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[Video] "Panasonic at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games 3" introducing the International Broadcast Center is now available
edited by mino at 2010-03-22 3:59 PM
Are you enjoying the video report brought to you by yuri and sharon? Well, here is the third edition.
The 2 headed towards "Stanley Park," an evergreen oasis for the citizens of Vancouver. From this park, you can see downtown Vancouver on the other side of the inlet, and one of the facilities that you can see is the IBC (International Broadcast Center), from where the footage of the Olympic Games are delivered all around the world. The video also introduces Panasonic's state-of-the-art broadcasting equipment that have been installed in this facility to support its operations and the 152-inch plasma display panel delivered to CTV, the largest broadcasting network in Canada.
Although Vancouver is a large city that represents Canada, it has such a large park nearby, you can enjoy the rich nature in Vancouver. You can also see some totem poles, which also appeared in the Opening Ceremony.
[Video] "Panasonic at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games (2)" introducing what the atmosphere was like in Vancouver is now available
edited by mino at 2010-03-21 2:39 PM
The second series of the video report introducing how Panasonic contributes to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games has been uploaded.
This report introduces the "BC Place," the main stadium of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games where the Opening and Closing Ceremonies were held and the official live site, "LiveCity Yaletown" where live footage of the Games was broadcast and various events were held. There are Panasonic LED Large Screen Display Systems in place at this live site, and they helped deliver an exciting experience to the viewers with its ability to beautifully and dynamically reproduce images. As I wrote in my previous entry, although it was raining on the opening day of the Olympic Winter Games, many people gathered at "LiveCity Yaletown" and cheered on as the Opening Ceremony took place. You can get a feel for what the atmosphere there was like as well.
[Video] sharon will also make an appearance! Video report, "Panasonic at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games 1" is now available
edited by mino at 2010-03-12 7:30 PM
The Cyber Showcase Blog is thriving as the Security Show and CP+ are taking place. I would like to take this opportunity to make an announcement as the writer in charge of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games.
As I have written about in my blog entries, Panasonic has supported the Olympic Games with its state-of-the-art AV technologies for over 20 years as the Official Worldwide Olympic Partner. Of course it played an important role at each venue and related facilities at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games as well, but the first series of 4 video reports that showcases its involvement at the Games has become available.
The main reporters are yuri, who is Japanese and sharon, who lives in Vancouver and has also helped enliven this blog with her entries. The 2 walk through the city of Vancouver, which is heating up with the festive fever and report about the role Panasonic's technologies and products are playing onsite.
The first series that has just been released starts at the Vancouver International Airport and takes a look through the city, and ends at the long running department store, "The Bay." You can take a look at the LED Large Screen Display System set up in the center of town, the Vancouver 2010 special edition LUMIX only sold at the official licensed merchandize store in the "The Bay," and the city on the day of the Opening Ceremony (it seems like that was ages ago). The rest of the series will be released quite soon afterwards, so please remember to check back in with us!
[Video] A video report introducing the FULL HD 3D Theater is now available online
edited by mino at 2010-02-26 12:26 PM
The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games has reaches its final leg. Perhaps everyone is wondering how many medals your country will end up winning in total.
The Panasonic's FULL HD 3D Theater, which appeared in Vancouver where the exciting Games is taking place, is crowded with great many visitors every day. I have introduced the pavilion to you in my entries for this blog, too, but now you can watch a video report that will give you an overview of what the pavilion was like!
In addition to the detailed introduction of the theaters, there are also clips on interviews with pavilion visitors, the 3D live camcorder corner, and the Eco Corner, which introduces the entire booth very clearly and concisely, so please take a look! You can also see what the "LiveCity Yaletown," an official live site where Panasonic's pavilion is located, is like, so you can get a feel for the atmosphere of the city gushing with excitement for the Olympic Winter Games.
When talking about the Olympic Games, we have to remember that there are many many volunteers that help make it a great success. This time, about 25,000 volunteers are helping with the operation of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. I heard that there is a Japanese girl who volunteers at the Panasonic’s FULL HD 3D Theater, so I went and talked to her about what it's like volunteering for the Games.
（mino） How long have you been living in Vancouver?
（Yuki） I was going to school and working for about a year on a working holiday program. The program has ended and I’m planning to travel when the Olympic Winter Games ends before returning to Japan in Spring.
（mino） Why did you want to become a volunteer?
（Yuki） I was going to be in Vancouver during the Olympic Winter Games, so I wanted to get involved in some way. I am astonished by the great number of visitors that comes here every day, but I am enjoying my time working here with the local staff.
（mino） What would you recommend about the Panasonic Pavilion?
（Yuki） As you may be able to guess, I would recommend the FULL HD 3D Theater. It’s so dynamic and lets you enjoy footage of the Olympic Games in 3D, so you can have an experience that is completely different from regular TV. I thought it was stunning. The image of the Opening Ceremony was much more dynamic than what I saw on TV. I hope many people will get to experience it for themselves.
（mino） What is Vancouver like?
（Yuki） Vancouver is rich in nature. I understand why people around the world say Vancouver is a nice place to live. People are very kind and friendly. May be it’s because this country welcomes many immigrants, but people help me with my English or try hard to understand what I am trying to say. So, it has been very encouraging from the beginning. Now, Vancouver is one of my favorite cities.
（mino） Thank you for your time. Good luck and I wish you the best during the rest of the event.
When the Olympic Games takes place in the city you live in and love, you would want to get involved or participate in some way, rather than just watching it take place. I understand that feeling. Such a feeling may have also motivated many volunteers who helped me in town and at the competition venues in Vancouver. The volunteers work for free and not all of them get to watch the Games (unless you are very lucky and end up with a great role), but I believe it is the attraction of the world’s largest event, the Olympic Games, that encourages a large number of people to apply for the volunteer program. The Olympic Winter Games is nearing its end, but I’m sure tens of thousands of volunteers, including Yuki, will feel an amazing sense of accomplishment when it ends.
I watched the footage of the Olympic Winter Games in FULL HD 3D at the Panasonic Center Osaka
edited by mino at 2010-02-21 3:12 PM
Athletes continue to compete fiercely at the Olympic Winter Games every day. I feel a little strange at times when I see images of the city of Vancouver or the competition venues I visited on TV. I can’t believe I was there only a few days ago.
Today, I went to the Panasonic Center Osaka located in Kyobashi, where you can watch the same footage showcased at the Panasonic's FULL HD 3D Theater in Vancouver.
The event is held every weekend and on public holidays until March 22 (until March 14th in the Panasonic Center Tokyo). You can enjoy footage from the Opening Ceremony as well as from the competitions of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games in 3D on a 103-inch PDP installed in the theater. I saw the footage from the Opening Ceremony in Vancouver, but this was the first time I saw images of the Games since they weren't available yet when I was there.
I attended the first showing held at 11:00 am, but there were already a good number of people there, which indicates how much attention 3D is drawing. The footage is more or less the same as the one I saw in Vancouver; it begins with the introduction of how FULL HD 3D works, followed by the history of the Olympic Games, and then an animation featuring the mascots of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games is shown. Then comes the eagerly awaited footage of the Games. After the images that let you fully enjoy the allure of FULL HD 3D such as scenes of the mystical performance the marching-in of each national team, the footage of short track speed skating competition begins.
The short track speed skating takes place on the same rink as figure skating, and athletes race against one another on the short track, competing for first place. The high-speed race and tactical techniques of the athletes are quite spectacular. The footage of short track speed skating in 3D was so dynamic, and the sight of the athletes blocking each other on turns or skating at extraordinary speeds seemed so real. Personally, it feels much closer to watching it live, and the sense of speed is different than when you watch it in 2D on TV. I would also love to see other competitions such as alpine sports and hockey in 3D!
According to what I heard from the person in charge, the theater is nearly full every time and very successful, perhaps also due to the exhibition featuring the FULL HD 3D TV, the "3D VIERA," for homes that began at the same time as the theater. The difference in screen size and content, in comparison to the 54-inch "3D VIERA," which airs movie teasers, is appreciated by many viewers who have said, "It was great because we could see a wide variety of content." Although most of the visitors are families, the "3D VIERA" is also drawing interests among the elderly and so most of the reservations for the first theater showcase on the first day of this event were placed by the elderly. Many people seemed to be already considering purchasing the new TV.
New footage from the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games will be added to the range of content showcased in the FULL HD 3D Theater in the Panasonic Centers once they become available. In addition, events featuring the Olympic Games that may be fun for families are also being held here, so please stop by!
|The "3D VIERA" will finally become available in Japan on April 23. You can see these products at the centers nearly every day (closed on Wednesdays), so don’t miss it if you plan to visit the theater.|
I interviewed a couple of local people about Olympic fever
edited by sharon at 2010-02-20 1:38 PM
Only a few days left until the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games end. I can’t believe how fast time flies! When I was watching a news program on TV last night, the reporter said that he had never seen Vancouver with full of passion and excitement like this before.
Some of my friends who don’t usually watch sports are now so into the 2010 Winter Games. The men’s hockey game between Canada and the U.S. played last Sunday had really high audience rating in Canada. It seems like that Canadians are really enjoying this almost once-in-a-lifetime experience of living in the host city for the Olympic Games.
I interviewed the owners of three restaurants (one Chinese restaurant, one Japanese restaurant, and one pizza house) around the Richmond area the other day. The owners of these local restaurants were really happy with tons of customers coming from all over the world. The owner of the pizza house even set up a big TV in his restaurant so that customers can enjoy the Games as well as meal at the same time. His restaurant is of course always busy.
Two things that local people are not happy about is heavy traffic and busy public transportation. Because numerous tourists from all over the world heavily rely on public transportation to go anywhere in Greater Vancouver, every SkyTrain and Bus is always packed. And it results in the delay because it takes longer to arrive at and leave stations than usual. Also it added average 30 - 45 minutes to commute time for people working in downtown Vancouver. However, despite heavy traffic and busy public transportation, it’s all worth being the host city for the Olympic Winter Games!
