The 3D scanning capabilities of the Kinect have been front row in terms of displaying its numerous real-world applications. Being able to fully scan a 3D model of practically anything and then importing it into a 3D modelling solution or gaming engine lends itself to so many DIY projects that are cheap and practical.
Unity is an integrated authoring tool for creating 3D video games or other interactive content such as architectural visualizations or real-time 3D animations. Unity's development environment runs on Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X, and the games it produces can be run on Windows, Mac, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii, iPad, iPhone, as well as the Android platform. It can also produce browser games that use the Unity web player plugin, supported on Mac and Windows but not Linux.
Official Site: unity3d.com/unity
AlexD hooked us all up with this robust and incredibly awesome framework developed as a part of his Computer Science Master Thesis. The framework allows users to become immersed in a whole body virtual reality experience. It's something you definitely need to see to believe. But we'll get to that soon enough.
The good folks at ZigFu have just announced that the commercial version of their ZigFu Development Kit is now available. With the ZigFu development kit, you can develop feature rich websites, Unity games and Flash applications using depth sensing cameras such as the Kinect.
All application are portable across all operating systems, web browsers CV middleware and 3D sensors. They have a recipe list, API documentation and some great tutorials to get you started on your way to developing robust kinect applications.
I just stumbled across a pretty cool free throwing basketball game that uses Unity with the ZigFu framework. It's good to see that people out in the wild are taking the ZigFu SDK out for a spin and coming up with some pretty creative projects.
I'm more than likely posting this one a little premature as I get the feeling this is mostly a PoC video demo of a work in progress. Either way, it's a great showcase in terms of what you can piece together using ZigFU and the Unity game engine.
Here's a short but sweet video demonstration of Mert Akbal's Avian Flight Simulator game build using Unity. Game mechanics are simple enough. Gesture with your arms in a flying motion in order to control the height at which the butterfly climbs. Angle your torso in different positions to change the flight path direction as you fly around.
If anything, it's a great work out for those flabby arms developed over the holiday season. Definitely a less embarrassing work out then the shake weight!
This interactive puppet display was developed by the team at yoke.dk and was created for the frederica theatre in denmark. The purpose of the project was to allow the audience to interact with a puppet from the show once they were finished watching the performance. Audience members were able to control the arms of one of the stars in the show creating another level of immersion that connects the the audience with the performers in a more interactive way.
Not much to say here aside from the fact that you can do some really great work using a kinect with Unity. If anything this is just a showcase piece in terms of what you can achieve in Unity with a Kinect sensor. The fact that the model is able to pick up boxes makes it seem as if the Unity Kinect wrapper example Skeleton was used as a base model and was improved upon significantly.