I've been thinking a lot about technology lately; namely the use and misuse of technologies. As a software engineer for over 30 years now, I've seen my share of technologies come and go. Some have been really cool while others needed to go. Each new innovation though has its uses and I constantly try to stay on top of what is new and how it can be applied to the business.
I often find it amusing and sometimes frustrating for how people use technology. For example, texting is one of the great marvels of our lifetime as it has allowed us to be more connected than ever before. The problem is that texting was designed for short and quick communication but I often get questions in the form of a book that also require a long response. Clearly that is a use for email but I have a hammer so everything looks like a nail. On the other hand, email is used sometimes when texting would be more appropriate like trying to arrange a meet up with people. There are also the social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, to name but a few. And now Google+ is making waves. The speed at which new things come at us is almost daunting.
The primary reason that I've been thinking about all of this is because I am constantly looking at our business and how we can make use of technology to improve the experience for both the competitor and race personnel. We have the most advanced technology around for timing events and we provide tools on our website to assist our managers, but I think it is often not enough. I'm looking for ways to improve the timing experience so that participants can get their results faster and in better ways. We've been using printed reports for a long time and they are a staple but often times it is not fast enough and really difficult during an event to keep up to date. Participants push us to improve and that is a good thing but presents many challenges. You want to cross the line and have instant feedback as to your time and placement.
It is a constant drive for us to achieve race perfection. Technology plays a tremendous role in not only capturing the times but in producing the results. Looking at the technologies available to us, there are certainly appropriate and not so appropriate avenues to follow. We'd love to hear feedback from you as to what you would like to see. Give us a shout. Did you know that Athlete Guild has a facebook and twitter feed? Come like us and stay on top of what we're up to.