This presentation as made as a tutorial at NCVPRIPG (http://www.iitj.ac.in/ncvpripg/) at IIT Jodhpur on 18-Dec-2013.
Kinect is a multimedia sensor from Microsoft. It is shipped as the touch-free console for Xbox 360 video gaming platform. Kinect comprises an RGB Camera, a Depth Sensor (IR Emitter and Camera) and a Microphone Array. It produces a multi-stream video containing RGB, depth, skeleton, and audio streams.
Compared to common depth cameras (laser or Time-of-Flight), the cost of a Kinect is quite low as it uses a novel structured light diffraction and triangulation technology to estimate the depth. In addition, Kinect is equipped with special software to detect human figures and to produce its 20-joints skeletons.
Though Kinect was built for touch-free gaming, its cost effectiveness and human tracking features have proved useful in many indoor applications beyond gaming like robot navigation, surveillance, medical assistance and animation.