We've all seen Kinect: the amazing game input device for Xbox 360 that enables controller-less console game play and control of other Xbox experiences.
It's fascinating to discover how this device uses array microphones, a projected IR dot pattern, an IR camera, and a regular RGB camera to sense the surrounding environment. With these inputs, the Kinect sensor can isolate and record sounds, generate a room depth-map, and build 3D models of human faces and skeletons. It's safe to say that Kinect is a game-changer.
Kinect for Windows is all about enabling Windows PCs to take advantage of Kinect. The Kinect for Windows 1.5 SDK and Toolkit includes Windows drivers for the Kinect sensor, a full SDK (Software Development Kit) a toolkit (sample code, tools), and supporting documentation.
Here's a list of what you need to start writing Kinect apps:
- Kinect sensor - (There are actually two Kinect sensors that work with the Kinect for Windows SDK and Toolkit:
- Kinect for Xbox 360 sensor (says "XBOX 360" on the front) - these devices are licensed for development purposes only, and do not support "Near Mode".
- Kinect for Windows sensor (says "KINECT" on the front) - these devices are optimized for Windows experiences, are licensed for use with Windows PCs, and also support "Near Mode")
- Windows PC with Windows 7 or later Windows OS
- Visual Studio (Express or full)
- Kinect for Windows downloads (SDK and Toolkit)
Developers can use either sensor to get started, but deployments need to be on a Kinect for Windows sensor which can be purchased online.
Here are some cool new Kinect Hacks:
First up, Human Presence Detection With Kinect:
You can read more about this porject here.
"The World of Coca Cola with Kinect" project shows how the Kinect is being used my a major corporation in the "real world."
Building Real-World Kinect Applications, at TechEd, Tim Huckaby, founder of InterKnowlogy and Microsoft Regional Director talked about what applications you can build with Kinect.
Tim shows off some coolreal-world applications driven by Kinect including interactive signage and how Kinect can be used in the healthcare industry.
The Kinect helps turn a living room table into an augmented reality playground, project shows how the author combined the Kinect, XNA and his living room table into an awesome augmented reality experience.
My Little [Kinected] Robot project connects two of our favorite things, the Kinect and a robot.
Winscape Kinect Demo: