A casual sports fan’s request of Google, Microsoft, or Apple

Just briefly, I’m going to go off-topic with a challengeI have for Google, Microsoft, or Apple to solve… because I have an admittedly selfish dream. You see, with the start of the football season overlapping with the end of the baseball season, I’m constantly being asked if I saw “the game.” I like watching sports. I really do, but the problem is I’m just too busy (writing, taking care of my family, and doing my full-time technology gig) to take 3 hours off to watch a game. I couldn’t get my final work done on The Ultimate PC Primer if I watched every game that I wanted to. So I end up not watching any.

Don’t tell me to catch the highlights. The highlights don’t cut it. 60 seconds of clips from a game aren’t enjoyable nor do they give me full appreciation of the important points of the contest. I often have more than 2 minutes to watch, but I don’t have 3 hours. If I wanted to know the net result of the game, I’d just look up the final score.

Secondly, don’t tell me to DVR the game and fast-forward. Devoid of the context of the game and the importance each play might have had on the final outcome, I wouldn’t know where to stop and watch.

So I have a dream. I want to be able to compress the actual footage of the game into a maximum length of my choosing. Ideally, each play would be tagged by importance to the outcome of the game (based on some rating criteria, which admittedly, might be easier with baseball than other sports), and the resulting string of video clips would automatically be placed back to back (with nice dissolves in between) for me to watch in sequence. So if I have 15 minutes, I might perhaps grab a slider interface element  representing the total length of the game (3 hours and 15 minutes, for example) and begin dragging it toward the other end of the spectrum. Based on least important plays/action, the application would begin to exclude plays from the total length of the video. So I might end up with 18 plays representing 14 minutes and 36 seconds. Perhpas the very last play of the game should always be shown. This way I could always fit the most relevant parts of the big game into my available time frame.

Google, Microsoft, or Apple, if you can take this concept and run with it, I can get back to work while still being able to participate in conversations about the big game. This casual sports fan thanks you in advance.

And now, standby for a real post on explaining technology…

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One Response to A casual sports fan’s request of Google, Microsoft, or Apple

  1. Ryan Herr says:

    Ben, I just saw some Wall Street Journal articles that made me think of your blog post.

    NFL games have 11 minutes of action.
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704281204575002852055561406.html

    And, MLB games have 14 minutes of action.
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703843804575534102219239786.html

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