For all Kinect
does, it's got some pretty glaring flaws. For one, it's bound by that silly USB cable to the back of the Xbox 360. Good thinking, Microsoft!
Thankfully, Microsoft also finds Kinect's tethered nature troubling, and is working on a mobile solution. The company filed a patent application this week that allows a Kinect-esque device (though the word "Kinect" is never directly used ... come on) to capture and update "parameters which specify how the mobile depth camera has moved." In other words, it's a Kinect that can – in real time, at 20 frames per second – reestablish where it's being positioned in a room. Neat! We can already see the possibilities for motion control and ... uh ... maybe augmented reality stuff?
Beyond mobile Kinecting, Microsoft is also interested in movie editing, filing for a "living room movie creation" patent as well. And given that the Kinect is Microsoft's primary living room camera connected to a computer, this one sounds like it applies there as well. The filing says "movies can be directed, captured, and edited using a system that includes a depth camera," and that various real life objects can be implemented "as virtual props." Said filming system also allows for editing after shooting, should your living room movie not come out perfect in the first take.