Motion tracking on a flat surface outdoors

I play a lot of sports outdoors and would love if I could record video easily. I was thinking of hooking my tripod up to a motor to pan it side to side. My cameras zoom functions and still capture can also be controlled with a cheap little remote so I connected a IR transmitter to my board and can now control the zoom and pan of my camera which is perfect, but now I want it to get done automatically. I want it to pan to keep me in frame, and zoom when I get a little bit to far away, so I need something to track movement on an X Y plane (up to like 20-30 feet). Any ideas? I wanted to use a little infrared transmitter on like a bracelet or something but would that get totally drowned out in the sun? And if that would work, what IR transmitter and receiver would you recommend for something like this?

This sort of thing comes up regularly. There has been no simple solution so far.

Are you going to be the only person in the field of view?
Will you be moving quickly or slowly?


Only person and yeah I'll be moving pretty slowly. Right now I just want to be able to monitor my shot from anywhere on a basketball court without having to move the camera manually

My only not-very-practical thought is to have a bright light on your head (could be infra-red) so it could be seen no matter what you are doing.

At the camera have an Arduino with a servo that sweeps a detector with a photo-diode at the bottom of a tube to narrow its field of view. When the light is detected the servo would be pointing at the light. This would not have any distance measurement.

Another possibility would be to have another fixed camera with a wide field of view and image detection software (which would require a PC or an RaspberryPi). Having it on the ceiling looking down would be best.

There is an expensive commercial system called Posyx - but I don't know how it works or whether it would be suitable.


A very similar question was asked last week I think. A teacher wanted to be tracked around a classroom with something working out the direction of travel.

The conclusion then was some form of hat, either with sensors\lights on it or tracked by a camera from above.

The problem with any form of sensor mounted on an object that is moving is that the very movement causes the sensor to be shielded from some of the 'detectors' be they light, sound or RF, which has a very significant effect on attempts at localisation.

This type of localisation is often asked about in here, if there was a practical and low cost solution, you would have expected it to have been found years ago, there would be heaps of tutorials on the subject and you would be able to buy the bits ready made on eBay, or find them built into your phone.

(please dont mention Bluetooth localisation)