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Fujitsu wants to bring AI judging to Tokyo 2020

With the Tokyo 2020 Olympics just months away, one of its most popular disciplines could be set for a major technological upgrade thanks to Fujitsu.

The Japanese technology giant has revealed a partnership with the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) aimed at introducing AI-assisted judging technology, with tests now underway in preparation for possible use at Tokyo 2020.

Fujitsu hopes that its “judging support system” technology could help eliminate possible errors that could be the difference between medal glory and defeat.

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The company revealed more about its technology at the Fujitsu Forum event in Tokyo this week, attended by TechRadar

The system uses 3D laser scanner sensors to capture the gymnasts’ movements in real time, providing two million shots per second on areas such as arm or leg bend angles, angles of elevation and height of particular moves.

This is then compared to a database of existing recognised moves and routines to hopefully provide a more accurate picture of an athlete’s routine for the judges.

(Image credit: Mike Moore)

(Image credit: Mike Moore)

(Image: © Mike Moore)

Fujitsu says there are typically 100 judges per 200 athletes at FIG competitions, so its new system could help cut down on the number needed and reduce possible bias or errors made due to tiredness or simply not spotting a mistake.

The technology is now planned to be deployed at the forthcoming Artistic Gymnastics World Championships, held from October 4th-13th  in Stuttgart, Germany, with further tests planned as Fujtisu aims to get it included at Tokyo 2020.

(Image: © Mike Moore)

Asides from helping judges, Fujitsu says that the technology could also be utilised by the athletes themselves in their training routines – helping them spot areas where they may be falling short in certain moves.

TV viewers or audiences at events could also track athletes at a competition in real-time via a companion app (shown off by Fujitsu at the show) to provide in-depth access to why judges scored a particular routine.

And away from gymnastics, the company showed off how the system could be used to help scoring in other sports too, including trampolining and skateboarding – meaning that it could well be making a splash at further Olympic events.

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