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Publication numberUS3589732 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 29, 1971
Filing dateSep 4, 1969
Priority dateSep 4, 1969
Publication numberUS 3589732 A, US 3589732A, US-A-3589732, US3589732 A, US3589732A
InventorsFeeney James R, Russell Jack A
Original AssigneeBrunswick Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Map spot projection system for a golf game
US 3589732 A
Images(6)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent Jack A. Russell James R. Feeney, Grand Rapids, both of, Mich.

Sept. 4, 1969 June 29, 1971 Brunswick Corporation Inventors Appl. No. Filed Patented Assignee MAP SPOT PROJECTION SYSTEM FOR A GOLF GAME Primary Examiner-Georgel. Marlo Attorney-H0fgren, Wegner, Allen, Stellman & McCord ABSTRACT: An improved plotting system for use in indoor golf games for indicating to a golfer, the point of termination of a shot as determined by a computer on a map of a golf hole. The map is projected on a screen along with a scene of the golf hole taken from the point at which the golfer is to hit a shot and a ball spot projector which illustrates the trajectory of the ball on the projected scene is also used to indicate the point of termination on the map. The position of the map on the screen is preoriented so that the location on thehole from which the golfer is to hit a shot and which is represented by the scene projected on the screen is always located at the same point on the screen.

PATENTEU JUN29 l97| SHEET 2 [1F 6 MAP SPOT PROJECTION SYSTEM FOR A GOLF GAME BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION In the copending application of Conklin et al. entitled Golf Game, Ser. No. 588,856, filed Oct. 24, 1966, now U.S. Pat. No. 3,501,152, and assigned to the same assignee as the instant application, there is disclosed a plotting system for use with indoor golf games to indicate to a golfer where each shot played on the indoor golf game would terminate on a map of the hole being played Information provided to the golfer by the point of termination indication is utilized by the golfer to select a scene for display on a screen for the next shot or is used to indicate 'to the golfer where on or around a putting green a ball must be located in completing the playing of the hole and/or for lie selection purposes, i.e., whether the next shot should be played from a fairway-simulating lie, a roughsimulating lie or a sand-trap-simulating lie.

The plotting apparatus of Conklin et al. is provided with trajectory information inputs from a computing system such as that disclosed in the copending application of Russell et al., Ser. No. 588,922, filed Oct. 24, 1966, now U.S. Pat. No. 3,513,707, and assigned to the same assignee as the instant application, the details of which are herein incorporated by reference. The Russell et al. computing system provides trajectory information to a so-called ball spot projector" which moves a spot of light on a screen which receives indicia representing the view from a point on the hole on a golf course. The moving spot of light simulates the flight of a ball relative to the view to provide a realistic display to the golfer.

When the Russell et al. computing system is utilized with the Conklin et al. plotting system, a second, so-called map spot projector is utilized in conjunction with maps of the golf hole to be played. As described in the Conklin et al. application, the maps are arranged on a plotting table beneath the map spot projector and preparatory to each shot, the golfer orients the map in such a way that the map spot projector, using informationobtained from the Russell et al. computation system, will project a spot of light on the map to indicate the point of termination of the shot as computed by the Russell et al. computer.

While the combination of the Conklin et al. and Russell et al. systems have proved very satisfactory, certain drawbacks are present. Specifically, the combined system described previously requires the use of two separate spot projectors, a ball spot projector and a map spot projector. Secondly, the nature of the system is such. that prior to each shot, the golfer must physically orient the map of the hole which he is playing in a certain manner in order that the point of termination of the next shot will be correctly indicated.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The principal object of the invention is to provide a new and improved map-spot-projecting system for use in conjunction with indoor golf games.

More specifically, it is an object of the invention to provide a new and improved map-spot-projecting system wherein a ball spot projector normally used with an indoor golf game may additionally be used for map spot projection to thereby provide an indoor golf game of more economical construction.

Another object is the provision of an improved map-spotprojecting system wherein maps of the golf hole are preoriented to eliminate the need for a golfer to orient the same prior to each shot.

The invention accomplishes the foregoing objects by means point of of film frames for projection on ascreen located forwardly of I a golf tee which frames'include scene indicia representative of the view from a particular location on the hole of 'a' golf course and a map-representing the hole of the-golf course. Additionally, the map is oriented on the frame with respect to the scene thereon such that the point from which the view was taken as located on the map, will always be projected to the same location on a screen for all scenes. Further, a hypothetical line extending from the predetermined point is utilized in orienting each map with respect to its associated scene so that the cup location on the map always falls on the hypothetical line.

Because a conventional ball spot projector is adapted to project a spot of light on the screen in such a way to simulate the flight of a golf ball, and because the map is also projected on a screen, it will be appreciated that the arrangement is ideally suited for permitting the ball spot projector to be used for both ball spot projection and map spot projection. To this end, switching means are provided which, when a ballflight has ended, switch computer inputs to the ball spot projector in such a way that the same then receives different information useful for map spot projection and the same projects a spot of light to the projected image of the map also on the screen.

The orientation of the map with respect to the scene provides an arrangement whereby map orientation, heretofore accomplished manually by a golfer preliminary to each shot, is automatically compensated for during the construction of the film for providing the frames having the scene in the corresponding map.

Other objects and advantages will become apparent from the following specification taken in conjunction withthe accompanying drawings.

DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the tee area of an indoor golf game utilizing a map-spot-projecting system according to the invention;

FIG. 2 is a block diagram illustrating the typical construction of a golf-game-computing system including a map-spotprojecting system made according to the invention;

FIG. 3 is an illustration of a typical map of a golf hole used with the indoor golf game;

FIG. 4 is a schematic illustrating a map and scene-projecting system;

FIG. 5 illustrates two frames on a film used with the map and scene projector;

FIG. 6 is comprised of FIGS. 6A and 6B that illustrates a schematic of a portion of the system illustrated in FIG. 2; and

FIG. 7 is a schematic of a relay circuit. which controls certain of the elements illustrated in FIG. 6.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT golf ball may be placed to be hit by a golfer. Forwardly of the tee area is a screen 14 on which is projected indicia representing the view from a certain location on a golf hole. The indicia are projected on the screen 14 by means of a projector 16 which may be of the type disclosed in the copending application of Pratt et al., Ser, No. 574,218, filed Aug. 22, I966, entitled Visual Display System, now U.S. Pat. No. 3,528,733, and assigned to the same assignee as the instant application, the details of which are herein incorporated by reference.

A control console 18 includes control means, I generally designated 20, for controlling the projector 16 so that the latter will dispose any selected one of a plurality of scenes on the screen 14. There is also provided a ball spot projector 22 which is adapted to project a spot of light on the screen 14 to fi rstly indicate the trajectory of a ball in flight relative to the scene 'projected 'on' a screen and secondly, to indicate the termination 'of ashot on: amap of the hole to the golferf' V Tothisend, the matter projected Ol'ttlt screen, ,bythe projector 16 is comprised of two parts. The first partconsists of a scene portion, generally designated 24, indicating, inperdesignated 26, and indicates, in plan view, the layout of the hole being played and, as seen in FIG. 1, the projector 22 is projecting a spot of light 28 on a zone on the map portion 26. The specific relation between the scene portion 24 and the map portion 26 will be described in greater detail hereinafter.

Suitable data acquisition means (not shown in FIG. 1) may be associated with the tee point 12, and located in front of and/or behind the screen 14. The location of such means will depend upon their construction. If the data acquisition means disclosed in the Russell et al. application are utilized, there will be appropriate means located at all three locations men.- tioned above and the information. provid d by such data acquisition means is fed to a computer whi h comput th theoretical free flight trajectory of a ball hit from thetee point 12. The computed trajectory information is then fed to the ball spot projector 22 which moves the spot of light" relative to the sceneportion 24 to indicate the balls trajectory and, thereafter, projects the spot of light to the map portion 26 to indicate the point of termination of the shot on the map portion 26. m

The data acquisition means and the computer to be used with the indoor golf game are illustrated in block form-in FIG. 2. With the exception of one block to be pointed out in detail hereinafter, the specific means for each block illustrated in FIG. 2 may be ascertained by reference to the Russell et al. application.

The data acquisition means include essentially four elements as described in the Russellet al. application. The first is an initial-velocity-information-providing means, generally designated 30. The second is an elevation-angle informationproviding means and is generally designated 32. There is also provided an azimuth-angle-information-providing means. generally designated 34; and finally, there is provided a sidespin-inforrnation-providing means. generally designated 34; and finally, there is provided a side-pin-information providing means, generally designated 36. for providing information relative to the side spin placed on a ball hit at the tee point 12.

The information provided by thedataacquisition means 3036 is provided as an input to a computer, generally designated 38, which utilizes the information to determine, throughout the theoretical free flight trajectory of the ball, three vectorial components of such flight. Thus, the computer 38 includes an X-distance-computing means 40, a Y-distancecomputing means 42 and a Z-distance-computing means 44. Those skilled in the art will recognize that the X-distancecomputing means computes the instantaneous displacement of the ball to either side of a straight line extending from the tee point down the center of the hole and usually to the cup.

Similarly, it will be recognized that the Y-distance-computing means 42 computes the instantaneous displacement of the ball above the ground while the ball is in flight. Finally, the Z- distance-computing means computes the instantaneous displacement of the ball from the tee point along the straight line extending therefrom discussed above in conjunction with the X-distance-computing means 40.

As disclosed in the Russell et al. application, the computer 38 provides three electrical outputs with the voltage at each output being proportional to the displacement of the ball from the various reference points mentioned previously at a corresponding time in its flight. Such electrical outputs are therein described as S, which is the electrical output indicating the distance in the X-direction, S, which is the electrical output designating displacement in. the- Y-direction and S which is the electrical output indicating displacement in The Z-direction.

In the instant invention, such electrical outputs are utilized as inputs to a mode changeswitching and amplification circuit, generally designated 46. Thereafter, appropriate electrical outputs totaling three in number are provided from the mode change switching and amplification circuit 46 to the ball spot projector 22, which includes an X-motor 50, a Y-motor 52 and a Z-motor 54. The details of such a ball spot projector 48 may be ascertained by reference to the Russell et al. application. For purposes of the instant application, it is merely sufficient to note that the X-motor controls the location of the spot projected by the ball spot projector 22 on the screen with respect to the-horizontal; the Y-motor 52 controls the location of the projected spot with respect to the vertical and the Z- motor' 54 controls the size of the projected spot and-being such that when the spot is being projected to simulate the flight of the'ball, as the Z-distance increases, the projected spot decreases in size.

