At CES 2019, Intel and Alibaba announced the new collaboration to develop AI-powered 3D athlete tracking technology that is aimed to be deployed at the Olympic Games 2020.
The technology is based on current and upcoming Intel hardware optimized for Alibaba’s cloud computing platform.
3D Athlete Tracking is built using a cutting-edge deep learning application that extracts 3D forms of athletes in training or competition. Multiple standard video cameras are used to create a 3D mesh that enables coaches and trainers to retrieve complex real-time biomechanical data. The 3D mesh is used for analyzing performance and introduce new training enhancements by the coaches.
According to Intel, the technology leverages advanced pose modeling techniques and other AI algorithms designed to analyze the biomechanics of an athlete’s movements. The performance is captured with regular video cameras, the AI algorithm is applied with a heavy dose of computing power, and a digital model of the performance is created that can be analyzed in different ways.
The technology will be utilized at Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 to provide athletes with new training data and analysis and provide fans with an insight into how world-class athletes perform and compare against one another.
This is not the first time Intel and Alibaba partnered together. In November 2018, Alibaba deployed Intel’s latest processor and memory technology to help power the 11.11 Alibaba Global Shopping Festival. The festival created a record by generating $30.8 billions of gross merchandise volume in transactions within 24 hours, which has exceeded both Black Friday and Cyber Monday in popularity and sales.
Alibaba’s highly interactive and data-intensive applications require the infrastructure to keep large amounts of hot accessible data in the memory cache to achieve the desired throughput and deliver a smooth and responsive user experience, especially during peak hours of the Alibaba Global Shopping Festival. According to Intel, the large capacity of Intel Optane DC persistent memory allowed more data to be stored closer to the processor, allowing for significantly higher infrastructure efficiency and lower total cost of ownership.
In September 2018, Intel and Alibaba announced the launch of Joint Edge Computing Platform, an initiative to accelerate edge computing development. Joint Edge Computing Platform allows enterprises to develop customizable device-to-cloud IoT solutions for different edge computing scenarios, including industrial manufacturing, smart building, and smart community, among others. It is an open architecture that integrates Intel software, hardware and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies with Alibaba Cloud’s latest IoT products.
Alibaba is partnering with Intel to compete with other hyperscale infrastructure providers such as Amazon, Microsoft, IBM and Google who are using hardware accelerators to deliver unmatched performance for running modern workloads.