This hack turns your Kinect into a handheld 3D scanner

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[Credit: Bristol Interaction and Graphics]

The Kinect has already proven itself to be a pretty robust 3D camera that can help robots get around and map an entirely new environment. The problem with these modded setups is the Kinect usually ends up mounted onto a robot or tied down by a computer connection.

Now a team of hackers from the University of Bristol may have created the very first portable Kinect. As spotted by Hack a Day, this mobile Kinect camera features a Gumstix board-based Linux computer with a ports expansion shield, battery power supply, and a Wi-Fi adapter.

With these small additions, the Bristol team turned the Kinect into self-contained, handheld 3D scanner that can create a 3D model of wherever you are standing. The team plans to improve its handheld Kinect in the future by adding heat sinks to keep it cool, along with a better battery that lasts longer than 30 minutes.

Over at the Mobile Kinect project page, the Bristol team is sharing the complete list of parts they used. The team also says that it could readily replicate its creation using a Raspberry Pi board as well. The build seems so simple on paper we’re hopping to see a lot of interesting mobile Kinect hacks like this.

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This story, "This hack turns your Kinect into a handheld 3D scanner" was originally published by TechHive.

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