The specific nature of the mode change switching and amplification circuit 46 will be in greater detai h reinafter. i M

As indi at d pre iously, the primary purpose of the instant application is to provide a map-plotting system that (1.) eliminates the need for a golfer to manuallyorient a map of the hole that he is playing and (2) eliminatesthe expense of a map spot projector. The first objective is met by projecting a golf hole map on the screen [4 at the map portion 26. of the image, which map is preoriented and the second objective is achieved by the provision of the mode changing switching and amplification means 46 which is operative to cause the ball spot projector 22 to operate as a map spot projector after the theoretical flight of the ball has terminated as determined by the computer 38.

FIG. 3 illustrates a typical map 60 of a golf hole and the outline thereof is locatedon a frame of film at the left-hand side thereof so thatit will be projected at the map portion 26 of the projected image on the screen 14 as will be seen hereinafter. A line 62 designates a fairway and the area therewithin may be colored a medium green. A second line 64 defines a rough surrounding the fairway defined by the line 62 and the area between the lines 62 and 64 may be colored a darker green to indicate the rough. Various continuous lines 66 may be used to designate sand traps and the area therewithin may be colored a sand color to designate a sand trap. A continuous line 68 designates a green and may be colored a lighter green to distinguish it from the fairway and the rough while lines 70 and 72 may define a water hazard and theatres between the two lines may be colored blue. A dotted line 74 in the vicinity of the green may be used to indicate that a golfer is'in sufficiently close, proximity to the green so that the shot need not be played with the use of the computer as discussed in greater detail in the Conklin et al. application. I I U Various undesignated lines divide the fairway, the rough and the sand into 'a plurality of discrete zones andeach zone may bear characteristic indicia 75 representative of a scene to be selected for display on. the screen 14 by a projector when a golferis about to makea shot from that particular 'zone. Each zone also includes a circle 76 that indicates the point in the zone from which the scene was taken and is also used for computational purposes as will appear hereinafter, although the a circle 76 may be eliminated from the image on the film.

The green is also divided into a plurality of zones indicated by the concentric circles labeled A, B, C,'D and E. The hole is located in the center of the circle designated A. Corresponding indicia may be marked on a separate green area on which the golfer may actually putt so that by means of the map and the map spot projector, the golfer will be apprised of the distance from the cup on the actual green area that he must place his ball before putting out.

Small zones within the area between the line 68 and the dotted line 74 may bear suitable indicia 77 for indicating to the golfer where a ball must be placed adjacent the separate green area for chipping or pitching, onto the green without the use of the computer.

Turning now to FIG. 4, a suitable projector system for use in an indoor golf game is illustrated schematically and, asmentioned previously, is preferably of the type disclosed in the identified application of Pratt et al. The projection system in FIG. 4 includes the projector 16 which is comprised of a suita ble optical system 80, a source of light 81, a-pair of reels 82 having a film 83 thereon, and drive means 84 arranged to drive-the reels 82 so that the film 83 may be located with respect to the light source 8] and the optical system 80 to project a desired scene and associated map on the screen.

Control of the film drive 84 is exercised by a selection control system 85 which receives scene selection information from the control panel 20. As seen in FIG. 4, the control panel 20 includes three manually operable scene selection inputs 86, 87 and 88, respectively.

The first selecting means 86 designates the hole that is being played and as illustrated, comprises a rotary switch having 18 positions designated one through 18, one for each of the l8 holes on the golf course.

The second selecting means 87 is also a rotary switch and has 10 positions designated A through .I and the third selecting means 88 is a similar lO-position rotary switch having positions designated one through 10.

In the course of playing a hole on the indoor golf game, first selecting means 86 is set to register the particular hole being played and need not be changed until that hole is completed. For the first shot on the hole and assuming the hole being played is that depicted by the map in FIG. 3, the second selecting means will be set at the position A and the third selecting means 88 will be set at the position 1 to indicate zone A] which is the tee zone for the hole. Thereafter, the second and third selecting means 87 and 88, respectively, may be changed by a golfer in accordance with the indicia 75 on the map (FIG. 3) for the particular zone which the shot terminates in. The zone of termination is, as mentioned previously, indicated by a spot of light at the completion of each shot.

Turning now to FIG. 5, an image of the map 60 is shown to be located at the left-hand side of a frame 90 on the film 83. Certain details of the map are omitted from the showing in FIG. 3 for the purpose of clarity. For purposes of illustration, there is provided a vertical reference line 94 which will, of course, be omitted on the actual frame 90. Additionally, there is provided a horizontal reference line 96 which will be similarly omitted on the finished film. A point 98 of intersection of the lines 94 and 96 represents map zero" and is one of two points which must be considered in orienting the image of the map 60 on each frame. The second point of consideration in determining the orientation of the image of a map 60 on each frame lies on the line 94 and is, in fact, a point on the map representing the location of the cup on the map. In FIG. 5, this point is designated 100.

The "map zero point 98 is always at the same location on every frame of the film. As a result, when means for accurately locating the projected image on the screen are associated with the projector 16 in a manner described in the above-mentioned Pratt et al. application, the location of the "map zero" point 98 will be at the same position on the screen 14. Of course, there will be no such image projected on the screen 14 because of the omission of the lines 94 and 96 in the finished film.

As will be described in greater detail hereinafter, the map zero" point 98 represents the location of the tee point for any given shot. That is, for a zero X-displacement and a zero Z-displacement, circuitry to be described hereinafter will cause the ball spot projector 22 to project the spot of light to the map zero" point 98. Since a zero displacement in both the X- and Z-direction represents the tee point for each shot, and since, by definition, one point which determines the location of the line from which X-displacement is measured is the tee point, the maps located on the frames 90 are arranged such that the zone on the map from which the golfer is making a shot, will have its center located at the map zero" point 98.

