TR#439: Stochasticks: Augmenting the Billiards Experience with Probabilistic Vision and Wearable Computers

Tony Jebara, Cyrus Eyster, Josh Weaver, Thad Starner and Alex Pentland

Proc. of the Intl. Symposium on Wearable Computers Oct. 1997
Cambridge, MA

We propose a practical application of wearable computing and augmented reality which enhances the game of billiards. A vision algorithm is implemented which operates in interactive-time with the user to assist planning and aiming. Probabilistic color models and symmetry operations are used to localize the table, pockets and balls through a video camera near the user's eye. Classification of the objects of interest is performed and each possible shot is ranked in order to determine its relative usefulness. The system allows the user to proceed through a regular pool game while it automatically determines strategic shots. The resulting trajectories are rendered as graphical overlays on a head mounted live video display. The wearable video output and the computer vision system provide an integration of real and virtual environments which enhances the experience of playing and learning the game of billiards without encumbering the player.