Kinect software brings animation to the masses

Researchers at Microsoft (Redmond, WA, USA) have released details of their new KinÊtre software that employs gesture recognition, enabling users to animate inanimate objects by moving their bodies.

Kinect software brings animation to the masses
Kinect software brings animation to the masses

Researchers at Microsoft (Redmond, WA, USA) have released details of their new KinÊtre software that employs gesture recognition, enabling users to animate inanimate objects by moving their bodies.

"We want to let you use Kinect for Windows and a PC and take arbitrary household objects and make them move like a cartoon character," says Microsoft researcher Dr. Jiawen Chen, who is presenting details of the software during SIGGRAPH 2012, being held at the Los Angeles Convention Center this week.

To animate such objects on screen, a user first scans an item such as a chair, a desk lamp, a bookcase, or a stepladder using the Microsoft Kinect camera. The same camera is then used to track the user's body and align his or her "virtual" limbs to the geometry of the item. After issuing one spoken command, the virtual limbs are then attached to the item, and when the user moves, the object on screen follows the same motion.

Microsoft believes that the Kinect-based system will bring animation to a new audience of users with little or no computer graphics experience.

A video of the KinÊtre software in action can be viewed on the Microsoft research web site here.

-- Dave Wilson, Senior Editor, Vision Systems Design

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