Showing posts with label Kinect. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kinect. Show all posts

Friday, February 28, 2014

OpenNI Closing

I Programmer - OpenNI to Close

The OpenNI website, home to a widely used framework for 3D sensing, will be shutdown in April. Fortunately the code will continue to be available via GitHub.


Now we know the bad news. The OpenNI site is to close on April 23, 2014 and software downloads will not be available after this date.

After Apple acquired PrimeSense, its website quickly shut, but the Developers link still points to Open NI:


The status of OpenNI is a not-for-profit whose framework allows developers to create middleware and applications for a range of devices, including the Asus Xtion Pro. It claims to be a widely used community with over 100,000 active 3D developers.

Surely that, together with the "open" nature of its software could have  guaranteed it a longer future?

It seems not.

A thread on the Future of OpenNI reports that ...


More Information


OpenNI on Github

Wow. There was a good deal of thought leadership coming from those using OpenNI. It's a damn shame to see it essentially going away... But since the source will continue to be available there's still hope.

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Can you Kinect me now... Using the Kinect for Windows SDK v1.8's JavaScript API to add voice recognition to your web app...

Kinect for Windows Dev - Using Kinect Webserver to Expose Speech Events to Web Clients

In our 1.8 release, we made it easy to create Kinect-enabled HTML5 web applications. This is possible because we added an extensible webserver for Kinect data along with a Javascript API which gives developers some great functionality right out of the box:

  • Interactions : hand pointer movements, press and grip events useful for controlling a cursor, buttons and other UI
  • User Viewer: visual representation of the users currently visible to Kinect sensor. Uses different colors to indicate different user states
  • Background Removal: “Green screen” image stream for a single person at a time
  • Skeleton: standard skeleton data such as tracking state, joint positions, joint orientations, etc.
  • Sensor Status: Events corresponding to sensor connection/disconnection

This is enough functionality to write a compelling application but it doesn’t represent the whole range of Kinect sensor capabilities. In this article I will show you step-by-step how to extend the WebserverBasics-WPF sample (see C# code in CodePlex  or documentation in MSDN) available from Kinect Toolkit Browser to enable web applications to respond to speech commands, where the active speech grammar is configurable by the web client.

A solution containing the full, final sample code is available on CodePlex. To compile this sample you will also need Microsoft.Samples.Kinect.Webserver (available via CodePlex and Toolkit Browser) and Microsoft.Kinect.Toolkit components (available via Toolkit Browser).


So, What Functionality Are We Implementing?


More specifically, on the server side we will:

  1. Create a speech recognition engine
  2. Bind the engine to a Kinect sensor’s audio stream whenever sensor gets connected/disconnected
  3. Allow a web client to specify the speech grammar to be recognized
  4. Forward speech recognition events generated by engine to web client
  5. Registering a factory for the speech stream handler with the Kinect webserver


While I'll also be highlighting this on the Channel 9 Coding4Fun Kinect Gallery next week, I thought it extra cool...

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio 4 Beta released (Think RDS gets Kinected)

Microsoft Robotics Blog - Announcing Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio 4 Beta

"In my July blog post, we announced the Kinect Services for Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio (RDS) and I promised that we would have some exciting announcements this fall. It is my pleasure to announce the release of RDS 4 Beta available as a free of charge download at


For the first time we define a Kinect-based hardware reference platform that can help in the delivery of an affordable and capable robot that will be able to support technologies and scenarios for the consumer audience. Most everyone can build a robot using this specification, and we are working with robotic hardware vendors that will make kits and preassembled units available. The first such kit is called EDDIE and it is available from Parallax for pre-order now. EDDIE is intended to be a turnkey solution for using RDS with this platform and our aspiration is that there will be development and sharing of technology for this hardware platform. In addition, we made sure that there is an accurate representation of a robot that is based on the hardware platform in our simulation environment. You can start developing your applications in the simulator before you decide to buy and run them on a physical robot.

