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As a part of education on the Swiss École Polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne, and a robotic idea was born. That idea was to build a robot foosball table that will be able to play versus people. This robot foosball table looks like basic foosball table that you can buy in some market.
The playing field of foosball table is transparent so you can see in the table. Under the transparent field, you can see a camera with 300 frames per second which is robot foosball table use to follow the ball in every second. When robot sees that the ball is in the range of rods it actives rods and kicks the ball with the player. The motors in the robot are extremely precise in controlling players. It is fascinating that these motors can kick the ball better than the average human. This motor is faster and more precise than human eye which is all thanks to the technology.
Robot foosball table can win against average human, but it can’t win against a professional foosball player with a lot of skills. The problem with this robot foosball table is that it doesn’t know how to use some tricks. So, one of the main roles in making this foosball table possible said that this robot is not so bright but is a strong machine.
The first step for this team was to make foosball table that will be controlled by a robot. After that, they started working on how precisely a robot can hit the ball. After, they accomplished to teach that robot to play foosball. That may be impossible but they wanted to make a strategy which robot can use in the match. For that, they need to teach robot some tricks like kicking the ball and how to defend the goal or take the ball in his possession. After that, this robot foosball table has a chance to beat professional foosball player with a lot of skills.
To achieve that goal this robot will need more than the camera and precise motors. The team thinks that will need to use a laser as its next upgrade. With laser, the robot could predict what opponent’s next move by the position of hands. After robot knows will the player do, it could react to player’s move. That sounds very complicated but that is the only way how you can teach your robot to think as the professional foosball player.
There is a big goal in the front that young team and it will take time for them to make those bigger changes. Until then, we only can think who will win the next time. But, we need to be prepared to lose that game with a robot that shoots faster, know tricks and how can predict our next move.
Mark is foosball player who plays a lot on local foosball tournament. He also loves to learn about new technology in foosball industry. Mark is also the owner of the blog about foosball where you can check news about foosball. If you are new in foosball and you want to learn more about it, feel free to check his blog: http://www.foosballzone.com/
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