intel perceptual computing

Just in time for next week’s Game Developers Conference, Intel announced it has finished the software development kit for its “perceptual computing” technology for next-generation computers.

That means Intel is ready for software developers to begin making apps that exploit hardware technologies that it will build into next-generation laptops, tablets, and desktop computers. Intel believes perceptual computing is the next big wave, and it includes face recognition, gesture recognition, voice recognition, and touch-screen technology.

For gestures, it involves close-range hand and finger tracking, face analysis, and augmented reality. This means that the PC will catch up with (and surpass) gesture-controlled games on systems such as Microsoft’s Kinect for the Xbox 360 or the Nintendo Wii U.

Here’s a demo from gesture-software middleware maker SoftKinetic that shows what Intel means by “perceptual computing.” It is a cool illustration of controlling lightning with your fingers. Michel Tombroff, the chief executive of SoftKinetic, also said that his company’s software is now available on Nvidia processors running Android. That means you can now take any Android-based device that runs on a Nvidia Tegra processor and make it a gesture-controlled device.