Please select your home edition
Edition
InSunSport - International - Tough

America's Cup- New TV graphics will be a sporting first

by Bernie Wilson, AP on 31 Jul 2011
34th America’s Cup - AC45 Test Event - Day 9 - TV Production ACEA - Photo Gilles Martin-Raget © http://photo.americascup.com/

The yellow first-down line that has become a staple of football broadcasts is coming to the America's Cup.

Thanks to improved graphics, viewers sitting in front of their TVs or computer screens will easily be able to tell which boat is ahead, see the line the boats will use as a final guide into the next turning mark and know when the fast 45-foot catamarans are within a certain number of boat lengths of the mark.

It's all part of the modernized America's Cup, which is trying to become more fan-friendly by using wing-sailed catamarans, shorter races and courses that allow easy viewing from shore.

The technology, called LiveLine, will debut with the first stop of the America's Cup World Series Aug. 6-14 in Cascais, Portugal. The AC World Series this year and next is a buildup to the 2013 America's Cup on San Francisco Bay.

Stan Honey, who helped develop the yellow first-down line more than a decade ago, chuckled at the comparison.
'I guess some of the technology certainly is going to be included,' said Honey, director of technology for the America's Cup Event Authority. 'Obviously the thing we are highlighting is a little different. Basically, the principle objective is to take something that's important to a sport and hard to see, and make it easy to see.'

In a sport like sailing, that's huge. But it took some doing.

'The main technical difference is, in football, the cameras are mounted on tripods. You know where they are,' Honey said. 'It's real easy to measure pan and tilt. In sailing, the camera is in a helicopter and it's much tougher. You have to know the location of the copter to within a couple of centimeters. Also, the attitude, which is roll, pitch and yaw. You have to measure that really accurately, otherwise you put the lines in wrong place in the video. If you're 1,500 feet away from the racecourse and have the angle wrong, then you'll put the lines in the wrong place. So that's tougher.'

In past America's Cups, viewers would see either a live shot of the boats in which it was hard to tell which one was ahead, or an animated view with a line indicating which boat was ahead.

Now they'll see a live shot of the catamarans with superimposed graphics.


'That's one of the frustrating things that we've all kind of experienced in previous cups,' said Honey, who lives in Palo Alto, south of San Francisco. 'If you look at the live video you can't really tell who's ahead. If you're looking at an animated view, you can see where they are on the course, who's gaining or losing, but not why, that a halyard just broke on one of the boats.'

The lines that will appear on the screen are the start-finish lines; ahead-behind lines; the laylines, which are the lines on either side of the course that show the approach to a mark; and the course boundaries. There will be circles indicating three boat lengths at the windward mark and six lengths at the downwind mark to define the zone in which the overlap rules apply.

Capsizes will be a bonus, and there have been plenty of those as sailors adjust to the new boats.

Organizers say this augmented reality from a helicopter will be the first time live graphic insertions have been done from a moving platform. It's driven by a GPS system that measures the race boats, mark boat and helicopter locations to two centimeters, and the attitude of the helicopter to one-twentieth of a degree.

'It's complicated and expensive,' said Honey, who, besides being a technical whiz, is an accomplished sailor.

He holds a master's degree in electrical engineering from Stanford and has won two Emmys for technical innovation in sports television, for the first-down line and the K-Zone for baseball.

He also was named Rolex Yachtsman of the Year in 2010 after serving as navigator on the giant trimaran Groupama 3, which set the record for the fastest nonstop circumnavigation, a remarkable 48 days, 7 hours, 44 minutes and 52 seconds, to claim the Jules Verne Trophy. He previously was nominated for the award following his turn as the winning navigator during the 2005-06 Volvo Ocean Race with ABN AMRO One.

America's Cup organizers held test sessions in New Zealand earlier this year and continued to refine the broadcast system in San Francisco.

Oh, and it doesn't necessarily have to be a yellow line.

'That'll ultimately come down to a decision the director and producer will make,' Honey said. 'I like white or yellow, but the software can make any color you want.'

