Anyone Can Be A Pool Shark When This Projector Calls The Shots

Pool is simple if you know your geometry. And physics. And have good hand-eye coordination. And while none of those seem that hard on their own, they can be a little tough to put together. But with a little help from tech, it becomes as easy as just keeping your eyes open.

PoolLiveAid is a project by Luis Sousa, Ricardo Alves, and J.M.F Rodrigues of University of the Algarve, Portugal. And with its on-the-fly game processing, it aims to make sinking balls and practically an afterthought for even the most unskilled players. Making use of a ceiling mounted camera, the system reads in the borders of the table, location of the cue ball, and angle of the pool cue to make the sort of calculations a real shark makes in his head. Then, it spits out the likely path on the table with a projector.

There's still room to mess up, of course. If you smack that ball at the bottom it's still going to go flying off the table and an overhead camera will have a hard time predicting that. Not to mention complex shots need to account for a few different balls. Still, something like this would totally take the trajectory guesswork out of the game for particularly novice stick-wielders and trajectory-visualizers. Right now the project is just a beta for a conference, but hey, maybe we can get a Google Glass app someday. [h/t Reddit]


    How hard you the ball strikes the cushion also affects its angle. Different cushion types also affed rebound strength and distance. So this projector's calculated angles cannot be completely accurate.

      Even if you can account for rebound, you would still have to hit the ball perfectly with the cue tip. Any hit away from dead centre or a wonky cue tip would create some spin that would affect the trajectory away from the bumper.

    I can't wait to the Google Glass app to come out. My game will improve a billion fold.

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