The second additional feature in RDS 4 is beta the availability of Kinect services that support the Kinect for Windows SDK capabilities shipped by Microsoft earlier this summer. You will be able to use the CCR/DSS programming model to access all of the Kinect for Windows SDK functionality. This unlocks a whole new world around Human Robot Interaction (HRI) with the use of skeleton tracking and speech. But we are also making available the raw sensor stream for your use in building additional capabilities such as navigation algorithms. As a matter of fact, we are shipping an obstacle avoidance service that fuses the Kinect input with the other proximity sensors to demonstrate how the sensor array can be used to intelligently perform directional based navigation.


Microsoft Downloads - Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio 4 Beta


Date Published: 9/16/2011
Language: English
File Name: Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio 4 Beta.exe
Size: 286.0 MB

Microsoft® Robotics Developer Studio 4 Beta enables hobbyists and professional or non-professional developers to create robotics applications targeting a wide range of scenarios. This release is an update that has the functionality of the previous Standard Edition with the addition of support for the Kinect sensor and a defined Reference Platform.

Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio can support a broad set of robotics platforms by either running directly on the platform (if it has an embedded PC running Windows) or controlling it from a Windows PC through a communication channel such as Wi-Fi or Bluetooth®.

In addition to providing support for Microsoft Visual Studio 2010, Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio 4 Beta provides a Visual Programming Language (VPL) which allows developers to create applications simply by dragging and dropping components onto a canvas and wiring them together.

The powerful Visual Simulation Environment (VSE) provides a high-fidelity simulation environment powered by NVIDIA™ PhysX™ engine for running game-quality 3D simulations with real-world physics interactions.

Tutorials that illustrate how to write applications ranging from simple "Hello Robot" to complex applications that simultaneously run on multiple robots.


Robotics! Kinect! Hardware! 'nuff said.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Kinect to transform video training/podcasting/teleconferencing?

Kinect Education - Evolve Your Podcasts with Kinect & StagePresence

"Kinect is continually proving to provide instructors and learners with new ways to engage with content. One innovative tool harnessing the power of Kinect is Nuvixa’s StagePresence. StagePresence provides plenty of justification to purchase a Kinect for any classroom implementing podcasts. Using StagePresence and Kinect, the “flipped classroom model” can be taken to an entirely new level.

Any instructor implementing podcasts or videocasts (“vodcasts”) needs to consider using this tool to leverage the time they’re already spending creating supplemental content. StagePresence allows viewers to actually see the instructor solving the problem. Traditional podcasting methods typically only allow for a screen recording of a problem being solved. While that’s effective, I would highly speculate that the viewer (learner) is more engaged when they can actually see their instructor solving problems.



Nuvixa - StagePresence

"Leveraging the latest in depth camera technologies, as well as its own industry-leading computer vision and video processing expertise, Nuvixa seeks to change the way people communicate with video. The first product to take advantage of this new paradigm is Nuvixa's StagePresence, which takes video calling and conferencing, presenting and social interactions via video to whole new level.

In short, StagePresence enables a presenter to engage an on-line audience with compelling presentations that "fuses" the speaker, video and other content with natural user interfaces; it essentially embeds the presenter into their content for more dynamic and interactive results. With StagePresence, remote workers can "share" a virtual space, allowing for communication and collaboration that's more "human" and personal.



In a word, ZOMG (okay, is that like four, three or still counts as one? :P )

That's pretty awesome and officially cool. It's amazing how the Kinect is igniting so many exciting and interesting projects...

Now all we need is Kinect like functionality built into our notebooks and that doesn't require an entire living room to use (I wonder if we'll see anything like that a BUILD next month?)

Friday, June 24, 2011

You had me at "SET DEVMGR_SHOW_NONPRESENT_DEVICES=1" (Environment variable to tell Device Manager to really show them all) - Using the Proper Kinect USB Drivers

"I’ve been playing with the Microsoft Kinect SDK and I really like it. The speed with which it snaps on to people and tracks them is really impressive. However, I did have one bit of fun and games when I installed it. Like loads of other people I’ve been using other drivers with the hardware and although some of these have uninstall behaviours they don’t always get rid of the device drivers themselves. This can lead to problems when you try to install the “proper” drivers and the old ones load up and get in the way. So, to get rid of the Kinect drivers you can do this before you install the Microsoft Kinect SDK. First perform the uninstall on all the previous drivers. Now you need to get rid of anything left lying around:

Open up a new command prompt running in Admin mode. The best way to do this is to click the Start button, type CMD into the search box and then hold down CTRL+SHIFT and press Enter. If you get this right you will be rewarded with a User Account Control dialogue box warning you that you are about to do something vaguely dangerous. Click OK.

