Microsoft's Kinect for Windows has been used for a variety of applications, including the basis for a virtual demo of new cars to making a 3D scan of the human brain. Now there's word of a new software project that may just be the coolest way to use Kinect with your home PC.
The project, as described on Microsoft's Channel 9 website, was created by Thomas Temme of Germany. In basic terms, his Kinect for Windows application, FaceMouse, uses its facial detection features to allow a human face to control actions that would normally be handled by a PC mouse. Temme worked on a previous project called KinectMouse that allowed mouse movements to be controlled by hand gestures. However, Temme said that it was tiring to keep moving the arm to control the mouse with Kinect and so FaceMouse was born.
Moving a cursor on screen is described this way by Temme:
It is really easy: Just move your head to control the cursor. Make sure that Kinect can see your face as well as your chest. Sometimes the initial recognition is better when you are waving. It is normal that Kinect needs a few seconds to identify your face correctly.
You can see the effects in the video above and, well, it's pretty impressive. FaceMouse allows users to left click on screen by winking their right eye and scrolling up and down is handled by raising and lowering the eyebrows; drag and drop commands are activated by opening and closing the mouth.
If you happen to own Kinect for Windows, you can download FaceMouse yourself at the FutureTechBlog.com website.