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Everything posted by tractarian

  1. Here's a look at how the in-house graphics for the various host broadcasters have changed throughout the years. Munich 1972. At the dawn of the computer age. No frills. Montréal 1976. Not much to see here. Circular vignette-type effect used to superimpose an image over background. Los Angeles 1984. Multiple colors used for the first time - and a deep drop shadow on everything. Wavy flag graphics also make their first appearance. Seoul 1988. The deep drop shadow remains. Individual competitors' names appeared on a gray slab with a wavy flag. Barcelona 1992. Now we're getting creative. No more drop shadow, and different color text for different purposes. Circular button-style flag icons. All over a light gray rounded rectangle base. Cobi signals that Mr. Ewing has fouled out. Lillehammer 1994. A truly artistic approach, incorporating the look of the games and pictograms. Text presented in mixed case. Flag graphics accompanied by horizontally-aligned country code in yellow. Atlanta 1996. White and yellow text presented in small caps over blue-green background with sublimated Olympic rings and look of the games. Flags combined with easily legible country codes. One of the most visually appealing packages, IMO. Nagano 1998. Text in mixed case, with combined flag-country code graphics on multi-colored grid panels. Pretty. Sydney 2000. Introduces standard graphics package that is used, almost unchanged, in 2002 and 2004. Simple grid format with white mixed-case text. Flags accompanied by itty-bitty country codes. Individual names over blue background, with Olympic rings omnipresent. Salt Lake 2002. Pretty much identical to Sydney. Athens 2004. Again, almost identical to Sydney. The country codes were made bolder and easier to read. Turin 2006. The grid gives way to a more stylized, slanted approach. New typefaces used for top-line and second-line text. Everything is on a blue background. Beijing 2008. In my view, the first graphics package intended primarily for HD. Oblique theme is retained from Turin, but the flags and country codes are more straightforward and upright. Fonts appear to be thinner, and surnames are capitalized. White numbers on red indicate rank; white on blue indicate start position. Look of the games sublimated into top-line background. Vancouver 2010. Not much changes from Beijing. Custom top-line typeface is different, and names are now small caps for given names, capitals for surnames. London 2012. Simple, slick evolution. The typefaces are unified - no longer are there five different fonts on one screen. Names are again small-caps/all-caps, and everything is slightly italicized. Olympic rings lose their color. Flag icons have 3-dimensional perspective. And everything is slickly animated. Sochi 2014. Virtually identical to London. Rio 2016. Most drastic evolution in years. The blue background becomes more of a dark teal/forest green. The text is *extremely* thin. Yellow text reappears, for uniform numbers, top-line titles, and country codes. The flags are flattened. Clearly no one is meant to see these graphics on a "standard-definition" television!
  2. Story checks out - in Brasilia it looks like there is still 2014 World Cup signage on the upper deck!!!
  3. Last year I attempted to purchase about $100 worth of merchandise from the official online London 2012 store. The website informed me I couldn't order because I was located in the US, and it directed me to the USOC's website. The USOC website had no officially-branded London 2012 gear. So I'm $100 richer, but I don't have any London 2012 merchandise. Such a shame that London 2012 wouldn't take my money!
  4. This is hilarious. We're talking about a 302-page thread. I don't think there's any chance of someone getting "bored" and there's certainly no need to attempt to muzzle anyone by snidely "warning" them they may be boring people. Listen: you're being called out for making fabulously wrong predictions, sticking with them in the face of credible evidence to the contrary, and then having the temerity to claim that you are persuadable. It hardly requires any psychoanalysis. In fact, this is an internet message board... having your failures immediately thrown back in your face is pretty much the polar opposite of "unusual behaviour" in this type of setting. It is absolutely par for the course.
  5. This might not be the case in 2016, though, since they are renovating Havelange to greatly increase the seating capacity. (And I don't know about you, but "Pele Olympic Stadium" sounds pretty good to me.)
  6. It would be great if they offered up the live cauldron feed on their website. I wouldn't mind having that in the corner of my computers screen all day.
  7. I think his point was that the internet feeds are (as one would expect) far inferior to HDTV in terms of picture quality. That is indisputable. Edit: Saw a cauldron shot for the first time this morning on NBC!
  8. I think I read somewhere that London couldn't secure a corporate sponsor for an external cauldron. Still, $5 million would seem like a trivial expense in the scheme of things. Amazing pictures; thanks. It appears that if you went back today, you wouldn't have been able to see the flame from the top of the Orbit. Shame!
  9. I'm not too disappointed by the fact that the cauldron isn't visible to the public in the Olympic Park. That is a recent trend and is very difficult to pull off if you have a fully-enclosed Olympic Stadium. What I'm disappointed about is they couldn't figure out a way to either (1) light the cauldron in its permanent position, so that it didn't have to be temporarily extinguished in order to accommodate the athletics competition; or (2) move the cauldron from its lighting position to its permanent position during the opening ceremony. I can't image it would have been that difficult or costly to move Betty from the center of the infield to her current position, using tracks, after it was lit. (Surely the 8.5-meter tall "stems" could contain enough fuel to last long enough to do that.)
