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Rio 2016 Olympics Opening Ceremony Parade Order of nations will be slightly different than previous years.

An interesting tidbit for the English-speaking world is that the opening ceremony of the 2016 Rio Olympics will feature the countries taking the field in alphabetical order, but by the Portuguese spelling of the nations.  As such some countries, like the United States, which generally enters toward the end of the parade, will find themselves entering early on during the event with the ‘E’s under Estates Unidos. This has even led to the US television networks asking that this be changed, as they fear American TV audiences will quickly turn the channel after they see the American team enter the stadium. Something similar happened in Beijing where the teams entered by ‘stroke’ order of the Chinese alphabet.

In case you are wondering, the USA will be wearing Ralph Lauren again this year.

For a full list of nations in the order they enter, take a look here and plan you viewing accordingly.

Afghanistan                  Afeganistão

South Africa                  África do Sul

Albania                  Albânia

Germany                  Alemanha

Andorra                  Andorra

Angola                  Angola

Antigua and Barbuda              Antígua e Barbuda

Saudi Arabia                  Arábia Saudita

Algeria                  Argélia

Argentina                  Argentina

Armenia                  Arménia

Australia                  Austrália

Austria                  Áustria

Azerbaijan                  Azerbaijão

Bahamas                  Bahamas

Bahrain                  Bahrein

Bangladesh                  Bangladesh

Barbados                  Barbados

Belgium                  Bélgica

Belize                  Belize

Benin                  Benim

Belarus                  Bielorrússia

Bolivia                  Bolívia

Bosnia and Herzegovina                  Bósnia e Herzegovina

Botswana                  Botswana

Brazil                  Brasil

Brunei                  Brunei

Bulgaria                  Bulgária

Burkina Faso                  Burkina Faso

Burundi                  Burundi

Bhutan                  Butão

Cape Verde                  Cabo Verde

Cameroon                  Camarões

Cambodia                  Camboja

Canada                  Canadá

Qatar                  Catar

Kazakhstan                  Cazaquistão

Chad                  Chade

Chile                  Chile

China                  China

Cyprus                  Chipre

Colombia                  Colômbia

Comoros                  Comores

North Korea                  Coreia do Norte

South Korea                  Coreia do Sul

Côte d’Ivoire                  Costa do Marfim

Costa Rica                  Costa Rica

Croatia                  Croácia

Cuba                  Cuba

Denmark                  Dinamarca

Djibouti                  Djibouti

Dominica                  Dominica

Egypt                  Egito

El Salvador                  El Salvador

United Arab Emirates                  Emirados Árabes Unidos

Ecuador                  Equador

Eritrea                  Eritreia

Slovakia                  Eslováquia

Slovenia                  Eslovénia

Spain                  Espanha

United States of America                  Estados Unidos

Estonia                  Estónia

Ethiopia                  Etiópia

Fiji                  Fiji

Philippines                  Filipinas

Finland                  Finlândia

France                  França

Gabon                  Gabão

Gambia                  Gâmbia

Ghana                  Gana

Georgia                  Geórgia

Grenada                  Granada

Greece                  Grécia

Guatemala                  Guatemala

Guyana                  Guiana

Guinea                  Guiné

Equatorial Guinea                  Guiné Equatorial

Guinea-Bissau                  Guiné-Bissau

Haiti                  Haiti

Honduras                  Honduras

Hungary                  Hungria

Yemen                  Iémen

Marshall Islands                  Ilhas Marshall

Solomon Islands                  Ilhas Salomão

India                  Índia

Indonesia                  Indonésia

Iran                  Irã

Iraq                  Iraque

Ireland                  Irlanda

Iceland                  Islândia

Israel                  Israel

Italy                  Itália

Jamaica                  Jamaica

Japan                  Japão

Jordan                  Jordânia

Kiribati                  Kiribati

Kuwait                  Kuwait

Laos                  Laos

Lesotho                  Lesoto

Latvia                  Letónia

Lebanon                  Líbano

Liberia                  Libéria

Libya                  Líbia

Liechtenstein                  Liechtenstein

Lithuania                  Lituânia

Luxembourg                  Luxemburgo

Madagascar                  Madagáscar

Malaysia                  Malásia

Malawi                  Malawi

Maldives                  Maldivas

Mali                  Mali

Malta                  Malta

Morocco                  Marrocos

Mauritius                  Maurícia

Mauritania                  Mauritânia

