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    1. Top | #1
      blahness is offline
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      Improving the visual presentation of Table Tennis

      Just wanted to get everyone's ideas about improving how Table Tennis is presented on TV and media.

      I liked the ITTF slow-mos now. What happened to the reaction-time meter that I once seen last year? Bring that back!!!

      I would really like a Spin Cam as well as Speed Cam(similar to how tennis has speed measurements of various shots, if it's even possible. I heard that they are using radar technology to do speed measurements in tennis. One possible way is to embed a small non-visible tracer on 2 small parts of the ball surface, i'm sure with current technology(high speed cameras and advanced software) somebody would be able to do something.

      Dynamic commentators who truly understand the sport (intricacies in shotmaking, spin, tactics, etc) would really help too! I'm thinking about employing the former greats, or even employing players who have already lost to comment. Imagine Waldner, Persson or Timo Boll commentating the recent finals between Joo Se Hyuk and Ma Long! When Wang Liqin improves his English, he'll be able to commentate matches too!

      I think dynamic audiences help a lot too! Cheering loudly, stomping foot, loud horns, face paint, this would really transform atmosphere. To those who are going to watch the 2012 London Olympics this is your job!

      For media, I hope that the ITTF would collaborate with the fantastic Youtubers who make absolutely cool tribute videos. Some investment into attractive Table Tennis TV advertisements would be even cooler, with possible support from TT equipment manufacturers like Butterfly, Stiga, Adidas (they will be the ones that benefit the most from increased participation!).

      What ideas do you guys have?
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    2. Top | #2
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      China has a lots of great commentators, I always enjoying watch and listen to the CCTV5 TT match that upload by janus. However, it is very sad that most of them do not have a decent level of english speaking.

    3. Top | #3
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      Ewh.. Got a thought after having my Tabata training..
      How about making the pros play in a court which has been covered with huge 'magnifying' glass?

      Just a crazy thought tho..

      The other thing is making a 3d auto model after a point to replay in the screen which is kinda awesome.

      Oh and Heart Rate detector like the one in this vid is gotta be cool
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    4. Top | #4
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      Some great ideas there. I don't think you can attach high-tech stuff to the ball though, since it is so light that anything attached to it will hugely affect its trajectory. If it is possible to make a 3d replay without adding stuff on the ball, that would be awesome since you can use it to analyze stuff as well.

      Something that lacks in a lot of livestreams is the placement of the camera. In many tournaments or matches the majority of the audience is gathered in one place on the tribune. This is often the place where the camera is also placed, so viewers get to see the empty part of the tribune, while they do hear some noise that the audience makes. Of course it all looks more spectacular with spectators in the background than with empty seats.
      As far as the audience activity goes, I think French audience is the best (most excited) audience in Europe.

      I believe players like Korbel have been involved in the commentary sometimes, but not all players are suited for this. You need a bit of 'talking talent' as well . Richard Prause is maybe a good example of a co-commentator with very good knowledge of the sport. Often people with knowledge have a very clear accent when speaking English, which could also take a bit off the entertainment value maybe. It is not easy to find the right commentators I think

    5. Top | #5
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      Well thinking about things I really like what the Pongcast is doing, that kind of 'news' based media is really good presentation wise and is fantastic for giving people summaries and highlights over a time period.
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    6. Top | #6
      Dan is offline
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      Quote Originally Posted by YosuaYosan View Post
      Ewh.. Got a thought after having my Tabata training..
      How about making the pros play in a court which has been covered with huge 'magnifying' glass?

      Just a crazy thought tho..

      The other thing is making a 3d auto model after a point to replay in the screen which is kinda awesome.

