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Kinect

Medical

Kinect measures body thickness to lessen radiation exposure from X-rays

The depth-sensing capabilities of the Microsoft's Kinect has seen it put to use in a number of unexpected applications, such as helping Parkinson's sufferers to walk and the visually impaired to practice yoga. Scientists now claim to have expanded the applications for the gaming technology to include a more precise approach to X-ray imaging, which they say can limit exposure to radiation by measuring the thickness of a subject's body parts.Read More

VR

VR system simulates the effects of dementia

It may be an overused proverb, but it's a good one: "Tell me and I will forget. Show me and I will remember. Involve me and I will understand." That's the definitely the thinking behind Virtual Dementia Experience, a virtual reality system created by four multimedia graduates from Australia's Swinburne University. It provides caregivers with an interactive simulation of what it's like to suffer from dementia, so they can better understand what their patients are experiencing.Read More

Health & Wellbeing

Kinect hacked to allow Parkinson's sufferers to walk the line

Most will be familiar with the telltale shaking of Parkinson's disease, but that isn't the only symptom sufferers must endure. They must also contend with what is known as Freezing of Gait (FOG), where the sufferer's muscles can freeze mid-stride, making them feel like their feet are glued to the ground or resulting in them falling over. Researchers at Brunel University London have hacked a Kinect sensor to overcome this.Read More

Electronics

Inexpensive new depth-sensing camera could outperform the Kinect

Although the Microsoft Kinect was designed first and foremost for gaming, the fact that it's a cheap but reliable depth-sensing camera has led to its use in everything from navigation systems for the blind to user-following grocery carts to remote-control cyborg cockroaches. Soon, however, it may be facing some competition. The Northwestern University-designed Motion Contrast 3D Scanning (MC3D) camera should also be economical, while offering higher-quality imaging and the ability to operate in sunlight. Read More

VR

Tech demo lets you visit the International Space Station in VR

Wondrous as today's technology is, there remains no feasible way to put ordinary people in space. Except, it seems, through virtual reality. Opaque Multimedia has combined an Oculus Rift headset with Microsoft Kinect 2 motion tracking to make it possible to get a first-hand (virtual) taste of life on – or rather just outside – the International Space Station. Its new tech demo, Earthlight, lets players explore in first person around the outside of the ISS as it orbits the Earth, safe in the comfort of their living room.Read More

Military

Video game gives soldiers better skills to handle bomb-sniffing dogs

For centuries, dogs have served in a variety of roles alongside humans, including faithful companion and guardian. The latter function is one that’s seen more focus in recent times as canines have been trained to sniff out buried improvised explosive devices (IEDs) before they are detonated. The dog’s handler also needs to be trained to detect subtle cues from the animal, which is where a video game developed by the US military comes into play. Read More

Games

RoomAlive transforms your living room into an interactive video game

Microsoft Research has moved on from IllumiRoom, its concept for adding visuals to the periphery of gamers' television sets. After concluding that that system -- which used a Kinect camera and a projector to bring video games into the living room -- was too expensive to be released commercially, the company has revealed RoomAlive, which is even more expensive and even less practical. Thankfully, it's also an intriguing glimpse at the possible future of gaming.Read More

Games

Microsoft to sell Xbox One without Kinect, and drop paid-only access to entertainment apps

Microsoft has announced a turn-around on its policy towards the somewhat controversial Kinect sensor, usually bundled with its next-gen Xbox One console. In what is likely a response to pressure from both consumers and the strong sales of Sony’s competing PlayStation 4 system, the company has today announced that it will sell its latest console without the Kinect sensor, lowering the price of entry to the system.Read More

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