Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Microsoft

Official MS Kinect SDK Coming to Windows 84

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the i-know-what-i'm-hacking-first dept.
fredr1k writes "Microsoft figured there is some movement in the Kinect hacking scene. They have now announced a Kinect SDK for Windows. (Though only for Academics & Enthusiasts). 'Ever since the November launch of Kinect for Xbox 360, enthusiasts and academic researchers alike have expressed their excitement and intense interest in the possibilities created by the products ability to enable users to bring games and entertainment to life without using a controller. While Microsoft plans to release a commercial version at a later date, this SDK will be a starter kit to make it simpler for the academic research and enthusiast communities to create rich natural user interfaces using Kinect technology.'"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Official MS Kinect SDK Coming to Windows

Comments Filter:
  • Not a MS fan, but... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by flogger (524072) <non@nonegiven> on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @12:33PM (#35348178) Journal
    I'm not a huge MS fan, but doing things this way for the "Hacker" community is a lot better than Sony's response to what hacking has been going on with the PS3. Of course, any academicians that create really good stuff will surely find their work inside of the next MS update/release without any credit given or payment. However, that is better than a cease and desist order followed up with a lawsuit.
    • by mcvos (645701)

      The past couple of months MS definitely has been showing a more positive attitude. More positive than they had before, and definitely more positive than the one Sony has been showing us lately.

      I'm not quite ready to become a fan, though. But the Kinect has certainly been the first product ever from Microsoft that has made me want to give them money.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by gad_zuki! (70830)

        > More positive than they had before

        To be fair to MS, the Kinect did not employ any dirty tricks to keep it from being used on other equipment. If you read the blogs of the guys who built the first drivers, they reported none of the usual encryption tricks others like Sony and Nintendo are always using. Perhaps there's an argument about Japanese society's take on consumer rights/hacking, as these concepts are very Western or even explicitly American.

        The only protectionism of the Kinect is see is that it

        • by Sockatume (732728)

          They had a segment about Kinect hacking on Science Friday last November. One of the researchers complained that the Wii Remote had become a ubiquitous tool in some fields because it packed a lot of useful sensors and a wireless connection into a cheap, sturdy gizmo, but Nintendo just weren't interested in supporting them. The MS spokesperson used this as an opportunity to wax lyrical about how they'd deliberately not engineered any barriers to talking with the hardware, and their plans for the research SDK.

          • by mcvos (645701)

            It's not just cultural, but I do think that Microsoft has learned a very valuable lesson somewhere along the line. Life is easier when they love you than when they hate you.

          • by tlhIngan (30335)

            They had a segment about Kinect hacking on Science Friday last November. One of the researchers complained that the Wii Remote had become a ubiquitous tool in some fields because it packed a lot of useful sensors and a wireless connection into a cheap, sturdy gizmo, but Nintendo just weren't interested in supporting them. The MS spokesperson used this as an opportunity to wax lyrical about how they'd deliberately not engineered any barriers to talking with the hardware, and their plans for the research SDK.

            • by Anonymous Coward

              Nice FUD, but if you knew anything about encryption you'd know there's no explicit overhead in data size. There might be a negligible change due to key exchange or protocol details, but when you AES encrypt a big data block, it comes out the same size as it went in.

            • by timeOday (582209)

              Wow, some nice spin by Microsoft PR - the real reason there's no encryption and whatnot on Kinect is far more obvious - the Xbox360's USB 2 isn't that fast.

              Yeah, I don't think so. Microsoft's vision seems to be broader than that - they seems to think the Kinect may be a springboard into leading the evolution of user interfaces (since most recent attention has turned from WIMP [wikipedia.org] to multi-touch).

              I happen to think they may be right. And unlike touchscreens, Kinect is built on breakthrough hardware that wil

            • by Sockatume (732728)

              As noted below, I'm not sure what data transfer rates have to do with encryption.

    • by Microlith (54737)

      doing things this way for the "Hacker" community is a lot better than Sony's response to what hacking has been going on with the PS3

      It's easier for MS to take a hands-off approach, as the end result sells hardware and has no impact on the XBOX360's platform security, whereas on the PS3 it is a direct attack on the platform's ability to keep the closed environment that publishers demand.

      That said, MS is obviously doing this to drive development back towards the Windows platform and away from OS X and Unix. W

      • by Hatta (162192)

        It's easier for MS to take a hands-off approach, as the end result sells hardware and has no impact on the XBOX360's platform security, whereas on the PS3 it is a direct attack on the platform's ability to keep the closed environment that publishers demand.

        I agree that this hack isn't really relevant to Sony's actions, but the Xbox360 has been cracked wide open for some time. Microsoft has handled this much better than Sony.

