Enthusiasts and third-party developers aren’t the only ones dabbling with Microsoft’s Kinect sensor. Researchers who work for Microsoft, are, too. At Microsoft’s annual TechFest research fair in Redmond this week, some of those researchers are showing off their Kinect-centric projects. One of these projects — the Holoflector projection/augmented reality mirror already made its debut during Microsoft’s pre-TechFest media event a week ago. On March 6 at the opening TechFest day — where Microsoft allows some of its press pals and invited guests to get a preview before closing the doors and turning the event into an employee-only one — Microsoft showed off some additional Kinect-centric research projects. (Note: As I am not at the event, I can only link to Microsoft’s descriptions and photos.) Additional Microsoft Research projects using Kinect: New webcam hardware/software prototypes integrating the Kinect sensor: Microsoft researchers showed off a prototype webcam with a much wider view angle than traditional webcams, which can capture stereo movie and high-accuracy depth images simultaneously. “Users can chat with stereoscopic video. Accurate depth-image processing can support not only all Kinect scenarios on a PC, but also a gesture-control user interface without a touch screen,” according to Microsoft’s write-up. “Besides computer vision, the webcam includes a hardware accelerator and a new image-sensor design. The cost of the design is similar to that of current webcams, and the webcam potentially could be miniaturized as a mobile camera,” the Softies added. Beamatron: Another augmented-reality concept that combines a projector and a Kinect camera on… [Read full story]
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