Kinect to recognise sign language

Reports have emerged that Microsoft’s Kinect will be able to understand American Sign Language.

A new patent detailing the ‘Gesture Keyboarding’ for the new Xbox add-on suggests ASL could be used to communicate with other players online.

While the patent does not specifically mention Kinect or even its previous moniker Natal, the patents reference to users making pre-defined movements in front of a depth camera” make it almost certain the filing refers to the upcoming motion controller.

The patent claims: Each gestured character is converted to its spoken equivalent or text equivalent. This may then be output locally, or sent across a communications network for remote output to a second user, or both.”

The example given is that when consumers are playing an online multiplayer game, they will be able to message other players using ASL. Kinect would then translate their gestures and convert them into text or sound – enabling them to communicate without having to rely on the standard voice chat system.

Another use of the technology could allow the user to make the facial motions corresponding to speaking words”.

According to the report: The system may then parse those facial motions to determine the user’s intended words and process them according to the context under which they were inputted to the system.”

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