China emphasizing high-tech capability at Games

The Yomiuri Shimbun
The opening ceremony of the Beijing Winter Olympics is held with the extensive use of high-tech visual elements on Feb. 4.

BEIJING — China is putting a lot of effort into promoting its advanced technologies at the Beijing Winter Olympics. The country is working hard to create an image of itself as a “great nation in science and technology” by showcasing its high-definition video and other technologies.

BOE Technology Group Co., a leading Chinese panel manufacturer, provided technical support for the impressive presentation of the Games’ opening ceremony on Feb. 4.

On the grounds of the Beijing National Stadium, the venue of the event, 40,000 LED displays were spread out to create the “world’s largest” high-definition screen, with an area of more than 10,000 square meters.

The 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics drew attention with a “mass game” performed by 15,000 people, but China put a lid on its long-favored human-wave tactics this time, and replaced people with high technology.

The Yomiuri Shimbun
A percussion performance is seen at the opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics.

China also showed off its artificial intelligence and environmental technologies.

During a Feb. 8-9 press tour, domestic and foreign journalists were taken to Beijing Soundal Technology Co., a start-up AI company that provides an epidemic prevention system for the Games, and Xinjiang Goldwind Science & Technology Co., which cooperates with the Olympics in wind power generation. Wu Kai, vice president of Xinjiang Goldwind, said, “Our competitive edge is technological innovation.”

China is using the Olympics as a “high-tech exhibition” because of the inevitable decline in the competitiveness of labor-intensive industries amid rising wages and the declining birthrate. In order to maintain stable economic growth, it has become essential to strengthen scientific and technological capabilities, and develop products globally.