Every century has 9 days where the day and month are square roots of the year – and they can be celebrated anywhere irrespective of whether your preference is writing day or month first.
But this year also coincides with something only a part of the world enjoys – it is Opening Day for US Major League Baseball. The sport continues to adopt technology in all aspects.
USA Today writes about Trackman, the pitch-tracking radar technology employed by MLB’s Statcast. “Before, you idolized guys because they throw like you, or you like the way they pitch, but now you can actually find guys that you think you kind of relate to — arm-angle wise and whatnot — and try to recreate pitches that they’ve mastered. There’s just more understanding of how to throw it, where I need to throw it in my delivery, where I need to throw it in my motion, and how the hitter needs to perceive it so it’s effective.”
Sporttechie writes about Smart Bat which houses “a sensor in a 3x3cm cavity found in the base of the bat, and will be easily removable for charging. With this development, Trout and his team will be able to reflect post-game on his bat speed, time-to-impact, hand speed and attack angle through a 3D swing visualization and various stats (see some below)
With golf club head speeds well into triple digits, aerodynamics is a discipline Callaway has studied for years. For its latest driver, the XR16, the company sought a fresh approach to moving through the air. So they called Boeing, which knows aerodynamics pretty well and surely counts a few golfers among its legions.
"The objective," says Evan Gibbs, Callaway's research and development chief, "was to have Boeing come in and critique Callaway's analytical methods and results, assess our baseline aerodynamic performance to date, evaluate different flow tripping options, and ultimately provide some guidelines for a new design feature on the crown of our upcoming XR16 driver."
“For the 2016 March Madness tournament, Microsoft Bing and NCAA are partnering up once again to bring fans their smarter bracket, powered by Bing Predicts.
The Bing Predictor tool is the foundation for the smarter bracket which has been used to pick winners for popular events such as the Oscars and Grammy awards.”
“Looking under the hood at the engine driving the Predictor tool, a user would find intelligent machine learning technology that pulls in consumer-oriented data, such as search data and social media activity, to “find signals that correlate how people will vote. This kind of information is very valuable in terms of driving signals that might not be easily available to the general public,” Sun said.””
Over the past two years, Under Armour has spent close to $1 billion buying and investing in three leading makers of activity- and diet-tracking mobile apps. By doing so, the company has amassed the world's largest digital health-and-fitness community, with 150 million users. Plank envisions all of those users, and their metrics, as a big data engine to drive everything from product development to merchandising to marketing.
Today, Under Armour has 13,500 employees around the world and nearly $4 billion in revenue. But Plank is still every bit the entrepreneur, chasing audacious dreams--chief among them overtaking Nike as the world's largest sportswear maker. Under Armour leapfrogged the longtime number two, Adidas, in the U.S. sportswear market in 2014, but worldwide it's still third. And Nike remains far larger, with more than $30 billion in revenue in 2015 Which is part of why Plank wants to move so aggressively. Nike has about a fifth as many users on its Nike+ platform as Under Armour does on its apps, and in 2014 the shoe giant shut down its FuelBand fitness-tracker business.
First, find pristine slopes in the craggy, sylvan backcountry of British Columbia and Alaska. Then, figure out how to get 10,000 pounds of equipment—4,000-watt lights the size of washing machines, generators to power them, scaffolding, wire and cable—up peaks higher than 7,000 feet. Spend months calculating wattage and beam diameters, weights and fuel consumption, distances and topography. Hire skilled gaffers and grips. Enlist a cadre of elite athletes. Put battery packs in their pockets, zip them into light suits, and strap LED-spangled packs on their backs. Turn the camera on. Hope for the best.
“In 2016, people drove cars; in 2066, cars drive people. What we now call reality, they called virtual reality. In ’16, earthbound people aspired to see the wonders of Mars; last night, Mars-bound people longed for the wonders back on Earth, as the pioneering first generation of NASA and SpaceX colonists lamented the 14-minute broadcast delay of Super Bowl 100, played 140 million miles away in a desert landscape stranger than any on the Red Planet.
For its centennial Super Bowl, the NFL returned to its favorite host city, Las Vegas, which first staged the title game 45 years ago. Super Bowl LV shared its initials with Las Vegas but also with Louis Vuitton, the luxury brand that paid handsomely to cover game balls in its handbag leather, embossed with its famous logo.”
From Super Bowl City, a free fan village near San Francisco's downtown waterfront, to NFL Experience, an interactive theme park at Moscone Center, fans, the NFL and — possibly — future Olympics organizers will see how a sports championship can use technology to boost the 'wow' experience for these big ticket events.
The game's venue, Levi's Stadium, home of the tech-influenced San Francisco 49ers, is the league's most technically-advanced, according to NFL spokesman Alex Riethmiller.
There, an app designed for the stadium by start-up VenueNext, which leverages Oracle's point-of-sales technology for mobile ordering, will let fans order food, drink and merchandise from their seats. VenueNext's smartphone app handles everything from parking to in-seat food delivery and instant replays at Levi's. For the Super Bowl, it has added a celebrity cam, Super Bowl commercials and express pickup of merchandise.
As football season winds down and basketball season heats up, excellent article in Popular Mechanics about the ladies on the sidelines who are not just attractive – they are cheerleaders for science. Founded by Darlene Cavalier, a former cheerleader for the 76ers, the group consists of current and former NFL and NBA cheerleaders pursuing science and technology careers. They are surgeons, chemical engineers, architects, and have many other STEM careers in their day jobs
At the game tonight, we should see a contraption where U of Alabama’s football, medical, engineering and marketing savvy come together. Courtesy of USA Today
“There are several design components that make the tent unique and so practical for football, starting with the fact the frame is actually anchored to and connected with the base of the trainer's table. The covering expands and collapses like an accordion within 10 seconds and basically is just pulled over the top to erect the tent. It weighs about 70 pounds, making it easy to transport. The synthetic material covering it keeps out rain or other elements but also allows in enough light for doctors and trainers to see. It was designed to be sturdy and stable enough to go on any kind of surface that might be on a sideline — grass, artificial turf, concrete, asphalt, etc. — without needing to be staked or anchored into the ground with heavy weights like your typical tailgate tent. They also tested the height to make sure it doesn’t obstruct the view of fans.
There’s also an added bonus for schools: More advertising space to sell, which Alabama has utilized to display the logos of a local hospital and sports medicine center (for the College Football Playoff, it is using an Alabama-branded look).”