IBM Takes 3D Printers To Wimbledon
The Wimbledon Championships 2015 are just around the corner and this summer’s tournament will be memorable for more than just the sport. While spectators enjoy the usual strawberries and cream, the traditional background soundtrack of the thwack of tennis balls striking rackets will be joined by a new sound emanating from the IBM kiosk.
This year, IBM will be an official Wimbledon partner and provider of all the real-time data streamed for every match played during SW19’s most important fortnight of the year. This in itself is a huge task and the technological mastery required to achieve such a faultless delivery of such a mammoth amount of information and statistical data is little short of astounding. But why just stop at that; why not bring the live data to life, as it happens, with an impressive demonstration of emerging 3D technology in a very clever marketing ploy?
The fun project will be facilitated and organised by 3D Printshow incorporating no fewer than nine Ultimaker 3D printers. Computers in the IBM Kiosk combined live, in-match stats (aces, double faults etc) with Grand Slam data gathered from over 41 million data points. This information will then be used to predict how the player is likely to perform in each match, and what performance they would need to put on to win. All the positive ‘tweets’ received by that player from fans will then be analysed using sentiment tracking software to gauge the social media loves and loathes. Both sets of data will be combined to provide an overall ‘score’. From this a continually updated ‘leaderboard’ will be created which displays each player in order of merit.
The battery of 3D printers will then be set whirring to produce a player-specific designed trophy for whoever is in the coveted top slot. The dinky novelty souvenir will be personalised with the player’s name being incorporated into the body of the trophy. And all this every 20 minutes throughout the day’s play! One printer working on its own would take around two and a half hours to produce each trophy, but with all nine firing at once, the time could be cut almost as dramatically as the play itself.
The idea behind the data-driven souvenirs is to demonstrate to the watching world how real-time data analytics is beneficial to businesses in helping them to make key decisions based on up to the second, relevant information, and to then be in a better position to deliver exactly what their customers need. No doubt this demonstration will go a long way towards boosting IBM’s sales of home 3D printers, too!
Image source: sellorelse.oglvy.com
About Alison Page
Alison is a small business owner, freelance writer, author and dressage judge. She has degrees in Equine Science and Business Studies. Read her full story at http://www.theladywriter.co.uk