Turning now to FIGS. 6A, 6B and 7, the specific nature of the circuitry forming the mode change switching and amplification means 46 will be described. In the .following description, where terminals of the circuitry shown in FIGS. 6A, 6B and 7 are connected to certain locations in the Russell et al. computing system, such terminals will be identified by the same reference numeral as the terminal disclosed in the Russell et al. application and preceded by an R. Thus, a terminal designated R303a means that the same should be connected to the terminal 303a as disclosed in the Russell et al. application.

Those familiar with the mode of operation of the Russell et al. computer system will recognize that each cycle of operation thereof may be divided into three parts. The first part is a so-called Standby condition wherein the computer is ready for operation and is merely waiting for a golfer to hit a shot so that data may be acquired to compute the shot. The second condition is a Ball Flight condition and occurs the instant that data relative to a ball hit from the tee point is available and continues until the computer ascertains the theoretical flight of the ball has terminated and then for a short time period thereafter. Finally, the third condition is a Map Spot Indication condition and this condition follows the ball flight condition and serves to indicate to the golfer, the point of termination of the shot on the projected image of the map. The map spot condition lasts for a predetermined time period and after such a time period has elapsed, the computer returns to the standby condition.

FIG. 7 indicates in schematic form certain electrical components in a standby condition. When the computer is in a standby condition, a relay coil 200, hereinafter referred to as the standby relay, is normally energized and is connected across a source of power through the normally closed contact 202 of a conventional holding relay 204 which may be of the thermal type.

There is also provided a relay coil 206, hereinafter called the ball spot projection relay, which is arranged to be energized when a ball flight is in progress. The ball spot relay 206 is connected across a source of power through normally open contacts R560 created by a relay 560 described in the Russell et al. application. When the computer judges that the ball is in flight, the relay 560 in the Russell et al. application is energized and the same will cause the contacts R560 to be closed to energize the ball spot projection relay 206 during the ball flight portion of the cycle.

Finally, there is provided a map spot projection relay 208 which may be connected to power through a normally open contact 210 of the hold relay 204. The map spot projection relay 208 is to be energized during the map spot projection portion of each cycle and its energization takes place in the following manner. As disclosed in the Russell et al. application, there are provided a set of normally open contacts R5201; operated by a relay 520 as disclosed in the Russell et al. application. The relay 520 is energized when a ball flight has terminated and as seen in FIG. 7, when the contacts R520b are closed, a conventional 2-second time delay circuit 210 is connected to a power source. After 2 seconds have elapsed following the closing of the contacts 520b, the 2-second time delay circuit 210 will energize the holding relay 204. This will cause the relay 204 to be energized and by virtue of its conventional holding construction, it will open the circuit from power through the contacts 202 and close the circuit to power through the contacts 210 thereof. This change in state will be maintained for a predetermined time period depending upon the construction of the relay 204. In the exemplary embodiment, it is desired that the relay 204 hold the changed condition when energized for 5 seconds and thereafter revert to its normal condition.

As a result of the foregoing, it will be apparent in the standby portion of each computer cycle, only the standby relay 200 is energized. During the ball flight portion of each computer cycle, both the standby relay 200 and the ball spot projection relay 206 will be energized and, during the map spot portion of each computer cycle, and at a time approximately 2 seconds following the completion of the flight as determined by the computer, the map spot projection relay 208 will be energized for a period of but 5 seconds.

Returning now to FIGS. 6A and 6B, the mode change switching and amplification means 46 will be described. It is to be understood that the circuitry shown in FIGS. 6A and 6B is to completely replace that illustrated in FIG. 19 of the Russell et al. application.

Referring first to the section that provides the X-motor with information, it will be seen that there is provided a terminal R4861: which is to be connected to the terminal 4860 in the Russell et al. application. Connected in parallel with the terminal R486a and ground are a pair of scaling potentiometers 220 and 222. The wiper of the potentiometer 220 is connected through normally open contacts 200a of the standby relay 200 as an input to an X-motor servoamplifier 224.

Similarly, the wiper of the potentiometer 222 is connected to normally open contacts 208a of the map spot projection relay as an input to the servoamplifier 224.

A second, feedback input to the servoamplifier 224 is taken from the wiper of an X-motor potentiometer R726 which corresponds to the potentiometer 726 disclosed in the Russell et al. application. Applied across the potentiometer R726 is a voltage that represents twice the displacement in the 2- direction as computed by the computational system. To this end, a pair of terminals R3010 and R3031: are connected to a source of minus S voltage and a source of plus S voltage in the Russell ct al. computing system through normally open contacts 206a and 207b operated by the ball spot projection relay 206.

There is also provided a common voltage input to the servoamplifier 224 which is taken from the wiper of a potentiometer 226 connected between a positive source of power and ground. lnterposed in the lead from the wiper of the potentiometer 226 is the normally open contact 208b operated by the map spot projection relay 208.

There is additionally provided a variable source of voltage as an input to the X-servoamplifier 224 which may be omitted under certain conditions. The variable source of voltage is obtained from the wiper of a potentiometer 228 connected to one side of the potentiometer'R726 and to ground. lnterposed inthe lead from the wiper of the potentiometer 228 are normally open contacts 200b operated by the standby relay 200.

The operation of the X-motor system is as follows. A commanded X-position in the form of electrical signal is placed at the point R4860 and, during the standby or ball flight condition, the contacts 200a will be closed so that a voltage proportional to that placed on the contacts R4861: will be applied through the potentiometer 220 as an input to the servoamplifier 224. The command position will then cause appropriate operation of the X-motor with feedback being provided from the wiper of the potentiometer R726.

