Sports, Technology & the Future: Will robots entertain us?

By Zaheer E. Clarke

Published March 13, 2017

Sports is big business and technology has played an integral part in how we are entertained today through sports. Will robots entertain us in future and be our future sports stars?

Deandre Jordan is seen shooting while wearing a wristband that records his biometrics.
(Source: ESPN)

Recently, DeAndre Jordan, the NBA’s leader in defensive rebounds and field goal percentage, wore a little biometric computer called WHOOP on his wrist in an NBA game. The WHOOP tracks his heart rate, skin temperature and other metrics. The device according to Jordan has assisted him with recovery after travelling as well as with his sleeping and eating habits. In essence, Jordan told ESPN’s TrueHoop that the device has taught him what he needs to do and what he does not need to do.

A few weeks later, NBA commissioner Adam Silver, using former New Orleans Pelicans’ Langston Galloway showcased some of the real-time biometrics data that could be collected on an NBA athlete. With wires strapped to his stomach and chest, viewers were able to view biometric data on Galloway’s heart rate, skin temperature, oxygen levels, respiration levels, sleep quality, caffeine levels, and blood pressure. Technology like this is currently banned in the NBA and not allowed under the current collective bargaining agreement, but that may change in the new deal due this year. Continue reading

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‘Roger Federer is simply Amazing Grace’

By Zaheer E. Clarke

(Published Monday, July 6, 2015)

Roger Federer will be seeking his eighth Wimbledon title and eighteenth Grand Slam title this week.

BELOVED: Roger Federer will be seeking his eighth Wimbledon title and eighteenth Grand Slam title this week. © PA Images / Clive Rose / POOL Wire / PA Wire

A fortnight ago, US President, Barack Obama delivered an enthralling eulogy in Charleston, South Carolina, for Pastor Clementa Pinckney of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. In closing, he bellowed an old, yet popular folk song, “Amazing Grace.” This famous ‘African-American’ spiritual was ironically written by a white man, John Newton, who was once a vile slave trader but later reformed to be a man of God.

A few days after the President’s rapturous rendition, which had over 5000 standing and singing in chorus, I sat in the depths of depression over West Indies cricket. Miraculously, my haemorrhaging heart perked a beat when I surveyed the still unfolding career of tennis legend, Roger Federer. Maybe due to years of West Indian asphyxiation, my tiny vocabulary gasped to find the right descriptive words to fully encapsulate Roger’s career. Just then, as hope vanished, the title of the old Negro spiritual, sang often in that old Methodist church, came to me forcefully, “Amazing Grace.” Without a doubt, those simple words are the fitting description for Roger Federer. Continue reading