Posts Tagged ‘kinect’

New Uses for Microsoft’s Kinect Gaming Console

Futuristic computer interface from Minority Report, with Tom CruiseStereo cameras in Microsoft’s Kinect accessory for the Xbox 360 gaming console can see things in 3-D and enable gestures and body movement as human interfaces to video games, eliminating the need for handheld controllers. But hackers are finding other uses beyond gaming.

Within weeks of the device’s release last November, someone posted a $1,000 bounty to whoever posted the first open source Kinect device drivers, according to this Wired magazine article, and Kinect took off.

Microsoft was horrified at first, tried to stop the hackers, and even threatened to prosecute them. But as the company saw the many imaginary new uses, which its own engineers never envisioned, it shifted its stance and started a love affair with the hackers themselves. Now Microsoft openly recruits academic and hobbyist hackers and encourages Kinect hacking with its own software developer toolkit. Some of the many new applications relate to healthcare, and we’ll surely see more soon.

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