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Print 26 comment(s) - last by abel2.. on Dec 2 at 1:58 PM

Lots more accuracy will need a new interface

The Microsoft Kinect has proven to be a sales winner for Microsoft and the company has invested heavily into making it more than just a game controller. Microsoft is working on a version of the Kinect that is specifically for the Windows computer user that will operate at shorter distances.
 
Microsoft is also rumored to be working on the next generation Kinect for Xbox consoles. The “Kinect 2” is said to be much more accurate (higher resolution) than the Kinect currently on the market according to sources. The Kinect 2 is said to be so accurate and sensitive that it can read lips, and it is said to offer better motion tracking and voice recognition. The new Kinect is also said to be able to tell what direction the player is facing.
 
 
This new Kinect goes along well with other rumors of two future Xbox devices. One of the new consoles is said to be a set top box that is a Kinect portal. The other is a much more powerful game console that will work with Kinect.
 
The next generation Kinect will need a new interface since the USB 2.0 port it currently uses is maxed out. According to rumors, the data is likely to be sent via a USB 3.0 port that would also offer much more bandwidth than the current solution. 
 
Microsoft recently started up its Kinect Accelerator Program that provides cash and hardware to individuals and startups to produce interactive software for Kinect hardware.

Sources: Eurogamer, Tech News World



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Great technology...but...
By jnemesh on 11/29/2011 1:23:12 PM , Rating: 4
They really need to get to work and make a game or two that appeals to people older than 12! I havent seen a SINGLE Kinect game that was worth the $60 asking price, and EVERY Kinect title out there will be in a $10 bargain bin by this time next year! Its great that they developed such a powerful technology, but it seems to be a solution without a problem right now. I think Microsoft is fooling themselves if they think they can extend the life of the 360 by simply adding Kinect. They need to quit focusing on gimmicks and make a better console already!




RE: Great technology...but...
By Golgatha on 11/29/2011 1:40:26 PM , Rating: 2
Focusing on gimmicks rather than hardware made Nintendo billions. Why not Microsoft too?


RE: Great technology...but...
By quiksilvr on 11/29/2011 2:03:11 PM , Rating: 3
Because its been done.


RE: Great technology...but...
By mfenn on 11/29/2011 2:28:48 PM , Rating: 2
Why reinvent the wheel when making a slightly rounder one will still make you billions?


RE: Great technology...but...
By GulWestfale on 11/30/2011 12:23:15 AM , Rating: 2
will MS use the lip-reading function to secretly listen in on your living room conversations, and then use the gained knowledge to send you ads or spam?
maybe i'm being paranoid, but in this day of phone tracking and rootkits, and EA's origin, anything seems possible.


RE: Great technology...but...
By ekv on 11/30/2011 3:11:58 PM , Rating: 2
Frank, HAL appears to be mistaken in reporting the presence of a fault in the spacecraft's communications antenna ...


RE: Great technology...but...
By abel2 on 12/2/2011 1:58:14 PM , Rating: 2
They could just put a microphone somewhere to record it? Im sure if they wanted to spend time programming something to decipher random noise they could do it. Or make something that just saw what you were wearing and displayed ads of similar clothing.

Or.. you could be paranoid, but who isn't?


RE: Great technology...but...
By cmdrdredd on 11/30/2011 5:45:16 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Focusing on gimmicks rather than hardware made Nintendo billions. Why not Microsoft too?


Nintendo has games that make good use of the controller though. Microsoft just has shovelware and no good games. That is the difference.


RE: Great technology...but...
By tdktank59 on 11/29/2011 2:30:00 PM , Rating: 2
Its not fully Kinect based but Forza 4 has kinect support.


RE: Great technology...but...
By Smilin on 11/29/2011 3:05:44 PM , Rating: 2
It's a bit finnicky to get right. Once you do though... Wow!

Take your Lotus or other canyon carver to the downhill half of that Japanese mountain track (Mt. Kiadlkjasdf something). It makes a huge difference on tracks with tigher turns. You can really see around the turn and pick your late apex instead of driving with a set of horse blinders on.

The "auto vista" showroom kinect experience is pretty lame though. Has a techdemo feel to it and the controller works better.


RE: Great technology...but...
By Smilin on 11/29/2011 3:09:33 PM , Rating: 2
I've seen 12 to 60 year olds having a blast with fruit ninja. It's not $60 that I'm aware of.

Kinect sports is still fun as crap to play and I haven't tried season two yet.

You kinda sound like a stick in the mud man. Have fun. If you want to be all hardcore use your controller or better yet switch to a PC.

Oh and my favorite Kinect feature...

"Xbox, pause" ... gets popcorn ... "Xbox, rewind, faster, play."


RE: Great technology...but...
By pburghdoom on 11/29/2011 3:34:59 PM , Rating: 2
I think you are kind of right that it is a solution without a problem, also I don't think Microsoft has done a great job making it a compelling gaming tool. I have also seen a lot of what the Kinect hacker community has done though and think overall it has a lot of potential. Not just as a gaming device but as an overall computing/lifestyle tool. Some of the things are cool (3d gaming) some intrusive (tailored ads using face recognition) but regardless I look forward to a better Kinect.


RE: Great technology...but...
By tayb on 11/29/2011 7:24:05 PM , Rating: 2
Two things...

1. You are mostly right but you have to remember that you are talking about the FIRST generation of this product that is running on a 6 year old console. Give this a hardware refresh and more horsepower backing it and you'll see a completely different experience.

2. I don't think you understand that you aren't the target audience. Hard core gamers are never going to give up their controllers, keyboards, or mice. Microsoft is trying to tap a completely different market with the Kinect. There is a reason there aren't any AAA first person shooters featuring the Kinect.

