Hackers push the new Kinect for Windows sensor and preview SDK

The Kinect for Windows hackathon in Dallas last weekend, July 18–19, was an amazing event, thanks to the 114 developers and designers who willingly gave up their Friday evening and all day Saturday to explore the potential of the new Kinect for Windows v2 sensor and the SDK 2.0 public preview.

Big thanks to Skip Howard and Computer Visionaries for helping to organize such a great event, to The Dallas Entrepreneur Center for providing the awesome venue, and to local Microsoft evangelists Jason Fox, Nathalie Goh-Livorness, and Anna Lergaard for going above and beyond in collaborating with us in Dallas!
The projects

My team and I left inspired by the creativity and passion that all of the 15 presented projects displayed. We were absolutely blown away by the three winning efforts. The top prize of US$500 and two Kinect for Windows v2 sensors went to the creators of Super Dueling Golem Dudes, a two-versus-two game in which a player’s gestures control moving platforms that help his or her teammate shoot at their opponent. Earning second-place honors—and $250 and a Kinect for Windows v2 sensor—was the team that developed Kinectergarden, an educational app that lets young children explore their environment and learn new words, objects, and skills. The third-place prize of $100 and a Kinect for Windows v2 sensor was snagged by Put Me in Space, a project that allows users to create a photograph of themselves anywhere in (or out) of this world.

More than 100 eager hackers put the Kinect for Windows v2 sensor and the SDK 2.0 public preview through its paces.
More than 100 eager hackers put the Kinect for Windows v2 sensor and the SDK 2.0 public preview
through its paces.

And the winners are…

  • Super Dueling Golem Dudes took first place ($500 and Kinect for Windows v2 sensors)

First-place winners, Super Dueling Golem Dudes

  • Kinectergarten took second place ($250 and a Kinect for Windows v2 sensor)

Second-place winners, Kinectergarten

  • Put Me in Space took third place ($100 and a Kinect for Windows v2 sensor)

Third-place winners, Put Me in Space

The other 12 projects presented on Saturday night were:

  • WaveMeIn, an app that makes passwords passé.  Wave me in, Scotty!
  • Cori App, a digital assistant that controls other applications and connected devices.
  • BorgVision, a utility to help users assimilate into the Borg Kinective.
  • Fly Up, an app that gets you airborne, as your Kinect avatar flies up and off the screen.
  • Sync or Not, an app that maps two people's locations in 3D space and determines if they are moving in sync.
  • STOP!, a potentially lifesaving app that visually detects stop signs and forcefully instructs the driver to stop. 
  • Virtual Skan, an online shopping app that selects the appropriate garment size for the shopper based on a Kinect sensor scan.
  • Talk Charms, an augmentative and alternative communication system that allows nonverbal children to communicate by selecting words and phrases to be played via text-to-speech.
  • Wakie Wakie, another potential lifesaver that prevents drivers from falling asleep at the wheel.
  • Booty Bounce, an app that brings the aerobic power of twerking to your screen, letting you use a variety of twerks to get in shape or just have fun. Miley Cyrus would approve.
  • Clubby VJ, an app that lets you create a cool avatar, whose special effects are perfect for a night of clubbing.
  • Capable Home Kinect, an app that tracks facial movements and uses facial cues to allow quadriplegics to operate devices within the home.

Upcoming events

We have more hackathons scheduled this summer, and we’d love to see you at one of them. Just click the link to register.

Thanks again to all who took the time to join us in Dallas. I got a big jolt of energy from the collected creativity and passion. If you have questions or need help, please use the following resources:

You can also email me at kinectninja@microsoft.com if you have other questions or just want to say hi.

I hope to see you at a future event!

Ben Lower, Developer Community Manager, Kinect for Windows

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