Chrome extension and Kinect control the browser with gestures

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A group of students at the MIT Media Lab Fluid Interfaces Group, devoted to move UI design past the typical keyboard-and-mouse interface, has turned the Kinect motion controller into a tool for Web browsing. They wrote an extension for Google Chrome called DepthJS (yes, it uses Javascript) so that surfers can manipulate the browser with just gestures.

The group has demonstrated fairly simple website navigation in their video, embedded below (via Engadget). Making a fist is for selecting while a swatting motion allows scrolling.

"DepthJS is a web browser extension that allows any any web page to interact with the Microsoft Kinect via Javascript," according to the video's description. "Navigating the web is only one application of the framework we built - that is, we envision all sorts of applications that run in the browser, from games to specific utilities for specific sites. The great part is that now web developers who specialize in Javascript can work with the Kinect without having to learn any special languages or code. We believe this will allow a new set of interactions beyond what we first developed."

For those of you that came here just to watch the video, here's a bonus one:

In the video above, the Munich-based software company Evoluce shows Windows 7 applications being controlled through Kinect. There's multitouch support, which we've seen before, based on the company's Multitouch Input Management (MIM) driver for Kinect. The user can easily zoom and resize images as well as draw using two hands at once.


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