Safely back in Japan, but my entries for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games will continue!
edited by mino at 2010-02-17 9:55 PM
Hi! This is mino. After flying from Vancouver to Narita, transferring over to Haneda airport (another airport in Tokyo) and then flying to Kansai airport, I have finally arrived home. In Japan, there is much coverage on the 2 medals Japanese athletes have won in the Men's Speed Skating. Although "taking part" in such a great sporting event is the most important thing, for athletes it's important to create a new record, that is to finish in the top 3 and win a medal. Of course we, as spectators, can't help having high expectations, too. I don't know how many more medals Japanese athletes will be able to win, but I think I will be spending few more days pegged to the TV, fighting off sleep.
I am now back in Japan, but the Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater in Vancouver will be open until February 28, the end of the Games. I will keep writing entries on the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games that I wasn't able to finish writing when I was in Vancouver, brand new entries based on information I receive from onsite, as well as entries on the Games related events organized at the Panasonic Center in Japan until the Games end, so please keep checking in with us!
Last night there was heavy rainfall here in Vancouver, but this morning, the fifth day of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games, you can see the blue sky here and there through the clouds.
Many people in Japan may be celebrating the medals Japanese athletes won for Men's Speed Skating. The excitement of the Games has just begun, but unfortunately, I am leaving for home today. I decided to leave my umbrella, which got bent due to extensive usage, in the hotel room. But it really did do a great job keeping me dry during my stay in Vancouver!
Although it was only for 8 days, I was very much impressed by the warm hospitality of the people in Vancouver. Everyone here, including the theater staff, hotel clerk, and bus and taxi drivers was very kind. Even though I spoke to them in my bad English, they didn't look at me strangely; they answered me kindly in a very easy-to-understand manner. It may be because the Olympic Winter Games is taking place here at this moment, but I also felt that it may have something to do with the multicultural diversity inherent to this country.
And the very popular Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater - people who gathered at the live site to enjoy this major sporting event with many others experienced the world of the Olympic Winter Games in FULL HD 3D in the theaters (it's nice out today, so I'm sure it will be very crowded again). Those of you who live in Vancouver as well as those who plan to visit, please stop by the FULL HD 3D Theater at LiveCity Yaletown.
I'm leaving today, but I will continue to write more entries based on the information I have gathered here as well as information I will be receiving from Vancouver until the Olympic Winter Games comes to an end. Our guest writer, sharon, will also be posting more entries from Vancouver, so please check back with us once in a while.
I'd like to express my gratitude to the staff working at the Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater who took time out of their busy schedule to help me with my research. The theater will be open until the Olympic Winter Games ends, so please take good care of yourself and good luck! And I would also like to ask for your continued support in providing information!
And sharon, thank you for going with me to Cypress Mountain even though it was very cold. I would also like to congratulate you on the excellent job you've done on the video report shoots! I'm looking forward to reading more of your entries!
Well, goodbye for now!
GO CANADA! GO JAPAN!
Vancouver is more fired up after the 2010 Winter Games began!
edited by sharon at 2010-02-16 10:42 AM
Vancouver is now packed with people who are hyped about the Games. Wherever I go, I see people dressed in clothes with an image of the Canadian national flag singing the national anthem, "O Canada." Many stores also put the "Go Canada Go! " cheer on their windows. In downtown Vancouver, a lot of images of a maple leaf, which is the national symbol of Canada, and posters featuring Olympic athletes are displayed. This is really a special event for people who live in Vancouver. When I visited the torch relay event at David Lam Park a few days ago, a Canadian told me that as he saw the torch flame passing by, a sense of national pride was brewing inside of him. How wonderful this opportunity is for the world to see the beauty and passion of Vancouver!
Despite of the rainy, cold weather, every competition is full of people cheering for their countries; many of them are even dressed in national colors, which are usually represented in the nation’s flag. For example, the national colors of Canada and Japan are red and white.
Before the Games began, I could roughly picture how the city would change during the 2010 Winter Games, but when the Games actually started, the city has changed more dramatically than I expected! Vancouver now seems to draw world attention. Every single day is like a celebration.
So, if you are in town and haven't felt the excitement and joy of the 2010 Winter Games yet because you don’t have a ticket to the Games, please visit the Celebration Sites in downtown Vancouver, Yaletown, Richmond and other locations, which I introduced in an earlier entry. Panasonic’s LED Large Screen Display System is installed in some of the Celebration Sites and screens the passion of athletes. I recommend that you visit the Celebration Sites and join the party with the world!
The competition venue for figure skating is the newly renovated Pacific Coliseum
edited by mino at 2010-02-15 11:28 PM
Figure skating is a competition people in Japan are hoping that Japanese athletes will win medals in at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. I went to the Pacific Coliseum to watch the pairs free skating on February 15, the 4th day of the Olympic Winter Games.
Pacific Coliseum, which was constructed in 1968, may be found within Hasting Park, located east of central Vancouver. The venue, which once was home to NHL's (National Hockey League) Vancouver Canucks, is now the home arena for the Vancouver Giants of the WHL (Western Hockey League). After this existing facility was selected as one of the competition venues for the Olympic Winter Games, the Pacific Coliseum underwent a major renovation. The first 3 rows of the stands were removed temporarily in order to expand the rink, because the figure skating requires a larger rink than ice hockey. Such efforts to use and renovate existing facilities as much as possible reflect the sustainability-conscious approach of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. Although it’s been more than 40 years since the Pacific Coliseum was constructed, it doesn’t look old-fashioned or didn't seem inconvenient at all. Rather, its long history gives it a chic and pleasant ambience.
As you may know, both the gold and silver medals were won by China. I was very impressed by their perfect, beautiful performances. How they performed to the music synchronously and dynamically was truly amazing and I thought that they put on a truly medal-deserving performance. With pair skating, not only do you get to enjoy a beautiful dance, you also get to see acrobatic moves such as lifts or women being thrown across the ice, and at such times I could hear the sound of the blades scratching the ice all the way up on the 2nd floor. Skill, beauty, strength, and harmony - I realized anew the allure of pairs skating that combines these 4 elements.
As you know, figure skating is a special sports that involves skating and also performing dance choreography to music. So, while it is a sport, the artistic element is also very important. In addition, unlike the singles figure skating, the pair figure skating requires that the two performers skate in unison. When the pair made their turns and spins synchronously with the music, the venue erupted into a loud round of applause. What's important here is audio quality. The ability to deliver audio beautifully and evenly to over 14,000 spectators, not to mention the athletes, is key. Also, the sound system must be compatible to various types of sounds and instruments since music of all genres is played during the competition. Panasonic has provided the sound system including speakers installed at the Pacific Coliseum.
Some of you may have seen how big the Pacific Coliseum is on TV, but having actually sat in the stands, I was overwhelmed by its sheer size and high ceiling. And because the entire floor is covered with ice, you would think that the sound may echo, but that wasn't the case at all. I could concentrate on what was happening on the ice while enjoying high quality audio. I’m sure Panasonic has great know-how on how to select and where to place speakers as well as how to adjust sound absorption. I was told that Panasonic did not just provide these equipment; the staff traveled to Vancouver much earlier than the Games began to install and set up the equipment to suit the environment in each venue.
|This is the screen installed in an area within the coliseum near the concession stands. Perhaps it was a live broadcast, but the image of the blazing Olympic flame was displayed on the screen.|
High-definition, LED Large Screen Display System plays an active role at the official live sites
edited by mino at 2010-02-15 10:43 PM
Tickets for the Olympic Games are limited in number, so they are quite hard to get. If you don’t have one, you can watch the Games on TV in your hotel room or at home, but I recommend that you go to one of the official live sites if you want to experience the excitement of the Olympic Games live.
There are 2 official live sites in Vancouver - "LiveCity Downtown" and "LiveCity Yaletown" - where you can enjoy live broadcasts of the Olympic Winter Games as well as concerts and various other events on a LED Large Screen Display System, which have been installed in each of the sites.
You can watch colorful fireworks at 22:45 pm before the live sites close for the day every night here at the "LiveCity Yaletown," where Panasonic’s FULL HD 3D Theater is located, adding excitement to the festive atmosphere. In addition, there are many elements even families can enjoy all day long, such as concession stands offering food from various different countries as well as trucks where you can buy Olympic merchandize.
The "LiveCity Yaletown" is always crowded with people - including local young people and families as well as tourists from abroad who have come to Vancouver to watch the Games - who want to share the excitement with others. A world where people were "Sharing the Passion" really was here at the live site on the day the Olympic torch arrived at the site, the day the Opening Ceremony was broadcasted live, and is also present during the daily live broadcast of the Olympic Games. What you find at the end of people's gaze is Panasonic’s LED Large Screen Display System.
Broadcasting footage such as of the Olympic Games at locations made available to the public, such as the "LiveCity Downtown" or "LiveCity Yaletown" in Vancouver, is called public viewing. Since the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, Panasonic has been providing large screen display systems for public viewing to the host cities in order to communicate the passion and excitement of the Games to many people. And this time, at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games, high definition footage was shown on these large screen display systems, so the people gathered in front of the screens are enjoying even clearer more true-to-life footage of the Games.
The LED Large Screen Display System reproduces "THE moment" in beautiful imagery. I am impressed by how such large screens are entertaining a great many people and transforming the site into a "world where people can share the passion and excitement."
I'm done shooting the video report!
edited by sharon at 2010-02-15 8:52 PM
The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games have finally begun! Have you all been enjoying the Games so far?
I have actually been quite busy over the past few days. Why? Not because I was watching the Games, but because I was shooting video reports! This is my very first time being on camera, so it was a lot of work. I was very worried on the first day of the shoot; I was afraid I might look nervous on camera. However, since everyone on the team that makes video reports was professional, they made my job much easier and helped me be myself on camera. During the shoot I realized that it really doesn't just magically happen; it requires hours of preparation and hard work.
I think the most difficult part of the shoot was the weather; rain made the shoot extra hard. When raindrops fell on the camera lens, we had to redo the scenes. Not only did we have to worry about the weather, the director and cameraman worked very hard to find the best angle and position to make sure that the audience will be able to enjoy the best shot in the video reports. I really appreciate having had the opportunity to be involved in the video report and to show you all around Vancouver!
