Remember when Windows was considered cool? It’s been a long time. However, the Kinect – a motion and voice-sensing device originally meant as a nifty feature for the Xbox gaming console – could help Windows recapture its long-lost coolness quotient.
Not surprisingly, a version of the Kinect is compatible with Windows-operated PCs. So almost immediately after this new version was released in February, companies started coming up with creative, out-of-the-box uses for it.
Innovative Uses for the Kinect
For instance, at the Chicago Auto Show earlier this year, the chief marketing manager for Nissan North America used Kinect for Windows to create a virtual tour of the Pathfinder’s upgraded interior. This proved especially beneficial because the marketing manager only had the Pathfinder’s empty shell to show off at the Auto Show. A large screen powered by Kinect showed visitors just what they’d be seeing if they were actually sitting within the finished body of the new Pathfinder. The screen, for example, displayed the car’s dual moon roofs and many other features.
Microsoft is working with companies to develop applications for the Kinect. This not only encourages creativity but it puts the Kinect at the center of many of the most recent innovations. One example of a company that is working closely with Microsoft in this manner is Boeing. Boeing used the Kinect to create virtual tours of its jets. Another example is a healthcare facility in Canada. They’re using the Kinect’s gesture-recognition capability to swipe through CT scans. This reduces the danger of getting germs on their hands from a keyboard or mouse.
Kinect: A Solid Hit
Microsoft hit a home run when they created the Kinect. The Xbox 360 was last year’s best-selling video game console, and they have the Kinect to thank for that. Since November of 2010 Microsoft has sold over 18 million Kinect devices.
It might seem hard to believe, but Windows and its creator might have actually found something that’s not only useful, but cool, which can do nothing but good for their reputation.
||About Fernando Sosa
Fernando Sosa is a technology consultant, project management professional, and software developer who helps small businesses and nonprofit organizations make the most of their information technology resources.