Could we one day see robots compete in their own winter games?

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Tuesday, February 13, 2018 – 2:58pm

While the world’s elite snow athletes battle for medals at the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics, just a couple of hours away from the Olympic village there was another major competition taking place in South Korea. 

Called the ‘Edge of Robot: Ski Robot Challenge’, the event was a cross between Short Circuit and Ski Sunday and was held yesterday at the Welli Hilli ski resort in Hoengseong, Gangwon Province.

Reuters reports that eight teams were competing for a $ 10,000 (£7,200) prize for creating the best skiing robot. Even though they were only taking on gentle slopes compared to their human Olympic rivals, the robots did at least look the part. Dressed in ski jackets and trousers, the only item missing was the ski helmets.

Hosted by South Korea’s ministry of trade, industry and energy, the world’s first robot ski tournament is hoped to spur interest in robots and promote research and development in robotics.

Organiser Kim Dong-uk predicts big things for robots in winter sports. He said: “I think in the future robots will have their own winter games on the sidelines of the Olympics held by humans.”

 

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