Moreover, thanks to the experience being in the shot, I had many chances to see a lot of passionate people from all over the world as well as Canadians supporting their athletes; I saw pure joy and hopes on their faces and it really touched me. As Panasonic’s slogan for the Olympic Games, "Sharing the Passion," indicates the Olympic Games are really an event where people from all over the world can come together and share the passion and excitement!
I went to watch speed skating at the Richmond Olympic Oval, a facility that is sustainability-conscious
edited by mino at 2010-02-15 12:18 PM
It was raining last night, but today is totally the opposite; it’s a beautiful sunny day. I wish I could have watched the moguls at Cypress Mountain in such nice weather, but c'est la vie. What’s past is past.
Today is the 3rd day of the Olympic Winter Games. I went to Richmond Olympic Oval to watch the women’s 3000m speed skating competition. The venue seen from the other side of the Fraser River that flows on the south side of Vancouver was just stunning, and the people in line heading for the venue to watch the competition were taking photographs in turns, and they seemed to be enjoying the pleasant walk along the river.
Perhaps it was because 3 Canadian athletes were competing that day, but the venue was filled with great excitement even before the competition began. Images of the marching band sounding the trumpets and trombones and the dancers performing to the music were shown on the large LED displays. The shots of groups cheering for their own countries such as Canada, the US, Holland, and Japan were also shown on the displays, adding even more excitement to the atmosphere. These large LED displays are from Panasonic. In addition to these displays, Panasonic’s sound systems i.e. speakers, and network cameras from the "i-pro series" used for surveillance and security purposes have been installed in this venue.
This was the first time I watched speed skating live at a venue, so I was very astonished by the speed. Unlikely TV broadcasts, you watch the race from one specific location, so you can really see how fast it all is. The athletes who race like the wind on the mirror-shiny ice are truly amazing. And these athletes who completed the 3000m-race in approximately 4 minutes seemed, understandably, to have no energy left; they took off their hoods, put their hands on their knees, and let the momentum from the race keep pushing them around the ice for one more lap. The athletes skate each lap comprising the 3,000m by taking their physical strength and speed into consideration. By the time they reach the final corner their bodies must have been exhausted, nevertheless, they skated aggressively, yet very precisely - this sight made me think that long-distance speed skating offers excitement different from that of short track. The gold medal went to Martina Sablikova from Czech Republic. Japan’s Masako Hozumi who skated with Sablikova (2 athletes skate per race) finished in 6th place. The time difference between the 2 athletes was about 5 seconds, an overwhelming difference in speed skating. I left the venue after the last race as the crowd went wild discovering that the bronze medal was going to Canada’s Kristina Groves.
I was also impressed by the size of the speed skating rink itself. I didn’t think that a 400m-track would be this large! My seat was located near the center, a little in front of the goal. It was a really good seat. Having said that, although we could see the stretch from the final corner to the goal very well, the area near the finish line was out of our line of sight and so I couldn’t see what was going on there even when I got up from my seat. But like at the moguls competition, you could see areas that may have been blind spots for spectators on the large LED displays. When people saw breathtaking shots including the facial expressions of athletes after they crossed the finish line or the scenes from the final corner to the finish line in slow motion, they were riveted to the screen. And when an image of an athlete crying after having fallen right before the finish line was displayed on the screen, spectators in the venue cried out in sympathy. Being onsite, I felt that what makes the Olympic Games special are not only the records, but also scenes likes these. And of course, everyone celebrated with a warm round of applause when Sablikova, the 22-year-old athlete who gave the Czech Republic its first medal in speed skating, began to run with her national flag in her hand. The large LED displays also showcased other dramatic scenes that took place even after the race, and left a lasting impression on the spectators.
By the way, Richmond Olympic Oval is one of the few facilities that were newly built after Vancouver was chosen as the host city for the Olympic Winter Games. I was looking forward to coming here since I heard that it has been designed to be sustainability-conscious. I have shown you photographs of the interior of the facility in my previous entry, but the timber used for the ceiling I told you about are also used in various other places such as under the canopy of the entrance, adding natural warmth to the ice skating rink. Let me introduce some of the other considerations that have been made to the facility, as also introduced in detail on the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games’ website.
Use of wood damaged by pine-beetles
As I have mentioned before, wood from British Columbia that have been damaged by a pine-beetle infestation have been used for the ceiling. This may contribute to encouraging other applications of such semi-damaged wood. I looked at it carefully, but as you can see in the photograph, it looked just as beautiful as normal wood.
Rainwater collected from the large roof is used as supplementary water for flushing toilets. Rest of the water is stored in a pond found in front of the building, and used to water trees on the premises.
Reusing waste heat
Considerable amount of heat is generated when creating ice for the skating rink. Such waste heat is collected at the Oval and reused to create hot water and for heating/cooling systems for the building. As the size of the rink is equivalent to 6 international hockey rinks, a great amount of heat can be collected.
Reuse of the facility
The facility has been designed to provide citizens a place to train and enjoy not only skating but also various other sports after the Olympic Winter Games ends. I’m so envious that the people in Greater Vancouver would be able to use such a wonderful facility.
Realizing dynamic live relay event made possible by establishing a connection between Vancouver and Osaka over the Internet
edited by mino at 2010-02-15 11:18 AM
On February 14, at 21:30pm local time, an event that connected the Panasonic Pavilion in Vancouver with the Panasonic Center Osaka in Japan over the Internet to establish a true-to-life high definition video conversation between the 2 locations was held.
In this event, a system which lets you have a TV conference with people in different locations using high-resolution video and high-quality audio over the Internet was used. This system was introduced at CES held last month. The system was originally developed for businesses as a means of conducting TV conferences with remote locations, but it is increasingly being used for live relay at various events. Perhaps the beautiful visual images and great audio quality, as well as the time-lag free, smooth, bi-directional conversation over the Internet have given way to such unexpected applications. Come to think of it, HD visual means that the picture quality is equivalent to that of digital TV broadcasting or Blu-ray software, so even if you are displaying the image on a large screen, you can clearly see all the details. It’s almost as if you are watching a TV broadcast.
A live feed of elementary school students gathered at the event was shown on the screen in the Panasonic Pavilion's Eco Corner. You could clearly see the faces of each student. I was told that the students were at the Panasonic Center Osaka on a field trip. Following a brief introduction about the Eco Corner given by the MC in Vancouver, the students in Japan asked the Canadian staff who work in the Pavilion questions about the Olympic Winter Games and Vancouver, and the staff answered these questions through an interpreter.
While the screen here displayed the image of many children in Japan, the screen installed at the venue in Japan displayed the image of staff answering questions in Vancouver, almost in life-size. I heard that everyone was amazed at how dynamic the communication was even though Vancouver is so far away, and that they said they felt like they were talking to a person standing right in front of them.
Heated competition continues every day at the Olympic Winter Games. And Panasonic's FULL HD 3D theaters have also been extremely popular since the opening day. There is always an endless line of people waiting to get in that extends even outside the pavilion. I would say that the best time to visit the pavilion is around 11:00 am, right after the doors open. In this entry, I would like to introduce the Eco Corner found within the Panasonic Pavilion. The corner offers various exhibits where children and adults alike can learn about eco in a fun way. Many families stop by this corner after enjoying the theater.
|[ eco quiz ] Here, you can take quizzes for 4 categories -"water," "recycling," "energy" and "global warming" - and use the touch panel to select the best answer from 3 options. People of all ages can learn about the environment while having fun.|
As you may already know since it has already been reported on the news, Cypress Mountain, where Freestyle Skiing and Snowboard are taking place, and Whistler, which serves as the competition venue for Alpine Skiing, are facing a lack of snow. I'm not sure if this is caused directly by global warming, but what does seem certain is that the Olympic Winter Games, which involves most competitions taking place in nature, is greatly affected by changes in the environment. Perhaps that is why the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games itself is upholding sustainability as one of the main themes.
We should do what we can to protect our plant, so that there will be a lot of snow in the mountains during winter, and the Olympic Winter Games will continue to be held on the best winter stage.
My very first Olympic Games experience at Cypress Mountain!
edited by sharon at 2010-02-14 10:17 PM
Have you been feeling the passion of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games? I have, too, and what's more, I was fortunate enough to get to go watch women's moguls with mino-san at Cypress Mountain on February 13th.
|This is the ticket. The illustration of the moguls skier is pretty cool, isn’t it? There is also an image of inukshuk on the hologram you can see in the bottom right. Can you see it?|
After I met mino-san at the Waterfront Station in downtown Vancouver, we took the SeaBus, a ferry, which connects downtown Vancouver with North Vancouver, to Lonsdale Quay, and then transferred to a shuttle bus that took us up to Cypress Mountain. Because the shuttle bus took us all the way up to the mountain, it was very convenient getting there. Unfortunately, it was raining most of the day and during the competition, so most of the spectators wore raincoats.
Although our seats were quite close to the front, in the 13th row, it was still far away from the course. However, there was a huge screen right next to the course, so we could still enjoy the competition. mino-san told me that it was Panasonic’s LED Large Screen Display System. I was very impressed by the image quality of the LED screen because we could clearly see the athletes competing far away from where we were. Despite the cold, rainy weather, the LED screen offered excellent image quality, and thanks to the big screen, everybody could clearly see the athletes making turns and their aerials.
The atmosphere at Cypress Mountain was wonderful and full of energy. Everyone cheered for athletes not only from their home countries, but also from other countries. Because neither Canada nor Japan won the gold medal, mino-san and I were a bit disappointed, but we still had a good time watching strong athletes from all around the world compete right in front of our eyes at Cypress Mountain.
The next day I was watching men’s moguls on TV and guess what! Canada won the gold medal! Alexandre Bilodeau was crowned champion for men’s moguls. He not only won the first gold medal on the homeland, but he was also Canada’s very first to win the gold in men’s moguls at the Olympic Winter Games. The whole nation celebrated the victory that day and it was an awesome night for Canadians.
