(embed) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1MkrNVic7pw (/ embed)
Play competitive video games long enough, and over time, you’ll come across some Yahoo that clearly use an aimbot to automatically align perfect shots. It turns out you can also cheat in real life. YouTuber Shane Wighton de Things done here has taken things to the next level with a bow and an IRL aiming arrow that can perceive a LEGO man or a moving target in about ten steps.
Inspired by his wife, who did growing archery, Wighton (who didn’t) wanted to make an automatic bow that could compete on a significant level with a relatively accomplished human being. Although bows have been around for centuries, they are deceptively difficult instruments to master, requiring a lot of strength, precision, and at the very least an intuitive understanding of physics and energy dispersion.
Wighton, who also brought us the basketball hoop that never lets you miss a shot, began with simple aiming software and a relatively basic robotic arm-mounted bow that moved on both its X and Y axes, along with a string that was released automatically at the push of a button. Wighton claims, however, that it amounted to a "shitty, heavy bow."
So Wighton used eight OptiTrack cameras placed around his workshop, which track the location of markers placed on the target and on the front of the bow and grip. While the robot helped Wighton achieve a slightly better aim at stationary targets, he also punched himself in the face with the force of the rope.
Wighton discovered that one of his most important problems was to use a curved bow (the modern version of a standard bow) versus a compound bow (the 3-shaped mechanical bow that the Crysis boy likes to use), which gives you greater mechanical accuracy. Immediately, Wighton's target appeared to be more in tune with the mechanical accuracy of a compound arc, which easily struck stationary targets. Wighton's other problem came down to ancient physics: how to properly track the arc of a moving target and when to release an arrow to connect. After weeks working on the code for his show, Wighton had perfected his shot (of the robot).
It's a sight to behold, as Wighton's bow is mounted on his chest and tied with all sorts of wires. The machinery that works the bow moves along each axis, as it determines the perfect shot in just milliseconds, allowing for an admirably consistent level of accuracy and defeating Wighton's wife in casual competition.
Watch the video for a complete breakdown of Wighton’s work.