Also during this time, an input proportional to the displacement in the Z-direction will be applied from the potentiometer 228 through the closed contacts 200b of the relay 200 to the servoamplifier. As mentioned previously, this input is optional and depends upon the geometry of the tee area. Specifically, if the physical location of the ball spot projector is centered with respect to a projected scene, i.e., in a vertical plane passing through the center of the projected scene and the tee point, this input may be omitted. However, if the ball spot projector is displaced to the side of the aforementioned vertical plane, the input should be provided for accuracy. The side of the potentiometer R726 to which the potentiometer 228 is connected (to receive plus S, or minus 8,) will be dependent upon the side of the aforementioned vertical plane on which the ball spot projector is located. The voltage taken from the potentiometer 228 insures that the location of the projected ball spot will be accurate. Those skilled in the art will recognize that any ball hit directly along the line from which X-displacement is measured should, when viewed on a plane, define a perfectly vertical line. However, if the ball spot projector is not located in the vertical plane including the line from which X-displa cement is measured, for the situation set forth in the preceding sentence, a diagonal line would be defined and the slope of the line would be proportional to the Z-component of the ball in flight. Thus, the Z-component is applied to the potentiometer 228 and applied through the closed contacts 200b during ball flight to the se-rvoamplifier 224 to insure that in such a situation, the projected ball spot will move in a vertical line.

When the computer switches from a ball spot projection portion of the cycle to the map spot projection portion of the cycle, the contacts 200a open and the contacts 2080 close thereby applying, as an input to the servoamplifier 224, a voltage proportional to the voltageapplied at the contact R486a through scaling potentiometer 222. Also applied at this time is a voltage picked from the wiper of the potentiometer 226 through the now closed contacts 208b of the relay 208. Thus, the servoamplifier 224 will cause the X-motor to drive the spot for map spot projection purposes.

The purpose of the voltage applied from the wiper of the potentiometer 226 is to provide an offset in the initial location of the ball spot with respect to the so-called X-direction. More specifically, at the beginning of the ball flight portion ofa cycle, the initial position of the spot in the X-direction corresponds to the center of the scene portion 24 (FIG. 1). However, during the map spot projection portion of the cycle, the initial position of the spot with respect to the X-direction should correspond to some point on the imaginary line 94 (FIG. 5) and the voltage applied from the wiper of the potentiometer 226 provides for such an offset.

From the foregoing, it will be appreciated that the X-motor 50 of the ball spot projector will cause horizontal movement of the projected spot on the scene portion in an appropriate manner when the relay 200 is energized with the scaling potentiometer 220 providing a correct proportionality factor between the voltage applied at the contact R486a and the required degree of movement of the spot on the scene. Similarly, the motor 50 will cause horizontal movement of the spot for map spot indication position on the map portion when the relay 208 is energized and the scaling potentiometer 222 insures that the movement will be proportional to the voltage applied at the contact R486a but not necessarily at the same proportionality factor as that applied to the motor during the ball flight condition. Thus, potentiometers 220 and 222 permit the map to be scaled differently from the scene.

The control for the Y-motor 52 is primarily illustrated in FIG. 6B and as indicated, a voltage representative of the distance in the Y-direction is applied to a contact R260a. lnterposed between the contact R260a and ground is a scaling potentiometer 230 which has its wiper connected through normally open contacts 206a operated by the ball spot projection relay 206 to an input of the Y-system servoamplifier 232. The potentiometer 230, like the potentiometers 220 and 222, serves to introduce an appropriate scaling factor into the voltage output provided to the contact R260a by the Russell et al. computer.

A second input to the servoamplifier 232 is taken from a voltage divider network, generally designated 234, through normally open contacts 200a operated by the standby relay 200. The arrangement is such that when the computer is in the standby portion of the computer cycle, and the contacts 2006 are closed, a voltage will be applied to the Y-servoamplifier 232 that will cause the projected spot to be located at a predetermined position on the screen. Normally, such a position would be just at the lower edge of the screen. Of course,

vat this time, other means may be provided to extinguish the light in the ball spot projector so that a spot will not be pro jected during standby but it is highly desirable that during the standby portion, the ball spot projector be directed to locate the projected spot, whether actually projected or not, at a predetermined location in readiness for the next ball flight when the light is illuminated.

A third input to the Y-servoamplifier 232 is provided through contacts 208C operated by the relay 200 and derived through the wiper of a potentiometer 240 which has one side connected to ground and the other to the terminal R30la to receive a voltage representative of the distance in the Z- direction.

The purpose of this latter connection is to provide a Z- distance-indicating voltage to the Y-servoamplifier during map spot projection when, it will be recalled, the Y-motor acts to indicate Z-distance on the projected image of the map.

A fourth input to the Y-servoamplifier 234 is taken from the wiper of a feedback potentiometer R728 in FIG. 6A for feedback purposes. During a ball flight condition, the voltage applied across the feedback potentiometer R728 will be twice the voltage representative of the distance in the Z-direction by virtue of the connections through contacts 206a and 206b to terminals R3031: and R301a, respectively. On the other hand, during map spot projection, the contacts 206a and 206b will be open with the result that the voltage applied across the potentiometer R728 for feedback purposes during map spot projection will be that determined by the magnitude of a positive reference voltage and a negative reference voltage indicated in FIG. 6A.