Mexico                  México

Micronesia                  Micronésia

Mozambique                  Moçambique

Moldova                  Moldávia

Monaco                  Mónaco

Mongolia                  Mongólia

Montenegro                  Montenegro

Myanmar                  Myanmar

Namibia                  Namíbia

Nauru                  Nauru

Nepal                  Nepal

Nicaragua                  Nicarágua

Niger                  Níger

Nigeria                  Nigéria

Norway                  Noruega

New Zealand                  Nova Zelândia

Oman                  Omã

Netherlands                  Países Baixos

Palau                  Palau

Panama                  Panamá

Papua New Guinea                  Papua-Nova Guiné

Pakistan                  Paquistão

Paraguay                  Paraguai

Peru                  Peru

Poland                  Polónia

Portugal                  Portugal

Kenya                  Quénia

Kyrgyzstan                  Quirguistão

United Kingdom                  Reino Unido

Central African Republic                  República Centro-Africana

Czech Republic                  República Checa

Republic of Macedonia                  República da Macedónia

Democratic Republic of the Congo          República Democrática do Congo

Republic of the Congo                  República do Congo

Dominican Republic                  República Dominicana

Romania                  Roménia

Rwanda                  Ruanda

Russia                  Rússia

Samoa                  Samoa

San Marino                  San Marino

Saint Lucia                  Santa Lúcia

Saint Kitts and Nevis                  São Cristóvão e Nevis

Sao Tome and Principe                  São Tomé e Príncipe

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines                  São Vicente e Granadinas

Senegal                  Senegal

Sierra Leone                  Serra Leoa

Serbia                  Sérvia

Seychelles                  Seychelles

Singapore                  Singapura

Syria                  Síria

Somalia                  Somália

Sri Lanka                  Sri Lanka

Swaziland                  Suazilândia

Sudan                  Sudão

South Sudan                  Sudão do Sul

Sweden                  Suécia

Switzerland                  Suíça

Suriname                  Suriname

Thailand                  Tailândia

Tajikistan                  Tajiquistão

Tanzania                  Tanzânia

East Timor                  Timor-Leste

Togo                  Togo

Tonga                  Tonga

Trinidad and Tobago                  Trinidad e Tobago

Tunisia                  Tunísia

Turkmenistan                  Turquemenistão

Turkey                  Turquia

Tuvalu                  Tuvalu

Ukraine                  Ucrânia

Uganda                  Uganda

Uruguay                  Uruguai

Uzbekistan                  Uzbequistão

Vanuatu                  Vanuatu

Venezuela                  Venezuela

Vietnam                  Vietname

Zambia                  Zâmbia

Zimbabwe                  Zimbabwe

How to rank medals by country in the London Olympics.

As we near yet another Olympics, the old debate about how to rank Olympic Medals is likely to come up once again. I’ve written about it in 2008 and 2010, so probably best to do an update as we kick off the London Olympics in 2012.

Under the Olympic Charter, there is no “official” list of medals by countries.  It is forbidden:

The IOC and the OCOG shall not draw up any global ranking per country. A roll of honour bearing the names of medal winners and those awarded diplomas in each event shall be established by the OCOG and the names of the medal winners shall be featured prominently and be on permanent display in the main stadium.

Since the games in Australia however, the press office started to issue “advisories” showing how nations were doing, and in these advisories the rankings were by the number of Gold medals first, followed by Silver, then by Bronze the so-called ‘Gold First’ standard.  The United States media, and their counterparts in Canada, have consistently ranked medals in a different manner, the so called ‘Total Medals’ standard.  In 2008, this led to a ‘split’ where the world’s media declared China the “Winner” of the 2008 games as they had the most Golds, but the US media also felt the US did the best as they had the most “total medals”.  However, in 2010, Canada had the most Golds, followed by Germany, then the United States, which also had the most medals.  This confused many in the European press as the official Olympic tally from the Vancouver Press office was listing in the ‘Total Medals’ format which showed Canada not have the best record.

At the close of the 2008 Olympics, IOC President Jacque Rogge said that the IOC had no position on which table is better.

“China has won the most gold medals and the United States of America won the most total,” International Olympic Committee President Jacques Rogge said during a news conference Sunday. “I believe each country will highlight what suits it best. One country will say, ‘Gold medals.’ The other country will say, ‘The total tally counts.’ We take no position on that.”