I checked out the versatility of the large LED screens at the women's moguls competition venue!
edited by mino at 2010-02-14 12:50 PM
Today, February 13th, is the first day of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. Fortunately, I was given the opportunity to go watch women’s moguls. The weather was not so great, but I went to see it with sharon!
The moguls competitions are held at Cypress Mountain located within the Cypress Provincial Park, which is about 8 km northwest of Vancouver. It is a popular destination easily accessible from Vancouver where people can enjoy hiking in the summer and skiing in the winter. Cypress Mountain serves as the venue for Freestyle Skiing and Snowboard during the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games.
The moguls course I saw was about 250m long, but the starting point looked much farther to the naked eye. The athletes look very tiny, and you can hardly tell who is standing there. The athletes ski down the slope from such a high attitude and at high speeds to the goal right in front of the spectators performing 2 aerials along the way. Moguls are one of my favorite sports because you can watch the entire run and it’s so dynamic. When you actually go to the venue, the 27-degree slope really looks like a "wall." And the 250m run feels much longer than it seems. You also realize what courage and superb skills the athletes who ski down such a tough slope have.
After the DJ introduced the athletes, the competition began with the cheer, "Vancouver, are you ready? Yes, we are!" When they start, they are too far up, so we couldn’t see their performance with the naked eye. People were looking at the athletes come down on the large LED screen located on the right side of the course. Of course, there is a Panasonic logo on the frame of this large screen that display clear images in high definition. The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games is the first time the footage of the Games is displayed in high definition at the venues.
In my case, I kept my eye on the LED screen until the athletes finished their first aerial and then I turned my gaze to the actual course. Then, I looked back at the LED screen again to look at their form as they made their turns and then back again to the course to watch the latter half of the performance with my own eyes. Unfortunately, I couldn’t see what was going on after the athletes crossed the finish line since the judge’s seat was blocking the view. So, I went back to looking at the LED screen again. You could see the faces of the athletes taking off their goggles, waiting and perhaps praying for a good result, and their joyous faces after they saw the results displayed on the LED screen.
Of course, some people probably watch the competition directly (or perhaps using binoculars?) rather than turning to screens, but the large LED screen is convenient for watching the highlights again since the best scenes such as the aerials or turns are immediately replayed in slow motion. The shots of spectators that are also displayed on the screen once in a while, out of the blue, also greatly contributed to firing up the crowd, adding to the excitement of the competition. I’m sure the Games would be much less exciting if there were no large LED screens or if the images were unclear.
As you may know, Aiko Uemura and other members of the Japanese women's moguls team unfortunately did not win a medal. But being onsite, I got to see first hand how the top athletes performed excellently. Uemura did very well, too, but the winners did even better. Each of the athletes believed in themselves and bravely took on the challenge to do their utmost without being afraid of failure. I would like to give a warm round of applause to all the athletes who stood on the starting line at the top of the hill - including those who won medals, those who fell, and those who did not make it to the final round.
"Audience Participation Kit" handed out at the Opening Ceremony
edited by mino at 2010-02-14 10:49 AM
This is a photograph of a kit distributed to the audience who went to the Opening Ceremony of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games on February 12th. As you know, the tickets for the Olympic Games Opening Ceremony are one of the most difficult to obtain. And this kit was handed out to only those people who were lucky enough to attend the ceremony. I managed to borrow this kit from such a lucky individual.
The kit comes in about a 50 cm diameter octagonal box, and it contains the items you can see in the photograph. The box itself serves as a drum and the box includes a drumstick, a small Canadian flag, a poncho (the color differs depending on each seating area), a maglite, and a candle-shaped penlight.
During the Opening Ceremony, the audience played the drums or waved the penlight in synch, following the directions given by the leader of the section your seat belonged to. The box also has a handle, so the audience can carry it easily and take it home as a commemorative gift.
Instead of just watching the performance, the audience was able to actually take part and enjoy being part of the ceremony. I’m sure it became a wonderful, memorable event for those who attended the ceremony.
Check out your own image in 3D! The very popular 3D live camcorder
edited by mino at 2010-02-13 11:32 PM
Needless to say, the main star of the Panasonic pavilion is the FULL HD 3D Theater, but there are also other corners where you can experience the 3D world.
The fully-integrated FULL HD 3D camcorder with a twin-lens system corner for professionals is one of them. If you look at the monitor with 3D glasses, you will see everything displayed on the monitor, including an image of yourself and cubes with illustrations of mascots hung from the ceiling, in 3D. Children and adults alike are fascinated when they see their own image in 3D for the first time. People react in various different ways - for example, some wave their hands while others try to shake the cubes.
The interesting thing about this exhibit is that, instead of images such as movies that are pre-produced in 3D, you can see the entire scene that the camcorder is shooting live in 3D. Many people must think when they see this, "Is it this easy to turn things into 3D?"
The images are shot by the camcorder you can see in the upper right-hand corner of the monitor. It is a prototype of the world's first, fully-integrated FULL HD 3D camcorder with a twin-lens system, which Panasonic will start taking orders for this spring, as announced at CES last month. The camcorder employs a twin-lens system. This means that the subject is shot through the 2 lenses, one for the right eye and one for the left, and footage with parallax that makes things appear in 3D is recorded.
Shooting 3D until now had generally involved setting up 2 cameras on a rig. So, every time the system had to be moved, the settings had to be tweaked, i.e. checking to make sure the 2 cameras are at the exact same height, angles are not askew, the color settings for both cameras are exactly the same, etc. The new camcorder, however, is fully-integrated with lenses for the left and right eyes in the best positions from the very beginning, so it will significantly reduce the time required for set up.
The ability to shoot FULL HD 3D footage using a single camcorder weighing less than 3kg without setting up large-scale equipment gives way to unprecedented mobility. And this mobility expands the possibility for FULL HD 3D application as well as shoot subjects, making it possible for us to experience new 3D imagery that could not have been shot in the past. I can't wait to see what the new world of imagery this new camcorder will bring to life.
Recognition for 3D has rapidly increased thanks to the smash-hit movie "AVATAR." Many creators around the world may be very keen to learn more about this camcorder. I'm sure this will also facilitate shooting 3D footage of sports, like the footage you can see in the FULL HD 3D Theater. I don't know if it will be 2 years or 4 years from now, but the day when 3D broadcast of the Olympic Games becomes commonplace may not be too far off in the future.
I watched the Opening Ceremony of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games in 3D at the FULL HD 3D Theater!
edited by mino at 2010-02-13 2:42 PM
There is a long line of people waiting to get into Panasonic's FULL HD 3D Theater every day. Since I heard that the footage of the Opening Ceremony and the Games will be added to the range of content from time to time after the Olympic Winter Games begin, I also went in to take a look.
3D animation featuring the mascots of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games is extremely popular among people of all ages. It is a very cute animation with Quatchi and Miga enjoying skiing or playing ice hockey and Mukmuk also makes an appearance and cheers the 2 mascots on.
I was particularly intrigued by the footage that introduces the history of the Olympic Games. Way back when, images of the Olympic Games were only available as photographs in newspapers. The advent of black-and-white TVs enabled people to watch the Games as moving images, and some time after that, color TVs were introduced. TVs continued to evolve further; screens became wider and images became available in high definition. This made it possible for people around the world to watch more dynamic, true-to-life footage of the Games taking place in a far country.
Panasonic became the Official Worldwide Olympic Partner in 1988, the Calgary Olympic Winter Games, and since then it has been supporting the Games with its state-of-the-art AV technologies. As I watched the footage, I realized that the history of Panasonic's contribution to the Games begins to overlap with the history of the Games. This year marks the beginning of a new era in the evolution of TVs. Yes, that is 3D. Conventional 2D images have dramatically transformed into FULL HD 3D, leaving a strong impression that the highly real sensation brought to life by the new imagery has added a whole new dimension.
The main FULL HD 3D content finally begins after the video introducing such history. At first, you will see footage of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. I was overwhelmed by the beautiful and extremely dynamic images of the Opening Ceremony and the Games, i.e. the spectacular performance by hundreds of thousands of performers at the ceremony as well as the footage of the Games such as of soccer, basketball, and track and field. Watching sports in FULL HD 3D made the whole experience more emotional and more exciting. Footage of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games ends with images from the Closing Ceremony and the phrase, "The curtain closes, a new stage awaits."
I'm sure many people were surprised when they saw what came next; it was the highlights from the Opening Ceremony of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games we just watched live last night. I watched it live on the large LED screens at the live site, and since highlights are being replayed on local TV frequently, the images have become very familiar to me, but they look different when displayed on the 103-inch PDP in FULL HD 3D. The beauty of each scene gains greater depth and it seemed as though the imagery etched a stronger impression in my mind. It seemed to me that the messages conveyed in the mystical and sublime ceremony, which created a different atmosphere from that of the colorful Opening Ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, were more vividly depicted. Although it lacked the usual 3D-like pop-up effect, you can naturally enjoy the beauty of each scene. Perhaps this is because the world reproduced by FULL HD 3D is much closer to the world we perceive with our naked eye.
Footages of the Olympic Winter Games will continue to be added to the content showcased at the theaters, so if you are planning to visit the Panasonic's FULL HD 3D Theater, don't miss it! The images will also be available at the Panasonic Centers in Tokyo and Osaka starting with the events that will be held there this weekend, so I will check out the additional content at the Panasonic Center.
The second day of Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games is unfortunately a rainy day.
The Opening Ceremony took place last night, and as I wrote in my previous entry, I watched it in the rain on the large LED screens set up in the official live site, "LiveCity Yaletown." By the way, did you know that the torch was once again handed over to another runner and carried to a different location after the 4 torchbearers lit the Olympic cauldron? At LiveCity Yaletown, you could watch it being carried to a different location live, but according to an e-mail I received from my friend, that part was not broadcasted in Japan.
