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Sunnyvale, California-based GestureTek is the patent creator and holder for their Video Gesture Control technology which, following a licensed use to Sony's EyeToy in 2005, was announced as being licensed for Xbox 360 Live Vision development last May.
The patent, U.S. #5-534917, covers all "video-based interactive gesture control of computer processes." In other words, any interactive technology with a user being displayed on-screen has licensed GestureTek's technology.
A simple demonstration program, with the file name of GestureGame.exe, shipped with Live Vision's development kit in late July (though it has been available internally at Microsoft since February). The demonstration, with source included, offers a simple level of interactivity, allowing the user to "touch" and interact with floating objects on the screen. The user is not displayed; rather, only motion is detected. The white splotch on the above screenshot is actually a moving hand.
GestureTek also displayed face-tracking technology, as seen above. The program very quickly recognizes a user's face, detecting facial structure and features, and is able to track it.
As seen in the photograph, a yellow box surrounds this user's face. He is able to move around rapidly, and the box stays with him, moving fluidly in real time. When another user steps on screen, the box still maintains its link with the original user. When the original user leaves, the tracker - looking for the closest match to the original face - moves on to the newcomer. If the original user comes back, the box returns. It's very smart, but unfortunately is not included in the Live Vision development kit, and must be licensed directly from GestureTek.