Last fall, Microsoft Research demoed an amazing technology called RoomAlive that combined any number of off-the-shelf Kinect sensors and video projectors to create interactive rooms where every surface was touchable and mapped in light.
Now, Microsoft has made its RoomAlive software public in this downloadable Toolkit, so anyone with a bit of programming know-how can create their own Holodeck-style interactive games or art projects.
Microsoft never sunk many resources into RoomAlive’s development. It started as the pet project of just a few researchers working with some graduate students over a few months. But the platform it built could have promise in the right hands, since theoretically, RoomAlive’s system is infinitely expandable. All you have to do is add more Kinect sensors and projectors, and you can create as large of a interactive environment as you’d like–from one room, to an entire building.
If it’s not obvious from RoomAlive’s quiet release on GitHub, Microsoft sees the future of these immersive, Holodeck-style worlds in headsets you wear–like its Hololens–more than massive technological buildouts in our homes. That makes sense.
But until that future arrives, RoomAlive is just begging for more attention.