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.