Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Olympic Legacy and Future?

What do you do once the Olympics is over? For most of us it’s a period of adjustment from wall to wall sport back to normal life, but what about the technology that was used to support the event? Does it merely return to the sponsors, or get sold off cheap, or even donated to the needy?

Acer plans dispose of some 500 "Olympic" laptops to school children in North East London and the remaining 15,900 computers they used in London 2012 will be sent to schools around the UK. The London laptops will be given out in partnership with the e-Learning Foundation charity  to eight local primary schools in the "Olympic boroughs". A number will also go to Great Ormond Street Children's hospital, which we all remember featured in Danny Boyle’s opening ceremony.

The PCs that were used for planning travel to supporting broadcaster will first be wiped and refurbed by Acer. Acer will then sell them to the schools at 17% of list with a years guarantee. Special "Used in the Olympics" stickers will remain on them for the kids to enjoy.

So the PCs will be one of the first legacy deals from the London Olympics. 

But what about Rio and 2020?

Olympic and Paralympic IT partner,  Atos have produced a report, ‘ Ascent at London 2012: A vision for sport and technology’ . This far reaching vision aims to prepare  the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and International Paralympic Committee (IPC) for the impact of technology at the 2020 Olympics and future.

It predicts that one of the greatest innovations will be the potential use of holograms at live events. This could even pitch previous Olympians against the best on the day.
Technology is already starting to impact how we watch sport such as Formula 1 and holograms of dead musicians have even appeared at music concerts. Information is also key to understanding events and performance and feeding this to the individual in a customised form offers much to engage even further with the paying audience. The audience could benefit also from being able to access behind the scenes footage, different camera shots , all fed on demand and over a local network service in the stadium.

Sport like space, medicine and warfare is now starting to push technology into areas we could have only dreamt of previously. We wondered whether the 2020 games legacy will not be a computer but a hologram teacher in the local schools!

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