Finally, scientists got off their dead ass and got to work on something useful: putting cameras inside footballs. Researchers at Carnegie Mellon and the Tokyo-based University of Electro-Communications (it’s where robots learn about public speaking) have made progress on a working camera feed from inside of a football in play.

The researchers have shown that a camera embedded in the side of a rubber-sheathed plastic foam football can record video while the ball is in flight that could give spectators a unique, ball’s-eye view of the playing field. Because a football can spin at 600 rpm, the raw video is an unwatchable blur. But the researchers developed a computer algorithm that converts the raw video into a stable, wide-angle view.

One of the co-authors, UEC’s Kodai Horita, a visiting graduate student last year at the Robotics Institute, will present a paper about BallCam on March 8 at the Augmented Human International Conference in Stuttgart, Germany.

I think the augmented humans at the conference will be into it.

Okay, so the ballcam is not exactly game-ready, but we’re getting somewhere. Invisibility cloak technology is great, but I think the scientific community needs to band together to fast-track this project to completion. Just think how great it would be to watch receiver drops from the prospective of the football. “Oh look, Greg Little is gonna catch us! Haha, nope.”

Let’s make this happen. C’mon, eggheads.

[via]