Augmented Ping Pong

Ping Pong table brought to life with piezo sensors, Arduino, Processing and projector.

by Chun Wang

To play with the Augmented Ping Pong, players must decide from three alternative realities, which includes an ultimately distracting social media mode.

This system has two main technical components: 1) is building a sensing system that is able to send the location of where ping pong ball hits the table to Arduino. I installed piezo sensors to the bottom of the table which connect to my laptop running a Arduino program. This part needs a lot of tuning work since piezo signals were kind of weak and accuracy was low. 2) is using Processing to code the data visualizations for where ping pong ball hits the table top. I came up with three different modes of visualization, aiming to provoke different user emotions - from fun to tranquil to distracting to the point of distressing. Visualization is then projected onto the table top with an overhead projector. Also there’s way for Arduino and processing to talk to each other so that the visualization is reacting to the sensor signal in real-time.

Conceptual sketches