The Olympics are totally awesome. While NBC’s TV coverage is annoying with needless commentary, lots of commercials and human interest pieces, I have been very impressed with the NBCOlympics.com coverage. I have been live streaming a bunch of less popular events like archery, fencing, and judo. Picture quality is decent/not bad, but the best part is there’s nobody talking over the action so you can watch the events like you’re actually there and get a better sense of the atmosphere. Also, live footage of these events in their entirety are archived online to play and rewind at my leisure.
None of the mainstream events (swimming and gymnastics, track and field to come) can be streamed online. That’s no big deal for me, I can catch those live when NBC airs them primetime. People on the West Coast, however, can’t watch live, despite the controversy of NBC forcing these events to be held in the Beijing morning so that they could show them live primetime in this country. West Coasters are appropriately outraged, as evidenced by the 3000+ angry comments on the linked Yahoo article.
Here’s my setup to watch the Olympics. I don’t even want to go to sleep at night since I have a lot of cool events at my fingertips. It’s like a non-stop sports buffet. Archery last night was awesome. The South Korean women are arrow-shooting robots; in the semifinals, they were shooting 10s literally in the midst of a thunderstorm. You can watch that on the NBC archery page.
The real highlight for me will be taekwondo, which won’t be competed until the last week of the Olympics. My taekwondo coach in college was internationally ranked and an Olympics hopeful, but he got injured and as far as I know, isn’t in the 2008 Olympics. Still, taekwondo is flashy and a crowd favorite, should be a lot of fun.
UPDATE: I was wrong, the big events like swimming and gymnastics can be streamed on demand after they air on TV.