Monday, February 28, 2011

Kinect versus the Wii?

image from Microsoft

I recently was able to try out the new Kinect on the Xbox. It was an interesting experience. The Kinect is able to detect your motions without any remote or game controller. Not only does it detect upper extremity motion (like the Wiimote) it also can detect lower extremity motion. I played soccer and did several track and field events. It was definitely very different from the Wii. The first step is to get the Kinect to register your motions. It was hard to match up my hands or feet exactly where the Kinect wanted me to. I found it to be difficult to follow which person I even was. In addition, the motor planning and body awareness required to kick the ball or jump a hurdle was challenging. I am sure if I practiced more I would be able to plan and execute my virtual motor actions better. For now though I am sticking with the Wii.

I do see amazing possibilities for the reasonably priced technology though. I imagine therapeutic home exercise programs where therapists can remotely track how a client is doing with regards to range of motion, reaction time, balance skills and more.

If you have tried the Kinect, what did you think of it?

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