A group in Spain called Think Big Factory, led by Openarch project Founder Ion Cuervas-Mons, has taken smart home technology to the next level, and they’ve used Microsoft Kinect to do it.
A piece of the future is nestled in a prototype apartment in Fuenterrabia, Spain. The architects and artists responsible have rigged up a system of Kinect cameras and video projectors that offer a glimpse of what the living spaces of tomorrow could look like.
The system, which the designers are calling the D. OS, or Domestic Operating System, would be able to project images and interfaces on every surface in the home.
“The digital layer – which from now on we will call D. OS (domestic operating system) – includes a series of components that allow users to stay connected to anyone or any place; control the house’s components by the movement of the body; hold conferences from home; know the power consumption at any time; activate any electrical household appliance from work; share a live video of your cooking recipes with the rest of the world; create your own TV set in the lounge, and so on,” the group’s website says.
A two-minute video shows a series of hypothetical uses for the system.
In it, a girl wakes up to an alarm clock on the wall, which she shuts off with a wave of her arm.
Meters show how long a laundry cycle will continue or how much water a houseplant has and needs or where in an organized collection a CD belongs.
She plays Tetris on the floor, browses Twitter on the wall, and does a life-size Skype chat with a friend.
The projectors are even able to transform her entire room into a serene beach, a busy city street corner or just a better-decorated room.
And the 3D motion capturing technology behind Microsoft’s Kinect peripheral for the Xbox 360 manages all of this interactivity.
The girl in the video navigates a menu with her arm, pointing at a Twitter logo, then sweeps her arm down to scroll through tweets, turning her wall into the world’s biggest iPad.
The use of Kinect could prove to be particularly prescient. Earlier this week, we reported on how Microsoft hopes that the technology, which first debuted in 2010, will eventually be integrated into several other types of products to eventually be as ubiquitous as it is shown in this video.