Sports Law Blog
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Saturday, December 09, 2006
Luminescent Basketball Uniforms Coming to an Arena Near You?

Tom Simonite from New Scientist Magazine has an interesting article on new basketball uniforms being developed that will indicate a player's statistics and other game information through luminescent bars:
The simple, coloured display panels are attached to each vest and connected to a small computer, about the size of an iPod, strapped to each player's body. These computers communicate wirelessly with a central control system, installed at the side of the court, which keeps track of all relevant statistics as the game goes on.

Luminescent bars running up the side of a vest indicate the points scored by each player, while lines on their shoulders show the number of fouls against them. Panels on each player's chest indicate when the game time or shot clock is running low, and panels on their back show which team is winning . . . this gives players greater confidence in their team's tactics, say the researchers involved.

"Team sports uniforms already communicate information visually," like a player's name, says Mitchell Page, who developed the system at the University of Sydney. "We wanted to augment the existing team sports uniform model to communicate more relevant information, such as a player’s stats and performance."
The uniforms--known as TeamAwear--are the creation of Mitchell Page, a University of Sydney student who "came up with the idea while playing computer sports games, which use graphics and icons to tie statistics to the virtual players and track their performance. He wondered how such on-screen graphics in sports telecasts could be made available to players and spectators at the ground."

We know the NBA is always looking for new sources of revenue, so maybe the league will find something here. And players would seemingly benefit by more easily knowing game information, such as how much time is left on the shot clock and the number of timeouts remaining. Other players, particularly those interested in their own statistics (such as one on the verge of getting a triple-double) might also find this information helpful. But I have a feeling Billy Hunter and the Players' Association would have some reservations, including those relating to workplace safety. After-all, what about the risk of electrocution or burns? But Mitchell counters these concerns on his blog when writing, "the risk of harm from electrocution is for all intents and purposes, zero" and players who have tested the uniforms "have reported no electrical shock whatsoever."

In any event, while reading this story, I couldn't help but recall that old NBA Jam videogame, where players would "heat up" both figuratively and literally:


Interesting. Another in the long list of things I would have never thought of.

Blogger Chad McEvoy -- 12/12/2006 10:40 AM  

he's heating up...


Anonymous Anonymous -- 12/13/2006 1:07 AM  


Anonymous Anonymous -- 12/14/2006 12:43 PM  

They look like robots.

Blogger GlennD -- 7/24/2007 7:53 AM  

Hi, where can I get some of these. Graham -

Blogger Graham -- 1/10/2008 3:37 PM  

Halk Bilimi
Türk Sanati

Anonymous Halk Bilimi -- 1/31/2009 4:10 PM  

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