Jimmy Engström


Our Kinect Controlled living room

Recently I created a project for a Swedish Kinect contest at Migbi.se this was my second entry, my first one (and third place winner) was my Robosapien project.

I have always been fascinated by home automation, I bought my first X-10 system ten years ago.

My friends thought I was insane, “-You can just get up an shut the light off".

But that’s not the point, it’s not because I’m lazy it’s all about removing obstacles, what if when I enter a room the lights turns on, when I go to bed everything turns off.

Saves energy, saves time, removes obstacles.


Peter Forss made a really cool entry to the contest, his project turns on and off lights depending on where he is in the room.

This inspired me, I wanted to do something with Kinect and home automation.


I had previously built a home automation system that can control our home (lights, infrared devices etc) so the only thing I needed to do is hook up the Kinect.
I wanted to be able to control what lights to turn on just by pointing at them.

So here is my attempt to control our living room with a Kinect.


Kinected living room


How it works

I added all my light in an array with the lights X and Z position relative to the kinect sensor (in meters).

For each light, I calculate the angle from where I am in the room to the light and compare it to the angle between me (my body’s centre) and my hand.


Then I check for the light on gesture (hand under shoulder moved to over shoulder) or light off gesture (hand over shoulder moved to below shoulder).


These gestures sends a command to my home automation system to executes the correct command.

It uses a Tellstick to control the lights, the beauty of that device is that it can control close to any type of protocol (I use Nexa or in some cases the cheapest possible plug-in lamp module I could find, it also works with X10).


In this video I only control lights and screen, but it is possible to control infrared devices like tv or home cinema.


Please feel free to send me an email if you have any questions.

Posted in Gadgets, Kinect