A fifth input to the Y-servoamplifier may be taken from a voltage divider network generally designated 242 through normally open contact 208d and a sixth input to the Y-servoamplifier 232 may be derived from a voltage divider network 244 through normally open contact 200d of the standby relay 200.

The input from the voltage divider network 244 introduces a factor corresponding to the height of an observer's eye above the ground and corresponds to the voltage applied in the Russell et al. application by the potentiometer 912. The voltage applied from the voltage divider network 242 through the contacts 208d provides for an offset in the Y-direction which is approximately similar to the offset in the X-direction provided by the signal from the potentiometer 226. That is, because the initial position of the projected spot in the vertical direction for a ball flight cycle is different from the initial position of the projected spot in the vertical direction for map spot projection, means are provided to insert an appropriate offset.

The control for the Z-motor is as follows. An input signal corresponding to the negative of the computed distance in the Z-direction is received on terminal 301a and applied to the anode of a diode 250. The cathode of the diode 250 is connected to the cathode of a diode 252 which, in turn, has its anode connected through normally open contacts 200e to a summing point 254. The junction of the cathode of the diodes 250 and 252 is also connected to a negative source of power through the wiper of the potentiometer 256. I

Also applied to the summing point 254 is a voltage taken from the wiper of the Z-feedback potentiometer R828 which is connected between ground and an appropriate reference voltage along the lines of that disclosed in the Russell et al. application.

A third voltage applied to the summing point 254 is taken from the wiper of a potentiometer 257 and the potentiometer 257 may be adjusted to control the initial position of the Z- motor thereby regulating the initial size of the spot of light projected on the screen.

Another input is taken from the wiper of a potentiometer 258 through normally open contacts 208e and ultimately applied to the summing point 254. The summing point 254 is then connected as an input to a Z-differential amplifier 260 and the same has a second input connection directly to ground.

The operation of the Z-system is as follows. During the standby condition, the contacts 200e will be closed and the adjustment of the various potentiometers 256, 257 and the reference voltage is such that the adjustment of the poten- 1 tiometer 257 causes the Z-motor to operate to control the size of the projected spot according to the desires of the operator. At this point, the size of the projected spot will typically be its largest.

During the ball flight portion of the cycle, the contacts 200e remain closed and the computed Z-distance is placed as an input on the terminal R30la and may often be positive with respect to the voltage taken from the potentiometer 256. When the voltage at the junction of the diodes 250 and 252 is negative with respect to the voltage at the contacts 200a as taken from the potentiometer 257 and the feedback potentiometer R828, an unbalanced input will be present at the servoamplifier 260 and the Z-motor will be operated to reduce the size of the spot. As a result, as the voltage applied to the terminal R30la swings increasingly negative, the Z-motor will be controlled to gradually decrease the size of the projected spot.

When the computer switches to the map spot projection portion of the computer cycle, the contacts 200e will be open and the contacts 208e will be closed. As a result, the voltage applied by the potentiometer 258 will ultimately be fed to the servoamplifier 260 to control the size of the projected spot during the map spot projection portion of the computer cycle. By appropriate manipulation of the potentiometer 258, the size of the projected spot during map spot projection may be made larger, or smaller or the same as the initial size of the projected spot during ball flight projection.

The operation of the system is as follows. Initially, the computer will be in a standby condition with the result that the X- system will be conditioned to project the spot of light to the vertical center of the scene portion because of the voltage applied to the servoamplifier 224 from the potentiometer 228 through the now closed contacts 200b. Inasmuch as a flight has not taken place, zero volts will be applied at the terminal R4860 so the closing of the contacts 200a will have no effect.

In the case of the Y-system, the contacts 200d will be closed to apply a voltage to compensate for the height of the viewers eye above the ground but this will not be observable at this time because of the voltage applied to the servoamplifier 232 from the potentiometer 234 through the contacts 2000 to the preposition the Y-system to project the spot to the bottom edge of the screen.

The Z-system at this time will merely be conditioned to project initially a spot of a predetermined size as determined by the setting of the potentiometer 257.

When a ball is hit and the computer switches from standby to ball spot projection, all of the contacts shown in FIGS. 6A and 6B operated by the relays 200 and 206 will be closed and the projected spot of light will be moved on the screen and the scene displayed thereon in accordance with the magnitude of the voltages 8,, S, and S, applied at the terminals R486a, R260a and R30la essentially as described in the above identified application of Russell et al. Thus, for the purpose of brevity, it is not believed necessary to fully described the mode of operation during this portion of the cycle.

When the flight is terminated and the map spot projector relay 208 has been energized in the manner mentioned previously, the Z-system of the ball spot projector will be conditioned to project a spot of constant, predetermined size which will be determined by the setting of the potentiometer 258 as fed to the servoamplifier 260 through the now closed contacts 2086.

The Y-system will receive Z-information through the now closed contacts 208a and the initial position of the spot during the map-spot-projecting mode will be shifted to be at the same height as the map zero point 98 (FIG. 5) assuming that there is no Zcoordinate voltage applied through the closure of the contacts 208d.

Finally, the X-motor will receive X-information through the now closed contacts 208a and such information will be offset to coincide with the imaginary vertical line 94 on the screen (FIG. 5) in view of the offsetting voltage from the potentiometer 226 applied to the X-servoamplifier 224 through the contacts 208b.

