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Kinect for Windows SDK Programming Guide (Community Experience Distilled) [Paperback]

Jana Abhijit
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Book Description

26 Dec 2012 1849692386 978-1849692380

Build motion-sensing applications with Microsoft's Kinect for Windows SDK quickly and easily

  • Building application using Kinect for Windows SDK.
  • Covers the Kinect for Windows SDK v1.6.
  • A practical step-by-step tutorial to make learning easy for a beginner.
  • A detailed discussion of all the APIs involved and the explanations of their usage in detail.
  • Procedures for developing motion-sensing applications and also methods used to enable speech recognition.

In Detail

Kinect has been a game-changer in the world of motion games and applications since its first release. It has been touted as a controller for Microsoft Xbox but is much more than that. The developer version, Kinect for Windows SDK, provides developers with the tools to develop applications that run on Windows. You can use this to develop applications that make interaction with your computer hands-free.

This book focuses on developing applications using the developer version of Kinect called Kinect for Windows SDK. It is a complete end to end solution using all the features of Kinect for Windows SDK. You will learn to develop applications in Kinect and give them a 3D effect by using the depth sensor, change angles by using camera sensor. The book will also help you develop motion sensitive and speech recognition enabled applications.

The book begins with explaining the basic requirements and setting up Kinect for Windows SDK. You will be surprised at how quickly the book takes you through the Kinect APIs classification. You will use NUI to use the Kinect for Natural Inputs like skeleton tracking, sensing, and depth measuring.

You will capture different types of video, and images, handle video stream event, and capture frame. Kinect device contains a motorized tilt to control camera angles, which you will learn to use. The last part of the book teaches you to develop a music player using Audio API where source is Kinect Device and then use the speech recognition too.

What will you learn from this book

  • Understand the Kinect sensor in terms of a device, different components, and how they work.
  • Step by step installation guide of SDK, troubleshooting tips and development environment setup.
  • Reading the Kinect device information, monitoring and notifying the sensor status change.
  • Automatically adjust the sensor elevation angle
  • Understand different approaches of capturing data stream from Kinect sensor.
  • Learn the uses of color, depth and IR data and how to leverage them in your applications.
  • Use skeleton-tracking for interactive applications and leveraging the applications to gesture-enabled application
  • Understand usages of Microphone array and build speech-enabled applications with Speech API.
  • Develop applications using Multiple Kinects
  • Understand how to design cross device application with Kinect


This book is a practical tutorial that explains different features of Kinect for Windows SDK by creating sample applications throughout the book

Who this book is written for

If you are looking to develop motion sensing, speech recognizing applications with Kinect, then this book is for you.

This book uses C# and WPF in the examples, so you need to know the basics of C# and WPF. You don't have to know anything about Kinect for Windows SDK.

Frequently Bought Together

Kinect for Windows SDK Programming Guide (Community Experience Distilled) + Kinect in Motion  Audio and Visual Tracking by Example + Beginning Kinect Programming with the Microsoft Kinect SDK (Expert's Voice in Microsoft)
Price For All Three: 75.32

Buy the selected items together

Product details

  • Paperback: 392 pages
  • Publisher: Packt Publishing (26 Dec 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849692386
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849692380
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 18.8 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 905,693 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Abhijit Jana

Abhijit works with Microsoft as a .NET Consultant as part of Microsoft Services Global Delivery, India. As a Consultant, his job is to help customers design, develop and deploy enterprise level secure solutions using Microsoft Technologies. Apart from being a Former Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional), he is a speaker, and author, as well as an avid Technology Evangelist. He has delivered sessions at prestigious Microsoft events like TechED, Web Camps, Azure Camps, Community Tech Days, Virtual Tech Days, Devdays, and developer conference. He loves to work with different .NET Communities and help them with different opportunities. He is a well-known author and has published many articles on various .NET Community sites.

He shares his thoughts on his personal blog at You can follow him on twitter at @abhijitjana. Abhijit lives in Hyderabad, India with his wife, Ananya.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Great introduction with good examples 26 Nov 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Really great book for getting into Kinect programming.