  10. Hm. Wouldn't be surprised if this is an actual representation of what the cauldron looks like!
  11. Can you name a particular time in the video where it is clear?
  12. It's been a pleasure speculating with y'all. My final prediction: Bannister will light the flame remotely from the floor of the stadium, using a swarm of automated quadrocopters, which will then fly up, around, and through the wires at roof level in order to light the cauldron, which looks like the image on the OC tickets and will be located (either suspended or anchored) on top of the roof near the Orbit.
  13. Why? The cable assembly is at roof level. The (purported) cauldron from the video is well above roof level. So, as long as it is lit in its final position - which appears to be the case, from the video - the wires wouldn't get in the way of the cauldron's flames.
  14. OK. Didn't want to check the 200+ previous pages to see if it had been suggested before. But it's plausible, isn't it?
  15. By the way, I've seen this image before, but it just popped up on the BBC News liveblog and it got me thinking.... Those - I don't know what to call them.. sticks? horns? pistils? - kind of look like they could be part of a sculpture made by the same guy who created this: It would be amusing if the cauldron was right there on the OC ticket for everyone to see!
  16. Read the quote again: "IOC coordination commission chair Denis Oswald tells ATR there definitely is a cauldron, but confirms it will only be visible within the Olympic Stadium." (my emphasis) If he has been quoted accurately, then Oswald is saying it will not be visible from outside the stadium. True... I guess that would be what we call "plausible deniability"
  17. That wouldn't completely jibe with the quote. The article states: " IOC coordination commission chair Denis Oswald tells ATR there definitely is a cauldron, but confirms it will only be visible within the Olympic Stadium." (My emphasis.) So even if it were lit in the stadium, then moved to a place visible outside the stadium, Oswald would still be lying. But, as you note, that would not be unprecedented; nor would it be terribly surprising. I did not intend to imply that you did.
  18. An anonymous Wikipedia user edited Bannister's page to say he was chosen to light the cauldron. It has since been removed. If Bannister is to light it on the stadium floor, how can one explain the cauldron rehearsal video in which it appears to be lit in its final position above the roof line?
  19. Why do you insist that the article was written by some "unknown" entity? Just because it doesn't have a by-line doesn't mean it has no author; it's author is the staff of ATR, and it directly quotes Oswald. ATR still stands to lose reputation, prestige, and access if it fabricated the quote. That said, I have viewed the video repeatedly and I have no other explanation for the ball of light in the middle of the stadium other than: it's the cauldron. Now, even if the cauldron is, in fact, visible from outside the stadium (as it now appears it will be), I still don't think the ATR article was false. Instead, it appears that Oswald was simply lying - or, to state it a little more gently, he was employing a bit of old-fashioned misdirection to throw off obsessives like ourselves. That's why he leaked it to a trade publication and not the BBC, for example, where it would get more play. His reputation needn't be tarnished, in any event; sometimes a bit of obfuscation is necessary to keep a secret as big and important as this. Couple of other comments: 1) It has been well-reported that Daniel Craig as Bond will be descending from a helicopter into the stadium, right? If so, there will need to be a (temporary) gap in the wires above the stadium large enough to make that feasible. Perhaps a large section of the wires can be moved off to the side temporarily? 2) As many have noted, it appears from the video that the cauldron will be lit in its final position, and that final position is somewhere above the roof level. This means either: a) the cauldron will be lit by someone standing on the roof; or ( it will be lit from a distance. I think, given the hype surrounding the "method" of lighting, it is unlikely that the method will just be the final torchbearer dipping the torch into the cauldron while standing next to it. Instead, the cauldron will be lit from a distance, perhaps from the floor of the stadium. [Wild speculation: Perhaps using missiles/rockets or a javelin.]
  20. Or, for those of us in the Western Hemisphere (excluding those poor Americans that don't live near a border)... half a working day... a lunch... and we can enjoy the opening.
  21. (By the way, can you give an example of what you would consider to be "concrete and believable evidence"? Would it have to be video footage of Oswald saying what was attributed to him? What if his quote was reported in the BBC; would you believe it then?)
  22. You're entitled to your opinion, of course, but you still haven't answered the key question: Why in the world would ATR want to falsely quote a top IOC official? It's not like this quote appeared on some random person's blog or twitter feed. ATR is not a fly-by-night operation; it is one of the foremost privately-run industry publications concerning the Olympic Movement. It stands to lose its reputation - and, perhaps more importantly, its access in the future to Olympic movers-and-shakers - if it prints fabricated quotes by IOC members. Frankly, I too would not have expected Oswald to divulge any details about the cauldron (even a minor detail like where it is visible from). So, in a sense, the report is not "believeable." But I find it clearly even less believable that ATR would risk its entire business to publish an unsubstantiated quote.
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