Microsoft unveils even more tempting Kinect offering: Open source
This has people up in arms, in a good way
First it was developer tools, then Kinect for the PC, now Microsoft's given hackers a shot at the Kinect code under an open-source license.
Specifically, Redmond has now released samples of the Kinect code under an Apache license to serve as a template for hackers building apps for the hands-free motion controller that's been proving so alluring to techies across many sectors.
Samples cover audio, colour, depth, face tracking, infrared, shapes, skeletal viewers, gestures and speech basics and are available in a variety of C#, C++, Visual Basic and DirectX.
You'll need the SDK and Microsoft toolkit to work with the samples.
Microsoft's released code to enable faster uptake, so you don't need to bother downloading and installing the full developer toolkit if all you want is just a few pieces.
Why? Microsoft wants feedback from the community on how to improve the samples, and - therefore - the Kinect code.
Code's been released to Microsoft's open source project hosting side CodePlex with a Git repository to permit cloning and forking.
Kinect's success has surpassed Microsoft's expectations. When Microsoft released the device in November 2010, it was simply as a hands-free motion-sensing alternative Xbox controller.
The Kinect won a Guinness World Record for fastest selling consumer electronics device: and now hackers have gone well beyond games to re-deploy Kinect hardware - as seen here. Microsoft's own researchers are using the Kinect's 3D camera too, in experiments to attempt to construct Star Trek-style holodecks and Minority Report-esque 3D touch-displays.
Open sourcers also got in on the act, with a race to build Kinect drivers for Linux shortly after launch.
Microsoft responded by making Kinect easier to access. It's released a Kinect sensor for PC, SDKs to build non commercial and commercial apps for the PC, and firmware updates to permit use of the controller at distances closer than the usual sitting-room gaming range. ®
Re: Plenty of hardware available.
There are lots of iThings, computers, automobiles and houses for sale second hand as well. Your anti MS babble is irrelevant.
It's an interesting input device
Can you use it to detect a users expression of horror when they realise they've made a cataclysmic mistake?
I can see an application here for an automated undo feature :)
EPIC KINECT FAIL!
Re: ... Guinness World Record for fastest selling consumer electronics device:
Or... The following 8 months the sales fell off a cliff because everyone who wanted/could afford one had one already. It's a much more simple and plausible answer than "big faceless megacorp evilly attempted to make it look like their fabulously popular product was more popular than it actually was."
Why does it always have to be a conspiracy?
Will you be accusing them of burning Kinnects next, so that they can stuff the channel with more of them, as there as been space filled up?
Re: Plenty of hardware available.
There's been millions of wiimotes sold as well. Doesn't mean it's a killer device. All it proves is the marketing worked.
If *you* enjoy flailing around in front of a camera just for the sake of it then more power to you I guess. I'll stick with a control scheme that's not likely to knock over my beer and go to the gym when I want exercise.