London Olympics 2012: How The Judges Score The Diving Event
I am a little frightened of heights.
Even climbing a step-ladder is enough to get my knees knocking together wildly.
And when I go swimming I am happy to stay in the pool while braver folks run to the top of the diving platforms.
How people climb those things, let alone throw themselves off is beyond me.
But I did enjoy watching the diving events at the Olympics. Even a layman such as myself can see the many months and years of practice which must have gone in to perfecting those dives.
The TV cameras have to slow down the movement for us to fully appreciate the technical skill involved so I imagined that it must be a really difficult event to judge and award scores.
In a bid to be helpful a BBC TV commentator explained how the scores are awarded at the beginning of the men’s 10m synchronized diving final the other day.
He said this:
“There are six execution judges. Three for one diver and three for the other. The highest and lowest [scores] of each execution judge are taken away.
“Then we get the synchro judges. There are five of them and the highest and lowest [scores] of them are taken away to leave you with five scores with carry, multiplied by the degree of difficulty for the particular dive, then multiplied by 0.6 which means that you get a total score for the dive which is in keeping to make the scores comparable.
“The most important thing to know is that it is tipped towards the synchronization element so the better the synchronization the better it is for the divers so the execution is obviously very important but it is the synchronization which is key.”
I am more confused now than ever I was.
You May Not Get To The Olympics…But You Can Try This 100m Race
Ok so this is a far cry from the Olympics…or any kind of competitive sport for that matter.
It is a game called QWOP and you have to make the athlete run 100m by using just the QWOP keys on your keypad.
Click the image to go to the site where you can play online…I managed to get the guy moving but it was not a pretty sight and my runner fell flat on his face long before the finish line.
No medal winner here I am afraid.
So There Is Life on Mars then…
Almost as soon as NASA’s Curiosity rover landed on Mars it began sending back pictures and NASA has been posting them on the internet.
This is one of the first images it sent back…Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
But it didn’t take long for it to appear on the internet in many doctored forms…this is one of them:
© 2012 Imgur
BBC Director General Orders News Staff Not To Focus on British Medal Achievements
It is a British trait that we like to play things down.
We don’t tend to take praise very well at all and tend to play down our achievements when they are remarked upon by others.
But there are times when we should celebrate our successes and accept all the plaudits we get from our achievements.
The Olympics is a good example of that.
As I write this post we are third in the Olympics medal winning count – I don’t think we have ever done so well in an Olympics anywhere.
There is even talk about the government investing more money into sports and young people are getting interested in getting away from their computers to do something physical and competitive instead.
All positives I would say.
Our newspapers, TV and radio stations are all full of stories about our Olympic winners, the sacrifices they had made to win the medals they won and their plans for the future.
All really inspiring stuff.
Normally people complain that only bad news sells newspapers but now that it is good news stories making the front page headlines and leading the TV and radio schedules you would think people would be happy.
And they are…unless you happen to be the boss of the nation’s broadcaster.
Step forward BBC Director General Mark Thompson is said to be ‘increasingly unhappy’ with the patriotic tone of the news coverage of the Games.
He saw that British medal winners were featured at the top of every bulletin and he was not happy at all.
Thompson communicated his feelings to Helen Boaden, the BBC’s Director of News who then fired off an email to all TV and radio newsroom staff headed: ‘An order from the DG.’
The email said:
‘Mark Thompson is increasingly unhappy that we are focusing far too much on Team GB’s performance to the exclusion of all else.
‘This is also becoming a theme within the Press.
‘As editor in chief, he has issued a directive that this needs to change from today. So you need to get cracking on making that shift.’
BBC news editors were said to be “irritated” at the tone of Miss Boaden’s email. I should think so. One to be filed in the trash can I think.
Thompson later issued a statement saying that the BBC was right to highlight UK achievements as long as it also ensured that “…our news programmes fully reflect some of the other great sporting achievements and human stories of the London Games.’
Via: Daily Mail
Meet The Man Who Is Famous For Being Ignored
His real name is Keith Lindsay-Cameron, and he lives in Peasedown St John, near Bath in England.
On Facebook he is known as “Keith Ordinary Guy” and he has become popular for writing daily letters which, it must be presumed, his intended recipient never gets to read.
The former youth worker, who bitterly opposes Government cuts,has begun a campaign to write a letter every day to the British Prime Minister David Cameron.
He moans about issues ranging from policing and benefits to Europe in his letters which has caused the Daily Mail to ask whether he is “Britain’s biggest whinger.”
He began his campaign in March, has fired off 137 letters so far and even gets people to donate writing paper, stamps and envelopes so that his writings won’t cost him a single penny.
But is he successful?
Well he has his own Facebook page – A Letter A Day To Number 10 – (The Prime Minister’s official residence is 10 Downing Street which is known colloquially as “Number 10″) which has several hundred subscribers.
And the page is popular with lots of likes, comments and other positive feedback.
But it unclear whether his letters are actually have any effect on the UK’s political leaders.
Certainly Prime Minister David Cameron does not appear to read them – and if he does then he has never taken the trouble to reply to a single one.
So far Keith’s 137 letters have earned him just five replies, and none of those were from the Prime Minister but this has not put him off continuing.
Keith said: “As long as I have got breath in my body I will keep on writing, because of the new policies against the vulnerable in this country.
“I wrote down my feelings to make them a matter of public record – I get so angry about what this Government is doing.
“I have written 137 letters so far. I never have to buy stamps, paper or envelopes because I’ve got loads of people sending it to me.”
Even though he knows that the PM does not wait anxiously each morning to see what he will write next he says the campaign will continue and Facebook it vital for its success.
He added: “I realize that David Cameron never reads the letters. The whole point of this was to publish them on Facebook and the website, to have my say in public.
“He has no care, no compassion, no empathy for ordinary people.”
Number 10 Downing Street declined to comment on Mr Lindsay-Cameron’s letters.
…And Now The Guy Who Everyone Is Talking About.
So now back to NASA for the last time this week and the Mars landing mission.
Like many people I watched the event live on the internet and marveled at how Curiosity actually got from Earth to Mars and landed exactly where she was supposed to land without incident.
It was also fascinating to see the entire mission control team working together to ensure that everything which could possibly be done to get the rover spacecraft to the intended destination was done.
And like many people, when the cameras panned around the room I would say to myself: “Wow, look at the guy with the hair.”
If you saw the event yourself you will know who I mean.
If you didn’t then see for yourself:
The senior flight director for the Curiosity mission is Bobak Ferdowsi and he changes his haircut for every mission he works on.
His unusual cut certainly got him noticed.
He was interviewed for newspapers, TV and radio shows and while before the mission he had around 200 Twitter followers, he now has tens of thousands. (41,899 at time of writing this post but probably even more by the time you come to read it.)
And Now Two Musical Tesla Coils for Your Enjoyment
Last week we had a story about a huge Tesla coil in a back garden somewhere in Oklahoma but this week we go one better…two Tesla coils.
And what is more these are musical Tesla coils no less.
You may be familiar with the tune “Sweet Home Alabama” but I wonder if you have ever heard it played quite like this before?
In case you are interested, each of the two coils shown in the video is able to generate a 13 foot spark and an output of around 500,000 volts of electricity.
If you thought the sprinters at the Olympics were fast…they have nothing on Sarah the Cheetah from Cincinnati Zoo who was clocked at a world record-breaking 61mph recently.
In fact she covered 100m in 6.13 seconds, nearly 40 per cent faster than Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt, the world’s quickest man.
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