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Forget Call of Duty: Xbox’s Kinect now being used to keep world peace

Published Feb 4th, 2014 1:50PM EST
Xbox Kinect Korean DMZ

As we’ve noted in the past, Microsoft’s amazing Kinect technology has applications that go far beyond the realm of gaming, including helping stroke victims recover their motor skills. Kotaku has spotted a report in Korean publication Hankooki that details how Kinect is being used to help guard the demilitarized zone that separates North Korea and South Korea.

Korean software developer Jae Kwan Ko, whom Microsoft lists as one of its Most Valuable Professionals for his work as a Kinect convergence application programmer, has developed software for Kinect that can detect whenever something crosses into the DMZ. The program is smart enough to detect whether an actual person is crossing into the DMZ or if it’s just an animal accidentally wandering through, which means that the Korean military won’t constantly be bombarded with false alarms for bunny rabbits hopping into unauthorized areas.

Ko tells Hankooki that he’ll upgrade the system with the new Xbox One sensor once it launches in Korea, which will give it the ability to detect heart rates and heat among many other things. At any rate, it’s nice to see that Kinect isn’t just being used to fight virtual wars but to prevent real-life wars as well. We’re sure that there are plenty of other applications for Kinect that have yet to be discovered and that researchers are just scratching the surface.

Prior to joining BGR as News Editor, Brad Reed spent five years covering the wireless industry for Network World. His first smartphone was a BlackBerry but he has since become a loyal Android user.