Tobii: Eye-Tracking Controls Finally Coming to Video Games

Tobii announced its partnership with SteelSeries to bring eye tracking to video games with a new sensor bar and the EyeX engine. A prototype at CES demonstrated in-game navigation, menu selection and aiming by using nothing more than players’ eye movements. Developers can preorder the SDK now for delivery in March, and they’ll be able to designate standard mouse and keyboard functions to gaze controls. The device is expected to cost around $100. Continue reading Tobii: Eye-Tracking Controls Finally Coming to Video Games

Google’s Chromecast SDK Headed for International Markets

Google is planning to bring Chromecast to international markets and make casting available on multiple devices with thousands of apps. The popular device’s SDK, which is still being finalized, will be opened up to help make apps compatible with the $35 dongle, and Google is partnering with several companies to bring its functionality to a number of other devices. Hundreds of developers have already signed up to add Chromecast capabilities to their apps. Continue reading Google’s Chromecast SDK Headed for International Markets

Google Aims to Attract Programmers with Glass Developer Kit

Google unveiled its Glass Development Kit (GDK) earlier this week at a Glass hackathon in San Francisco, inviting developers to create third party apps for its wearable technology. The company is looking to lure programmers with parts of Glass that were previously unavailable. Developers can now build Glass apps that work offline, in real time, and use the hardware accelerometer and GPS. Until now, developers were only able to work with the Mirror API. Continue reading Google Aims to Attract Programmers with Glass Developer Kit

Samsung Edges Out the Competition for Android Development

Samsung made some significant announcements at its Developers Conference earlier this week that indicate it is making a play for greater control over Android. Among the announcements, the company plans to release five new SDKs for phones, tablets, TVs and more. The developer kits include support for apps and features involving pen and gesture controls in addition to media playback from mobile devices. Samsung now sells more Android devices than any of its competitors. Continue reading Samsung Edges Out the Competition for Android Development

Nielsen to Include Mobile Viewing in Its Television Ratings

Nielsen confirmed this week that starting in 2014, television ratings and viewership consumed on digital devices will be measurable. The company is currently working on the software developer kit for its clients to make that possible. The move marks a significant change considering that more people are now consuming media on digital devices than they are on traditional TV, and that segment of viewers has been sorely missing in rating calculations. Continue reading Nielsen to Include Mobile Viewing in Its Television Ratings

Facebook Partners with Unity to Attract Core Game Developers

Facebook has partnered with game engine Unity to infiltrate the world of Web and mobile 3D games. The social network is releasing a software development kit with Unity that will allow game makers to incorporate Facebook tie-ins into games. Game developers for Unity will be able to create Facebook hooks for Web, iOS and Android. The ultimate goal is to attract more developers to build a wider array of games for the Facebook platform. Continue reading Facebook Partners with Unity to Attract Core Game Developers

Google Limits Some Development on Chromecast and Android

Google is beginning to restrict developer access to Chromecast and the Android operating system. The company is disabling workarounds of its Chromecast streaming device and other app options on Android. The move may be bad news for developers as certain functions are no longer available, but it may be good news for consumers if the user experience becomes more refined and features less ads on the new Chromecast and maturing Android. Continue reading Google Limits Some Development on Chromecast and Android

SoftKinetic and Intel Pursue Era of Perceptual Computing

Belgium-based SoftKinetic built what it says is the world’s smallest 3D camera that recognizes gestures. The company has teamed with Intel to take the next step toward “perceptual computing,” which entails using more senses to interact with computers. The small 3D gesture-recognition camera, which is based on “time-of-flight” technology, will be used by Intel in its collection of perceptual computing technologies next year. Continue reading SoftKinetic and Intel Pursue Era of Perceptual Computing

The Surface: Microsoft Table-Sized Tablet to Ship by Early 2012

  • The Surface 2.0 SDK, demonstrated at last year’s CES, will be released sometime early next year. Pre-orders can be placed with Samsung resellers in 23 countries (including the United States).
  • The $8,400 table-sized tablet, also wall-mountable, is four inches thick and recognizes hands, fingers and objects placed on the screen. It is currently known as the “Surface” or “Samsung SUR40 for Microsoft Surface.”
  • “Running Windows 7 and Surface 2.0 software, SUR40 has a 40-inch screen measured diagonally, 1,920×1,080 resolution, a contrast ratio of 2,000:1, an AMD GPU along with 2.9GHz Athlon X2 dual-core processors, 320GB of storage, and 4GB of memory,” reports Ars Technica. “Ports include Ethernet, HDMI, and 4 USB 2.0 ports.”
  • Microsoft targets the Surface for professional use and envisions it being used in a number of industries including automotive, education, finance, healthcare, hospitality and retail.
  • The original Surface is already in use by the Hard Rock Cafes, Microsoft retail stores, MSNBC, Disney, Sheraton hotels and others.

Microsoft Announces Free Software Developer Kit for Kinect

  • Microsoft is helping developers looking to utilize the full potential of Kinect technology by releasing a software developer kit. While Microsoft wants to keep the focus on gaming, the company recognizes the potential for Kinect-based applications beyond video games.
  • Soon after Microsoft released the Kinect add-on for its Xbox (which has reportedly sold 10 million units), developers and hackers have been creating new and interesting ways of using Kinect and its motion-sensing camera system – from compelling interactive window displays to steering remote-controlled toy helicopters. There is even a Kinect Hacks site dedicated to such efforts.
  • Recognizing the strong interest in the technology, Microsoft officially announced the introduction of a free software developer kit for the Kinect.
  • According to the Microsoft blog: “This is only the beginning in our commitment to deliver an SDK to the community. Microsoft’s vision of the natural user interface is that interactions between people and computers will ultimately become invisible – computers will understand peoples’ gestures, listen for their voice commands, even interpret and respond to their expressions and inflections in voice.”

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