The last torchbearer lit a torch once again, carried it out of BC Place, through the streets of downtown Vancouver in an open car, and ended up in the Jack Poole Plaza next to the IBC (International Broadcast Center). And another cauldron shaped exactly like the one at BC Place was lit there.
|This is a picture of the cauldron this morning. It is rumored that this flame will keep on burning here, as a permanent monument even after the Olympic Winter Games finishes. If this is true, it will surely become a new tourist attraction.|
Did everyone watch it? At 18:00 on February 12, 2010, the Opening Ceremony of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games began. Perhaps many of you watched it on TV.
At the official live site, "LiveCity Yaletown," where the Panasonic pavilion is located, there are 2 large LED screens set up by the stage, and the Opening Ceremony was showcased live on these screens. Although it was rainy, many people saved their spots in front of the screen from early afternoon waiting for their ceremony to begin. And as it got closer to 18:00, many more people came to the venue.
As the numbers counting down the seconds appeared in the stands shown on the LED screen, everyone sitting in front of the stage at LiveCity Yaletown also joined in on the countdown.
Although the rain was heavy at times and cold winds blew, the crowd went crazy when the Canadian team appeared. Various scenes - the great performances by musicians, mystical performance that communicate the spirits of the aboriginal people, strong messages communicated in the speeches, and the respect paid to the lost life - left a very lasting impression.
Watching the many people who gathered in front of the large LED screens, withstanding the rain to experience the excitement made me realize once again that the Olympic Games has a very strong power to attract a great many people, and the power of big visual and sound. Although people may not know each other, they gathered to share the excitement, and this magnifies the effect.
The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games has begun! I hope to do my best during the rest of my stay to absorb everything here and to tell you all about it.
I'll be in a video report for this blog!
edited by sharon at 2010-02-12 2:43 PM
Hello everyone! I hope you are as excited about the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games as I am.
I am actually very nervous as I write this blog entry because I am now a member of the team that makes the video reports. In the video report I will team up with yuri-san who flew in from Japan for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. She is actually the one who translates entries for the Cyber Showcase Blog into English. I will be showing her around Vancouver and will take her to various sites related to the Olympic Games in town, so stay tuned!
February 12, 2010. The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games will begin this evening!
The Olympic torch, which came to the official live site - "LiveCity Yaletown" - last night, is traveling across Vancouver this morning. The torch relay is being broadcast live and you can see how the city is getting really excited about the Games. The torch relay will arrive at the BC Place, where the Opening Ceremony will take place at 18:00 to light the Olympic cauldron.
"LiveCity Yaletown," which is one of the official live sites, has officially opened from 11:00 am this morning! "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater" has also officially begun. Many people from all around the world will come and visit the theater and experience the world of FULL HD 3D from today until the 28th of February, the last day of the Games. Let me introduce the Panasonic pavilion, starting with the theater.
|[FULL HD 3D Theaters] There are 2 theaters with a 103-inch Full HD plasma display each. Each theater can hold up to 47 people. It is the main attraction at the Panasonic pavilion, where you can enjoy exciting, dynamic 3D imagery.|
The torch relay has arrived at the official live site, "LiveCity Yaletown"!
edited by mino at 2010-02-11 10:40 PM
In terms of total surface area, Canada is the world’s second largest country. The torch relay was scheduled to travel across this vast nation during its 106-day journey to light the Olympic cauldron during the Opening Ceremony. The torch relay that has been traveling a total distance of 45,000km involving over 12,000 torchbearers finally arrived at the official live site in Vancouver, "LiveCity Yaletown," the day before the Opening Ceremony.
Former top athletes appeared on stage followed by Mr. Gregor Robertson, the Mayor of Vancouver, and VANOC CEO, Mr. John Furlong. The crowd cheered as these representatives expressed their joy and excitement that this day has finally come; since Vancouver was selected as the host city, many people have been preparing for a long time to make this a great success. The excitement reached climax as the torchbearer appeared at the live site and the crowd erupted with the "Go Canada Go!" cheer.
When you talk about the Olympic Games, mascots, who enliven the Games with their cute presence, must not be forgotten. The characteristics of the host nations are reflected in their design, so I find them very interesting. I am sure many of you have seen the mascots for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games on TV. On your right is Quatchi and the one in the middle is Miga. They are the official mascots of the Games. And the one on the far left is Mukmuk, who supports and cheers loudly for his friends. You can see their cute faces all around the city.
Here, at the "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater," you can watch 3D animation of the mascots, and there is also a corner where you can take a photo with them. I am sure many children will gather around in this area during the Games. Let me briefly introduce these mascots to you.
The motif for Quatchi is "a young sasquatch who comes from the mysterious forests of Canada." He is a shy young boy, but loves ice hockey and dreams of becoming a world-class goalie some day.
Miga is a sea bear designed to resemble a killer whale and a polar bear. She lives in the ocean, beyond Vancouver Island, but comes to the shore in the winter seeking adventure. She loves to surf and snowboard. She hopes to one day land a corked 720 in the half-pipe.
Mukmuk cheers Quatchi and Miga on. The Vancouver Island marmot, which is an extremely rare, endangered species served as the model for this character. Mukmuk comes from "muckamuck," meaning food in Chinook, a language used by the First Nations for trading.
You can watch an animation of the mascots on the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games official website.
Surprise! The FULL HD 3D Theater opened tonight a day ahead of schedule
edited by mino at 2010-02-11 6:51 PM
It’s 18:00 on February 11. The remaining time to the opening of the Games displayed on the countdown clock at Robson Square must be less than 24 hours. The preparations for the start of the Games are also underway here at the live site “LiveCity Yaletown” in David Lam Park where Panasonic’s FULL HD 3D Theater is located and food and beverage concession stands have been erected in just a short time.
Since the torch relay, which has been traveling across Canada for 106 days, will come to LiveCity Yaletown tonight as it makes its way to the goal tomorrow, a great number of citizens and tourists have gathered here. And in time with such a milestone, all the sponsors including Panasonic have decided to open up their pavilions from this afternoon a day ahead of schedule.
The doors to the pavilions opened around 16:00 pm and many visitors are staring to make their way in to have a look while they wait for the torch’s arrival. There is already a long line of people waiting to get in. Everyone who comes here has a big smile on his/her face. They seem to be excited and ready to enjoy the torch relay with their family, friends or loved ones tonight and the competitions that will be held over the next 17 days in this city.
People have lined up as soon as the Panasonic’s FULL HD 3D Theaters opened their doors and the 2 theaters are already in full operation. I also joined the line immediately to get in and experience the theater. Although I have already seen people's reactions to the theater at several exhibitions, people’s response here seems a bit different. Everyone seems so excited even while they are waiting in line, and their reactions to the 3D images after entering the theater is amazing! People laughed aloud when they heard a child say, “It's going to get into my eyes!” in the scene where confetti seems to float in the air.
I can hear the voices from the stage well even in the “secret back room” located behind the theaters and I can see the images of the packed pavilion on the monitor in front of me. Being in an environment where a super big event - the Olympic Winter Games - is about to begin, I feel somehow euphoric and it makes me want to high five every person I walk past.
Unexpected thing always happens at the events. The staff at the Panasonic pavilion are busy dealing with the surprise opening, but they seem to be excited about and enjoying the situation.
The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games (the XXI Olympic Winter Games) will finally begin tomorrow, February 12, at 18:00 pm local time (11:00 am of the 13th in Japan time).
Let me talk a little bit about the symbol of the 2010 Winter Games, "inukshuk"
edited by sharon at 2010-02-11 4:39 PM
Do you know about "inukshuk," the symbol used for the emblem of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games? The word "inukshuk" means "something which performs the function of a human" in Inuit. Inukshuk sculptures are stone landmarks, which have been used by the Inuit for marking trails or roads, passing on messages, or identifying reference points.
The history of an event held in Vancouver with inukshuk started back in 1986 when the Expo '86 World Fair was held in the city. An inukshuk sculpture you can still see at the English Bay Beach was a gift from the artisan Alvin Kanak of Rankin Inlet, Northwest Territories. The inukshuk for the 2010 Winter Games was designed by a talented Vancouver local artist, Elena Rivera MacGregor, and it is called "Ilanaaq, " which means "friend" in Inuktitut.
Inukshuk is a symbol for the aboriginal peoples who worship Mother Nature. This in part overlaps with the spirit of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. I am very glad that more and more people in the world will get to know about inukshuk and its meaning through the 2010 Winter Games. Perhaps it may also serve as a guidepost that will lead the Olympic Games to success as well as the world in a better direction.
Sarah Brightman came to the theater on the day before the opening of the Olympic Winter Games!
edited by mino at 2010-02-11 3:39 PM
The pre-opening event of the "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater" and the presentation of Panasonic’s global song for the media were held here at the theater today, February 11, the day before the opening of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games.
Although it has been raining here in Vancouver from early morning, nearly 50 media representatives attended the event and song unveiling. The media were the first guests at the brand-new theater.
First, Mr. Takumi Kajisha, Managing Executive Officer of Panasonic Corporation appeared on stage and talked about Panasonic’s contribution to delivering footage of the Olympic Games to homes around the world with its technology as the Official Worldwide Olympic Partner for the Audio and Visual Equipment category over the past 12 Olympic Games. Mr. Kajisha also announced that the theater where people can enjoy the excitement of the Games in FULL HD 3D imagery for the first time in the world will open its doors to the public today. Then, he introduced Panasonic’s global song "Shall be done." This will serve as a means of communicating Panasonic's corporate philosophy and vision.
Following the introduction of the song, globally renowned diva, Sarah Brightman who sings the song, "Shall be done," was welcomed to the stage with a flood of applause and camera flash. As she smiled at the media gathered there, she spoke about how honored she is to be a part of the great celebration taking place in the city of Vancouver, the host city of the Olympic Winter Games. The diva also mentioned that she was very happy to receive the offer to perform this song, which expresses Panasonic’s commitment to live in harmony with the global environment and to protect it for the future generation. She received a big round of applause when she said, "Please enjoy my passion conveyed in this song 'Shall be done' with Panasonic’s FULL HD 3D."
