Robots could soon demolish humans at table tennis

21 Nov 20151.75k Views

Robots are now on court!

It began at the tables, it evolved to the tennis court and then the IBM robots finally destroyed the humans in the squash courts. Really? No, not really, but close enough.

Before we upset our esteemed colleague Gordon Hunt, who eats rivals every day for lunch at squash, the truth is a little less dramatic but warrants a pause for thought.

Drones created by IBM’s research division could tip the tables in the favour of robotics.

What a racket!

Fast-moving drones seem to have all the time in the world to defeat their human competitors with a preternatural speed that would shock even the most able athlete.

An IBM research team basically taught an IRIS+ drone to track the trajectory of a ping-pong ball headed its way and intercept it in order to return the shot.

We have to question whether or not the Cyber Olympics organisers have thought this through and we would like to take the liberty of challenging IBM’s machine to a match against our Gordon.

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Racket image via Shutterstock

 

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years

editorial@siliconrepublic.com