Sunday, December 15, 2013

Image to SGF

Keeping track of a game record when playing on a physical board is somewhat tedious. Either use pen and a game record sheet available here and write down each move, or use a tablet/computer and replicate each move, or take a picture of each move from a fixed standpoint and then generate the SGF file using software such as image2sgf.

image2sgf is a Perl module that takes a photograph depicting a position on a go board, and returns an SGF description of the position.

It's pretty cool software, but If you're not a programmer, you may find it daunting to use.  Besides the picture, one must provide certain information for it to work (the 4 board corners), Using a fixed point for the camera is important because all pictures will share the same corner coordinates.

Unfortunately this makes it unpractical for our original purpose. Also if a players hand was over the board when taking the picture, it obviously won't work.

Before getting to know this software, me and some friends were toying with the idea of producing our own software to do this. For that purpose we (even though I didn't play) shot two blitz game videos with a camera facing down, lying on a table with a hole in the middle, and the board was on the floor. Watch them here and here.

1 comment:

  1. Clever! I certainly hope that we can create more user friendly technology as time goes on for recording games as people play instead of the tedious recording move by move. I can definitely attest to the fact that I spend quite a bit of time during each tournament recording my games during the game (which takes away from time I could be using to think).