The World’s First AI Ski Instructor

AI is penetrating all pores of the world – from managing flights to risk management on gambling sites (even though you should probably stick to instead of trying to tackle an AI), this new technlogy promises some interesting future applications.

Carv, the world’s first AI Ski Instructor, fits into your boots. Yeah, you heard that right, it’s not some Skynet supercomputer that requires a big server room to run, you just have to put two shoe inserts in your boots, attach the small box, and start skiing.

It requires two things — a smartphone with headphones and the big Skynet-like server room back in Frankfurt. Made by the Motion Metrics, a Canadian Start-up, this new Ski Instructor will help turn an average skier into a beast on the slopes. Sadly, it can’t teach complete beginners the basics, so you’ll still need your trusty skiing coach.

How Does It Work?

Carv has 48 pressure sensors in each shoe insert that can tell which direction you’re heading to. The sensors monitor the movement of your smartphone and detect whether you are correctly positioned. Each insert contains a gyroscope, an electronic compass and an accelerometer that communicate with your smartphone via Bluetooth.

Carv collects all the data your body movement provides, and then sends this data to the server in Frankfurt. The server sends calculations back to Carv that tells you what you need to improve. A soft-spoken female voice gently encourages you to improve and tells you what mistakes you have made.

You can do the drills by following the instructions from Carv, or use the Free-Ski mode, where Carv will only speak after the session and provide useful tips. You can also share how good you were on social media and evoke the envy of lesser-skilled skiers.

What Do the Professionals Think?

The development of this ski instructor has included the input of many professional skiers. Members of the US Ski Team and the Professional Ski Instructors of America Association were very open to the idea and helped the development team out.

Professionals have also extensively skied with the system put in and attached to their boots, and their great performance can be viewed as a benchmark for what regular people should strive to attain. One has to ask, “why would you greenlight a machine meant to replace you?” A good answer is: having Carv out there might increase skiing popularity and get more people on the slopes, meaning more business for both our land-based instructors and our online instructor.

Will It Replace Real Coaches?

It certainly can’t replace real coaches. As we mentioned before, Carv is made for intermediate skiers, so it can’t teach the beginners the basics that will shape their entire skiing future. If you are new to skiing, it’s much better to have real coaches around you until you can get the hang of everything.

However, Carv has some serious benefits over real instructors. Instructor’s classes are valuable and expensive, even going into hundreds of dollars per day, while Carv is a one-time investment of $299. Every slope you ski is memorized back in Frankfurt, so Carv can tremendously help your skiing and single out your mistakes.