Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Windows 8 To Adopt Kinect Support or At Least, Kinect-Like Features

So, it does seem that Kinect on 360 just may be a way in for Microsoft to break through with this technology to break into the PC world.

This news comes from

Microsoft is also aiming to use sensors in Windows 8 PCs. "Windows 8 can adapt to changes in ambient light, so that the display is always easy to see", states part of the document. The document also hints at Kinect like features. "Windows 8 could detect my presence and log me automatically", hinting at PCs being able to detect their users.

Kinect Technical Specifications [unconfirmed]

These are the Kinect specs given to UK retailers, according to [now retracted?]

  • Colour and depth-sensing lenses
  • Voice microphone array
  • Tilt motor for sensor adjustment
Field of View
  • Horizontal field of view: 57 degrees
  • Vertical field of view: 43 degrees 
  • Physical tilt range: ± 27 degrees
  • Depth sensor range: 1.2m - 3.5m

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Harmonix: When Keeping It Fake Goes Real

Just before E3, Harmonix let the cat out of the bag on Rock Band 3. Introducing not just a keyboard interface, but also a Pro mode, which allows for both midi input and instruments designed to replicate the real thing. Now you will be able to plug in a real midi drum kit, a 120 button guitar replica guitar, a real guitar with midi registers (made just for this game), and/or your own midi keyboard. Still waiting to hear if any guitar with a midi pickup will work. If so, I think they just out-hero-ed Guitar Hero by a mile.

Sound like too much? Well, as long as they keep the standard mode intact (they will), to me it only opens up a new avenue for not only actual musicians, but for music learning, as well. Video games have been the bastards of media for far too long, imo. The phrase "learning can be fun" has always been cliche to the point of being cringe-inducing, but really, if you are going to learn something why can't it be during a fun game?

More images after the break.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Kinect Unleashes Casual, Possibly Fun Games This November

Well, this site should probably start with the most radical consumer interface product yet. That would be Microsoft Kinect. By now, most readers of this site probably already knew about the formerly named "Project Natal". Kinect is a sort of mish-mash of depth, video, and audio sensors. When you think about it, its kind of scary that our input devices are being made to mimic our human senses. Then again, at least they were decent enough at Microsoft to leave out the senses of smell and taste.

Microsoft has decided to launch with a very family-friendly slate of casual games, following Nintendo's strategy, or more over, their complete image that Nintendo has taken many years to develop. I can see how this could equal success, but I just hope that they don't limit the possibility of more edgy fare of game software in the future.

Launch date for NA is November 4th, with the rest of the world "jumping in" by the end of the year. Rumored price is to be set at $150, which is currently refuted as being final by Microsoft. I'll post the actual retail price as it is released.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Welcome To About-Interface!

Thank you for visiting About-Interface. This blog has been a long time coming, and I will have to do a bit of catch-up, as E3 happenned not too long ago.

Thanks. Hope you enjoy.