Skip to main content

Microsoft Publishes Kinect For Windows SDK Beta

It is primarily aimed for academia and enthusiast developers to explore the opportunities of the Kinect motion sensor for use on a Windows PC. The developer kit includes all core features of Kinect that can be used in applications that are created using C++, C#, or Visual Basic (2010).

According to Microsoft, the 100 MB software comes with support for raw sensor streams, skeletal tracking, audio recognition, and some sample code.

When Kinect was released, Microsoft heavily criticized Kinect hacking and early efforts that showed Kinect devices working on PCs. At the time, the company said that hacks by "scriptkiddies" would be a waste of time as no one would be interested to acquire such software commercially. That opinion appears to have changed and there is the notion that Kinect for Windows could go viral at some point. Microsoft does not even have to put much effort into this trend, but simply support a Windows SDK.

The software is provided free of charge, but the company maintains that no commercial applications can be created with the toolkit. There are some limitations to the software license: For example, Microsoft does not allow the use of third party drivers or software in connections with the SDK, the Kinect runtime cannot be redistributed and there is no license that would allow you to create applications that are used to run your own in-house business. However, the company encourages developers to build applications that’s how off the capaility fo the technology to others in a tutoring scenario.