Making Kinect Windows-friendly is more than just a fancy new SDK and some marketing materials. Developers are going to need some tweaked hardware as well, and Microsoft is prepared to deliver with a Windows version of Kinect capable of accurate sensing as close as 50 centimeters from the sensor.
In a post on the official Kinect for Windows blog general manager Craig Eisler details this new version of the magical hardware, which comes complete with a shorter USB cable and a dongle to help it play nice with other USB devices. By far the coolest new feature, however, is Near Mode, a special setting for the device that will allow people to sit at their desks and be recognized by Kinect, rather than having to drive into the next county like I have to with the one in my living room.
Well thanks, Microsoft. There goes my vision of a future in which people have to back six to eight feet away from the ATM to be verified, their money scattering majestically in the wind before they can make it back. Such dreams I had, jerks.
Kinect for Windows – Building the Future [Kinect for Windows Blog]