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VIDEO

ASSISTANT

REFEREE

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SMT-VAR

SMT-VAR is a configurable video replay system built specifically on FIFA’s foundational requirements of video latency, quality and synchronicity.

Utilizing input and feedback from experienced operators and industry professionals, SMT-VAR allows referees and operators to review any moment quickly, efficiently and accurately from every camera angle. In addition, SMT-VAR combines the FIFA-certified SMT-VOL solution into one product, so operators can easily toggle between video review and offside decisions from a single interface.

 

Since 2021, SMT-VAR has been a FIFA-certified Video Assistant Referee system. Additionally, SMT is excited to be a member of the FIFA Quality Programme Technical Advisory Group for VAR and looks forward to the opportunity to continue evolving the future of technology in football.  

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KEY FEATURES

Robust and intuitive user interface built for operators of any skill level

Support variety of video format types, including super-slo-mo (SSM) and multi-phase cameras

The easily adjustable system integrates with any sport/event

Configurable controls, layouts and settings to suit operator’s preferences

Connection to SMT's OASIS Platform (data management system) organizes all data/video inputs and application configuration settings

Efficient workflow to export clips live during matches or post-match based on defined protocols

Scalable system solution (video servers and clients) to fit any sized production (VAR and VAR Light)

Control SMT-VAR and SMT-VOL from a single application

Easily configurable system to support "simulator environment" for referee and operator training sessions

OUR SOLUTION

SMT-VAR is comprised of three core SMT technologies:

TANDEM

SPR VIDEO SERVER

KALEIDOSCOPE

VIDEO MOSAIC CLIENT

OASIS PLATFORM

DATA MANAGEMENT SYSTEM

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ADDITIONAL SERVICES

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RIBS

REAL-TIME INSTRUMENTED

BALL SYNCHRONIZATION MODULE

CAPS

COMPUTER AUTOMATED

POINT SELECTION MODULE

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RTA

REFEREE TRAINING &

ANALYSIS MODULE

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SMT

TANDEM

A simultaneous playback and record video server, SMT-Tandem functions as the engine that drives all video in SMT-VAR. All incoming video sources route through SMT-Tandem for processing before outputting the video to client machines.

SMT-Tandem machines can be configured to handle up to (16) 1080i50 inputs on a single video server. A single machine can be configured to handle physical SDI and/or Internet Protocol (IP) cameras sources. SMT-Tandem supports a variety of video input formats, including but not limited to interlaced, progressive, super slo-mo and IP.

SMT-Tandem’s user interface provides a variety of system status checks, configuration options, and monitoring information so that users can confirm the video flow is operating as intended. All inputs are recorded and stored locally on the system for post-event accessibility.

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SMT-Tandem utilizes “channels” as a destination directory for recording inputs. Each input maps to a channel for recording. The output is loaded from each channel and continuously chases live video.

 

The output video to client machines can have a configurable delay adhering to specific protocols and has the flexibility to output as SDI or streaming video. Streaming the video between video server and client machine(s) allows greater flexibility for supporting other client applications using the same video server(s).

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Kaleidoscope
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SMT

KALEIDOSCOPE

SMT-Kaleidoscope is the front-end, video tile display that combines all video outputs from SMT-Tandem(s) and makes each video source available to view simultaneously in a tiled mosaic. In a VAR system, the Replay Operator will run an instance of the application and be able to quickly toggle between VAR and VOL modes as well as publish tiles to the VAR Monitor, Referee Revision Area (RRA) and Host Broadcaster (HB) for reviewing.

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INCIDENTS TAB

Growing list of bookmarked timecodes for quick recall of potential reviews with editable incident names and color coded based on which user role marked each Incident.

Operator controls in SMT-Kaleidoscope are available through a library of hotkeys and/or controller:

Playback Controls

  • Play/Pause

  • Jog/Shuttle at variety of speeds

  • Frame-by-frame video stepping

  • Video looping

  • Single-button go-to-live retrieves latest video during live event

  • Paired with the JLCooper Slo-Mo Elite controller, a professional-grade replay device, for expanded playback controls including a speed adjust T-bar

Configurable Layouts

  • Preset standard layouts for a variety of sources

  • Layouts can be selected from preset list (2x2, 3x3, 4x4, etc.)