Love the examples and tutorials and really well described without being too numptified. As a professional software engineer, this really got me started on amateur kinect programming. I wanted to make a demo welcoming touchscreen system with facial recognition and the stuff this bit of kit does made that really possible. This book opened that world to me
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars superb device with powerful sensors 3 Feb 2013
Kinect is a superb device that comes equipped with several sensors, letting you devise applications that are not just game related. The text starts off with a quick tour of the sensors. Most immediate or obvious is the colour camera. But take careful note of the infrared emitter and infrared depth sensor. The former spews out a pseudorandom dot pattern of invisible IR dots and the latter reads the reflections. The software knows by coordinating the output with the resultant input how to [try to] get depth information. Essentially, think of this as sonar. The ping is the emission of an IR dot followed by its detection. Since the dots travel at the speed of light, the time elapsed between emission and detection of a given dot tells kinect how far the dot travelled. Needless to say, but I'm saying it anyway, a lot of computation is still needed to construct a 3 dimensional model of the surroundings.

The IR devices are how kinect can handle an arbitrary hitherto unknown environment. It is an indication of how sophisticated kinect is that it even contains a small fan. This is to stabilise the temperatures of the IR devices. Since the emitter can otherwise get warm [IR is heat] and thus the wavelength of the emitted IR can vary.

Other sensors include a tilt motor that can register the orientation, within some limits imposed by the hardware. The text warns the user to be careful and not tilt kinect often. Apparently there is some hardware brittleness that can cause problems.

Then there are 4 microphones, oriented so as to let kinect find the direction of the incoming audio, as well as of course record the audio itself. The use of 4 microphones is impressive, as the book explains, for it enables noise suppression, echo cancellation and beam forming methods. Nice!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.6 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great guide, let down only by a lack of C++ examples. 27 Mar 2013
By A. R. Cummins - Published on
This book, produced by Packt Publishing, purports to be a complete guide to the Windows Kinect SDK. This is not to be confused with the broader themed Kinect books which may cover more subjects such as OpenNI, Omek Beckon, Lib Freenect or various other related topics. This book very much concentrates on the official Microsoft Kinect SDK.

It begins with an excellent and well researched discusson of the Kinect hardware, which is well illustrated, and features all of the relevant information in an easily digestible form, and can be easily picked up if you need to quote a client the specs, like for example the field of vision of the depth sensing camera. It's 43 degrees.

We are then walked through the basic SDK setup, which is simple enough, and then a discussion of the sensor's capabilities. Seaonsed professionals may want to skip through this, as they will likely already know much of this, but nevertheless there may be a few head scratching or eureka moments when you fill in a gap in your Kinect knowlegde, so I'd recommend a read through of this section.

After an overview of the various tools and components of the SDK, we start to see some code examples.

Sadly, this is where the book and I begin to part company. The example code is almost entirely written in C#, which is not a language I generally use. Although I'm perfectly comfortable using Visual Studio, I generally use it to code in C++ (which the SDK extensively supports) so I feel that this was a bit of an oversight. I'm sure for anyone starting out who is already familiar with C# and WPF programming, this wouldn't be a problem, but as I work with Cinder and a number of other C++ libraries, C# isn't really an option.

The book continues on through the various capabilities of the device and the SDK, and as long as you don't mind being tied into C sharp, it's a pretty comprehensive read and holds your hand all the way through. It also covers tricky stuff like the encoding of player ids into the 16 bit depth image stream, something which can cause a lot of confusion starting out, but is vital to get a handle on.

It also covers less well understood topics like speech recognition, beamforming, and does a good job of introducing the reader to simple gesture recognition.
Be aware, however, that gesture recognition is not actually provided by the Kinect SDK as such, and you will have to come up with your own solution for this. This is a pretty common gotcha with Kinect applications, and it can take a long time to get to grips with, so be warned that allthough the material in the book is a good starting point, you may want to look into more sophisticated gesture recognition solutions if your application needs to do anything complicated.

As I've mentioned, I was a bit disappointed on the heavy reliance on C sharp, but the rest of the book is so useful that I'd say it's a welcome addition to your library even if you don't us C#, just for the hardware information alone.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars All you ever need to know about Kinect development - In this book. 11 Mar 2013
By Ariel - Published on
This book is a guide that takes you end to end with Kinect development.

