The Kinect, hit-or-miss as it may be when it comes to actual gaming, has certainly inspired the community. Everything from multi-touch surfaces to feeling up a virtual lady has been created, in just the two short months since the accessory’s release. As you may know, PrimeSense is the company that came up with the Kinect before it was the Kinect. And now they’re looking to start something new… and open.
PrimeSense is putting together an Open Natural Interaction consortium, presumably to establish some basic standards for Kinect-like devices to operate by, get a few libraries for developers to use, and promote new hardware. The “OpenNI” project is still pretty much in its gestational phase, but PrimeSense is probably the right company to lead it right now. With luck they can get some of the majors on board and get, say, OpenCL or CUDA support for depth information processing, that kind of thing. Originally I had in the headline that it was open source, but that’s not really specified. We can hope, but since they don’t mention it at the outset, I doubt it’s going to be totally open.
Man, I can’t wait until I can clear the desktop by waving my hand, rotate photos with a gesture, and so on. Loving it.