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Posted on 01/02/2013
One of the things that the Kinect made possible after KinectHackers had a chance to play around with it was to create interesting alternatives to the mouse. People didn’t have to spend a fortune to have something that would let them use gestures in order to control their computer setups.
Today’s featured hack is another attempt at creating a better gestural interface for computers. What’s different about this hack is that the developers are promising that their app, called 3Gear SDK, makes the Kinect “finger precise”:
“We’re using 3D camera hardware (e.g., the Microsoft Kinect) to make this possible. However, existing Kinect software only work on large, full-body motions. We’ve developed software that creates a finger-precise representation of what your hands are doing, capturing tiny motions of your index finger and subtle movements of the wrist. This means your applications can use small, comfortable gestures such as pinching and pointing rather than sweeping arm motions.
“To make this work, we had to develop new computer graphics algorithms for reconstructing the precise pose of the user’s hands from 3D cameras. A key component of the algorithm is to use a database of pre-computed 3D images corresponding to each possible hand configuration in the workspace. The 3D image database is efficiently sampled and indexed to enable extremely fast searches. At run-time, the images from the 3D cameras are used to “look up” the pose of the hand using the database. This way, the user’s hand pose can be determined within milliseconds — fast enough for interactive applications and a short enough time to avoid the effects of “lag” or high latency.”
It’s definitely interesting to see it in action and, judging by what’s presented in their demo video, another hack that could definitely go a long way.
To learn more about 3Gear SDK and other projects from the developer, be sure to visit the link below.
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Posted on 12/31/2012
ViiM is a software development kit for the 3D sensors built on top of OpenNI, providing all its functionalities and also adds new high-level features. ViiM’s middleware takes care of all the software architecture and processing routines, running silently in the background, allowing developers, from novice to expert, to focus all their attention solely on the creation of interactive applications.
According to developer CoVii, ViiM is a revolutionary tool because it offers developers a suit of high-level processing methods, unavailable until now, on the market or only existing in separate tools. For instance most SDKs available on the market have gesture recognition or skeleton tracking thought for specific purposes. ViiM not only offers both features for all kind of applications but also offers many more advanced features.
ViiM already recognizes 14 gestures, ranging from basic wave to more complex ones, such as double click or backspace. Regarding skeleton tracking ViiM can track up to 15 skeletons and not only does the detection of the skeleton itself but can also calculate joints positions, rotation angles, matrixes and quaternions.
The other processing units are user segmentation, distinguishing users from static background and detecting multiple users with ID differentiation; user cropping that removes the static background from the scene and optical flow which detects the amount of movement on the scene, computing the velocity vector.
ViiM SDK opens a whole new world of possibilities to easily create NUI applications and integrate them into different graphic engines (based on OpenGL or DirectX). By combining ViiM’s units, developers have the power to create more and more fantastic optimized applications no matter the business area or purpose.
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Posted on 12/28/2012
Fruit Ninja is a true gaming phenomenon. Hardly any mobile device doesn’t have some version of the fun time-waster installed. It actually also made the cross-over to consoles and was released as a full game for the Kinect. But if you’re looking for a slightly different way to play this awesome game, then you may want to check out today’s featured hack.
Today, our featured hack shows you how you can play Fruit Ninja with your fingers…
“Isn’t that already how you normally play the game?” Some of you may be asking that question and you are correct. But what’s different about this is that you won’t need a touchscreen. All you have to do is make swipes with your finger across the air to chop up those juicy fruits. It’s similar to how you play the official version of Fruit Ninja with the Kinect but this way, you won’t need a whole lot of living room space!
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Posted on 12/26/2012
Holidays are always the perfect excuse to get plastered. And while we don’t have any Christmas-themed KinectHacks for you today, we do have one that features Absolut vodka, a great companion for a chilly December night and one drink that’s sure to liven up any party.
While the Kinect hack itself doesn’t feature anyone getting wasted, it’s still an interesting concept and very imaginative use of the Kinect to promote the product. Here’s a quick background of the project from the developers:
“We were invited by Absolut, alongside few other Bulgarian artists, to participate into their Absolut Blank campaign. The idea was simple, we could do anything we want, as long as we use a blank white canvas in the form of the Absolut bottle as a foundation. So we went with an interactive installation, where people could express and transform themselves through their body movements, using the Absolut bottle as digital ‘mirror.’”
After checking out the video, don’t you feel like partying with a bottle of vodka in hand? Happy Holidays, everyone!
Check out more of the developer’s projects using the link below.
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Posted on 12/24/2012
When you hear the rock music start blasting from your speakers as soon as you hit play, you’r eprobably thinking that you’re about to watch the trailer to some action movie. Before you turn away, in case action movies aren’t up your alley, hold on and give the entire demo a watch. It;s actually for our featured Kinect hack today which allows users to control their PCs with nothing but gestures.
Here’s a description of the app from the developer’s website:
“Orchestra – interactive control system of any content, which can be launched on PC. Using several smoothing algorithms, clench or delay as click and two-hands for scaling you can do anything you want. At home: games, video and audio players, internet surfing. In business: interactive stand, commercial stand, gallery – that is only few options, which are possible with Orchestra. All, which can be done with “mouse”, can be repeated on distance of several meters from projector or presentation panel.”
Granted, the concenpt isn’t new but it’s always interesting to see what KinectHackers out there are trying to introduce to the growing number of gestural PC interfaces powered by the Kinect. Also, if you’re having issues with whatever system you’re using now, then this might be worth a look.
Learn more about Orchestra using the link below!