So as we move into the London Olympics, I found it interesting to see the official ‘medal table’ on their website goes both ways.  Those who want the Gold first standard can click the sort button by Golds, but those who prefer the Total medals count can sort by the totals.

We won’t likely see a determination as to what is better / worse in this Olympiad, but more and more voices are starting to complain the emphasis on “Gold” is neglecting the development of some athletes and sports in countries with limited resources to put forward for their Olympic team.  Whether we see a further discussion about this after the Olympics remains to be seen.  Maybe I’ll do another post when we get to 2014.

 

Norway curling pants the ‘hottest’ thing on ice

Much is being made about the Polo Reindeer Cap from the opening ceremony being the hottest fashion item of the Winter Games, but now it seems it has been supplanted by something a bit more garish being the sought after ‘must have’ for Olympic fans (which good for me too as I’ve sold my Polo hats for as much as $500 each on Ebay).

The crazy pants for the Norwegian curling team are turning heads throughout Vancouver.  Red, white and blue plaid would look more appropriate on the golf course than the curling ice, which helps explain how the Norway team was able to get the pants.  The captain of the team went online to LoudMouthGolf.com to order these pants just before the Olympics.  Only $99 if you can still find a pair (and I should note their website is getting pounded).

Unfortunately for Norway the pants were no help yesterday as Canada beat Norway 7-6.

loud mouth golf

Olympics airlift Zambonis to Vancouver, give up on ‘green’ ice machines

 

Screw the environment, we want ice.

Follow a disasterous resurfacing yesterday, the Vancouver Olympic Committee has launched an emergency airlift of a Zamboni machine to the Winter Olympics.

While often thought of as synonymous with ice resurfacing, Zamboni is actually a trademark of a specific machine.  The Olympic committee, in an effort to ‘go green’ decided not to use the tried and tested Zamboni but an electronic Olympia machine.  

The first one belched up a bunch of snow on the long track speed skating oval.

Then the backup did the same thing.

Then the emergency backup shredded the ice to the point some teams wanted a postponment of the race.

That was it.  Back to the standby and an airlift mission was tasked to fly a true Zamboni out to Vancouver so that the ice resurfacing can go ahead without fail.

Sometimes going green is not ready for primetime.

Tracking the Olympics via Twitter

The NBC Olympics site is really trying some pretty cool things this Olympics.  They have Facebook pages and Twitter feeds (both of which allow you to submit questions to the on-air announcers), but one of the newer items is a real time Twitter visualization so you can see what the Tweeting masses are talking about as they watch the games.  This is a pretty neat capture of what folks are talking about in real time, and I can’t wait to see it tonight when some announcer says something dumb.  Will be interesting to watch.

Olympic Medal Count in 2010 counted in different ways depending on where you live

One thing that always amuses me during the Olympics is the nationalistic jingoism that is often displayed, mainly in an anti-USA manner by fans from other parts of the world.  It can be silly, like saying ‘Chanting USA-USA is Nazi-like’ but Greek fans in Athens chanting ‘Hellas-Hellas’ is part of the Olympic spirit.”  One other way it manifests itself is in the endless debate about the medal table.

I’ve spoken about this before during the medal debate in Beijing.  There are two ways of counting medals by country at the Olympics.  By the number of golds, then silvers, then bronze, or by the overall number of medals.  The United States media generally reports on the overall number of medals, whereas most of the rest of the world reports on who has the highest number of gold medals.  Thus a country with 1 gold would appear higher than a country with 6 silvers and 10 bronze medals in some tables.  This has led to some countries like Russia criticizing the Gold First standard saying ‘how can a country with 12 medalists be said to have a ‘poorer’ Olympics than a country with just one medal?’  Some commentators have suggested a ‘points system‘ whereby a bronze is worth 1/5 of a Gold or something like that.  Sounds very silly (it’s a British idea so yeah, it is very silly).

Officially–there is no ranking.  The Olympic charter forbids it:

The IOC and the OCOG shall not draw up any global ranking per country. A roll of honour bearing the names of medal winners and those awarded diplomas in each event shall be established by the OCOG and the names of the medal winners shall be featured prominently and be on permanent display in the main stadium.

However, there is an unofficial ‘media alert’ that the IOC puts out that has the medal table in the order of Golds first.  This started back around the 2000 Olympics and the IOC won’t comment on the debate because “officially, we don’t publish a table”.  How bureaucratically convenient.  UPDATE:  It appears that the Vancouver 2010 committee has decided to publish their list in a ‘total medals’ format, but the European media continues to follow a Gold first standard.