      Oh and Heart Rate detector like the one in this vid is gotta be cool
      Wow is that their real heart beats? I did this before with my gym instructor. My heart beat was very high at deuce sets hehe

    7. Top | #7
      Dan is offline
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      Quote Originally Posted by PingPongPom View Post
      Well thinking about things I really like what the Pongcast is doing, that kind of 'news' based media is really good presentation wise and is fantastic for giving people summaries and highlights over a time period.
      Yeah I totally agree Matt. Incredible presentations, I can't see why those couldn't make the TV

    8. Top | #8
      Dan is offline
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      Quote Originally Posted by blahness View Post
      Just wanted to get everyone's ideas about improving how Table Tennis is presented on TV and media.

      I liked the ITTF slow-mos now. What happened to the reaction-time meter that I once seen last year? Bring that back!!!

      I would really like a Spin Cam as well as Speed Cam(similar to how tennis has speed measurements of various shots, if it's even possible. I heard that they are using radar technology to do speed measurements in tennis. One possible way is to embed a small non-visible tracer on 2 small parts of the ball surface, i'm sure with current technology(high speed cameras and advanced software) somebody would be able to do something.

      Dynamic commentators who truly understand the sport (intricacies in shotmaking, spin, tactics, etc) would really help too! I'm thinking about employing the former greats, or even employing players who have already lost to comment. Imagine Waldner, Persson or Timo Boll commentating the recent finals between Joo Se Hyuk and Ma Long! When Wang Liqin improves his English, he'll be able to commentate matches too!

      I think dynamic audiences help a lot too! Cheering loudly, stomping foot, loud horns, face paint, this would really transform atmosphere. To those who are going to watch the 2012 London Olympics this is your job!

      For media, I hope that the ITTF would collaborate with the fantastic Youtubers who make absolutely cool tribute videos. Some investment into attractive Table Tennis TV advertisements would be even cooler, with possible support from TT equipment manufacturers like Butterfly, Stiga, Adidas (they will be the ones that benefit the most from increased participation!).

      What ideas do you guys have?
      I really like your ideas Blahness. Some I dont think would be possible, in terms of money and the dynamics of the game. Perhaps a camera at the table which faces the player would be cool. To get a 3D camera would require loads of cameras in one room. This would be to costly. I like your ideas of bringing the youtubers together ect.

      On a positive note, over recent years the ITTF have improved tremendously in terms of the social media and promoting the sport. The ITTF are working on bringing in commentators. I think the best commentators would be ex professionals like Werner Schalger

    9. Top | #9
      Matt Hetherington is offline
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      Well I mean realistically they could it's just a matter of creating the right connections and doing the hard yard. People need to be interested in table tennis and giving it to them bit by bit is the best way currently

    10. Top | #10
      Dan is offline
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      Quote Originally Posted by PingPongPom View Post
      Well I mean realistically they could it's just a matter of creating the right connections and doing the hard yard. People need to be interested in table tennis and giving it to them bit by bit is the best way currently
      Yeah true, lets hope this recent sponsorship by the ITTF may progress some things. Perhaps more sponsors will come along with the Olympics on the way. The more money we have in the sport the better. I think tho, the ITTF and many other bodies need to focus more to home also, money invested into training centres which will give many players around the World incentives.

    11. Top | #11
      JustAlt is offline
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      Speaking of commentators, I rather listen to a Chinese one without understanding nothing but a few words than the one commentating the Killerspin events. He is just so annoying.
      The best commentator speaking English is "the drunk commentator". Lol I don't even know his name.

    12. Top | #12
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      Quote Originally Posted by WiWa View Post
      Some great ideas there. I don't think you can attach high-tech stuff to the ball though, since it is so light that anything attached to it will hugely affect its trajectory. If it is possible to make a 3d replay without adding stuff on the ball, that would be awesome since you can use it to analyze stuff as well.
      Thinking about it, the markings on the ball could be used as a kinda of tracer, using a high speed camera, one can count the number of times the surface color of the ball turns from white to the marking colour and back again, and use that to calculate the spin.

