The most inexpensive 3-D camera to date, the Kinect bypassed the need for joysticks and controllers by sensing the user's gestures, leading to a feeling of total immersion into the game. Microsoft sold 8 million Kinect units within 60 days, making it the fastest-selling electronic device ever.
"But then something interesting happened," said Oliver Cossairt, assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer science at Northwestern University's McCormick School of Engineering. "Microsoft made the software available for the 3-D capture part of the device. People were able to integrate this inexpensive consumer device into a variety of platforms, including robotics and navigation."