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Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?


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Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
11-19-2010, 01:49 PM
Post: #1
Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
I remember reading some conflicting reports on the precision of the Kinect motion sensor. Some say that it can see the hands and maybe even the fingers. Others say that it can only see the overall body skeleton and not the fine details.

I'm curious because the level of detail basically dictates the precision, and thus the future potential of the system as a game controller.

It bothers me that the default menu selection system requires you to hold your hand at given location for a few seconds. That's so clumsy and slow. I can't help thinking that MSFT picked this system because it can't see what your hand is doing...it can only see where your hand is located.

There are so many better options...for example:

- twist the hand (like turning a knob)
- close the hand (like grasping a handle in mid-air)
- wave just the hand, keeping the arm steady
- flick just the hand

MSFT should have waited or invested the time/money to create a motion sensor that CAN see fine movements. Otherwise, it seems like such a wasted opportunity. There is a HUGE difference in potential for a system that can only see body movements versus one that can see hand movements.
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11-19-2010, 04:01 PM
Post: #2
RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
I think it can see fingers. I only think that because in dance central, using the menu is more accurate when your index finger instead of your whole hand...and I'm sure they are not advertising this because then all these crap developers would be bugging HMX since they know what they are doing Tongue

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11-19-2010, 10:43 PM
Post: #3
RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
I remember an article about how Kinect could have understood sign language but MS gave it a lesser resolution to cut costs. If ours can't read sign language, I doubt it can tell the difference between our fingers. Just my 0.02. Smile

http://www.engadget.com/2010/08/11/micro...graded-ca/

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11-19-2010, 10:58 PM
Post: #4
RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
LOL I dunno man, maybe I'm just crazy TongueDC just seems more accurate when using an index finger instead of your whole hand.

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11-20-2010, 12:46 AM
Post: #5
Information RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
Officially Kinect can't track individual fingers but I think theoretically it could if you held your hand(s?) close enough (but I think they still need to be 2ft away) although if you're that cloe then obviously it can't track most of your body as well. It can definitely track hand movements though and as far as finger movements go just hold all your fingers and thumb together then move your fingers like that but only bending at the big knuckles at the bottom of you fingers, that's what your Kinect skeleton can do so basically it can at least track you making a fist. Actually I'll draw a quick Kinect skeleton in Paint and attach it:

[Image: 4ruhsh.jpg]
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11-20-2010, 12:51 AM
Post: #6
RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
Bravo on the artist work! Tongue

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11-20-2010, 12:51 AM
Post: #7
RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
(11-19-2010 10:58 PM)TheZeeMan Wrote:  LOL I dunno man, maybe I'm just crazy TongueDC just seems more accurate when using an index finger instead of your whole hand.

I'll give it a shot and see. You may be right. Smile

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11-20-2010, 12:55 AM (This post was last modified: 11-20-2010 01:30 AM by Corellianrogue.)
Post: #8
RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
(11-20-2010 12:51 AM)TheZeeMan Wrote:  Bravo on the artist work! Tongue

Thanks, lol! I just found a pic of the real thing:

[Image: dy0z2h.jpg]


Edit: Although the skeleton looks 2D in pics it is actually 3D and each "bone" is 3D so it can track turning your head, or twisting your arm/wrist/hand.
(11-19-2010 10:58 PM)TheZeeMan Wrote:  LOL I dunno man, maybe I'm just crazy TongueDC just seems more accurate when using an index finger instead of your whole hand.

I know Dance Central is developed by Harmonix but is it published by Ubisoft by any chance? Because that skeleton I posted is Microsoft's default skeletal system but other companies are free to create their own (although obviously it takes a lot of time and effort) and that's what Ubisoft did and they even claim it's better than Microsoft's! Also if a company is developing a 1 player game then theoretically they could make a more complex skeletal system (and probably tracking system in general) as they'll have at least twice as many "bones" and points to work with.
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11-20-2010, 02:46 AM
Post: #9
RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
Well, DC is published by MTV, distributed by Microsoft.

Hmm...thanks for the pictures. Interesting.

If it can see the hand, MSFT really should have gone with a hand gesture, instead of the default 'hold hand in position for several seconds.' Perhaps, it's just not reliable enough at this level of detail. Anyways, I definitely think this is a sticking point and will be the primary limitation of this current Kinect system. I think MSFT is going to kick themselves in a year or two for skimping on the resolution.

I guess I can hope that the software will improve (dramatically) with time and some genius developer will figure out how to overcome this limitation and get as much out of the system as possible.
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11-20-2010, 03:50 AM (This post was last modified: 11-20-2010 04:02 AM by Corellianrogue.)
Post: #10
Information RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
(11-20-2010 02:46 AM)fervor Wrote:  Well, DC is published by MTV, distributed by Microsoft.

Hmm...thanks for the pictures. Interesting.

If it can see the hand, MSFT really should have gone with a hand gesture, instead of the default 'hold hand in position for several seconds.' Perhaps, it's just not reliable enough at this level of detail. Anyways, I definitely think this is a sticking point and will be the primary limitation of this current Kinect system. I think MSFT is going to kick themselves in a year or two for skimping on the resolution.

