Microsoft: Nyeah nyeah, Kinect won’t understand sign language, fools

Posted By | On 11th, Aug. 2010

Ok, no, Microsoft didn’t REALLY say that. But do you remember how we told you Kinect will understand sign language? Yeah, well, it won’t.

The patent which revealed the said information on Microsoft’s motion sensing camera, Kinect, was not supposed to be “brought to the market right away.” So for the time being, Kinect won’t be able to understand sign languagem according to MS.

They told Kotaku: “Microsoft files lots of patent applications to protect our intellectual property, not all of which are brought to market right away. Kinect that is shipping this holiday will not support sign language.”

Kotaku says it’s all because of the camera’s resolution. The original Kinect model had high resolution, so it may have had the ability to understand ASL (American Sign Language), but the newer model, the one that will be sold in stores, has a lower resolution, and will not be able to detect individual fingers and limbs.

“Patents are about protecting inventions and their uses – it doesn’t follow that everything you read in the patent will make its way into the final shipping device,” says Richard Leadbetter.

“Patent applications need to be far-reaching enough to cover not only current technology but also subsequent evolutions of it, or spin-off ideas based on the same fundamental concepts. “Sign language recognition is a step beyond the final shipping device – the resolution just isn’t there – but then the application also talks about connecting the camera to a PC and that’s not going to happen in the short term either. Both of these scenarios are simply possibilities for utilisation of the sensor.”

So… I guess Kinect sucks again.


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