Get to know the man behind Trace, a device that tracks your stats and edits your GoPro footage

Get to know the man behind Trace, a device that tracks your stats and edits your GoPro footage

David Lokshin, co-founder of the action sports tracking device dubbed Trace has always been a numbers and statistics guy. With a degree in applied mathematics from Harvard University and a deep interest for action sports, Lokshin’s creation of Trace could not paint a clearer image of his talents and passions.

For those of you that aren’t familiar with the concept, Trace tracks a number of interesting statistics as you tear up the mountain. From GPS location, to calories burned, speed, distance traveled, airtime, vertical feet and beyond, the small black device can do it all. Today, Trace has revealed its latest incredible capability, automatic editing. We caught up with Lokshin to get the scoop on Trace, how athletes utilize it and its latest functions. Get all of the information in the Q&A below.


Image provided by Trace

The Q&A…

Give us a bit of background on the inspiration for developing Trace and how the idea came to fruition.

I grew up skiing, skating and surfing and this is a product I always wanted as a kid. If you played little league [baseball] you knew your batting average; if you played soccer you knew how many shots on goal you had in a game; even in a sport like water polo you have stat-lines. With skiing, snowboarding and surfing I had no idea if I was getting better or not, or even how many runs I had done. You forget how many you had done by the time it’s the afternoon.

So, [four years ago] we created this portal for skiers, you had to use a big blocky device that we gave you—it was like two pounds. People told their friends about it and word of it just kept spreading. We didn’t expect it to be this big but just created something we wanted and rolled with it.

How did Trace lure someone like Olympic gold medalist Joss Christensen to be part of its team?

Joss uses it for a number of reasons. He has this story he tells where last year at X Games, because the jumps were smaller than at [the US Grand Prix in] Park City, he didn’t know if he could pull a triple. Using Trace he went off the jumps, looked at his stats and realized he was getting the same amount of airtime and distance as in Park City. He knew that was enough airtime for a triple and he was the only one to do a switch triple at X Games. So, he uses it for training to get better, and dial in tricks.

The other aspect is that he takes a ton of GoPro footage. With GoPro, everyone wants high quality clips but it takes a lot of editing to achieve that. Trace edits the footage for you; it tells you the best parts of your footage, automatically color corrects it and put stats on top of it to show people all of your information from the session. What we always say about our ambassadors is that we want people who use the product and are stoked on it. Even before we started working together, Joss was already using Trace to help boost performance.

Where did the inspiration to integrate GoPro into the product and the app come from?

It was actually an idea that the athletes gave us. We were developing our jump algorithm and athletes were putting cameras on their poles, and they were sending us footage to use so that we could fine tune our stuff. We built a prototype to help identify, say, where the big jump in your video occurred. And the athletes responded and said, “can you do this but just edit out this clip for me for use on Instagram?” So we built out a system to do just that. We’ve now processed over 10,000 GoPro videos, so it was an idea born out of necessity: We were using the product and trying to find all of these moments in the GoPro footage and it was super hard to do. So we just built software around it.

What’s your background, away from action sports?

My background isn’t that impressive. My dad is my co-founder and he worked for NASA and then was the Chief Technology Officer for Magellan Navigation, the company that created the first consumer GPS. His tech background is super legit.

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For more on the latest information from Trace, see the press release provided below.

Press Release:

Take the hassle out of video editing with Trace Video, the desktop app for Mac that automatically edits ski, snowboard and surf footage by using performance-generated metrics to separate the action from the mundane moments. Simply drag raw files into the Trace Video app and Trace will clip the highlights, color-correct the footage by adding contrast, speed and stability and overlay statistics including momentum, distance and location.

Prior to filming, sync Trace to any Wi-Fi connectable camera and Trace Video will automatically color-correct the footage with enhanced lighting, timing and stability. By overlaying stats such as speed, distance and time, users are able to see their results and measure their performance. Within seconds of processing, Trace Video saves clips its user’s hard drive, or allows the footage to be shared on social media with the simple tap of a button.

“The biggest pain-point with video is finding what’s relevant and editing it,” says Trace Co-Founder, David Lokshin. “Everyone who buys a GoPro wants that particular look, but most GoPros sit on the shelf since editing is so hard. Trace gets you that GoPro look without having to lift a finger.”

Trace Video has already created more than 14,000 edits to date and is the only auto-editing software trusted by top competitors including professional surfers Jordy Smith and Kalani Robb and Freeskiing Olympic Gold Medalist, Joss Christensen. For athletes, video is one of the most essential tools for improvement. Trace Video allows athletes to spend less time editing and more time reviewing footage in order to progress.

In addition to its auto-editing features, Trace accurately measures GPS, calories burned, airtime, distance height, number of airs, number of runs and more. For surfers, Trace will measure number of waves, length of ride, number of turns, turn degree, turn roll angle, distance paddled and time. For ski, it highlights vertical, distance, slope time, chairlift time and rest time.

To learn more about Trace Video check out the video demonstration here.

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