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Microsoft Kinect Turns 1, Opening Up to Serious Business

Almost one year ago, on November 4, 2010, Microsoft launched one of the most revolutionary devices on the market today – the Kinect. It's entirely possible that Microsoft didn't know what it had on its hands. After all, the Kinect was a gaming peripheral for the Xbox – hardly serious business. But then the hacking community got its hands on it, making it so much more.

Microsoft's new TV ad for the Kinect recognizes all the other uses of this technology. Check it out below:

While these are dramatizations, they're based on real-world work. Tedesys, a technology startup in Cantebria, Spain, that is working on software that will make Kinect useful in an operating room.

During surgeries, the doctors can use gestures and motions to review a patient's medical information without the need to leave the sterile environment to touch paper or keyboard.

"Using Microsoft Kinect, they can check information on the patient without touching anything, and in this way they can avoid [the risk] of bacterial infection," said Jesus Perez, Tedesys' chief operating officer.

Microsoft announced that it will release a commercial SDK in 2012, meaning that the Kinect will officially move from being just a gaming peripheral to a full market device. Microsoft named Toyota, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and Razorfish as companies developing commercial Kinect applications.

UPDATE: The Windows SDK has hit beta 2 and it's available for download here.

  • cookies
    Awesome. I dig the orchestral version of Pixies - Where is my Mind.
    Reply
  • CKKwan
    Kinect used in sugeries?! What if it reads the hand movement wrongly and cut the wrong part ....
    Reply
  • house70
    CKKwanKinect used in sugeries?! What if it reads the hand movement wrongly and cut the wrong part ....Dude, it's for interacting with data onscreen without having to touch anything... not to actually cut someone. Read the article.
    Reply
  • LORD_ORION
    Yep, next iteration of the device will be exciting to see.
    Reply
  • de5_Roy
    kinect is an invention?
    kinect's uses in different situations make it better tham wii's controllers. i wonder if nintendo will ever let wii controllers be hacked.
    Reply
  • michaelahess
    There are a LOT of "hacks" for wii controllers, I use one for a giant white board for example. I also use it to play old games on my android tablets. Just because they haven't released an SDK or "allowed" hacking, doesn't mean it's not happening.
    Reply
  • igot1forya
    I'm STILL waiting for MS to make it more useful for navigating the dashboard - it seems like a waste to not integrate it into the whole dashboard. In the least let me tell it to "POWER DOWN" when I want to shut the console off.
    Reply
  • jcb82
    LORD_ORIONYep, next iteration of the device will be exciting to see.
    Most likely, they'll increase the resolution of the images so that they'd be able to capture finer movements like finger movements or facial expressions. But think what's really lacking in the gaming industry is creativity to come up with compelling concepts other than dance central for the system.
    Reply
  • theconsolegamer
    "Almost one year ago, on November 4, 2010, Microsoft launched one of the most revolutionary devices on the market today – the Kinect."

    Hahaha yeah, pretend the PS Eye never existed.
    Reply
  • Self-gloryfing PROPAGANDA.
    Reply