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[翻译]Technology Report - Olympic Ready? Robot Skiers Compete in South Korea

更新时间:2018/2/15 8:50:39 来源:本站原创 作者:佚名

As the world’s top athletes competed at the PyeongChang Winter Olympics, some robots also showed off their winter sports skills.


A ski race involving robots was held recently at the Welli Hilli Park ski area near Pyeongchang.

最近在平昌附近的威利海利公园度假村(Willi hilli park)的滑雪场举行了一场机器人滑雪比赛。

Eight teams built and programmed the robots to compete in the Ski Robot Challenge for a chance to win a $10,000 prize.


The robots came in different shapes and sizes.


The rules, however, required them to have the basic form of a human. They needed to be able to stand on two “legs,” with joints similar to elbows and knees. They also had to be at least 50 centimeters tall.


In addition, each robot had to have an independent power system and use the same skis and poles that people do. A Facebook page for the competition listed the robot names and described details of how they were built.


Some of the racers looked very human-like, complete with winter clothes covering their mechanical bodies. Others rode down the hill with nothing covering their shiny, high-tech parts. Some racers were tall, others short. Some did not have heads.


The robots - equipped with cameras and sensors - used artificial intelligence, or AI, to move through the Olympic-style race course. The winner was the robot that made it down the hill fastest, with the lowest number crashes or collisions with course obstacles.


Winning that top honor was the TaekwonV robot, built by South Korean robotics company Minirobot. TaekwonV – named after a South Korean film character – skied around five obstacles before finishing the course in 18 seconds.


On the day of the competition, high winds forced some of the Olympic skiing events to be delayed. One member of the winning team, Lee Sok-min, said he was sorry to hear about the Olympic weather problems. But he added, “The robots are doing fine here.”

比赛当天,强风迫使部分奥运滑雪赛事延期。获胜团队成员Lee Sok-min表示,他很遗憾听到冬奥会遇到天气问题,但是他补充说,“机器人做的很棒。”

Videos of the robotic race clearly showed some of the robots having trouble staying up on the skis and navigating the course. But several watchers of the event said they found the race an interesting way to show off some of the latest human-like robots.


“I’m amazed that the robots recognize the flags as they can ski down while avoiding them,” 12-year-old Son Ki-ryong told Reuters.

12岁的Son Ki-ryong对路透社表示:“我很惊讶,这些机器人可以识别出旗帜,并在下滑过程中避过它们。”

The organizer of the race, Kim Dong-Uk, said he hopes the event will be the start of something much bigger. “I think in the future, robots will have their own Winter Games on the sidelines of the Olympics held by humans,” he said.

赛事组织者Kim Dong-uk表示,他希望这场比赛将是一个好的开始。他说:“我认为在未来,机器人将会人类举办的冬奥会场外举办自己的奥运会。”

He added that until then, he will keep holding international events to show off South Korea’s robotic technology to the world.


South Korea is one of several Asian nations heavily investing in robotics, AI and machine learning technology. Major developers include electronics giants Samsung and LG. Japan and Singapore also have growing robotics industries.


But Asia’s largest robotics developer by far is China, which set a goal to become the world leader over the next decade. The goal is part of the government’s “Made in China 2025” plan, which seeks to change many industries with the use of technology.


One of the country’s most active AI developers is Chinese online seller Alibaba. The company recently announced an AI-powered learning tool it developed performed better than human beings in a high-level test of reading comprehension.


I’m Bryan Lynn.

Words in This Story

athlete – n. person who is trained or good at sports

artificial intelligence – n. the ability of a machine to reproduce human behavior

course – n. a path followed by people in a race

obstacle – n. an object standing in the way of something

navigate – v. to find the way to get to a certain place

amaze – v. to surprise and sometimes confuse (someone) very much

comprehension – n. the ability to understand something