work properly, Convert the pot movement to X\Y movement, and the buttons to Right\Left click)
What I am wondering is if anyone has ever converted these to PC before WITHOUT any sort of fancy, pay for, pre-made adapter.
Ports available on my laptop emulator: serial, Parallel, 1x USB, IRDA, Dell Expantion port, 1x PS\2 port (2x if I build an adapter)

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I think you'll have to get a stella adapter. (google it) I have a couple paddle controllers, and I opened one up. basically, how the paddle works is a current flows through it, and when you turn the knob in one direction, the resistance is increased, and in the other direction, it decreases. i guess the atari interprets the resistance as a coordinate. there isn't a circuit board inside the paddle controller, just a button and a potentiometer.
lemonie7 years ago
How do you want the paddle to work with Windows? I can see you using it as a game-controller for Pong, but is that really the sort of thing you want it for.
You'll surely only get x or y movement from a paddle. Oh, you want to use two paddles instead of a mouse like an Etch-a-sketch, that's it isn't it?

pizzaboy192 (author)  lemonie7 years ago
Sorry for taking so long to reply...
I want to use it with an Atari Emulator, for that real paddle expierence.
If it's possible, the emulator I'm using currently takes the X and Y movements from a mouse, and uses them in place of the paddles, and I'd be using the mouse controller as a surrogate for the $20 adapter that I could buy.
Mice use position / movement tracking, I'm not too sure about paddles, but the idea that the operate in a completely different way enters my head.
If you know how the paddles work (in electronic terms) you may need a micro controller interface to (e.g.) USB.

Can you find out exactly how the paddles work, or how they are constructed?

pizzaboy192 (author)  lemonie7 years ago
From what I've gathered, the Paddles are a simple 5V potentiometer and just spit out the position the the Atari. I don't have the paddles to use for actual testing, but my cousin has done research for me, and has given me that data.