By Joel Hruska, ExtremeTech
Microsoft has filed for a Kinect-related patent, and it’s a doozy of an application. The abstract describes a camera-based system that would monitor the number of viewers in a room and check to see if the number of occupants exceeded a certain threshold set by the content provider. If there are too many warm bodies present, the device owner would be prompted to purchase a license for a greater number of viewers.
No, really. It’s that blunt. From the abstract: “The users consuming the content on a display device are monitored so that if the number of user-views licensed is exceeded, remedial action may be taken.”
It’s refreshing to see Microsoft eschewing its play-nice-with-everyone approach to business for some old-fashioned, straight-up evil. The patent’s various claims can endow a device with a limited number of performances in a given period of time, a limited number of users allowed to view such performances, and the continuous monitoring of viewers during those performances. It also covers the determination of “when performance of the content to an identified user exceeds a threshold.”