Geek-out time!

Okay, displaying my geekery here more than somewhat. For those who don’t know, the success of the Wii has both Sony and Microsoft working on their own solutions for non-traditional, motion-based video game controllers. The PlayStation Move is much more similar to the Wiimote than Microsoft’s offering for the XBox 360, which is called Kinect. Kinect basically uses cameras and an array of sensors to track objects, including human bodies, in 3-D space without you having to actually hold anything: you just move and gesture, and things happen on the screen. Naturally, Microsoft doesn’t want anyone else messing with it; and naturally, the thing was reverse-engineered within a day or two of release and now techy folks are starting to do wild and crazy things with it.

Which is all just a long preamble so that I can post this cool video:

This guy takes video from the Kinect camera, adds the depth information that the Kinect also provides in real-time, and creates a 3-D extruded video that can be viewed from any angle. If you’ve seen Minority Report, you can see that the result looks pretty much like the scene where Tom Cruise watches holographic videos of his lost family — except now anyone can do that, not just a Hollywood studio, using $150 of retail hardware. I’m looking forward to what’s next! (Especially since, for now at least, I have no interest in the Kinect for actual, you know, gaming…)

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2 Responses to Geek-out time!

  1. Ed says:

    I wonder how long it’ll be before someone manages to take the input from several Kinect cameras and stitch them together to create full 3D video. Cost doesn’t seem to be a significant barrier any more…

  2. lornebeaton says:

    Nope. One obvious thing was his “shadow” — seems like it would be simple to pick up the background and fill it in bit by bit as he moved around. From there, you could move to dynamically gathering information about objects — turn something around in front of the camera and then you could see the back side of it in 3D. How hard would it be to do that with a human figure? I suppose all that’s on his to-do list.

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