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3D reconstruction of live sporting event

View a live sporting event from any seat in the stadium, the ref's point of view, midfield, even floating 10 feet up!
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View a real live game with the same kind of controls and camera angles you can use to watch a 3d computer football game on your computer.

Track multiple (10+) cameras located around a sporting event ( say a football/soccor match). Use real-time computer analysis to distinguish players and the ball from the field and generate a 3d location and cutout image. Regerate the 3d positions in a computer and then "skin" them using the best available live image (or combination of images).

Much of this technology is available now and the power to do it in realtime ( allowing some delay ) is close enough that someone is probably working on it already... I know I'd love to be!

related areas: - Fox hockey puck ( and the more economically successful virtual 10yard down line in US football) - Current 3D VR and artificial intelligence 3D image processing work ( Intel labs and many others) - video compression technologies ( MPEG, Internet Video a la Real Networks and Microsoft)

There are some Dutch guys who were doing 3d un-skinned models of Football ( Soccor) goals and posting them on the net a day later. It's the closest thing I've seen yet to this idea.

justinj, Mar 03 2003

Virtual Spectator http://www.virtuals...sl_home/default.asp
[thumbwax, Oct 04 2004]

SI: "Microchips in World Cup balls?" http://sportsillust.../index.html?cnn=yes
"FIFA will consider using an electronic microchip inside soccer balls at the 2006 World Cup finals if the technology proves successful." [bristolz, Jun 14 2005]

Chip Suit Chip_20Suit
[theircompetitor, Jun 14 2005]

[link]






       Virtual Spectator is good to go on this - America's Cup, road races, etc. have been the targets thus far.
It's considered good form to leave your email address on your profile page: press on your nic, and that'll take you there. You can tell us all about your elf 'n' stuff there too.
thumbwax, Mar 03 2003
  

       Sky did somethign similar for one incident in the Spurs v Fulham game (football/soccer), to prove that the referee had been unsighted when he awarded a penalty and sent a player off.   

       The virtual camera, showed the posiitons of all the players and swopped around to show diferent POVs. Very neat. +1
liamdelahunty, Mar 03 2003
  

       Sounds hideous. Watch the game. Enjoy. Then argue about it with your mates afterwards. That's what sport is about, not arsing around with camera angles and pointless statistics.
DrBob, Mar 03 2003
  

       I think I know a better way to do this, and I've toyed with posting it here for some time. But it'll have to wait.
beauxeault, Mar 03 2003
  

       I've seen this done during a hockey playoff game. They had placed 36 cameras around the periphery of the arena, all programmed to point to a chip in the hockey puck. This was used to zoom around in a 'bullet time' style, twisting the arena around to get the best look at the action.
waugsqueke, Mar 03 2003
  

       Rather than translating everything into video game format, and worrying about translating field action into game play, just place three cameras (normal, telephoto, extreme telephoto) to each of those 36 positions. Then you'll get live view-from-any-angle footage.
dalek, Mar 03 2003
  

       But those views are still from the sidelines. I rather like this, for it's helmet-cam perspective and view-from-anywhere potential. I want the puck / ball viewpoint. Surprised I haven't seen too many commercials explore it.
RayfordSteele, Mar 03 2003
  

       The Virtual Spectator mentioned by thumbwax half way there ( it updates a player position, not image, in a modeled playfield - which isn't updated at all ). Commercially viable idea which I'm sure will be more commonly done with the advent of the ps2 and xbox online services.   

       Since posting this half-baked idea I've come across a company closer but with morphing between camera angles instead of decomposing/recomposing. Close enough for most applications but still not what I was hoping for. They call it "Virtual Viewpoint" http://www.zaxel.com/virtualviewpoint/   

       Better yet: A research paper oriented towards video compression is much closer. They have implemented their system with results similar to the game graphics of 2000. "Multiview Video Sequence Analysis, Compression, and Virtual Viewpoint Synthesis" IEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems for Video Technology, Vol.10, No.3, April, 2000. Hmm.. Maybe it's in MPEG4 already??   

       More: Sarnoff Corporation's security product "VideoFlashlight" Neat overlay of live video on models of your very own compound.   

       Then there's the BBC's Prometheus project which I'm sure has contributed to some of the visual effects they have used in documentaries.   

       Almost Baked and Delivered... I'm guessing 3D reconstructive TV with virtual viewpoints on your Playstation 3 !   

       And why aren't we seeing broadcasts with updating of 3D models on your PC via the internet ( a la Virtual Spectator ) in the meantime?? Heck.. they already produce highly accurate and detailed models of golf courses, stadiums and even cities for games...
justinj, Dec 09 2003
  
      
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