Today, Microsoft announced it will release a non-commercial Kinect for Windows software development kit from Microsoft Research later this spring. The intent of releasing a “starter kit” for application developers is to make it easier for academic research and enthusiast communities to create even richer experiences using Kinect technology.
The Kinect for Windows SDK from Microsoft Research is being developed and released by Microsoft Research (MSR) in collaboration with the Interactive Entertainment Business (IEB) to support a growing community of academic researchers and enthusiasts who are exploring potential applications built using Kinect.
The starter kit will give academic researchers and enthusiasts access to deep Kinect system capabilities such as audio, system APIs, and direct control of the sensor. Microsoft will deliver a commercial version of the SDK later. There are no further details to share at this time.
Microsoft has deep investments in R&D in natural user interfaces (NUI). NUI is part of the company’s long term vision of creating computers that are intuitive to use and able to do far more for us. The fruits of those investments manifesting across many of Microsoft’s products, including Kinect for Xbox 360, Windows Phone 7, Microsoft Surface 2.0, Bing for Mobile and Office 2010 Mini Translator.
This announcement of the Microsoft Kinect for Windows SDK reflects Microsoft’s desire to unleash the magic of the NUI technology to a broader set of academic researchers and the enthusiasts by empowering them with the tools to create exciting applications with the use of Kinect technology.
Microsoft Research issued a statement today at http://www.research.microsoft.com.
Xbox Kinect Adventures
Gizmodad bought Kinect Adventures for Christmas. We have been playing it most nights. The Ridgeway which is my favourite game is an obstacle course where you have to jump, duck and dive.
The aim is to beat your partner by doing the course as quick as you can while collect coins. I have yet to beat Gizmodad, not for trying though.
The first time we played I thought I was going to die, I knew I was very unfit but thought I would be able to do a bit of jumping.
We have played this with my parents as well and it is a great party game, I think after playing my dad was hooked and he will try and get a Kinect just to play this game.
After playing a few days it gets slightly easier but still brings me out in a sweat.
Xbox Kinect Sports
I haven’t played this game as much as the adventures but had great fun playing bowling with my family.
My favourite game on Kinect Sports is the track and field. You have a go at running, long jump, javelin, discus, and hurdles. Its safe to say I came mostly last but had a surprise with the discus and came first. The hurdles were the funniest to play as I am not too good at combining running and jumping.
Xbox Dance Central
I have been playing this most nights as I have been trying to get better. The first time I played it I was so bad I wanted to give up but Gizmodad kept encouraging me to carry on.
I started with the songs I new and have become quite good at the first song Poker Face. I haven’t yet beaten Gizmodad’s score but am proud of getting close to his score.
Out of all the games I have found this one to be the one that makes me ache, a couple of days in and I found it really worked my waist.
I would recommend all these games but if you were to buy just one I would suggest the Adventures as it is a great game to play with friends and family.