Which is better?  Who really cares.  In the end it is about athletes and their own personal quests and sacrifices to become the best in the world. Some of them have help from nations, some do not.  If you see someone arguing the point that one counting system is inherently better or worse than the other, than you have found someone worth ignoring for the rest of the Olympics.

Luge officials move the start to slow down the sleds

Slow Down

Following the death of Olympic competitor Nodar Kumaritashvili, Olympic luge competitors will now be starting at a lower ramp in an effort to reduce speeds on the Whistler Luge track, this despite an ‘investigation’ earlier which ruled out track design as an issue in the death.

Men are now starting from what was the women’s start ramp, and women are now racing further down the track from the ‘juniors’ starting gate.  This move should slow down speeds along the course.  The course will now be 575 feet shorter and speeds should be reduced about 6 mph.

However, many are acknowledging that the technical changes are not really the issue right now, but that mental changes are in order.

“You have an emotional component and you have a technical component,” Romstad said, his voice cracking as he tried to explain why what seems a fairly superficial fix is being instituted. “None of our athletes . . . They lost a friend yesterday. It’s an emotional experience, something they haven’t been through before.”

NBC Coverage of the Vancouver Olympics: More coverage with less staff

Things are a bit more advanced than the first televised Olympics in 1936

“NBC sucks” is a constant drone you hear each and every Olympics.  “They didn’t show enough of the Tajikistan entrance, ergo they are biased against Tajikstan” and other silliness often is heard on the messageboards and other sites (and no, I’m not kidding about the Tajik reference–it happens).

So now that we’re done with that, let’s talk about some real live numbers behind this year’s Olympics.

NBC is going to have 835 hours of coverage across multiple platforms (and I believe that includes online coverage as well).  This is way up from the 419 hours of Torino coverage in 2006, and 375.5 hours in 2002 Salt Lake City.  It will also be the first Olympics produced entirely in HD (though my local WRC coverage got messed up last night due to a glitch with Comcast that I had, so I watched most of the Opening Ceremony in Standard Definition.  How 2003 was that?)

NBC is doing all this coverage with a significantly lower staff this year.  2168 employees which is down from the 2,768 they sent to Torino and 3,260 in Salt Lake.  You would figure more advanced technology might require more personnel, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

But if you really want to get into the technical bits of the coverage, you need to read this amazing piece in BroadcastingCable magazine that goes into some massive details, such as What type of Cameras are they using for Vancouver?

NBCU will use more than 100 cameras, all equipped with Canon lenses, to supplement OBS’ coverage. They include Sony HDC-1400, -1500 and -3300 units, and for ENG applications, Sony’s new PDW-F800 XDCAM HD optical-disc camcorders.

Um, ok.  It also goes into some details about how the streams are being processed directly in Vancouver instead of backhauled to their HQ and redone there (as they had to do with the China Olympics).

Anyway, it’s a pretty interesting article if you like technical details of television sports broadcasting.

Investigation of fatal luge accident finds human error, not track problems

The Vancouver Olympic committee has issued a statement on the death of Georgian luger Nodar Kumaritashvili.

The track was closed for an investigation by the coroners office in Canada.  Once they had the evidence they needed for their investigation, they turned it over to the FIL (International Luge Federation).  The luge federation and the Vancouver Olympics determined ‘human error‘ was to blame for the crash, not the track design itself.

It appears after a routine run, the athlete came late out of curve 15 and did not compensate properly to make correct entrance into curve 16. This resulted in a late entrance into curve 16 and although the athlete worked to correct the problem he eventually lost control of the sled resulting in the tragic accident.  The technical officials of the FIL were able to retrace the path of the athlete and concluded there was no indication that the accident was caused by deficiencies in the track.

There have been several other accidents on this track, in both luge and bobsled.  One corner is now known as “50-50 corner” as you have a 50% chance you’ll crash coming through it.  There are others who still blame the track, even in light of the official report from the Olympic committee.

From a layman’s perspective, it looks kind of silly to have large metal poles located on the ‘downwind-inertia’ side of the track, i.e. the place where the body would naturally go in a crash.  But watching the horrific luge crash video you see his body did sort of go back and forth and I’m not certain the ‘flow’ of the track led to him going in that direction any more than it would have resulted in him jumping the wall in the other direction had he crashed a bit earlier.

Vancouver residents have set up a makeshift memorial to luger Nodar Kumaritashvili in the city center.

Vancouver 2010 Opening Ceremony cost $38 million

That’s a lot of little flashlights.

The Opening Ceremony to the 2010 Winter Olympics set a record as the most expensive Winter Olympics Ceremony ever, chalking in at about $38 million.  While this was dwarfed by the Beijing Olympics, it certainly is upsetting some who feel the money should have been spent on <insert cause of the day here>.

Even at $1,100 a ticket (for the opening ceremonies) it is unlikely that ticket revenue alone is going to pay for this event. (UPDATE.  60,000 * 1,100 = $66,000,000, so that’s not bad). Other top event tickets are going up in price on the fan ticket exchanges for the Olympics, but the biathalon is still a bargain at $70.

Full video of the Olympic Luge Crash of Nodar Kumaritashvilvi

This is really hard to watch.

For those who have not heard, the luge athlete from Georgia was killed today in a freak accident on the very dangerous luge track in Vancouver.  Nodar Kumaritashvilvi accident propelled him off the track and into a steel girder at nearly 90 mph, which caused injuries that eventually cost him his life.

A special moment of reflection will be held tonight during the opening ceremony.  IOC officials are meeting with the luge federation in an emergency meeting as to whether the luge will take place at the Olympics or if any other changes might be made to the schedule.

Nodar was 21 years old.

The full video of his run can be seen on NBC Olympics (requires the free Silverlight plugin).  It is graphic, partially in the sense you look at him and know what is coming.

As NBC is limited to the USA, you might find other links here:

Buzzfeed

Seattle Post

The IOC is shutting down Youtube videos for copyright reasons nearly as fast at they are being put up.

The US Olympic Team Opening Ceremony uniforms from Polo Ralph Lauren

The only thing bigger than the USA logo on the US Olympic Team’s Opening Ceremony outfits is the Polo Ralph Lauren horse that appears on the front of each jacket. I remember when some folks were upset to see the Nike swoosh. They’re going to have a field day with this. At least the hat is relatively logo free.

UPDATE:  The “Moose” hat which was worn in the opening ceremony is already a very hot seller.  Ebay is sold out, but I’ve got one (L/XL) that I’ll be auctioning off shortly.  Check back for the link or goto Ebay to find it.

Here is the link to my EBAY sale.  24 hours only.  Ends Monday Night

The Polo collection mirrors the 1920s look that the US Olympic team wore in Beijing. Sort of a throwback to the roaring 20s look, but at a definite 2010 price tag.

The wool hat is a top seller.  You can’t find them in stores and the only place I’ve heard that has them in stock is the USA store in Vancouver.  You can find them on ebay, but you will spend nearly $400-$500 to get one (yes, seriously).

If you have $400 you might like this sweater a bit more.  It’s quite nice and was worn by most of the team during the opening ceremony.


Vancouver 2010 Olympics–Opening Ceremony Parade of Nations order of entry

Unlike Beijing, in which the nations entered in Chinese alphabetical order, the Winter Olympics in Vancouver will have the nations arriving in French alphabetical order, English order according to some published reports.  Of course there are two exception–Greece will be first, and Canada will be last (as the host nation).  The USA will be the 82nd nation to enter.

The opening ceremony is being dedicated to the memory of Nodar Kumaritashvilvi, the Georgian luge athlete that died earlier today.

This is the best list I can find so far.  We’ll see if I can find a better one before the parade starts.

GREECE
Albania
Algeria
Andorra
Argentina
Armenia
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Belarus
Belgium
Bermuda
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Brazil
Bulgaria
Cayman Islands
Chile
China
Croatia
Cyprus
Czech Republic
Denmark
North Korea
Estonia
Ethiopia
Finland
France
Macedonia
Georgia
Germany
Ghana
Great Britain
Hong Kong
Hungary
Iceland
India
Iran
Ireland
Israel
Italy
Jamaica
Japan
Kazakhstan
Kyrgyzstan
Latvia
Lebanon
Liechtenstein
Lithuania
Mexico
Moldova
Monaco
Mongolia
Montenegro
Morocco
Nepal
Netherlands
New Zealand
Norway
Pakistan
Peru
Poland
Portugal
Romania
Russia
San Marino
Senegal
Serbia
Slovakia
Slovenia
South Africa
South Korea
Spain
Sweden
Switzerland
Chinese Taipei
Tajikistan
Turkey
Ukraine
United States
Uzbekistan
CANADA