    • by slim (1652) <john@ha[ ]up.net ['rtn' in gap]> on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @12:41PM (#35348266) Homepage

      I'm not a huge MS fan, but doing things this way for the "Hacker" community is a lot better than Sony's response to what hacking has been going on with the PS3.

      "Better than Sony" isn't much of a target, to be fair.

    • I'm not a huge MS fan, but doing things this way for the "Hacker" community is a lot better than Sony's response to what hacking has been going on with the PS3

      You're comparing hacking a controller to hacking a games machine.

    • by Gravatron (716477)
      Actually, Sony's been open to people using the Move for the same sort of hacks as people are using the Kinect for. what Sony is against is people hacking the ps3 itself to play pirated software. MS has a similar policy when people hack the 360 to try to do the same thing.
      • by tlhIngan (30335)

        Actually, Sony's been open to people using the Move for the same sort of hacks as people are using the Kinect for. what Sony is against is people hacking the ps3 itself to play pirated software. MS has a similar policy when people hack the 360 to try to do the same thing.

        Move isn't terribly interesting to hack - it's really just an improved Wiimote turned around, and those hacks have existed for years now.

        And Microsoft vs. Sony - Microsoft's still less evil. There's one open hack in the Xbox360 - and it let

  • And with mono-dev...perhaps you can play with the Microsoft toy and still keep your open source hands clean. I won't...I'll be using the greatness of Visual Studio 2010, but you know, there's no accounting for IDE preference.
    • by dunezone (899268)
      I love Visual Studio and with the express editions its extremely easy to take up C# or C++. My only beef with Microsoft SDK is sometimes they limit your ability, for example with the Windows Phone SDK we still don't have access to the LED light. Now of course some of us found ways to get access but these were holes we found in the SDK and cause other issues.
  • And this is a good thing? We still have to wait until spring for the 'early release' SDK and the 'commercial version' will follow soon. (unmentioned date reference.)
    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @12:44PM (#35348324)

      LOL...I dont consider myself strongly pro or anti-Microsoft. However, I get such a kick at the idiot Microsoft haters on Slashdot who can't even admit when Microsoft does something right. If this were another link related to Windows security flaws there'd be 700 posts about Bill Gates being the anti-christ.

      Slashdot users are supposed to be smart; smarter than childish fanboys/fangirls.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Actually, as far as misdirected hatred goes, Apple is the new MS. The anti-MS bias seems pretty listless these days, but try mentioning Apple, and it's a dorkfest of cluelessness.

      • by betasam (713798)
        The headline gives the impression that this is being done right now. The timeline also gives a hint of the level of commitment. Before the "promised" SDK, we've heard stories like http://www.next-gen.biz/features/hacking-kinect [next-gen.biz] -- So this response, whatever the spirit, is delayed. It is definitely not one of the "right" things Microsoft has done recently. (There may be others.)
      • Re: (Score:1, Redundant)

        by ArhcAngel (247594)

        /. car analogy time. Let's say Microsoft sells cars. You open a car dealership down the road from Microsoft. Shortly thereafter you have several cars stolen and find them for sale on Microsoft's lot. You go to court to get your cars back and by the time it actually goes to trial the cars in question have already been sent to the junk yard they are so old. Microsoft pays you a small percentage of the money it cost you over the last 15 years to end the suite.

        Meanwhile cars have evolved and now travel through

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by migla (1099771)

        Slashdot users are supposed to be smart; smarter than childish fanboys/fangirls.

        (Now, I didn't read your parent, so maybe my comment doesn't apply exactly in this particular case, but I'd just like to make a general comment:)

        Sometimes it's about freedom. Liking freedom is not just any kind of fandom. It's really important for real. Hating on MS in the name of freedom is not (necessarily) being a childish fan, IMO.

      • Slashdot users are supposed to be smart

        No, slashdot users are supposed to be geeks and nerds, which is to say, obsessed with certain pop culture fetishes (Buffy, Star Wars, Monty Python, et. al.) and typically over-educated.

        There's nothing inherently "smart" about geekiness or nerd-dom -- particularly with the devaluation of both terms in the past ten years ("Movie Nerd"? "Sports Geek"?).

      • can't even admit when Microsoft does something right

        I admit that it's the right thing to do, but I still don't respect MS for it. They are doing it for the wrong reasons, the PR/money aspects, not because they give a shit about the maker/hacker community. If you remember, their first reaction was to threaten people with lawsuits. Only when they realized it's bad PR to do that did they backpedal. Yes you can make money AND not be evil, but MS will never be that entity...
      • While I agree with this somewhat, I'm more tempted to think Microsoft's stance is "if you can't beat them, join them" (The Kinect has been used in ways it wasn't intended almost from launch)

        While I highly dislike Microsoft for the most part, I applaud this move though I'm not holding my breath that a non-Windows SDK will ever be released.

