Since last November there's been an open-source Linux driver for Microsoft's Kinect 3D sensor to take advantage of its RGB camera and depth-sensing functionality. With the next Linux kernel release, there's now a new Linux driver that's been integrated into the mainline tree. As part of the 3.0-rc1 Video 4 Linux pull request, there's a Kinect color camera driver. Additionally, there's other new drivers, support for new remote controls, driver enhancements, and DVB API support for the DVB-T2 standard. The Kinect driver though is what's most interesting.
This current GSPCA dirver for the Microsoft Kinect hardware is based upon the code from the OpenKinect project. For now it just takes advantage of the RGBA sensor or the output from the mono-chrome sensor, but it doesn't handle the processed depth stream yet. Basically, in its current form you can use your Microsoft Kinect as a web-camera or an IR camera with the "Linux 3.0" kernel.
The Kinect driver related commits can be found from this Git web search. Here's the commit adding in the driver. Below is the commit message with more details.
[media] gspca - kinect: New subdriver for Microsoft Kinect
The Kinect sensor is a device used by Microsoft for its Kinect project, which is a system for controller-less Human-Computer interaction targeted for Xbox 360.
In the Kinect device, RGBD data is captured from two distinct sensors: a regular RGB sensor and a monochrome sensor which, with the aid of a IR structured light, captures what is finally exposed as a depth map; so what we have is basically a Structured-light 3D scanner.
The Kinect gspca subdriver just supports the video stream for now, exposing the output from the RGB sensor or the unprocessed output from the monochrome sensor; it does not deal with the processed depth stream yet, but it allows using the sensor as a Webcam or as an IR camera (an external source of IR light might be needed for this use).
The low level implementation is based on code from the OpenKinect project (http://openkinect.org).