    13. Top | #13
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      I loath the ITTF commentators, there was one from Yorkshire I couldn't stand, reminded me of my mum. Then the over-enthusiastic english fellow and now an Irish gimp. sorry but it does my head in how they have to say some long winded rubbish for EVERY point lol i don't rant very often but there it is :P

    14. Top | #14
      Dan is offline
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      Quote Originally Posted by blahness View Post
      Thinking about it, the markings on the ball could be used as a kinda of tracer, using a high speed camera, one can count the number of times the surface color of the ball turns from white to the marking colour and back again, and use that to calculate the spin.
      If this is possible! It would be a genius feature to the sport!

      There could be a marker in the corner of the video which says the number of spin one put on the ball for a particular epic shot for example. However, i'm sure this would be hard to measure.

    15. Top | #15
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      Quote Originally Posted by PingPongPom View Post
      I loath the ITTF commentators, there was one from Yorkshire I couldn't stand, reminded me of my mum. Then the over-enthusiastic english fellow and now an Irish gimp. sorry but it does my head in how they have to say some long winded rubbish for EVERY point lol i don't rant very often but there it is :P
      Well I don't recognize local accents, but I agree that both the 'drunk' commentator and the guy that likes whisper mode are funny, but not really the best in terms of expertise it seems.

    16. Top | #16
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      I would like to see statistics of each set and the summary of the entire game. I watched a lot of tennis, and they have stats like percentage of 1st serves and 2nd serves, winners, forced and unforced errors, serve velocity (in TT maybe the smashes), and at the end of the game, they will have the summary of the game.

      I know Americans love these sort of stats. They have it in basketball, baseball and football. And I guess as long as the sport (TT) doesn't really take off in a big way in the US, we are not going to see TT stats any time soon
      To improve, we must enjoy the game and above all have fun



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    18. Top | #17
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      Quote Originally Posted by azlan View Post
      I would like to see statistics of each set and the summary of the entire game. I watched a lot of tennis, and they have stats like percentage of 1st serves and 2nd serves, winners, forced and unforced errors, serve velocity (in TT maybe the smashes), and at the end of the game, they will have the summary of the game.

      I know Americans love these sort of stats. They have it in basketball, baseball and football. And I guess as long as the sport (TT) doesn't really take off in a big way in the US, we are not going to see TT stats any time soon
      Yep, to have those stats would be cool. You could see what percentage of services lead to a point for a certain player, or how his points are distributed between own service rallies and opponents' service rallies.

    19. Top | #18
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      lol it's not like you have 1st and 2nd service in table tennis (even though you have 2 serves each before anyone slams me on that one :P) would be cool to pick some stats up though or chart when points were won in the set that's always cool

    20. Top | #19
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      I'm sorry, but the style of shooting this can be done, but what you're asking blahness would require way too much. To use the Fusion 3D rigs would cost a lot and even if you could get your hands on one for cheap say 100 USD / hour you would need people that were qualified to use them. And to do that you'd need steadicam operators which cost several 1000 USD / hour. It would not be cost effective at all to try to go for a 3D look. As far as the technology there isn't anything currently in production that is able to calculate accurately the trajectories of shots in TT. There's just too much spin and no real formulas to properly predict the proper trajectory based on the science currently available. To recalculate a shot using tracking systems would take hours on end for a on minute shot. It's just not practical.

      I agree that what Killerspin did there is a great evolution to what we follow these days there are just too many things involved in making the film work in TT better. The best solution to this is to change angles and find the best ones and to go from there. It's so costly to run events and with all the different techniques and equipment needed it's really hard to get by. So far the best ideas are currently out there, but not popular. I'm hoping to also create new styles with Joola's video work, but it's incredibly hard to prioritize shots. It will take another 5-10 years before we can come close to anything near what you'd like.

    21. Top | #20
      Matt Hetherington is offline
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      3D tt coverage, when they can finally get around to making that possible I will be a happy individual. You could perfectly analyse players techniques in 3 dimensional! how awesome would that be. But a wee way off I think.

      I think just making highlights of each tournament on the World Tour is a good step forward. I'm hoping to do that myself! I had done one for Hungarian Open, Slovenian Open is so close to it but I hope I can do it again

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