master wrote: MoCoVault wrote:
Is there any way to give http://www.nbcolympics.com
feedback and tell them not to keep changing the order of the vaulters on their live feed. I understand they put them in order of their current place, but it's a lot more informative to pole vault people if they stay in their jumping order. I didn't see a feedback link anywhere.
When I first used their chart I was confused. But when I realized what they were doing, I found it helpful. I am interested in what you feel is "..a lot more informative to pole vault people.." in using the chart without changing its order. I certainly can understand the benefit of that being what we are used to.
Until they improve this (and they won't be improving it before the Men's Finals - it's not a bug), you should just keep a hard-copy or soft-copy of the Start List to refer to the vaulting order. That will allow you to understand passing strategy, who's on deck, etc.
There are at least 3 ways NBC can improve this from a user interface design perspective, each one being a bit better than the previous ...
1. The simplist way is to just add the jumping order # as an additional column to the nbcolympics.com list. The reader can then just glance down the list for the next vaulter in order.
2. A better way is to allow the reader to sort the entire list by either start order or rank - by clicking on the column heading that you want to sort by. Then, for those of you that prefer start order, you can see the list sorted that way. Preferably (for us, at least), start order should be the default order. However, there may be more readers that prefer the rank order, so NBC will cater to that majority.
3. The best way is to make the reader's most recent sort order choice "sticky" - even from one day to another. (This is usually done by "cookies".) That way, you won't have to re-sort the list by start order after every auto-refresh. It just takes a slight bit more time to design the software this way, but it would certainly be the best solution to satisfy everyone - those that prefer rank order, and those that prefer start order.
NBC is using Microsoft SilverLight, which is a very powerful browser plug-in that can make your browser do almost everything that you can do in a "thick client" application - such as Word or Excel. Really, it comes down to understanding user preferences, and designing the user interface accordingly. Keep in mind that they will probably not customize their application for PV only. The same interface will probably be implemented for every field event. Even the running events have somewhat of an equivalent to "Start Order" - it's "Lane #".
As a side note, I think they've done a really good job of implementing this with SilverLight. The auto-refresh feature, for example, is something that you don't normally get in Internet Explorer or Firefox. Without SilverLight, you have to click the refresh button on your browser when you think there's been a change (like we do now on PVP, as Becca posts updates during the competition). The country flags, and the drill-down to athlete bios are also nice features. But most important of all, it's within a minute or 2 of the LIVE results!
Not quite as quick as Becca's stealth team
, but hey, what do you expect for multi-billion-dollar company on a multi-million-dollar website!