ORLANDO, FLORIDA | It has become a ubiquitous element of the game, its trajectory, literally and figuratively, mesmerizing to watch both on a screen and within the golf industry.
For a time Toptracer – originally called Protracer prior to the entertainment company Topgolf purchasing the technology in May 2016 – was purely a curiosity. A Swedish entrepreneur, Daniel Forsgren, had quit his IT job in 2003 and spent several years building a prototype of an innovation that would revolutionize the way golf is consumed. His system utilized a special camera with a custom-built sensor, both of which were connected to a computer that searched for the ball and continually identified it in flight.
Those who first saw the string of ribbon thrown across their television screens shortly after Toptracer officially launched in 2006 felt like they were witnessing magic. The viewer went from waiting for the ball to land, without much context at all as to where it was headed, to actively witnessing the flight relative to the target. Suddenly shot s...
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