Let's look at how we can interface and work with the Kinect sensor in ROS. ROS is bundled with OpenNI driver, which can fetch RGB and the depth image of Kinect. This package can be used for Microsoft Kinect, PrimeSense Carmine, Asus Xtion Pro, and Pro Live.
This driver mainly publishes raw depth, RGB, and IR image streams. The
openni_launch package will install packages such as
openni_camera package is the Kinect driver that publishes raw data and sensor information, whereas the
openni_launch package contains ROS launch files. It's basically an XML file that launches multiple nodes at a time and publishes data such as point clouds.