Stated another way, for both X-direction and Z-direction components of zero, the closure of the contacts 2081) and 20811 causes both horizontal and vertical offset of the brush of the projected spot so that the same will be located at the map zero" point 98. Thereafter when Z-inforrnation is fed to the Y- system through the contacts 2080 after being appropriately scaled by the potentiometer 240, movement aLong the imaginary line 94, which corresponds to the Z-direction on the map, will take place. Similarly, when X-information, approximately scaled by the potentiometer 222 is provided to the X-servoamplifier 224 through the contacts 208a, the projected spot will be moved to either side of the imaginary line 94 according to the X-displacement.

ill

As aresult, the projected spot will be displaced from the map zero point corresponding to the computed X- and Z- coordinates as determined by the computer, and inasmuch as the correlation of the scenes and the preoriented map associated therewith is such that the tee point for each shot is located at map zero, the resulting position of the spot will be an indication of the point of termination of the shot which may then be used for scene selection purposes, etc.

In some cases,- it may be desireable that the map spot projection condition be maintained for a longer period of time than the second hold provided by the relay 204. In such instances, because virtually each shot will require a change of the projected scene before the shot will be made, a holding circuit may be provided in parallel with the relay 204 which will hold the map spot projection condition until such time as the next player is about to make his shot as indicated by the in itiation of the selection of the appropriate scene for that player. When such is done, the relay 204 will insure that the map spot projection condition will last for at least 5 seconds and will continue to remain until the next player is ready to make a shot.

We claim:

1. An indoor golf game comprising:

a. an area defining a tee from which golf balls may be hit;

b. a screen located forwardly of said tee area and adapted to receive indicia depicting any one of a plurality of scenes ofa golf hole;

c. means providing indicia depicting a map of said golf hole;

d. means for sensing the flight characteristics of a golf ball struck from the tee toward said screen for providing information relative thereto;

e. computing means responsive. to said sensing means for receiving the information therefrom and for computing the theoretical free flight trajectory of the golf ball hit from the tee, said computing means including a first circuit for determining the distance the ball would travel in a first horizontal direction generally straight away from said tee, a second circuit for determining the distance that a ball would travel in a second horizontal direction transverse to said first direction and a third circuit for determining the distance a ball would travel in a third direction normal to both said first and second directions;

spot-projecting means responsive to said computing means 7 I for moving a spot oflight on said screen and thus on the one of the plurality of scenes of a golf hole on the screen to provide a visual simulation of the computed theoretical free flight trajectory and 2. for projecting a spot of light on the map of a golf hole to indicate the point of termination of the computed theoretical free flight trajectory of the golf ball on the map, said spot projecting means including first, second and third systems for changing the projection of the spot of light on the screen to indicate the distance of the ball from the tee, the distance of the ball to either side of the tee and the distance of the ball above the tee, respectively; and g. means responsive to said computing means when the latter has determined that the theoretical free flight of the ball has terminated for thereafter causing said spot-projecting means to indicate said point of termination on the map, said means responsive to said computing means comprising, means for alternately connecting said first, second the third systems to said first, second and third circuits, respectively, to move the spot of light on the scene and for connecting said second and third systems to said second and first circuits, respectively, to indicate the point of termination of the theoretical free flight trajectory of the golf ball on the map. 2. An indoor golf game according to claim 1 wherein element (0) comprises a projector for projecting the image of a map of a golf hole on said screen.

3. An indoor golf game according to claim 1 further including a plurality of scenes, each depicting the view from a different location on a hole on a golf course, means associated with each scene for providing a map of the golf hole, and means for projecting each said scene and the corresponding map on said screen.

4. A golf game according to claim 3 wherein each map is located with respect to its associated scene such that the point on the golf hole which the view for the particular scene represents on said map will be located at a predetermined position on said screen when projected thereon by said projection means.

5. A golf game according to claim 4 wherein said predetermined point includes an imaginary line extending therefrom and each said map is associated with its corresponding scene so that the location of the cup on the golf hole of the map will always be projected on said imaginary line.

6. In an indoor golf game including a screen, a projector for projecting on the screen any one of a plurality of scenes each depicting the view from a different location on a golf hole, a computer for utilizing input data to compute the theoretical free flight trajectory of a golf ball, a ball spot projector responsive to the computer for projecting and moving a spot of light on the projected scene to simulate the flight of a golf ball; and means providing a map of the golf hole, the improvement comprising: means connected to said computer and responsive to the termination of the theoretical free flight trajectory of a golf ball for causing said ball spot projector to cease projecting said spot of light on the projected scene and to project said spot of light on said map-providing means to indicate thereon the point of termination of said theoretical free flight trajectory. I

7. An indoor golf game according to claim 6 including the further improvement wherein said map providing means includes means associated with said projector for projecting the image of a golf hole map on said screen.

8. An indoor golf game according to claim 6 including the further improvement wherein said map providing means comprises: a plurality of map images, one for each of said scenes, and each having the point therein corresponding to the point of view of the corresponding scene locatable at a predetermined position with respect to said ball spot projector, and means responsive to the projection of a selected scene for locating said point at said position.

9. In an indoor golf game including a tee from which balls may be hit, data acquisition means for acquiring trajectory information relative to the balls hit from the tee, a computer responsive to the data acquisition means for computing the theoretical free flight trajectory of balls hit from the tee, means providing a map of a golf hole, and means responsive to the computer for indicating, along two coordinates, the point of termination of a ball flight trajectory on said map with respect to a predetermined reference point; the improvement wherein said map-providing means comprise a plurality of map images, one for each of a plurality of possible starting points for a ball flight trajectory, each of said images being oriented so that the starting point corresponding to the image is locatable at said predetermined reference point, and means for selecting one of said images for disposition at a predetermined location with respect to said indication means and with said starting point at said predetermined reference point.

