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Microsoft to release official Kinect for Windows SDK later this spring

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April 14, 2011

Microsoft is releasing an official Kinect for Windows SDK later this spring

Microsoft is releasing an official Kinect for Windows SDK later this spring

Amid the growing community of Kinect hackers that have turned Microsoft's controller-free gaming device to everything from the obvious Minority Report-style user interfaces to a set of eyes for the visually impaired, Microsoft has announced it will release an official Kinect SDK for Windows 7. At MIX11, the company revealed the non-commercial beta SDK would arrive in the northern spring to give enthusiasts the tools to more easily explore the potential of the device for both gaming and non-gaming applications.

In addition to providing access to the infrared depth and RGB camera data, which were hacked a mere three hours after the device's European launch, the SDK will also provide developers with skeletal tracking capabilities to determine the body positions of up to two people. It will also provide full access to the Kinect's four-element microphone array to allow for noise cancelation and to identify the current sound source via beam formation. Developers will also be given full use of the integrated speech recognition API.

To assist developers, Microsoft will also include documentation for the APIs and a description of the SDK architecture, along with sample code demonstrating how to make use of the functionality of the SDK. Developers will be able to write applications in C#, C++, and Visual Basic.

Onstage at MIX11, the company provided a glimpse of what is possible using the toolkit with a Kinect hooked up to its WorldWide Telescope to allow users to explore the universe using hand gestures. It should be exciting to see what other applications developers come up with when the Kinect for Windows SDK beta is released sometime in the next month or so.

About the Author
Darren Quick Darren's love of technology started in primary school with a Nintendo Game & Watch Donkey Kong (still functioning) and a Commodore VIC 20 computer (not still functioning). In high school he upgraded to a 286 PC, and he's been following Moore's law ever since. This love of technology continued through a number of university courses and crappy jobs until 2008, when his interests found a home at Gizmag.   All articles by Darren Quick
4 Comments

Yes, this way Microsoft will give some boost for Windows in a long run, as future versions of popular OS with no doubt will support Kinect-hardware. Everybody will want it!

Михаил Финогенов
15th April, 2011 @ 07:21 am PDT

my thoughts exactly.

Dewey Buds
15th April, 2011 @ 09:22 am PDT

i'd been waiting for microsoft to do this for a while now :) the mighty PC is still the best game machine!

Blue Lucero
16th April, 2011 @ 12:40 am PDT

So what's the official release date? They said May 16, but that was the beta and only open to academics and other special people. When is the public release?

Matt Tu
15th June, 2011 @ 08:45 am PDT
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