Japanese engineer Jun Rekimoto has created a ball that can hover and fly, similar to the Quidditch snitch in Harry Potter’s world.
Reikmoto created the HoverBall by embedding a small quadcopter within a flexible, spherical frame. This allows it to hang in the air, glide or even dodge around players. The system would allow game designers to program the ball to react in different ways to a traditional ball and could even steer itself away from star players to even up teams.
The HoverBall, which is 90 mm across and has a hover time of five minutes, has the possibility of changing the “vocabulary” of ball games. “With this technology, physical dynamics of a ball can be re-programmed by sports designers, and new ball-playing vocabularies such as hovering, anti-gravity, proximity or remote manipulation, can be introduced to extend the way people interact with balls,” says Reikmoto.