The Torch is Lit, the Podium is Live

On August 8 in Beijing, the Olympic flame will have completed a five month journey from its home in Greece to the opening ceremonies of the Summer Olympic Games. Lenovo, as a global sponsor of those games, of the torch relay, and indeed, the design of the very torch itself, is proud to be the official supplier of personal computers to this historic event, China’s first hosting of the Olympics. Today Lenovo is proud to announce its interactive guide to the summer games, the Lenovo Olympic Podium is live.


For the past six months a team of Google engineers led by Thomas Lowry and Tonia Lipscomb, David Aubespin, Shyam Govardhan and Kevin McCloskey worked with Lenovo’s web team of Alan White, Esteban Panzeri, Sheji Ho, Caroline Stringer, Donna Bedford and Rebecca Welles to create a dynamic platform for streaming content about the Games. This platform or “Podium” is officially open today at The Podium is a highly customizable experience built on iGoogle gadget technology, where a user, once signed in, can change the appearance and layout of the page and add custom modules, or gadgets, or related content. Existing Google account holders will automatically sign in to the system. The team has focused on the creation of gadgets that stream content dynamically from:

  • News sources
  • Olympic athlete bloggers – we’re recruiting more than 100 athletes to blog on our new IdeaPad line of notebooks
  • Map interfaces using mashups of Google Maps and the Olympic Torch Relay route and the Beijing Olympic venues
  • YouTube videos related to the Games
  • Picasa photos from the Games

What would you like to see in a gadget? The team plans on releasing a steady stream of new ones throughout the months leading up to the Games: from television broadcast schedules, to results, to first person stories and images from the athletes themselves. The bloggers will be coming online in the weeks to come, so return often to the Podium to see and hear what they have to say. The first two bloggers to join us are Australian rower and Olympic gold medalist, Drew Ginn and US women’s soccer team member, Lindsay Tarpley. Drew blogs at Lindsay is at If you have any suggestions, please leave a comment.