Friday, March 30, 2012
During the 2nd India England
V V S Lax man. Vaughan. Vase line. During the 2nd India England cricket Test last August, former England skipper Michael Vaughan stirred up a hornet's nest, when he accused Indian star batsman Laxman of applying vaseline on the edges of his bat to avoid being caught nicking the ball on Hot Spot india. A heated debate ensued Only as expected, also with the Indian cricket administration being never in favors of the Umpire Decision Review System. "It's ridiculous. Why would V V S Laxman use it?" asked Mr.ChinmayaJoshi, a junior undergraduate student, who is involved in a Umpire Decision Review System -related project by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab. He was speaking at EmTech India 2012 on the future of imaging in cricket, based on his team's research findings, here on Wednesday. The impact of the ball on the bat, he reasoned, would be even more pronounced, if vase line or petroleum jelly were to be applied on the bat. "In fact, it would be more and of better resolution than in just air," said Mr.ChinmayaJoshi. A team member of him, MR.SiddharthKhular said that it was proven by BBG Sports, the Australian company that pioneered the snickometer system in cricket, that vase line could not hide the hot spot. Mr.ChinmayaJoshi, however, added that application of silicon spray under laboratory conditions did hide it. "When we tested it, no heat signature was seen on the bat," he attested.
After which, they have evolved a fool-proof new fine technology with Femto Photography – "It looks around corners with a trillion frames-per-second camera (cricket)" – and the Netra (Near-Eye Tool for Refraction Assessment). Said Mr.ChinmayaJoshi, "In Netra, you hold up to the eye, align patterns and send the signals to a computer or a mobile. We have a dynamic range sensor that will detect the impact precisely by locking in a specific frequency." Femto Photography camera is so accurate that even the light waves slow down while viewing intricate motions. It could be used for Hawk-Eye trackings, said Mr.ChinmayaJoshi. By the way, the Hot Spot technology uses Infra Red wave-based imaging system to detect impacts. The MIT team put into use a $30,000 robotic arm, which is normally employed for other scientific research purposes, for this study. They have also discussed in detail with some international umpires about what kind of issues they had to deal with in such scenarios. "Soon, on-field umpires can carry an Apple iPhone or any such device or crowd-source data to statistically identify how a batsman middle or edged the ball during an innings. You can view more about the project at cameraculture.info or eyenetra.com. Here's wishing this brings to an end all controversial decisions surrounding the Hawk-Eye, Snickometer and Hot Spot technologies.
Source: CIOL Bureau