ONLINE GUY: Meet the new lord of the Olympic rings, that master of Microsoft, Bill Gates!

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ONLINE GUY: Meet the new lord of the Olympic rings, that master of Microsoft, Bill Gates!

Got this story from via email this morning. A little birdie passed it along to me. I don’t know anything about The Review Journal… but I am excited to read what’s in their article.

I very vividly remember watching the Olympics as a little girl… you know, back when it all happened only every 4 years. Maybe it was the Cold War, maybe it was just little kid awe, but it seemed so important then… that I really was contributing to our grand nation in some way by watching and cheering.

Needless to say, I don’t feel that much enthusiasm around the Olympics anymore – however, I am VERY interested to see what new fandangled technological cool-ness they have cooked up for us this Summer. And, I have a 6 year old of my own this year, I wonder if he will rekindle the magic of it for me… he did it with Christmas, Easter and Tooth-Fairy!

Jan. 08, 2008
Las Vegas Review-Journal
ONLINE GUY: Meet the new lord of the Olympic rings, that master of Microsoft, Bill Gates!

AL GIBES: The Online Guy

I hope we’re all ready to send Bill a thank you card later this year.

If everything comes off as touted, sports fans will have plenty to be happy about when the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing begin. Bill, that’s Mr. Gates to you, and his partners at Microsoft Corp. have plans for you to experience the games like never before.

Yes, Bill was in town again, and if everything came off as planned, he made his 12th keynote address to the International Consumer Electronics Show in 15 years Sunday night. I wasn’t there, but had the benefit of a prespeech briefing Friday by Beth Jordan of the Microsoft public relations department. She outlined the highlights of the Gates talk, and it pretty much followed the pattern of his previous presentations.

The biggest announcement is a partnership between Microsoft, MSN and NBC Universal to make viewing the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing a customized experience on (

Fans of every Olympic sport will be able to watch all the action — from badminton to basketball — with the help of Microsoft’s Silverlight (

Silverlight is free download and Microsoft expects record numbers of downloads between now and the start of the games, scheduled for 8 p.m. on Aug. 8.

That’s 8/8/08 at 8.

"People will have access to 2,200 hours of live event coverage," Jordan said. "It’s not just a sit and watch experience. Viewers can choose what they want to see and when they want to see it. It’s a new breed of TV and a new breed of entertainment."

The action will be on your PC but there will also be ways to play your PC through your TV, Jordan said, alluding to Microsoft’s home server, which funnels the power of your computer to other networked video and audio devices in the home.

She said there will be as many as 30 simultaneous video streams and more than 3,000 hours of on-demand video content. The quality of the video will be "as good as anything you’ve seen on your TV or on the Web," she said, adding that the feed will also be recordable.

"With as much as a 15-hour time difference in the U.S., this will allow people to view (the Olympics) on their time schedule," Jordan said.

There will also be unique data fed with the video, including statistics and analysis, along with live video alerts to help fans stay connected to fans and teams.

Gates also talked about the digital decade just ending and the digital decade we’re entering. As chief evangelist for Microsoft he discussed new entertainment offerings, more partnerships and easier user interfaces.

It’s all about taking technology to the next level, and enhanced Olympics coverage is a good step

Thanks, in advance, Bill.