For the rest of this story http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/43936755/ns/technology_and_science-tech_and_gadgets/!click_here

InSunSport - NZBarz Optics - Kids rangeBakewell-White Yacht Design

Related Articles

America's Cup - Changes proposed to control future Cup options
Changes are being mooted to put the America's Cup on a longer-term footing according to the Daily Telegraph (UK) News that changes are being mooted to put the America's Cup on a longer-term footing is being floated in the Daily Telegraph (UK) by the British Challenger, Land Rover BAR. According to the Telegraph, some of the teams in the 2017 America's Cup are keen to lock-in parameters which would bind successive holders of the a style and frequency for the next America's Cup Match.
Posted on 8 Jun
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
Terrific battle in Oyster Regatta Antigua finale
On the final day, two of the three Classes were so close that the winners were decided on the last race. On the final day, two of the three Classes were so close that the winners were decided on the last race. Spectacular sailing conditions prevailed with a brisk 20 knots of wind from the south east. Oyster yachts are built to sail the oceans and revelled in the conditions.
Posted on 12 Apr
34th America's Cup - Oracle pumping claims are flawed - Update
Claims that Oracle Team USA broke the manual propulsion rules in the 34th America's Cup are seriously flawed Claims by an American journalist, Bruce Knecht that Oracle Team USA broke the manual propulsion rules in the 2013 America's Cup are seriously flawed. The allegations received considerable airplay in New Zealand on Friday and over the weekend.
Posted on 6 Mar
America's Cup - Another win for Oracle Team USA in California Courts
America's Cup Defender, Oracle Team USA has been successful in its legal effort to swat away another complaint America's Cup Defender, Oracle Team USA has been successful in its legal effort to swat away a complaint brought by former Oracle Team USA crew member, Matthew Mitchell. Mitchell's complaint against his former team was dismissed by a San Francisco Court on Wednesday. The amount of damage/injury claimed was stated as $400,000.
Posted on 12 Feb
America's Cup - No action against Kiwi sailor, but rule changes made
The International Sailing Federation has changed the process for Rule 69 Hearings in line with CAS recommendations One of the Oracle Team USA crew members found by the International Jury to have been involved in boat tampering activities with the America's Cup World Series regattas ahead of the 34th America's Cup has not been further penalised by the International Sailing Federation.
Posted on 19 Nov 2015
America's Cup - ISAF and Cup Jury summonsed by California Court
Five members of the AC34 Int Jury and the Int Sailing Federation have been summonsed by a San Francisco Court The International Sailing Federation, the controlling body for world sailing, and the five individuals who made up the International Jury for the 34th America's Cup have been summonsed by a San Francisco Court, to answer a lawsuit.
Posted on 9 Sep 2015
Dean Barker's Blog - Back into the racing
Five times America's Cup helmsman Dean Barker gives his view on his split with Team New Zealand and life since Writing on his blog at Kiwi Yachting Consultants' websites, of which he is a substantial shareholder and director, five times America's Cup helmsman Dean Barker gives his view on life since Team NZ. This is my first blog for quite some time. In fact since September last year when I was still a part of Team NZ racing in Istanbul for the Extreme Sailing Series.
Posted on 20 Apr 2015
America's Cup- Mitchell fires new salvo at ISAF Jury Officials
Matthew Mitchellhas advised that he has filed complaints of Gross Misconduct against all five Americas Cup jury members Matthew Mitchell, previously a member of Oracle Team USA, has issued a media release advising that he has filed complaints of Gross Misconduct against all five Americas Cup jury members with the sport's International governing body (ISAF). This action follows on from his recent claims about the actions of another team member Simeon Tienpont, now with Challenger Luna Rossa.
Posted on 5 Feb 2015
America's Cup- Oracle crew mate lodges ISAF complaint against Tienpont
Last Friday, former OTUSA's Matthew Mitchell issued a media release stating that he has lodged a complaint with the ISAF Last Friday, former Oracle Team USA team member, Matthew Mitchell issued a media release stating that he has lodged a complaint with the International Sailing Federation over the actions of a fellow crew member, Simeon Tienpont, and inaction by the International Jury for the 34th America's Cup, in San Francisco.
Posted on 28 Jan 2015