When people first started talking about messing around with the insides of the Kinect, Microsoft played bad cop, making legal threats. Thankfully, things have calmed down since then.

A few weeks back, Microsoft said - in response to a "bounty" being offered to the first person to "hack" Kinect - that it would "work closely with law enforcement and product safety groups to keep Kinect tamper-resistant". Heavy-handed!

Now, though, cooler heads have prevailed, and in an interview with NPR, Microsoft's Shannon Liftis and Alex Kipman have stated emphatically that nobody doing what is presently being called "hacking" - as in, messing around with drivers on a PC to get the Kinect doing cool and interesting stuff - will be punished.

Indeed, the pair say Microsoft meant to make it this easy to hook a Kinect up to a PC, in order to encourage this kind of behaviour.

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But what about the legal threats? Those are being reserved for people who "hack" Kinect using the definition Microsoft is using, which is "someone got to our algorithms that sit on the side of the Xbox and was able to actually use them", or had "put a device between the sensor and the Xbox for means of cheating".

And that hasn't happened. Yet.

How The X-Box Kinect Tracks Your Moves [NPR]