Microsoft Research Computer Vision Contest

Individual full-time students and post-graduate students are invited to participate in the contest. Students are encouraged to apply their imagination and passion to create novel technological solutions using Kinect for Windows.

Kinect has been a smashing success since its November 2010 debut, partly thanks to key contributions from Microsoft Research to its audio, skeletal-tracking, and facial-recognition capabilities.

Whether you’re entertaining friends, or exploring what’s possible when humans and computers interact, you can create something amazing with Kinect for Windows. What will you develop? Demonstrate creativity in your choice of a challenging problem, as well as your computer vision skills!

The authors of the top 5 works will travel to Cambridge (United Kingdom) for the Microsoft PhD Summer School.

To better prepare for the contest, we recommend that you review the materials of the computer vision summer school and examples of projects developed using Kinect for Windows. The working language of the contest is English.

Tell your friends about the contest - print the poster (in Russian) and hang it in your university!

Contest procedure

  1. Before January 15, 2012 the participant needs to register and fill out the application form (see section Application below). A brief description of the project that you are going to implement (1-2 pages) is required.
  2. Before February 28, 2012 the registered participant has to submit a presentation of the project and video (5-15 minutes) in English, demonstrating the prototype in action. Video can be recorded using the Expression Encoder Screen Capture Utility, which any student may get in Microsoft Expression Studio by the DreamSpark programme, assembled from individual photos in Windows Movie Maker, or in any other convenient way.
  3. Before March 30, 2012 an expert panel will judge the entries and the winners will be announced.
  4. The 5 winners will receive their certificates from Tony Hey, Corporate Vice President of Microsoft Research Connections at a ceremony to be held in Moscow on April 4, 2012. Travel expenses will be paid for by Microsoft Research. The 5 winners will be invited to attend the Microsoft Research Summer School in Cambridge (United Kingdom) and present their projects there. Travel from Moscow to Cambridge and accommodation expenses will be paid for by Microsoft Research.

You can ask questions about the contest by e-mail


To participate in the contest, projects must meet the following requirements:

· The use of Kinect for Windows;

· Development using Visual Studio (Express, Standard, Professional or Team System), which any student may get by DreamSpark programme


The assessment of the contest entries will take the following criteria into account:

  • Problem statement— How complex and important is the task? How well is it defined by the author of the project?
  • Novelty and innovation— Does the application face new challenges or offers a new way to solve old problems?
  • Impact on business and society— How the use of the application may influence the life of people and commerce?
  • Functional completeness— What phase is the development at?
  • The quality of the presentation — How well the presentation describes the project? How clearly are the principles of the system described? How well does the video demonstrate the prototype?

Review Panel

The expert review panel includes Microsoft employees and collaborators from Moscow State University.

Olga Barinova (Moscow State University / Microsoft Research, Moscow, Russia)
Anton Konushin, (Moscow State University, Moscow, Russia)

Pushmeet Kohli (Microsoft Research, Cambridge, UK)

Victor Lempitsky (Moscow State University / Yandex, Moscow, Russia)
Elena Pavlova (Microsoft Research, Moscow, Russia)
Stewart Tansley (Microsoft Research, Redmond, USA)


To fill in the application form you need to:

  • Go to the submission website
  • Register in the system ("Sign up")
  • Enter the system using your login and password ("Login")
  • Choose the option "Create a new Paper Submission"
  • Fill in the application form according to the instructions provided

 Terms and Conditions

By registering your project in the system, the participant must agree with the Terms and Conditions.