Now, in the command box give the command:

..." [GD: Click through for the rest... Didn't want to leach all his traffic, etc]

I've known about Device Manager's "Show hidden devices" for forever, but not that environment variable. On my Win7 x64 box that variable makes a huge difference in the devices shown...

Before (even with Show Hidden Enabled):






See what I mean? Wow...

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Check out the new Coding 4 Fun Kinect Project Gallery (where you'll see someone familiar posting...)

Coding4Fun - Kinect Project Gallery


Microsoft, the Channel 9 and Coding4Fun team have given me another chance to be part of something that's officially very darn cool (Thank you Dan!). I'll be posting/curating/etc. on the new Coding4Fun Kinect Project Gallery! Yep, Kinect Blog Guy (KBG) is now my middle name (okay, yeah, that's kind of weird, but you get the idea... lol )

If you're into Kinect and if the thought of using it in your own "fun" projects sounds interesting or cool, please come on by and check it out...

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Watch a special Kinect message live on Channel 9 tomorrow at 9:30AM PDT

Watch Kinect on Channel 9

Tune in tomorrow at 9:30 AM Pacific Time for an important message about Kinect technology. Following that announcement, we will continue with a Channel 9 live broadcast from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM.


Channel 9 Live


News about Kinect coming tomorrow...

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Two for one day - A cool Kinect hack and open source 3D development platform for interactive real time 3D projects

Kinect Hacks - K’AndyNect Kinect game

"OpenSpace3D is a free and Open Source development platform for interactive real time 3D projects. Its mains advantages are :

  • User friendly, you can create a whole interactive 3D scene, with great graphical quality, without writing any code.
  • Power, lots of functionality are directly included, realizing an OpenSpace3D application consist in linking functionalities together, and defining theirs mutual interactions.
  • Technological advance, our team keep searching for and integrates the last technologies in domains of virtual reality, speech recognition, and computer graphics.


As a demo, we had developed K’AndyNect, a small tunnel game, where the goal is to catch with your hand some gems coming front to you. The player got one minute at the beginning of the game, and everytime you catch a gems, you grab some points and a few more seconds to play. There’s also red colored gems which must be avoided by the player because they drops 5 seconds of the timer (this adds fun, some players were making great and fast movement to avoid them!).


Note that this game was created without writing any line of code: OpenSpace3D is an 3D editor which goal is to add some interactivity to a 3d scene without code. It works with logical blocks, which triggers events and receives actions.

We also package all kinect redist (OpenNi/driver/Nite), so it’s easier for end-user to use a Kinect on pc (it’s much more like clicking “next/next/next” on a unified setup instead of manually install those 3 setups, and configuring them by hand).


While we wait on the official Kinect SDK to be released, there's still a good number of Kinect Dev happening (Kinect Hacks is a great place to watch this). This one struck my fancy in that its providing a number of cool things. A simple install for the Kinect redist, a no-code "game" and a very cool sounding platform for doing what looks like some pretty neat 3D stuff.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Connecting with Kinect (Redux)

[With an official Kinect SDK release coming sometime in the near future (I hope), the original version of this post needed to be pulled from the Channel 9 Coding4Fun blog. With their permission, I’m reposting it here]

Yep, I'm one of the 10 million who purchased a Kinect. And as a dev I've been watching the news stream relating to hacking it.An official SDK has been promised, but there's enough out now where we can start playing with it on our PC's today...

Jim Galasyn shows us just how easy it is in his Getting started with Kinect development post.

And easy it is. Download and install Code Laboratories NUI Platform plug in your Kinect and go. No hacking, no slashing and all the P/invokes are already done for you.

Here's one of the samples included in the SDK;





And here's the other...


Of course, this is only the very very first step. Now we need to actually do something with the data we're getting from Kinect... But every journey begins with a first step and in this case the first step is a pretty easy and painless one.

Here’s a few more links you might find interesting: