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U.S. Track and Field Trials and Mobility

Tomorrow, I head north from San Francisco to Lake County to get away for the July 4th weekend, but I’d rather head to the Pacific Northwest- to Eugene, Oregon to see some of the fast foot action at the University of Oregon’s Hayward Field. It has been a couple years since I’ve been to Eugene; and right now Track Town USA is in full swing, serving as the nexus where athletes, coaches, the media, family, friends and fans have converged for the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Team Trials. Instead of watching the competitions in-person, I’ve been following the action from the Internet sidelines through a few sites. Eugene 08, Track Town USA and of course YouTube.This made me take a step away from mission- and business-critical wireless networks, and think about the last Olympics and how the Internet and more pervasive wireless is changing how the athletes and fans interact with each other with the broader adoption of social networks and media sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Facebook launched in early 2004, and YouTube in mid 2005; and it’s difficult to think of a time before both sites existed because they are part of my life, allowing me to stay in touch with friends, family and colleagues. For the track and field athletes who traveled to Eugene, many of them must keep in touch with family, friend and fans — from their hometown — who are rooting for them just as I am -- from the Internet sidelines. I wonder how many fans and athletes will use Twitter to share quick thoughts during the trials and Olympics.Wi-Fi Planet’s Naomi Graychase posted an article on the University of Oregon mesh wireless network in action for the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials.I’d like to hear from you. With the Trials heating up, and the Olympics just around the corner, how will more of these social and media sites — enabled by a wireless network --change competitive sports?Have a happy Fourth!

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