Drone Race @ Sendai No. 2

The Japan National Qualifier for the International Drone Race Tournament to be held in Seoul.
It was held at XEBIO ARENA in Sendai.
Top men’s and women’s pilots from overseas also participated.

FPV race.
The athletes are called pilots.
They control their drones with real time video sent from attached cameras to an HMD and compete for time.
With skill, these can be piloted at speeds of over 100 km h.
The fuselage has a maximum length of 330mm, there are 3 6 inch propellers, and radio waves are used for radio control.

President Kodera of the Japan Drone Race Association (JDRA), which organized the event, said, “it is a new sport.”
Using radio waves to fly aircraft with digital video. It is IT, VR and IoT.

Sendai City will tackle drone and automated driving as a National Strategy Special Zone.
This is an event realized through the cooperation of local government with private sponsors such as NTT Docomo and Fujitsu.

According to President Kodera, there are two tasks.
First, radio waves.
In Japan, it is necessary to apply for an amateur wireless radio license and file a station opening application, but neither of these are necessary in South Korea or China, so it raises difficulties for Japan in holding an international tournament.

The other is funding.
Guaranteeing the income of pilots. This is a global challenge. In order to foster and maintain competent operators with a longing to be a part of this world, having a mechanism for the flow of money is a prerequisite. I want to commercialize it, with live events and a distribution system.

Everything is exactly like the way that e-sports faces this issue. It is a matter of coordination among systems involved and businessization.
As drones and automation progress, and the programming advances as well, situations where drones are useful for the public interest such as surveillance and disaster prevention will increase. But the skill of human pilots will continue to be questioned. I think that the necessity of drone training will increase.


Open Data VLED Unofficial Awards

Open Data VLED Unofficial Awards. We unofficially recognize the open data activities of various entities. This will be the 5th time the awards have been held.

It has become common knowledge in the government that AI and IoT are pushes us forward towards a Fourth Industrial Revolution, where the decisive competitive factor is data itself. The most important issue now is how to create an environment where big data can be utilized.

Among the entities involved, many of those honored this time were very different than those given awards up to now.

Grand Award
Basic Act on the Advancement of Public and Private Sector Data Utilization
By Various lawmakers
Judges’ Commentary: This law is an engine to accelerate value creation through open data and big data. An important milestone has been achieved. It is a strong motivator for promoting open data to society. I expect that in the future, specific measures will come into being one after another based on this law.

Excellence Awards (4 winners)
Dealing with “MEXT’s Excel Problems”
By Taro Kono, Member of the House of Representatives
Judges’ Commentary: Actions by lawmakers who overcame waste as required for Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research at MEXT. The problem of reports of Japan’s declining productivity have for a long time attacked politicians’ situations. Providing easy-to-use data is an inevitable task, and we would like to point out where it's being done in other fields in the future.

Corporation Number Publication Site
By National Tax Agency, METI
Judges’ Commentary: The management of ID code systems is the very essence of the role of a public agency, and this site is a model for how this service can be carried out in a machine-readable from.

NDB (Receipt information/Specific medical exam information database)
By Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare
Judges’ Commentary: The rich individuality of municipalities is a big appeal of Japan. By analyzing prefecture data on injuries and the prevalence of diseases, we are likely to discover new treasures and issues in the regions.

Cross-sectional search of prefectural assembly parliamentary minutes
By Bitlet
Judges’ Commentary: An example of good utilization of open data; the minutes of local councils.

Sponsor Award
CiP Council Award
Louvain Cup Final (360° free viewpoint video demonstration experiment)
By Japan Professional Football League, Canon
Review: Shows new possibilities in sports spectatorship, with applications expected for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.

Fusion Institute Award
Publication of snowplow information by web API
By Aizu, Wakamatsu City, Toyota IT Development Center
Review: Reacting to the needs of snowy areas, the data holder side and service developer side successfully collaborated to present a new service model.

New Media Risk Association Award
World Data Viz Challenge
By Kobe City
Review: An innovative data utilization workshop held in collaboration with overseas sister cities, we can expect a synergistic effect with other activities such as data academies in Kobe City as well as other areas. This is a model for other cities to follow.

My comments.

The first year, Sabae City won the Grand Prize of the Unofficial Awards. Regional coalitions won the second year. The third year was Tokyo Metro, a public utility company. The fourth year was the set of Shizuoka City and Toyota, a municipality and a private company. This time, the legislature was selected, and parliamentarians also won Excellence Awards.
Open data is showing that it is spreading beyond assumptions. With legislature and the backing of the Diet, it is entering a new phase. Let’s continue to advance on the path of becoming an open data power country with government/industry/academic collaboration.

I should offer congratulations to all of the winners, but since these have been awarded at our own discretion, I’d like to thank you all for receiving these awards.