The first chapter provides you with an in-depth introduction into the Kinect sensor itself, for myself one who finds all hardware a mystery it was very educational to have someone pinpoint all the hardware pieces that Kinect consist of.

The 2nd chapter guides you with the preparation of your working environment. It describes in length how to setup the various SDKs and make sure you have zero questions mark before you get into the real thing. Coding.

From there we are skimming though the various properties of the SDK, from extracting information on kinect devices plugged in into setting their properties, for example their tilt angle.

With light and easy to read language, the book takes no prerequisites on the reader knowledge, but WPF knowledge will help concentrating on the main issue which is the SDK and not the user code that operates it.

Also very helpful are diagrams and side information meant for explaining what is going on the device itself and the physics involves with the commands operated.

Skeleton processing or speech processing are most likely what every Kinect driven application is likely to use, the book is full of practical code snippets and approaches that steer away from the academic approach and it's very valuable for someone who doesn't solely care about how it works but how to make it work in his app.

Kinect is here to stay, it's the harbinger of NUI (Natural User Interface), reports indicate that Kinect and other similar devices are getting better and better and are extending the scenarios they can be applied into. You can grab this book and make sure this train doesn't leave without you.
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous introduction to the Kinect SDK 25 Mar 2013
By Mr. S. Jackson - Published on
Since reading [...] I've take a much more proactive interest in Kinect programming.

Abhijit Janan has taken a very look leading approach to drawing you in to how to use the Kinect SDK and get used to NUI style development.
It builds up very nicely on all the features enabled with Kinect like Skeletons, Audio, Tracking, Guestures and so on getting you a full working app by the end of each chapter.

highly recommend this book for anyone interested in delving into Kinect, much better than any current on-line training resources with practical samples.
5.0 out of 5 stars A very good Kinect for PC Programming Guide Book by Abhijit Jana 22 Mar 2013
By Alon Fliess - Published on
Since the release of Kinect for PC I had the opportunity to take part and be involved with several Kinect based projects. Starting developing with the Kinect SDK is something that most .NET and native C++ developers can handle very easily. Just download and install the SDK, hook a Kinect device (you can use the Xbox Kinect, however you will need a power cable and do remember that it is just for the development process and some features, like near mode, will not work), run the Kinect toolkit browser, see the sample, read the document and open the source code.
The hard part is to learn to use the Kinect for PC SDK to develop a real word Natural User Interface (NUI) based applications. You will need to deal with developing tasks such as understanding postures and gestures, using voice commands with Windows Speech SDK, and handling multiple Kinect devices simultaneously.
This new book from Abhijit Jana is exactly what you need to flatten the steep learning curve. I wish I had this book when I started dealing with Kinect for PC, myself.
The book starts with the basic features of Kinect and your first Kinect applications. It takes you through all the features of the Kinect device, which are exposed by the SDK. You will learn how to deal with the color and depth Cameras, How to reactive Skeleton events and understand the tracking state of the players. Two chapters talk about Kinect audio, the first one tells you how to get audio stream from the Microphone array and the second chapter teaches you how to use the audio stream as a feed to Microsoft Speech API, to implement Voice Recognition.
The last chapters are going deep. Here you will read about NUI with gestures, understand how to recognize Skeleton positions and how to interpret the player gesture. The last chapter shows how you can add Kinect to a distributed application using the Cloud and the Phone.
Kinect is a revolutionary device and this book provides the information you need to start developing NUI application with it.
5.0 out of 5 stars Learn All Aspects of Kinect Development! 22 Mar 2013
By Keith Harvey - Published on
If you are really wanting to go beyond the simple examples posted on the web, and really understand and learn all aspects of Kinect development, then this book is for you! It was for me. The authors and publisher worked really hard to illustrate and structure the book well. It was a pleasure to read and I learned much more than I thought I would. One thing I really liked is that they taught me about the hardware of the Kinect, teaching me where each sensor was placed, how the tilt motor functioned and even showed pictures of its internals.

Overall, I think this is a great book!
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