While Chengdu City, home of a major panda breeding research center, prepares to host the 31st FISU World University Games in June, a short video featuring traditional western Chinese sports has recently gone viral on Chinese social media. In particular, a virtual panda in the film created with iFLYTEK’s AI technology gained attention across the country.
In the short film, the AI panda, acting as a Jiaodi (ancient wrestling) competitor, wrestles with a female opponent in a vivid and humorous way.
iFLYTEK has long been a leader in AI virtual image research and development. In 2021, the company launched the Virtual Image Interactive Platform 1.0, where technologies including speech synthesis, speech recognition, natural language understanding, and image understanding were developed and upgraded to enable multi-modal perception, emotion inclusion, and multi-dimensional expression of virtual images.
To create the AI Panda in the promotional video of the Chengdu 2021 FISU World University Games, the iFLYTEK team studied the characteristics and traits of pandas and used its technological prowess to create a virtual version.
Dr. Ye Yuancheng of the iFLYTEK virtual image team said that compared with traditional animation, AI technologies based on big data and a deep learning network can produce more life-like virtual images in a more efficient way. The iFLYTEK team designed humanlike posture and body movements for the AI Panda using a movement data bank while the algorithm included in the AI Panda made its fur look more natural during movements.
With more data and training, virtual images like the AI Panda will become more sophisticated. Based on iFLYTEK AI and semantic interaction technologies, and through Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs) and semantic understanding training, virtual images are expected to “learn” body movements and facial expressions more quickly and achieve more natural interactions with human beings. In this way, “smarter” virtual images can be created.