I think Microsoft has a real winner here. They can trade blows with Nintendo on the fun factor and with Sony on the hardcore crowd. Neither Sony nor Nintendo can really say that. (PS Move is crap, sorry)


RE: Great technology...but...
By ekv on 11/30/2011 3:19:13 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I don't think you understand that you aren't the target audience
I've seen a lot of naysayers re: Win8, WP7 and MSFT's chances going forward in the desktop space. I have to wonder if Kinect plays a role here -- connecting it altogether, as it were. All the gestures you're using on your Android [and iPhone, ad nauseum] will work with Kinect on Win8 desktop.

Privacy issues could be a real PITA though.


By inperfectdarkness on 11/29/2011 9:10:29 PM , Rating: 2
and i'm just laughing that people are finally realizing that it's NOT NINTENDO'S FAULT that so much shovelware was developed for the wii.

sweet comeuppance. your angst sustains me.


RE: Great technology...but...
By MGSsancho on 11/30/2011 5:24:04 AM , Rating: 2
really? half the games are dancing (kids to adult dancing) and work out games.


Maxed 2.0 out, really?
By mcnabney on 11/29/11, Rating: 0
RE: Maxed 2.0 out, really?
By retrospooty on 11/29/2011 5:07:21 PM , Rating: 2
Calm down there man, its not an "outright LIE".

http://vr-zone.com/articles/kinect-2-rumoured-to-b...

Microsoft put on the USB interface as to not interfere too much with the performance of other attached USB devices. As such Kinect is only allowed 15-16MB/s of the total available bandwidth, a restriction the next generation hardware won't suffer from. In fact, it's meant to have a camera capable of reading your lips, for improved voice and motion recognition.


RE: Maxed 2.0 out, really?
By retrospooty on 11/29/2011 5:11:13 PM , Rating: 2
I meant to add...

It was MS that limited it, and I hate to break this to you, but Kinect does alot more than just transfer the info of the low res camera. there is the whole full on motion detection that you neglected to consider.

If you have used a Kinect, you know there is a lag. OK for kids games and some sports activities, and great for dance exercise games, but way WAY too slow for any online FPS. You'd be dead before Kinect reacted to you attempting to aim.


RE: Maxed 2.0 out, really?
By Aikouka on 11/29/2011 5:41:20 PM , Rating: 2
Retro, I assume that the input lag that you're seeing is related to processing. Now, I don't know enough about Kinect programming to know where the processing occurs or what data a Kinect application would even receive. But looking at different input methods, hitting the up arrow on my keyboard is a simple interrupt that is fairly easily processed, but what happens if I raise my arm with the Kinect sensor? What portion of that is handled at the sensor and what does the CPU of the host device have to do? I would imagine that the 360 may not have a lot of available resources left over for a bit of extra processing.

With that... I wonder if a beefy current generation CPU would work any better?


RE: Maxed 2.0 out, really?
By retrospooty on 11/29/2011 5:45:02 PM , Rating: 2
Good point. I dont really know, maybe a combo of both... but I do know before Kinect came out MS was talking about bandwidth limitations from the Kinect to the XB360 as if it was the limiting factor. Now they are announcing they are improving it for the next gen, so thats good enough for me (if they could just hurry it up and release) =)


RE: Maxed 2.0 out, really?
By mcnabney on 11/29/2011 7:11:53 PM , Rating: 2
To me it sounds like same old song and dance.

Software companies blame the hardware company...and vice versa. My original point is still valid, unless the software is deliberately crippling the USB function they aren't going to come anywhere CLOSE to what USB 2.0 is capable of. Even if the new Kinnect handled full color 1080p in stereo, plus a 1080p IR image it still wouldn't use HALF of the bandwidth available.

And no, I don't do consoles. My last console was an Atari 2600. Consoles are too 'canned' and limited and the controllers depend too much on thumb dexterity. Hell, console games don't even make the player AIM anymore, just point and shoot.


RE: Maxed 2.0 out, really?
By Sivar on 11/30/2011 12:02:23 AM , Rating: 2
In addition to other comments, Blu-ray movies are highly compressed either with VC1 or, even better, with h.264 AVC. Raw 1080p video (24-bit, 24FPS) takes about 140MB/sec.

I guarantee you that the camera is not capable of compressing video in real time using any of these advanced video codecs.

Please understand a technology before making knee-jerk reactionary accusations about it.


RE: Maxed 2.0 out, really?
By tygrus on 11/30/2011 1:55:20 AM , Rating: 2
54Mb/s uses complex multi-frame compression which isn't in realtime (only realtime decompression).
Kinnect can't compress to the same rate because that increases processing and adds delay of at least a whole frame (complete frame before compression). Compression also adds sparkle/ghosts/blur and other artefacts but I guess they still have to use it.
There could do a compromise and do the 3D outline and motion tracking in the Kinnect and the live video processed by the XB360. USB2 typically has 35MB/s of usable bandwidth (280Mbps) not 60MB/s because of overheads and half-duplex. Firewire was full-duplex and close to 40MB/s.


RE: Maxed 2.0 out, really?
By MGSsancho on 11/30/2011 5:29:38 AM , Rating: 2
unless the are going to release it along side a new console (usb3?)
I doubt they will use one of the firewire specs or lightpeak since they have Direct Memory Access http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thunderbolt_%28interf... however newer chips we should assume will have the link"s mentioned security provisions.

Either way we do not know for sure. until it launches


Cue in picture of HAL
By Nacho on 11/29/2011 2:33:20 PM , Rating: 5
...reading Dave's lips




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