    • Would you rather they clamped down on you?

      What is it with people feeling entitled to everything right now, this second, immediately? Do MS really owe you this SDK?

      Of course this is a good thing. Sheesh.
      • by geekoid (135745)

        "What is it with people feeling entitled to everything right now, this second, immediately?"
        Corporations have fed that to people for decades, so now it's entrenched, and they will pay with a loss of control.

        And yes, this is better then 'clamping down' on people.

    • by Zerth (26112)

      And this is a good thing? We still have to wait until spring for the 'early release' SDK and the 'commercial version' will follow soon. (unmentioned date reference.)

      And presumably pay out the nose for the "right" to make commercial products. Or just use the open source drivers and make commercial products now.

    • by skids (119237)

      Hey it takes time to make up all those ReallyLongIdentifiersForThings, not to mention all the other work that goes into making the API a PITA and fill out 2K worth of actual code with 1M of redundant symbol tables.

    • by mikejuk (1801200) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @02:47PM (#35349742)
      This isn't a good thing and it might even be a bad thing. There already is a semi official SDK from PrimeSense the people who made the Kinect hardware for MS - it just needs a tweek to work with the Kinect (an XML file). They also supply "middleware" to do jobs like body tracking and we have to wait to see what the MS SDK includes. FInally there is the interesting distinction between the non-comercial and commercial SDK - does this mean that anything I create using the non-commercial SDK can't be used commerciall and are they going to charge for the commercial SDK and take a cut from any apps that result? The point is that the semi-official SDK is open source so why bother with the Microsoft SDK with strings attached? I wrote all this up about a week ago but it was ignored by Slashdoters - shame on you :-) http://www.i-programmer.info/news/91-hardware/2030-official-kinect-sdk-who-needs-it.html [i-programmer.info] But it is clear that this is an attempt by MS to take over the Kinect party.
  • by Drakkenmensch (1255800) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @12:44PM (#35348308)
    If someone had suggested hacking the Move for making cool new stuff, they'd probably already had all their computers seized while hordes of Sony lawyers darkened the skies above their home.
    • by AC-x (735297)

      To be fair you can use Move happily on a PC and I don't remember Sony making a fuss about it http://code.google.com/p/moveonpc/ [google.com]

    • by Gravatron (716477)
      Actually sony has expressed approval of such things. Hacking the Move is a vastly different beast then hacking the ps3. Hacking a move doesn't let you pirate games.
    • by matt_gaia (228110)

      Damn you AC-x for beating me to it. :)

      I do say that is a rather nice false-equivalency you did start there, DM. If you remember right, and I'm assuming you don't reading that drivel you posted, but MS did the exact same thing with their JTag'ed consoles that Sony is doing now (PSN ban). If you go out and try to tell the world how to get around the PS3 security for your "homebrew" (read: piracy), they have the right to bring down hell on you. If you've noticed, the only people Sony are coming after are th

      • by h4rr4r (612664)

        Telling people how to run software on a device they own is "openly challenging them"?

        Your type of stupidity makes me want to start pirating games.

        • by matt_gaia (228110)

          Telling people how to run software on a device they own is "openly challenging them"?

          No, but telling people how to break the existing security related to the IP/network that they own is. You don't like the terms that they make on their network, you can stay the hell off it.... you want to pirate their games out of your feigned spite, again, you can stay the hell off of PSN. If you honestly are naive enough to think that everything that has gone down has been about running homebrew, you're out of your damn mind. If anything more than 10% of the modded consoles get used for actual homebrew,

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Microsoft is doing this ass-backwards.

  • (Though only for Academics & Enthusiasts)

    Enthuse for Kinect!

  • Although I'm glad they aren't pulling a Sony with the hardware, saying "enthusiasts and academic researchers alike have expressed their excitement and intense interest" fails to recognize that those enthusiasts and researchers not only built a cross platform open source driver but have been pumping out projects left and right since November. They missed the boat as far as I'm concerned and "maybe" putting out a Windows-only SDK is too little too late. It would be better for them to sponsor freenect or Ope
  • Yo Microsoft! (Score:5, Informative)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Tuesday March 01, 2011 @02:51PM (#35349788) Journal
    Yo, Microsoft, I'm really happy for you, and I'mma let you finish; but the Kinect SDK has been in multiplaform release for months now, months now!
    • by 0ld_d0g (923931)

      Thats true but being officially supported has its benefits too. For e.g. if they update the firmware to change the way the Kinect interfaces with the PC/XBOX, the SDK would be updated too. We don't have to wait for a generous hacker to reverse engineer the protocol again. IMO This will give a certain comfort level to academics to use the product in their projects.

Old programmers never die, they just become managers.

Working...