Thursday, September 15, 2011

Animation Technology in Sports

I was watching the U.S. Open a few days ago and noticed that animation is used quite frequently when it comes to replays and judging calls made by the referee. Tennis uses animation technology to help judge whether a ball is in bounds or out of bounds.

I haven't seen much of this technology in the past so I decided to look into it and found that it is a type of technology called Hawk-Eye. Hawk-Eye uses video cameras situated around the stadium. These cameras record the motion of the ball. Then, using special analytical software, Hawk-Eye is able to create an animation of the ball's exact position and movement in order to judge whether it was in or out. This technology has actually been used in professional tennis since 2006 but is now expanding to other sports. I found this article that talks about the history of Hawk-Eye as well as its future. This video also explains Hawk-Eye, interviews players about it, and has some pretty cool examples.

1 comment :

  1. You might want to check out one of the early sports tracking systems called Virtual Spectator. It was launched many years ago (early 90's) with the tracking and 3D simulation of the America's Cup yacht race. Nowadays it is used in practically every major sport and it is truly a fascinating technology.