Then Mr. Eisuke Tsuyuzaki, Chief Technology Officer of Panasonic Corporation of North America appeared on stage. He gave an overview of the FULL HD 3D technology and its future potential. Then the participants were invited to experience the FULL HD 3D imagery in the theaters for themselves. The 3D version of the promotional video in which Sara Brightman sings the song, "Shall be done" was also especially shown. Mr. Tsuyuzaki received interviews from some media including TV crews after the presentation. Perhaps this is indicative of how much interest people have in FULL HD 3D.
Although the view through the glass was not so great due to the rain, the appearance of such a wonderful star added glamour and excitement to the press conference. I’m looking forward to finding out what the media thought about FULL HD 3D imagery in tomorrow’s papers and on the news.
Two days until the Games begin! Robson Square and surrounding areas are crowded with visitors from all around the world
edited by mino at 2010-02-10 6:46 PM
The Robson Square is located in downtown Vancouver. It is a central area of downtown where you can find the countdown clock I introduced yesterday as well as numerous renowned department stores and hotels. You will also find Panasonic's LED Large Screen Display System installed on the facade of the Robson Street side of the Vancouver Art Gallery located in Robson Square.
"CUE" is an exhibition organized by the Vancouver Art Gallery that showcases videos taken by various artists from all over the world during the Games. And Panasonic supports this exhibition because it concurs with the objective of the exhibition, that is to share the artwork with people from around the world. Don't you think it is a wonderful idea to showcase contemporary art videos against a backdrop of a historical building on a main street where people come and go regularly?
|This is the interior of the "BC Showcase." Here, you can learn about the allure of British Columbia through beautiful images.|
Today, I got to meet sharon, a resident of Greater Vancouver who contributes entries to this blog as a guest writer. She took me on a tour of Robson Square as well as the surrounding area and I learned many things about Vancouver. I'm looking forward to reading more of your entries, sharon!
I finally met mino-san at The Bay!
edited by sharon at 2010-02-10 5:55 PM
I went downtown to see mino-san today. Vancouver is really full of Olympic spirit, especially at The Bay, the oldest department store in Canada, located in downtown Vancouver. The Olympic Superstore, which carries various souvenirs and gifts, is on the first floor there.
While I was walking around the store, I ran into mino-san! He looked exactly like the cute cartoon icon on the blog! After we greeted each other, mino-san told me, "I just arrived in Vancouver, but I already feel like I could live here in this beautiful city." Then I asked him, "What do you think about the Vancouver International Airport? It has been renovated for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games." He told me, "I was very impressed by it. It was dressed in the Olympic Games spirit, and there were many friendly and helpful volunteers there as well." I am very glad to hear that mino-san has been enjoying his stay so far.
He also told me that he was really looking forward to watching Women’s Moguls at Cypress Mountain this coming Saturday because a couple of strong Japanese athletes will be competing. I am also going, so I will watch it with mino-san; I, too, am very much looking forward to watching it. Let’s cheer for Team Japan and Team Canada together, mino-san!
I really can’t wait for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games to begin! I am sure we will have lots of fun during the Games!
[Photo] The welcome boards that greet visitors from all around the world
edited by mino at 2010-02-10 5:26 PM
When I walked around the city, I found numerous ad boards, banners, posters, etc. that help dress the city in Olympic spirit. There are all kinds of visual elements including those displayed by the organizer, local government or sponsors, as well as those displayed by individuals such as flags on cars or in the windows. They all help create a festive atmosphere only seen in host cities of the Olympic Games. I found Panasonic ads in many places around the city, so let me introduce them to you.
|The large billboard located along the highway is highly visible even from a distance. It looks as if the size of the billboard is wide just like the screen of a high definition TV.|
"Three days" to go until the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games begin!
edited by mino at 2010-02-09 11:31 PM
It hasn't been sunny in the city of Vancouver for a while it seems, so we were lucky. Taking advantage of the clear skies, I went to quickly take a look around the city before it got dark. The countdown clock, which you may have seen on TV, shows that there are only 3 days remaining until the Olympic Games begin. The Opening Ceremony will start at 18:00 pm on February 12 local time. Due to the time difference, for those of you in Japan the Opening Ceremony will begin at 11:00 am on February 13.
Although it's only been about 3 hours since I arrived in Canada, I already made my way down to the "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater" to take a look. The surrounding open space is still under construction, but the theater itself is done, inside and out. So it is all ready to go, waiting for the Games to begin on the 12th.
When I got here, I noticed that from this area, which is usually used as a park, you can see the beautiful False Creek. And in front of this creek there is a stage with 2 large LED screens. I thought that the setting sun, on a sunny day like today, would look beautiful when all the construction finishes and the no-entry pickets are removed. During the Games, you can watch the competitions on this stage, and events such as concerts will also be held here. And there's no admission fee!
I will tell you all about what you can find here at the FULL HD 3D Theater and the content that will be aired here in another entry.
|The "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater" looks great in the setting sun. Vancouver gets a lot of rain in the winter, it seems, but I hope that we will continue to have sunny days.|
I’m currently here in Vancouver to write entries on Panasonic’s "FULL HD 3D Theater" that will be open during the Olympic Games. Perhaps many of you may still remember the announcement made at CES in Las Vegas last month, which I attended to write entries for this blog, about how 3D products for home-use will become available in North America.
Finally, the FULL HD 3D compatible high definition plasma TV "VIERA" and FULL HD 3D-compatible Blu-ray Disc player and recorder "Blu-ray DIGA" will also be made available in Japan.
The products that will be launched on April 23, 2010 are the "VIERA" 54-inch TH-P54VT2 and the 50-inch TH-P50VT2 as well as 3 models of "DIGA" - HDD DMR-BWT3000 (2TB), DMR-BWT2000 (1TB) and DMR-BWT1000 (750GB). The "3D glasses" that are necessary for watching 3D imagery will be included in the "VIERA" package.
Nearly 1,000 journalists, reporters, and bloggers - the highest number ever - attended the press conference as well as 18 TV cameras. A total of 12 rooms were set up at the press conference venue, and nearly everyone got to experience the 3D world. The response was naturally big, leaving a strong impression that this year will indeed be the “opening year of 3D.” This news received a lot of coverage in Japan. There are links to various articles written by the media on the "3D VIERA" website introduced below.
As it was in my case, the allure of 3D imagery (I mean the latest FULL HD 3D) may be difficult to understand until you actually see for yourself. Therefore, Panasonic is offering opportunities to experience 3D to as many people as possible by setting up mini theaters and conducting truck tours all around the world. I’m sure a great many people will be able to experience the world of 3D and realize its allure at the "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater" set up within the Live Site in Vancouver during the Olympic Games from February 12 to 28. I’m also very much keen to see the footage of the Games that will be updated every day.
|This is the "3D VIERA" website available online. The phrase "Let’s see a new world!" reminds me of the theme "Step into our 3D world" used for the CES.|
Are you ready for the Games? Let’s have a blast at the Celebration Sites in town!
edited by sharon at 2010-02-09 1:45 PM
The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games are right around the corner! In this entry I will give you some last-minute travel tips and tell you about where to go in town during the Olympic Winter Games.
I believe many of you have already heard that Greater Vancouver has been experiencing a warm winter in January and February this year. The current average temperature is around 7 - 10 degrees Celsius. Vancouver gets a lot of rain in the winter, so don’t forget to bring a raincoat or an umbrella with you. In addition, when planning your sightseeing schedule, keep in mind that the sun rises around 7:30 am and sets around 5:00 pm. To some of you, it may seem like sun rises late and sets early.
I think that one of the most challenging things during the Games is transportation. The official website of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games has a useful section called "TravelSmart 2010, " where you can check the bus schedule and road regulation changes and there is also a useful trip planner.
So where else can you go besides the tourist sites listed on your travel guides? "Richmond O Zone" is definitely a place you shouldn't miss! Richmond O Zone, which is located in the heart of Richmond City Centre right next to Richmond-Brighouse Station on the Canada Line, is the official Celebration Site in the city of Richmond and the biggest Celebration Site for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. It will be open from February 12th to 28th, Monday through Friday from 3:00 pm to 11:00 pm and on weekends from noon to 11:00 pm. You can enjoy concerts, fireworks, fun activities for families, exhibits, outdoor skating, and more every day and night for free.
Another awesome Celebration Site is in downtown Vancouver. It’s the "Robson Square Signature Celebration Site" where you can enjoy skating from February 12th to 28th, noon to 9:00 pm for free. There will also be multimedia displays and live broadcasting of the Games aired from the British Columbia International Media Center.
And if you don’t have a ticket to the Games, but would love to watch it with many people, there are 2 places you could go to; one is LiveCity Downtown on the corner of Georgia St. and Beatty St. open from 11:00 am to 12:00 am; and the other one is LiveCity Yaletown at David Lam Park on Pacific Blvd. at Drake St. open from 11:00 am to 11:00 pm. Both sites will be open to the public for free from February 12th to 28th. The Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater is located at LiveCity Yaletown, so please go and visit their pavilion. You can enjoy watching the Games, events, and highlights on huge screens at both of the live sites. These large LED screens have been set up with the support of Panasonic.
Hope you will have a great trip to Vancouver!
I’ve arrived in Vancouver! The airport is crowded with visitors from all over the world
edited by mino at 2010-02-09 1:29 PM
After approximately 9 hours on a direct flight from the Narita Airport, I’ve arrived at the Vancouver International Airport, where the Olympic Winter Games will be taking place. In the airplane, I heard an announcement wishing luck to all the athletes, and the passengers who, I am guessing, will be going to the Games also seemed to be in an elevated mood.
The skies are crystal clear. According to the in-flight announcement, the temperature is 6C°, but it feels much warmer, so I am starting to get a bit worried about the moguls competition I plan to go watch on the 13th.
The airport is filled with banners and posters featuring the Olympic Winter Games and the mascots. A female immigration officer asked me about the purposes of my trip in detail (and I explained by showing printouts of this blog) and then stamped my passport with a smile saying, "Welcome to Canada. Please enjoy the Olympic Games".
After I got my luggage from baggage claim and went through, I saw media from various countries waiting for the arrival of athletes (a scene we often see on TV). That is when I really began feel that I’ve finally arrived in Vancouver.