  • Custom layouts can be built and saved for easy recall based on operator preferences

Tile Zooming

  • Allows closer look at the action

  • Zoom percentage indicator

  • Reset button quickly restores the tiles back to default state

  • VAR touchscreen allows pinch to zoom, double tap to publish, and general touch events

Incident Marking

  • Single-button marking of potential reviewable incidents during a match

  • Build an organized library of incidents, easily accessible through the Incident List module

  • Each incident gets assigned a starting timecode; operators can mark an end timecode and loop during review

  • Incident list color-coded by user role to quickly determine if incident marked by the RO, VAR or AVAR

  • Assign an incident type (goal, red card, yellow card, offside) to marked incidents for additional filter parameters

  • Incident List grows indefinitely as event progresses, sorting by most recent

  • Incidents can be manually renamed and dynamically deleted if deemed not critical

  • All incident information saved to OASIS and searchable for auditing and analysis 

Custom Input Labels

  • Every input assigned a label

  • Operators can rename labels

OASIS

INPUTS TAB

List of video inputs used to dynamically rename and indicate whether input is SMT-VOL enabled

LAYOUTS TAB

Preset list of standard video tile layout options and user created custom video tile layouts

VOL TAB

Configuration settings that help to determine offside decisions

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SMT

OASIS

SMT’s 38 years of experience has led to the creation of a powerful organizing philosophy called OASIS and a powerful data and video management system called the OASIS Platform (Organization of Asynchronous Sports Information Subsystems).

 

OASIS as an organizing philosophy views the data landscape of a sports league in three layers:

 

Level 0       All subsystems that create data or video

Level 1       The central hub that absorbs, collates, synchronizes, organizes, expands, and

distributes all Level 1 data via push and query APIs

Level 2       All subsystems that consume, present, or use the data

 

As a product, the OASIS Platform is a highly integrated, multi-venue, time-synchronized, multilevel, data/video management system that SMT architected, designed and created to provide professional sports leagues with a centrally controlled and league-controlled platform to organize, maintain, administer, and manage all phases of the league’s data creation, data distribution, data visualization, and data monetization.

 

Using SMT defined protocols, SMT-VAR utilizes OASIS for user management, organization of events & sessionIDs, reviewing incident playlists and exporting of post-event clips, all within a web app dashboard called SMT-VAR Manager. This online dashboard makes it easy for league administrators to monitor the status of events and protocols. The export tool allows users to export incidents in a variety of formats, including all available cameras, configurable destination paths and the addition of pre/post roll time to each exported clip.

 

Additionally, OASIS is fundamental to the integration and organization of player-tracking data to use in SMT-VOL mode.

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SMT

REFEREE TRAINING & ANALYSIS MODULE (RTA)

The RTA module is a credential-controlled Web Browser application that leverages SMT’s proprietary OASIS Platform to call-up and present SMT-VAR/VOL generated video clips that have been synchronized to key match incidents of interest to referees.  

  

The RTA Module allows the user to query, organize, and view match incidents for the purpose of training referees and confidentially/privately analyzing referee performance.   

  

The RTA Module provides the user with the ability to:  

  1. Sort and filter video clips using a variety of data keys and variable attributes;

  2. Create custom playlists that are shareable with authenticated users;  

  3. Annotate video clips with notes and commentary for peer review; and,   

  4. Compare statistics and attributes between and among multiple referees to identify trends.  

  

The RTA module provides a rich and secure presentation of referee-related data and video that allows aggregated statistics for each referee to be maintained and presented.  

  

The RTA Module accesses video of match incidents that have been posted to SMT’s OASIS Platform by VAR Operators using the bespoke Export Tool within the SMT VAR-Manager system.   

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FILTER & PLAYTEST QUERY

Full suite of Filter Parameters drive the Playlist module that shows all available Incidents to view based on the Filters. 

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EXPANDED VIDEO PLAYER

Collapse the Filter and Playlist options to expand the video player with various playback controls, volume meter, and selectable cameras.

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DETAILED PLAYTEST WINDOW

Each Incident in the Playlist module allows user to expand and collapse detailed data associated to that Incident while viewing video and adding to a shareable playlist. 

