Microsoft Embraces Open, Creative Coding: New Kinect openFrameworks, Cinder Integration

It’s not overstatement: the Kinect has changed vision on computers. It’s made a range of techniques more accessible and affordable, it’s spread what were once laboratory ideas into millions of homes, and it has gathered a swath of artists and inventors to using vision who never had before. But in the process, that open source world has changed Kinect – and Microsoft. No more do we need a bounty to hack Kinect. Now, Microsoft and the open source community can work together. Microsoft Open Tech is now embracing openFrameworks and Cinder, two fully open-source frameworks for creative coders and artists:

READ MORE →

Not Just Mapping, Reshaping: VVOX on Projection for Personalizing Architecture, Space

dd:OUTPOST _ Personalized Environment from volvoxlabs on Vimeo. Light on its own can be a powerful medium for transforming a space. When that light is formed into an image, the customization is as fluid as pixels on a display. So, there’s a reason we hear terms like “responsive architecture” or even “interactive architecture.” We may see environments become as changing as the computer before our eyes. The question is, how, exactly? VolvoxLabs, a Brooklyn-based design house specializing in visual effects and projection design, showed one vision of how this might work, for Digital Dumbo (in partnership with Bing). The ingredients, …

READ MORE →

Kinect Goes Analog: Oscilloscope and Digital Depth Map Meet

Rutt Etra Meets Kinect from i.m. klif on Vimeo. There’s a beautiful fusion of analog and digital imagery in comments on yesterday’s story on easy Kinect software solutions. “Post digital” gets bandied about, yes, but really this to me is the perfect example of focusing on the materials of a project without any particular regard for any arbitrary dividing lines; it’s just the freedom of experimentation at work. Description, from Croatia-based reader i.m. klif (who also includes some of his lovely music, rescued from tape):

READ MORE →

Some Easy Ways to Get Kinect Controlling Music, Visuals on Mac and Windows

While we wait for Microsoft to send the new Kinect – yes, we’re on the list for one here at CDM HQ – there’s still plenty to be done with the current generation of Kinect. And it’s likely that you’ll find even more of these on the cheap when there’s new hardware out there. The problem is, apart from using Microsoft’s prescribed development tools on Windows, working with Kinect can be a bit tricky. What if you want to plug in a Kinect and play around quickly to try some possibilities? Or what if you want to work with collaborators …

READ MORE →

When New Media is No Longer New, Disciplines Blur [Editorial]

I was one of a handful of editorial contributors to the HUGO BOSS-sponsored Red Never Follows project. The exhibition presents twenty creatives at Saatchi Gallery in London, celebrating HUGO’s 20th anniversary, later this month. Here is the full text I wrote for the catalog with added illustrations, as I think it gets to the heart of what CDM is about. (Article as published on their site.) The examples naturally relate to artists selected for the exhibition, so they represent a small fraction of what I believe is a web of interconnected artists worldwide. And since it’s for a more general …

READ MORE →

New Kinect Windows SDK Coming; Microsoft Opens Up Pre-release Developer Access [Timeline]

Whatever is going on in the new Kinect Microsoft unveiled recently, it’s doing more than its predecessor. It appears vastly more precise, smarter about telling people from objects, better at telling people from other people, and more responsive to gestures. And there’s another difference: this time, at last, Microsoft appears to be hitting the ground running. Caught flat-footed by the interest of innovative developers and artists in the original Kinect, Microsoft has only recently managed to get their SDK in a state that could rival efforts by hackers and sensor developer PrimeSense. The official Windows sensor, at least, is now …

READ MORE →

Dance and Music: Convert Kinect to MIDI, Free Beta on Mac and Windows

When we first saw movements and dance converted to music in February, it must have sparked some interest. Developer Jesper Nordin tells us popular demand has prompted him to release a free (as in beer) version of his Gestrument Kinect controller. With a beta download and a Windows or Mac machine, you can translate Microsoft’s depth-sensing camera to MIDI events you can use with instruments. Previously (including mention of the iPad version of this idea, if you don’t fancy prancing about in front of a camera): Gestrument, Shaping Music with Kinect, Touch, and Acoustic Ensembles [Videos] Now, you can grab …

READ MORE →

On Hacking the New Kinect

Will the new Kinect be hackable for artists and developers? Some of the best speculation I’ve seen yet actually shows up here in CDM comments. So, it’s worth elevating this to a news story, just in case you missed it. In short, the answer appears to be yes. I’m hopeful in particular for Microsoft’s own official developer tools when Kinect hits Windows next year, as I think it’s really the PC world that will be the most expressive and open. From an anonymous CDM reader calling him or herself “n4cer”: Though the port for the Kinect on Xbox One is …

READ MORE →

Biostagog: Fluid Cellular Architecture Combines Mapping, Responsive Interaction [Gallery]

BIOSTAGOG from Platige Image on Vimeo. When futurists dream of fluid architecture, more digital image than brick and mortar, this is one element of what they mean. From Warsaw, Poland comes a project combining algorithmic design, 3D-printed surfaces, and interactive motion turned into projection-mapped image. Yep, that ticks all the buzzword boxes. But the upshot really does signify something transformative here in all these trends: it shows an architectural surface imagined on computers that takes on new shapes and responds to its environment. So, while some of these particular interactions are familiar – apparently, no one gets tired of waving …

READ MORE →

Lawnmower Man-Style Audiovisuals, in Kinect Experiment, Plus a New Kinect

Oculus Rift + Kinect – Audio visual instrument a001 from Ethno Tekh on Vimeo. That window between science fiction and actual interfaces continues to narrow. Here, virtual hands paw at geometric orbs to produce sound, with simultaneous 3D visuals as accompaniment, in the latest artist/hacker experiment. You can thank the popular and surprisingly-accessible game engine, Unity – which recently added free deployment to mobiles, by the way. Description: This is our first Kinect-controlled, virtual reality experiment, using the greatly anticipated Oculus Rift. It’s a simple virtual reality environment built in Unity 3D with our own interactive framework. It allows us …

READ MORE →