Now, I will first go drop off my bags at the hotel and then make my way downtown to conduct research for my report!
From this entry onwards, the time displayed will be the local time in Vancouver.
|This is the arrival area at the airport where the media and guides were waiting. Totem poles made by the aboriginal people, Salish, represent "welcome," greet the visitors coming from abroad..|
Commemorative Olympic Games items unique to Canada!
edited by sharon at 2010-02-09 9:56 AM
You will be leaving for Vancouver tomorrow, mino-san. I hope you will have a safe trip and I’m looking forward to seeing you soon!
I have something interesting I'd like to introduce to you. Since Vancouver has been selected as the host city for the 2010 Winter Games, the ICBC (Insurance Corporation of British Columbia) has issued "2010 Winter Games license plates." I’ve seen many cars with these license plates in town, so if you are going to be making your way here, please try to keep an eye out for cars with these beautiful plates!
Another thing I'd like to introduce, which, like the license plates, also exhibits Olympic spirit is coins. As you may know, in Canada, we have six kinds of coins: 1¢, 5¢, 10¢, 25¢, $1 and $2. Each type has a different name - penny for 1¢, nickel for 5¢, dime for 10¢, and quarter for 25¢. These are the same as in the U.S., but in Canada, we have names for 1 dollar and 2 dollar coins, which are loonie and toonie.
The Canadian government issues new quarters with different symbols on the reverse side each year, so please take a closer look at quarters when you get them. Also, from 2007 to 2010 the government has issued an Olympic quarter collection with images of the Games such as ice hockey and figure skating on the reverse side.
|Here are some Olympic quarters with images of ice hockey, alpine skiing, and biathlon.|
Even though you can purchase the Olympic coin collection at the official Olympic Stores, which I introduced in the previous entry, I think it’s more fun to collect each coin yourself. Fifteen kinds of the Olympic quarters have been issued so far. I hope you will be able to collect them all.
Off to Vancouver tomorrow. A map of Vancouver is now available on the Cyber Showcase Blog site!
edited by mino at 2010-02-08 3:48 PM
Time passes so quickly; we only have a few days to go until the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games begin on February 12. I am going to be leaving for Vancouver tomorrow, a few days before the Opening Ceremony.
I would like to write about the "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater" and the energy of the city getting ready for the Opening Ceremony. I will be posting my entries more frequently, so please check more regularly.
A map of Vancouver has been uploaded on this blog to give you a better idea of where the theater and the other locations I will be reporting about are, so please check it out as well.
|You can see the map by clicking on the "Map of Vancouver" icon on the "FULL HD 3D Theater in Vancouver" top page and on the page for the individual entries. On the map you will see pins marking the locations where sharon-san and I have introduced. And if you put your cursor over the pin, you will see the title of the respective entries. If you click on the pin, you can jump to the entry. There will also be a link to the video reports that will become available at a later time.|
It is exciting to think that I will be in the locations seen on the map, in the middle of the city and all the action, tomorrow. I am sure that athletes from all around the world will be coming to Vancouver with great hopes in their hearts. Right now you can only see sharon-san's pins on this map, but I hope I will be able to add many pins myself over the next few days, so wish me luck!
Would you like to get a taste of Vancouver?
edited by sharon at 2010-02-06 3:24 PM
When my friends from all around the world come and visit, they almost always end up gaining a little weight. This is because Vancouver boasts some of the best cuisine in North America!
In downtown Vancouver, there are tons of fabulous restaurants on Robson St and in neighborhood areas. Because of the wonderful cultural diversity in Canada, you can find all kinds of different food from Italian, American, Indian, Mexican, Chinese, to Korean. Many restaurants are actually run by people who have moved from their home countries to Vancouver; that is why I can guarantee that these cuisines are absolutely tasteful and have retained the local, authentic flavor.
Interesting enough, what tastes different here than in the original country is Japanese food! Sushi rolls are very "creative" here, compared to those in Japan. Since mid 1990’s, more and more Japanese restaurants have started creating their own signature rolls and named them differently, like for example the "BC roll." If you have a chance, I definitely encourage you to try the Vancouver style Japanese food!
|This is the BC roll. It’s one of the most popular sushi rolls in the Province of British Columbia (BC), which is famous for its salmon. Can you see the BBQ salmon skin inside the roll?|
Moreover, if you love Asian food, Richmond is a perfect destination for you! The city is all about Chinese food. We have Hong Kong style Dim Sum, Taiwanese food, Shanghai food, and we also have other Asian food such as Vietnamese food. You can find many restaurants on No.3 Rd. and Alexandra Rd. If you want to have some Taiwanese food, you have to try some beef noodles. It looks very good doesn't it? In Hong Kongese restaurants you can find all different kinds of meat and seafood. Another good thing about dining in Richmond is that the average price of eating out is lower than in downtown Vancouver.
Lastly, please keep in mind that a 10% tip should be added to your lunch bill when dining at a restaurant and a 15% tip for dinners.
Information about the "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater" that will appear in Vancouver is now available
edited by mino at 2010-02-05 4:53 PM
Hi everyone. This is mino. Every time I see the countdown "X more days to go!" until the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games begin on TV, etc. I feel excited.
A page introducing the "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater" is now available on Panasonic's website dedicated to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. This page, which bears the title, "Sharing the Passion in FULL HD 3D," provides an overview of the theater, which will be available in Vancouver during the Games.
The "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater" is located inside "LiveCity Yaletown," an IOC recognized live site, found at the David Lam Park, which is walking distance from the center of town.
In this theater, people will be able to experience the dynamic FULL HD 3D world, through 3D content that introduces the history of the Olympic Games, 3D animation featuring mascots of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games, and 3D footage from the Opening Ceremony and various competitions, which will be added to the range of content as the footage becomes available. The new FULL HD 3D systems for homes unveiled at CES a month ago and Panasonic's environmental commitment will also be introduced inside the theater.
If you have any plans to be in Vancouver during the Games, please make sure to stop by and enjoy exciting footage in dynamic, immersive FULL HD 3D.
Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater
Period: February 12 – 28
Open hours: 11:00 – 23:00
Location: "LiveCity Yaletown" inside the David Lam Park, Vancouver
Have a great homestay experience during the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games!
edited by sharon at 2010-02-04 2:45 PM
When it comes to travel, accommodation is a big deal to me. I love choosing a homestay or B&B (bed and breakfast) as travel options because not only do I have more chance to talk with the locals, their houses are often located near desirable attractions; therefore, if you want to experience the real Canadian culture, living with the locals with firsthand information, homestay is an excellent choice to make yourself at home.
Speaking about homestay, the VANOC (Vancouver Organizing Committee of the Olympic Games) offers a special homestay program for Olympic volunteers from all over the world. The biggest advantage is to reduce commute time; hence all host families live in places which are relatively close to each venue. Also the volunteers can receive excellent hospitality. On the other side, the host families can always get firsthand news about the Games from volunteers.
When I came to Victoria on Vancouver Island, which is located to the West of Greater Vancouver, from Taiwan and went to the University of Victoria, I was very fortunate to have a wonderful host family; one of the greatest things about living with Canadians is that they give you total freedom at home as you really are part of their family, but with respect for other people. Homestay works perfectly well for those who appreciate firsthand guidance during their stay and who can take care of themselves. Don’t expect that host families will do everything for you like driving you around the city or do the laundry.
Furthermore, if you are considering doing a homestay, you’d better check the price. Some homestay plans include meals. Most of the time you can choose a homestay plan with breakfast only, breakfast & dinner, or 3 meals per day. Please keep in mind that there is no refund when skipping meals. Also in Canadian culture, people eat cold food; therefore you can expect cereal/bread/egg and coffee for breakfast, and simple sandwiches for lunch. If you wish to have warm food, I suggest you go with the breakfast plan and eat whatever you want for lunch and dinner. Plus, there is no standard price when choosing a homestay; however, you can expect around $550 - 700/month with no meal included; $750 - 900/month with meals included.
I’ve been talking about homestay so far but unfortunately the application for the VANOC homestay program has already been closed. I wish I could’ve let you know about this earlier. Sorry about that. Lastly I hope that everybody will have a great time in Canada no matter where you decide to stay!
It's February and the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games are about to begin. In Japan, athletes being interviewed at the airport as they make their way towards Vancouver are being aired on TV.
The Olympic Games, great sporting festival, welcomes many spectators from all over the world. In the past, new stadiums, facilities, and roads were built or renovated, so hosting the Olympic Games had involved large-scale construction projects. But today, there is greater awareness for environmental issues, so a big theme for host nations is to reduce environmental impact as much as possible. On the page on sustainability of the official Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games website, you can learn about the environmental considerations that have been employed, such as using existing facilities and reducing new construction as much as possible, in order to curtail the impact on the natural environment and society.
For example, BC Place, where the Opening and Closing Ceremonies will take place, is originally the home stadium for the BC Lions, a Canadian football team, and it has been renovated for the Games. The main venue for ice hockey, GM Place, is the home rink for the NHL Vancouver Canucks. And the figure skating and short track venue, Pacific Colosseum is also an existent facility that has been renovated. The Canada Place, where the Main Press Center (MPC) is located, was built in 1986 as the Canada Pavilion for the Vancouver EXPO, and currently serves as a hotel, convention center, and movie theater.
A facility that was newly constructed for the Games is the Richmond Olympic Oval, the venue for speed skating. This facility has employed various eco-conscious ideas, and after the Games, it will be used as a community and sports center for the city of Richmond.
The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games will be held by reusing existing facilities as much as possible. I think many people who live outside Canada think of it as being a "beautiful country rich in nature," but perhaps the beautiful nature only exists because people of Canada have made efforts to preserve it. One of the themes I would like to write an entry about is how people of Canada safeguard the environment, what their environmental awareness is like, and what efforts they make on a daily basis.