10. A golf game according to claim 9 where said images are on film, and further including means for projecting the selected one of said images to said predetermined location with said starting point at said predetermined reference point.

11. A golf game according to claim it), further including a screen located forwardly of said tee, said projecting means further being operative to project said images on said screen along with scenes depicting the views on a golf hole from the plurality of starting points, said scenes being correlated with said images so that the image and the scene projected at a given time relate to the same one of said starting points.

12. An indoor golf game according to claim 11 wherein said indicating means comprises a spot projector for alternately projecting a moving spot of light on said screen and on the scene projected thereon to simulate the flight of a golf ball, and for projecting a spot of light on the screen and on the map image projected thereon to indicate the point of termination of a shot.

13. An indoor golf gamecomprising:

a. an area defining a tee from which golf balls may be hit;

b. a screen located forwardly of said tee area;

c. means for projecting any one of a plurality of scenes of a golf hole and indicia depicting a map of said golf hole on said screen in side by side relation;

d. means for sensing the flight characteristics of a golf ball struck from the tee toward said screen for providing information relative thereto;

e. computing means responsive to said sensing means for receiving the information therefrom and for computing the theoretical free flight trajectory of the golf ball hit from the tee, said computing means including a first circuit for determining the location of the ball in a first direction with respect to said tee, a second circuit for determining the location of the ball in a second direction with respect to said tee and a third circuit for determining the location of the ball in a third direction with respect to said tee;

f. spot-projecting means responsive to said computing means for moving a spot of light on said screen and thus on the one of the plurality of scenes of a golf hole on the screen to provide a visual simulation of the computed theoretical free flight trajectory and 2. for projecting a spot of light on the map of a golf hole to indicate the point of termination of the computed theoretical free flight trajectory of the golf ball on the map, said spot-projecting meansincluding first, second and third systems forchanging the projection of the spot of light on the screen to indicate the distance of the ball from the tee, the distance of the ball to either side of the tee and the distance of the ball above the tee, respectively; and

g. means responsive to said computing means when the latter has determined that the theoretical free flight of the ball has terminated for thereafter causing said spot-projecting means to indicate said point of termination on the map, said means responsive to said computing means comprising, means for alternately connecting said first, second and third systems to said first, second and third circuits, respectively, to move the spot of light on the scene and for connecting said second and third systems to said second and first circuits, respectively, to indicate the point of termination of the theoretical free flight trajectory of the golf ball on the map.

14. An indoor golf game according to claim 13 wherein said means responsive to said computing means further includes means operative after the computing means has determined that the theoretical free flight trajectory has terminated for providing said second system with an offset signal to cause said spot-projecting means to project toward said map indicia rather than toward the scene on the screen.

15. An indoor golf game according to claim 13 wherein said means responsive to said computing means further includes means operative after said computing means has determined that the theoretical free flight trajectory has terminated for providing said third system with an offset signal.

16. An indoor golf game according to claim 13 wherein said means responsive to said computing means further includes means operative after the computing means has determined that the theoretical free flight trajectory has terminated for providing both said second system and said third system with respective offset signals to cause said spot-projecting means to project toward a predetermined location on said screen occupied by said map indicia rather than toward the scene on the screen.

Patent Citations
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US2121750 *Jan 9, 1930Jun 21, 1938John F VaughanGame and practice apparatus
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3937466 *Feb 18, 1975Feb 10, 1976Candor James TMethod for playing strategy golf
US4029315 *Jun 19, 1975Jun 14, 1977Bon Michel Julien Marius AugusDevice for automatically evaluating the ball throwing efficiency of a football passer
US4086630 *Jan 19, 1976Apr 25, 1978Maxmilian Richard SpeiserComputer type golf game having visible fairway display
US4150825 *Jul 18, 1977Apr 24, 1979Wilson Robert FGolf game simulating apparatus
US4160942 *Sep 12, 1977Jul 10, 1979Acushnet CompanyGolf ball trajectory presentation system
US5340108 *Nov 22, 1991Aug 23, 1994Donald A. WilsonApparatus for projecting and moving a spot of light in a scene projected on a screen and for controlling operation of a stepper motor used therewith
US5354063 *Dec 4, 1992Oct 11, 1994Virtual Golf, Inc.Double position golf simulator
US6012987 *Jun 26, 1996Jan 11, 2000Nation; Ralph WynyardRecreational game
US6595863Jan 19, 2001Jul 22, 2003Par Action Golf, Inc.Golf simulator
US7837572Jun 7, 2004Nov 23, 2010Acushnet CompanyLaunch monitor
US7959517Aug 31, 2004Jun 14, 2011Acushnet CompanyInfrared sensing launch monitor
US8137210Dec 1, 2004Mar 20, 2012Acushnet CompanyPerformance measurement system with quantum dots for object identification
US8475289Jun 7, 2004Jul 2, 2013Acushnet CompanyLaunch monitor
US8500568Jun 7, 2004Aug 6, 2013Acushnet CompanyLaunch monitor
US8556267Jul 26, 2004Oct 15, 2013Acushnet CompanyLaunch monitor
US8622845Jun 7, 2004Jan 7, 2014Acushnet CompanyLaunch monitor
WO1994013368A1 *Dec 1, 1993Jun 23, 1994Donald B CurchodDouble position golf simulator
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Classifications
U.S. Classification473/156
International ClassificationA63B69/36, A63B67/02, G03B21/00
Cooperative ClassificationA63B69/3658
European ClassificationA63B69/36E