Once again, leave it to hackers to turn something trivial and fun into something useful. A group of French hackers have repurposed a Kinect to become, as they call it, “a gesture recognition system” – in other words, something that can potentially read and translate sign language.
(Leave the annotations on in the above video, unless you can speak French.)
The system is still in its infancy – it doesn’t recognize hand or finger positions yet, and needs to be “taught” more words than just “Hello” and “Sorry” – but as Hubert Wassner, one of the hackers involved, explains, “[The] neural network training is automatic [so] no more coding is need[ed]. This means that virtually everyone can build [their] own gesture recognition system, no need to be [a] software engineer.”
With proper development, this could be an invaluable system for deaf and hearing-impared users (Or even a tool to teach sign language), and a much better use of a Kinect than playing Kung Fu Panda 2.
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