Deep Green, the pool-playing robot

r1green01.jpg

In one of Iain M. Banks’ Culture novels — I think it was Consider Phlebas — one of the vast A.I. Minds laments to its human ward that even with all its vast computing power it can only calculate the scattering of billiard balls with any accuracy for less than a few moves across the table. While that may hold true in the real world for the moment, the “Deep Green” robotic pool playing system is already dropping cellulose spheres at a “better-than-amateur level”. Granted, its matrix of gantries and cameras isn’t predicting the moves of every ball from games’ beginning to end, but its ability to adaptively analyze a table is still impressive.

Plus who doesn’t love a robot with something labelled “pneumatic break cue actuator”?

Computer.org did a nice profile of the system in January, including lots of details from Canadian scientists on the team explaining how they built Deep Green with mostly off-the-shelf parts.

Why build a pool-playing robot at all? Just a few moments listening to the nearly monotone female voiceover while the video shows a whipping, articulated white robot leering from the ceiling makes it clear: this is where GLaDOS will be born.

Toward a Competitive Pool-Playing Robot [Computer.org via BotJunkie]

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8 Responses to Deep Green, the pool-playing robot

  1. Gary61 says:

    Already done – see the Bruce Dern sci-fi flick from the 70’s ‘Silent Running‘, where a robot plays against the spaceship crew on a round pool table …..

  2. muteboy says:

    #5 also featuring reprogrammed robot surgeons – “Deep Red”? Argento would have something to say.

  3. Rob Beschizza says:

    “Momentum, a function of mass and velocity, is not conserved between portals. In layman’s terms, speedy thing goes in, and stays there until the next rack.”

  4. devophill says:

    Deeply odd voiceover.

  5. dculberson says:

    I just want that awesome gantry setup above my pool table. Maybe it could be reprogrammed to be a drink holder.

  6. dculberson says:

    Coincidentally, I just downloaded “Still Alive” for Rock Band last night; what a fun song to play! (Me on drums, my wife on guitar..)

  7. Scuba SM says:

    DCulberson,

    Think bigger… it could be reprogrammed to be a bartender/waiter, all in one! It mixes your drink, then brings it to you where ever you are in the room, and automatically takes your empties and brings you refills!

  8. Agies says:

    The fact that this thing can basically position itself aywhere above the playing surface gives it an unfair advantage versus a human player that needs to use a bridge.

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