Boeing on Kinect
Written by Kay Ewbank   
Saturday, 10 September 2011

If you still need to be convinced that Microsoft Kinect can be used in more ways than just playing games, how about using it for a tour of a Boeing 737?

Boeing is using Kinect to let potential customers move around a virtual 737 created by combining more than 20,000 high res images into a 32-gigapixel image of the plane. The 3-D-like model is hosted on Windows Azure, and uses Silverlight Deep Zoom to provide 360-degree tours of the airplane and the ability to view every component of the plane down to the landing gear, engine components and individual rivets.

 

boeing737

 

The project was so unusual that it has been submitted to Guinness World Records.

“We believe it is currently the largest gigapixel image of a commercial object,”

according to Jon Baker, Chief Technology Officer for Wire Stone, the company who developed the tour. Most gigapixel images created today are of landscapes.

Silverlight Deep Zoom lets the viewer of the demo zoom in and out rapidly, and handles the 360-degree navigation of the plane. Boeing has added annotations on many of the plane’s components so the potential customers can read more detailed information.

In addition to using Silverlight Deep Zoom and touch screens, an alternative version of the demo uses Kinect to control what the potential customer sees. The users stand in front of the image and use Kinect to move around and explore the plane. Boeing says that for example, they can jump from the brakes on the main landing gear to the leading edge of a wing in one fluid movement.

The video below lets you see it in use:

          

 

And you can try the Silverlight version for yourself here: http://www.newairplane.com/737/explained/#/Home

And finally, if you think flying round a virtual Boeing using Kinect is using technology to its fullest extent, there’s also a version that runs on Windows Phone.

 

boeing2

 

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