Super Bowl Meets The Matrix with a 360 View of the Action
A new, immersive reality view of the action
Let’s see a replay Mr. Anderson. Remember the fight scenes in The Matrix where the camera swings around to show you the action from a 360 view? This effect is coming to TV viewers of the Super Bowl this Sunday.
Technology geeks and viewers at Super Bowl 50 parties are in for a first-rate experience, because this is the game where CBS reveals next gen sportscast technology with EyeVision 360, Pylon Cameras and Next Gen Stats.
Circling the stands and 68,000+ fans is a robotic camera system placed at 7 degree angles that will send a 220 degree display that “revolves” around the players in real time, just like in The Matrix. To get an idea of the robotics behind EyeVision, check out this video.
CBS News announced this next gen technology 3 weeks ago. “The system, comprised of 36 cameras strung around the upper deck of Levi Stadium, has the ability to freeze the moment and revolve around the play, then continue to play out the scene.
“It allows viewers to have a look in a moment’s time from what the quarterback sees in the pocket to the safety’s perspective or other points on the field.”
Eve Vision 360 places viewers in an immersive, hyper-resolution virtual reality.
The precision and coordination of the cameras was a challenge.
Takeo Kanade, computer scientist and one of the world’s foremost researchers in computer vision at the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, developed the original software that blended the feed from 30 cameras at Super Bowl 35 into one “dynamic panorama.”
What CBS unveils Sunday is the next generation AND it’s in ultra high definition.
Pylon Cameras and Audio
Those little orange posts are hiding some very cool technology. “For the first time in its history, the 2016 Super Bowl will also have Pylon Cam technology and audio. The eight high-resolution, high-definition, point-of-view cameras housed inside the pylons also will have microphones embedded in them to enhance the natural sound of the game.”
ESPN announced in August that they would be developing these cameras for NFL games. “The updated Pylon Cams now feature 4/4-camera pylons—one on each side of the field at both goal lines—with high quality cameras, custom-made in-ground wiring with easy break-away connections in the pylon.”
Next Gen Stats
CBS will also use the NFL’s Next Gen Stats, an innovative technology platform that tracks players on the field through sensors in their shoulder pads, and generates a broader set of statistical data in real-time during its coverage of Super Bowl 50.
The stats tracking program will allow CBS and fans to analyze and understand action on the field and replay the action with visual overlays of the data. For example, it will show viewers data on such things as a player’s location, running speed and acceleration anywhere they are on the field, and enrich the replays with stats.
With all of these great upgrades, the Super Bowl experience is going to elevate our thinking about good sports coverage. It’s going to be harder to watch less sophisticated programming after this. The camera will see all—and in ultra high definition.
“Harnessing big data for analytics is revolutionizing the sports industry right now. It’s being applied across the NFL, NBA and every major league”, says Rob Lons, Director of Growth for Playerline, a fantasy sports app.
“What we’re seeing now is statistical analysis being applied to human performance. The days of gaging a player’s performance by watching a game unfold or trusting your gut is over.”
Bring it on!