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Chip-enabled ball at 2006 World Cup soccer games?

Posted by bboyes on October 25, 2005 at 11:13 AM PDT

This InfoWorld article describes how an ASIC with an integrated transmitter is suspended in the middle of the ball to survive acceleration and hard kicks. Antennas in light masts and other locations distributed around the arena collect data that is transmitted from the ball. It uses the 2.4 GHz frequency range, and the developers are battling how to prevent interference with WiFi, among other things...

Similar chips have been designed to insert into players' shin guards so that players actions and strategies can be monitored. But is this really a Good Thing? Does David Beckham really want the world to know his detailed moves? Then again, maybe such a system could have helped or hindered his recent red card appeal.

I wonder how the ball can meet official weight and mass specifications with any added electronics, without some other tradeoff?

Sounds like a useful idea for other human sports or robotic games...

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