PlayStation Camera To Support Facial Recognition

Illustration for article titled PlayStation Camera To Support Facial Recognition

Forget full-body waggle, the thing that most excited me about Project Natal's E3 demo was the promise that the camera could recognise my face, and log me into Xbox Live automatically. Yes, I'm that lazy.

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Not wanting to be outdone, Sony Europe's Head of Developer Services, Kish Hirani, announced yesterday during the Develop conference that the PlayStation 3 would soon also support this facial recognition technology, courtesy of the existing PlayStation Eye camera.

This PS Eye will apparently be able to "detect gender and even the age of the face, separate facial features such as the nose, eyes and ears, and even detect whether you're smiling or not." In addition to facial recognition, Hirani says the PS3 will soon also be able to support other similar advances, such as "skeleton tracking".

Whether your favourite upcoming game will support this kind of thing is up to developers.

Develop 2009: SCEE's Hirani Reveals PS Eye Facial Recognition, Motion Controller Details [Gamasutra]

DISCUSSION

I always felt the EyeToy/PS Eye was under-used technology, even when it first came out for the PS2. I initially picked up EyeToy Groove (don't judge me!), followed by AntiGrav, in addition to other games I had that used it (DDR Extreme 2), but it never really seemed to catch on, despite all the tech demos they showed of what it could do (Like tracking brightly colored objects as a form of motion control, years before the Wii was out).

Now that the Wii exploded, it seems like Sony thought, "Oh hey. We do have a camera, don't we? Didn't we also have a bunch of cool tech showing off really neat motion control abilities that could be done with it? Hrm, maybe we should finally act on it 6 years after we actually released it."

I'd say day late and a dollar short if I wasn't actually excited about finally using my PS Eye for something other than a PC webcam.