Kinect for Windows SDK available Spring 2011

Microsoft announced on Monday that they will be making the Xbox 360 Kinect SDK available for non-commercial use in the spring. The buzz seemed to spread quickly through Twitter this morning, and even confirmed by Microsoft.

According to sources, the SDK was originally scheduled to be available all along, but the company needed to set its priority first. The Kinect SDK will be available for free this spring to everyone, and a commercial SDK license will also be available in the near future.

Since the release of the Xbox 360 Kinect in November, hackers have been creating homebrew applications and games for the motion camera. The Kinect homebrew began shortly after its launch, with a number of applications including a Star Wars light saber application, a Minority Report style control, and a 3D demonstration.

Microsoft has been nothing but enthusiastic from developers creating Kinect hacks. Microsoft even said the Kinect was left open by design, and 'hackers' were simply creating drivers for the device, allowing anyone to control the device using a Windows-based PC.

Starting this spring, developers will have an official SDK to work from to create homebrew applications and games. Details about the Kinect SDK are still scarce, but with the wide range of available hacks and other interactive programs available, the possibilities for an open Kinect environment are endless.

The official press release tells us that developers will have access to Kinect's audio technology, a programmable platform, and direct control over the unit itself.

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16 Comments

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Being a linux fanboy in damn near every sense of the word, its not often I say this.
Well played Microsoft, Just like W7 you are still on the right track, I just hope people manage to get things working just as well on other platforms too. Technology like this should be embraced widely, not just on one platform. And I definitely think this technology has far more potential outside gaming, than it does inside.

johnnypatras said,
Hmmm, nice news! I guess this is also implying we could be seeing official MS Kinect drivers for Windows soon?

I'm hoping for native support via W8, especially as its going to be a multi-platform OS.

MS is pushing every front incredibly hard, I'm kind of afraid they will be in the monopoly position like back in the 90's, but this time on a larger number of media and devices.

Still, gotta love the cool stuff coming from this every day.

Azyr said,
MS is pushing every front incredibly hard, I'm kind of afraid they will be in the monopoly position like back in the 90's, but this time on a larger number of media and devices.

Still, gotta love the cool stuff coming from this every day.

This just in, Google/Facebook/Apple/Mozilla/Opera et al and many others have approached the EU Antitrust regarding these monopolisation claims <HUGE SARCASM TAG> Although it is always a scary possibility

Wow! looks amazing! Microsft rocks! kinect rocks! Kinect is new mouse in the tech world! in the near future everyone use kinect as this day everyone use mouse!

great job MS! keep going

Emperatoor said,
Wow! looks amazing! Microsft rocks! kinect rocks! Kinect is new mouse in the tech world! in the near future everyone use kinect as this day everyone use mouse!

great job MS! keep going

I see what you did there...

And I lolled

Hollow.Droid said,
Nice move by MS, the quality of apps/homebrew should improve as well.

Yeah, in both Kinect and WP7, they're taking the exact opposite approach of Apple/Sony. It's earning them major street (internet) cred.

Reacon said,

Yeah, in both Kinect and WP7, they're taking the exact opposite approach of Apple/Sony. It's earning them major street (internet) cred.

LOL @ internet cred.. me and my forum buddies be giving them mad props