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Magic fingers: SoftKinetic is at the core of Intel’s ‘perceptual computing’ technology (video demo)

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softkinetic demo

SoftKinetic grabbed some of the limelight at the Intel Developer Forum as the world’s biggest chip maker showed off “perceptual computing,” or how you can control a computer through hand movements, face recognition, voice commands, touchscreen swipes, or mouse-and-keyboard controls.

The Brussels, Belgium-based SoftKinetic makes gesture-control cameras and software much like the elements used in Microsoft’s Kinect motion-sensing system for the Xbox 360 game console. But SoftKinetic makes technology that can recognize gestures that are anywhere from 6 inches to 3 feet away from a DepthSense camera atop a laptop.

Intel believes that the close-range gesture-recognition technology is ideal for controlling thin and light laptops — dubbed “ultrabooks” — which resemble Apple’s MacBook Airs. SoftKinetic’s technology will be included in the software development kit (SDK) coming in 2013. Michel Tombroff, the chief executive of SoftKinetic, and his team showed us a hands-on demo of the technology. Here’s our video of it on display at the Intel Developer Forum at Moscone Center West in San Francisco.

SoftKinetic shows its close-range gesture control technology for laptops from Venturebeat on Vimeo.