I guess I can hope that the software will improve (dramatically) with time and some genius developer will figure out how to overcome this limitation and get as much out of the system as possible.

I don't think it's got anything to do with it being reliable. In Child Of Eden when in "lock-on" mode you push forward to fire your missiles (you clap to switch between rapid-fire mode and lock-on mode, I think it's the clapping motion that triggers the switch not the clapping noise) and it looks like you close your hands then open them (like a wizard casting a spell or something, lol!) to activate the smart bombs. Also in Forza 4 in the "looking around and in the car" mode you push things to select them. Maybe Microsoft thought it would be "safer" to use on the dashboard (and in games at first) the "holding until the circle draws" method of selecting as they were worried people would accidentally select the wrong things too easily? (Notice they also changed from just flicking left and right to scroll through menus to touching the scroll icon then flicking left and right?)
By the way, Kinect doesn't see your skeleton, Kinect can "see" the 3D model of you that you can see in Your Shape and should be able to just make out in that pic above, behind the skeleton. That's what it "sees" with the IR sensor and it can also "see" video the same as the EyeToy, however what's cool is that it can project the video on top of the 3D model to create 3D video! (As seen in Your Shape sometimes and the upcoming The Michael Jackson Experience as well as of course in this article from this website: https://123kinect.com/kinect-3d-model/ for example.) The skeleton is actually what Kinect's software creates using the tracking data. But like I said, other companies (or Microsoft themselves obviously) can create their own skeletal system if they want.
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11-20-2010, 04:04 AM
Post: #11
RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
You could be right. I hope you're right.

I haven't researched enough about upcoming games. Maybe I should check them out.

Human computer interface / user interface definitely interests me. It was a minor focus for my studies at my grad school, so I'm fascinated to see what solutions the developers and Microsoft come up with for Kinect.
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11-20-2010, 04:30 AM (This post was last modified: 11-20-2010 04:32 AM by Corellianrogue.)
Post: #12
Information RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
(11-20-2010 04:04 AM)fervor Wrote:  You could be right. I hope you're right.

I haven't researched enough about upcoming games. Maybe I should check them out.

Human computer interface / user interface definitely interests me. It was a minor focus for my studies at my grad school, so I'm fascinated to see what solutions the developers and Microsoft come up with for Kinect.

I'm not sure if you already saw the video that I posted in one of the boards here but it shows someone using nightvision goggles to see the thousands of points (the same amount as the resolution of the sensor I think, so 76,800 points!) projected by Kinect's IR projector that are then "seen" by Kinect's IR sensor and used by it to map the players and the room (and any objects) in 3D. I think that basically it would take too much processing power to actually track every single one of those points as far as actually using them to control things in games so instead Kinect's software converts them into simpler and far more manageable skeletons. I think I read that Microsoft's default software can track up to 48 points so that's enough for 2 full skeletons (ie. full body control for 2 players which equals 40 points) plus more basic tracking (the remaining 8 points) for a few extra players or objects. (For when games implement object scanning & tracking.)

If you want a good comparison then each of the "bones" in the skeleton is the equivalent of 1 Move wand (without buttons though obviously, lol!) so Kinect can track the equivalent of at least 40 Move wands (more than 40 really as you had those 8 extra points left over) whereas Move can only track a maximum of 4! Big Grin(Plus video, but of course Kinect has video too.)
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11-20-2010, 05:17 AM
Post: #13
RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
Dude Core you are smart LOL I wouldn't of ever known all that if you didn't mention it lol

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11-20-2010, 06:35 AM
Post: #14
RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
Yes, I saw the video. Definitely a surprise. I've used motion capture systems before, but they all used reflective markers placed at various points on the body. Kinect's system is quite innovative.

From what I've read, the IR emitter/sensor is basically a depth sensor with a 320x240 resolution. Looks like each of the dots in the video is one of these 'pixels'. The software identifies each body part using the depth information. It was probably trained using tons of example skeletons that have a fair amount of variety.

At one point in the video, the guy puts his hand in front of the camera. Total guess, but it looks like maybe a couple hundred pixels worth of depth information. It looks like that might be enough to track some finger movements. But the problem is that the hand is somewhat close to the IR emitter.

At the normal Kinect distance, the pixels should be more spread apart, which means fewer pixels dedicated to the hand and fingers. It seems like it could be able to see a hand opening and closing. I don't know.

I would think that the width between each pixel is the smallest possible movement that the system can detect. That's unrealistic, because I'm sure the system needs a minimum number of pixels in order to identify body parts.

Hmm...I don't have enough technical information to really figure out the limitations, but it is definitely slick software. I'm quite impressed, especially with the speed of processing.

I don't think the RGB camera is used at all for motion detection, since I've used Kinect in a pitch black room and it worked fine. I wonder how hard it would be for the system to utilize the RGB data in addition to the infrared. That would enable finer detail since the RGB camera has a higher resolution (640x480).

Anyways...I look forward to the coming years and seeing the advances that come from our new gadget.
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11-20-2010, 06:49 AM
Post: #15
RE: Can Kinect detect hand or finger movements?
Well said fervor, even though these crap games keep coming out, someone has to eventually utilize the tech Tongue

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