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REAL-TIME INSTRUMENTED BALL SYNCHRONIZATION MODULE (RIBS)

The RIBS Module leverages SMT’s proprietary OASIS Platform to integrate, synchronize, and incorporate real-time ball impact detection data with match video for use within the SMT VAR-VOL system.  

  

The RIBS Module allows the SMT OASIS Platform to record ball kick events, ball touch events, and ball movement events, within the video-synchronized timeline of the game.  

  

The RIBS Module improves the efficiency of the VAR operation, contributes vital information to the officiating process, and produces data points to enhance fan appreciation of game play. 

  

VAR Operation Efficiency: With ball kick events recorded in the timeline, the VAR Operator can “jump” from discrete kick event to discrete kick event with the touch of a button on the User Interface rather than having to “shuttle” video backward and forward in an effort to determine the exact video frame that contains the “moment of ball impact”.   The task of searching for the proper video frame of ball impact reduces to simply selecting the relevant kick from among the set of automatically determined discrete kick events. This significantly reduces the time it takes to reach an Off-Side decision.  

  

Game Officiating: With ball touch events recorded in the timeline, the VAR Operator can definitively know when and if a ball is touched or not when reviewing video.  No longer is the VAR Operator inferring ball touch by tediously searching for implied ball movement from multiple camera angles.  Any impact on the ball at any given moment is recorded for each video frame.  The system effectively “tells” the VAR Operator if the ball has been touched, or not, at any given moment.  This is especially useful for hand ball determinations, and “last touched by” determinations for out of bounds possession.  

  

Game Play Storytelling: With ball movement events recorded in the timeline, the SMT OASIS Platform can make ball parameter data points (e.g., spin rate, speed of shot, etc.) available for display to fans in a variety of ways; for example, in-stadium video board displays, website and digital displays, and television broadcast and graphics displays.  This capability enhances match storytelling and analysis and increases fan engagement with the match. 

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RIBS SYSTEM LAYOUT

An example of the lightweight system installation with minimal infrastructure. 

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SMT

COMPUTER AUTOMATED POINT SELECTION MODULE (CAPS)

The CAPS Module uses spatial analysis to auto-select the most “offside-relevant” body point for each player that has been manually identified as relevant to the offside decision by the VAR Operator.    

  

The CAPS Module chooses the most “offside-relevant” body point for each identified player, from the set of body points available for that player as generated from the SMT A/I Skeletal Tracking Engine.  

  

The CAPS Module automatically selects and then returns to the SMT VAR-VOL System, the [ X, Y, Z ] location of the “offside-relevant” body point for each identified player.  

  

The SMT VAR-VOL System: 

  1. draws a perpendicular line from the [ X,Y,Z ] location of the offside-relevant body point of the Attacking Player to a point on the surface of the pitch; and,  

  2. draws a line (colored uniquely for Attacking players) on the surface of the pitch parallel to the end line that intersects with the point of the surface of the pitch.  

  3. draws a perpendicular line from the [ X,Y,Z ] location of the offside-relevant body point of the Defending Player to a point on the surface of the pitch; and,  

  4. draws a line (colored uniquely for Defending players) on the surface of the pitch parallel to the end line that intersects with the point of the surface of the pitch.  

  5. Uses spatial analysis to indicate whether the Attacking Player is Offside or Not Offside. 

  

The CAPS Module auto-selection capability offers two (2) significant benefits to the operation of the overall SMT VAR-VOL System: 

 

  1. Significantly reduces the processing time required to determine if a player is offside or not; and,  

  2. Guarantees that the selection of the offside-relevant body point is consistent and objective, regardless of which VAR Operator is assigned to a match.   

Example of SMT-VOL utilizing CAPS to automate the 'offside-relevant' body point and apply across multiple cameras.

VAR COMPONENTS

  • SMT-Tandem Video Server

    • 2RU chassis (downsize to 1RU chassis for smaller productions)

    • Record up to 16 1080i50 inputs on a single server

    • Embedded SSD storage for up to eight disks

    • Windows OS

    • Dual SDI I/O card

  • SMT-Kaleidoscope

    • 2RU chassis

    • Windows OS

    • SDI I/O card

  • Compact External Playback Controller

    • Professional design

    • Tri-color LED backlit buttons

    • High-res T-Bar playback speed mechanism

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