Panasonic supports the Olympic Games with its state-of-the-art audio and visual technologies
edited by mino at 2010-02-01 5:55 PM
Just like Beijing 2008, the entire international video signal for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games to be distributed around the world from the International Broadcast Center (IBC) will be recorded and produced in HD format. In addition, HD video will be displayed on the giant screens in the stadium where the Opening and Closing Ceremonies will take place as well as at the various competition venues.
Panasonic has supported the Olympic Movement as the Official Worldwide Olympic Partner in the Audio and Visual Equipment category for more than 20 years ever since the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) The Olympic Partner (TOP) Program was introduced at the Calgary Olympic Winter Games in 1988. And at this edition's Winter Olympic Games, Panasonic, as the TOP sponsor of the Games, will be supplying the greatest quantity of AV devices in its history. Panasonic will contribute to the success of the Olympic Games with its HD technologies. Now, let me briefly introduce the wide range of AV devices that will be supplied to the venues.
Panasonic’s DVCPRO HD format has been chosen as the recording format for the 2010 Winter Games. Starting with the Barcelona 1992 Olympic Games this will be the 9th Olympic Games in which Panasonic’s digital broadcasting equipment will be used as the recording format. Approximately 160 units of P2HD/DVCPRO HD Recorders, 50 units of P2HD Camera Recorders, 600 units of monitors have been supplied as well as 16 units of multi format live switchers to 12 venues.
A total of 29 LED Large Screen Display System have been installed at 15 venues including 3 screens at the BC Place, which will certainly add excitement to the Opening Ceremony. In addition, 91 Professional Audio Systems in 17 venues, approximately 3,000 TVs, 17 DLP Projectors and 1,200 Monitoring and Surveillance Cameras have been provided.
HD Video Conference System
Panasonic has also provided HD Video Conference Systems, which will link the 2 Athlete’s Villages – one in Vancouver where competitions such as Skating, Curling, and Ice Hockey will take place, and one in Whistler where Alpine Skiing, Ski Jump, and other competitions will take place. Panasonic's system, which combines HD visual communication units (KX-VC500) available in Canada next year with Full HD PDP and Full HD Camcorders will link the Villages with H.264 high-resolution images and high audio quality to enable true-to-life visual communication. This system that I introduced inmy report about the CES will not only be used for conferences, but also for the welcoming ceremony to be held at the Villages in order to unite the athletes together. In addition to saving time and money that may have been required for athletes to travel between the Villages, this system will also help reduce CO2 emissions from transportations, ensuring an eco-conscious Olympic Games.
AV Security Equipment
Panasonic has delivered over 1,200 units of AV Security Equipment to ensure a safe and secure environment for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games to take place in. The equipment will be installed in various locations including the competition venues and peripheral grounds, surrounding cities as well as for outdoor security on highways.
As you can see, Panasonic will contribute to the success of the Olympic Games with its HD technologies. I was impressed by the sheer quantity of equipment that it has supplied. You can get a feel for the grand scale of the Olympic Games just by looking at these figures. I will write more about Panasonic’s equipment when I see them in Vancouver!
Take some Official Vancouver 2010 Olympic Merchandize home!
edited by sharon at 2010-01-29 7:56 PM
Hello everyone and welcome back! In this entry I will tell you where you can find Official Vancouver 2010 Olympic Merchandize. Guess where! Yes, visitors’ all-time favourite, the official Olympic Stores.
I was at the airport to pick up my friend from Taiwan yesterday. While I was waiting for her, I walked around inside the airport and found this beautiful Olympic Store! It is located on the second floor right next to the food court. Don’t worry if you can’t find the store because there are many staff on site who will help you find your way.
|There were various kinds of pins from those with Olympic mascots to those with cool designs. They are enjoyable even just to look at. I also found pins with "Welcome to Vancouver" written in Japanese.|
Now you might want to ask me this question: So are there any other Olympic Stores in town? Yes, of course! If you go to The Bay, which is Canada’s oldest department store, in downtown Vancouver, you’ll find a huge Olympic Superstore on the first floor.
|When I was walking around the store, I saw a Panasonic booth! It sells the new "LUMIX," which has been especially designed for the 2010 Winter Games. Look what it’s got! I love the 2010 Winter Games logo on the camera. It’s really pretty, isn’t it?|
|Moreover, when I was walking around town after I left The Bay, I saw a bus with a Panasonic ad waiting for the green light! What a lucky day!|
When people in Canada think of Panasonic, they think that it has high-tech, high quality products such as HDTVs, digital cameras, and printers. I personally think that their products are very durable and reliable.
I hope you have enjoyed this entry, and if you coming here for the Games don’t forget to take some Official Vancouver 2010 Olympic Merchandize back home with you!
The theme for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games upheld by the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC) is "With Glowing Hearts." This simple and strong message comprised of 3 words is taken from the Canadian national anthem, "O Canada."
|This is the official website for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games. You can see the words, "With Glowing Hearts" on the upper left hand corner, right next to the emblem.|
VANOC Chief Executive Officer, Mr. John Furlong, said the following in the press release found on the official website: "With Glowing Hearts is connected and familiar to all Canadians through our anthem 'O Canada' and it also embodies what it takes to be an Olympic or Paralympic athlete… It embodies the emotions every athlete will feel - no matter where they are from or what flag they stand under - when they have the honour to represent their own country on the world's grandest international stage in 2010."
Athletes will compete with all their might at Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games, a once in a lifetime stage, "With Glowing Hearts." As we cheer them on, they will give us great power and courage. If feels as though such message is communicated through this theme.
The slogan Panasonic upholds as it undertakes activities as the Official Worldwide Olympic Partner is "Sharing the Passion." The slogan expresses Panasonic's desire to share with people all around the world the thrill and excitement that we experience from the passion filled, highly tense, breathtaking performance athletes exhibit at the venues.
"With Glowing Hearts" and "Sharing the Passion" - to me, it feels as though the feelings embodied in the 2 slogans are quite similar, but what do you think?
Tips on how to get around Greater Vancouver using public transportation
edited by sharon at 2010-01-26 5:38 PM
Hello everyone! Welcome back to my entry! In this entry I will give you some tips on how to get around Greater Vancouver using public transportation plus some information on what is "common sense" here in Canada so you fit right in when you get here.
In this blog, I will be writing a lot about Vancouver and Richmond, but first let me give you an idea of what Greater Vancouver is. "Greater Vancouver" consists of 21 cities, including the most well-known ones such as "Vancouver," "Richmond," and "Burnaby." Although the region has changed its official name to "Metro Vancouver" in 2007, many local people still call it "Greater Vancouver" because they’ve been doing so for such a long time. However, some people might say "Vancouver" instead of the actual names of other cities in Greater Vancouver, such as Richmond or Burnaby, because Vancouver is the most popular city here. I hope you’ll remember now that Vancouver is part of Greater Vancouver!
For your information, the currency of Canada is Canadian dollar, but I will use the abbreviations, "dollar" and "cent" in the way they’re usually called in this entry.
Back to the main topic, public transportation. TransLink, which is Greater Vancouver’s regional transportation authority, is in charge of operating the public transportation service in Greater Vancouver. The service includes Bus, SkyTrain, SeaBus, and West Coast Express. I will talk about the SkyTrain and Bus in more detail later on. Greater Vancouver is divided into 3 fare zones. When you purchase a ticket, pay attention to which fare zone you’re heading to because the fare differs depending on the time of the day and how many zones you cross. For example, if you take a bus within one city, it is one zone and costs $2.50; from city to city, like from Vancouver to Richmond, is two zones, which costs $3.75. The fare for weekdays after 6:30 pm and all day on Saturdays, Sundays, and on holidays is $2.50, no matter how many zones you travel through.
If you arrive at the Vancouver International Airport (YVR) in Richmond and would like to go to downtown Vancouver such as Vancouver City Centre Station or Richmond, it’ll cost $3.75 with an AddFare of $5.00, which applies to all cash-paying passengers from YVR to Vancouver or Richmond. There is no AddFare going towards the YVR, though. The AddFare took effect on January 18, 2010.
Moreover, for those of you who want to stay in Vancouver for the whole Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games, TransLink offers 2010 Games Transit Passes for unlimited Bus, SeaBus and SkyTrain service from February 8th through March 21st.
Now let’s move on to the fully automated transit system running throughout Greater Vancouver, SkyTrain. First, you pay the fare at a ticket vending machine near the entrance. You can use bills, debit and credit cards as well as coins to purchase tickets at SkyTrain stations. All public transportation except West Coast Express uses the same type of tickets and they are valid within 90 minutes of the initial purchase even when transferring to any public transportation such as SeaBus and Bus. Remember to keep the ticket and note the time printed on it at the bottom.
Here come some key tips for before you get on the train. In Greater Vancouver, there is no fare gate that checks your ticket at any station. You can just walk in and out of the platform. So don’t forget to buy a ticket! Sometimes there are police officers standing near the entrance to check if you have a ticket or not. If you don't have a ticket, you will be issued a $173 fine. Bear this in mind!
|This is a photograph of a ticket. See that the date and expiry time are printed on it?|
The last topic is Bus. Many people greet the bus driver with a “Hello” or “How are you?” and a friendly smile when getting on the bus. Be sure to remember to say “thank you” when getting off the bus. Please remember when taking the bus that you can only pay the fare in coins; bills are not accepted. So it's best if you have enough coins especially one dollar and two dollar coins and quarters. Once you get on the bus and put the coins in the farebox, the bus driver will give you a ticket based on the fare you have paid. Keep in mind that you need to push a button or pull a string hanging on either side of the bus when you want to get off. In the photograph you can see a silver farebox in the back and strings hanging near the windows.
Ok, I think that's enough for the tips on public transportation in Greater Vancouver. Here are some useful links you can check for more information.
2) Trip Planner
Do you know about the "Panasonic Vancouver 2010 Athletes' Blog"?
edited by mino at 2010-01-25 4:55 PM
Hello sharon! Glad to hear that you are joining me on this blog to report about the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games. It seems from your blog entry that Vancouver is getting ready for the Games! I’m looking forward to your entries and information unique to the host city. Good luck!
On a similar Games-related note, “One Winter. Five Dreams. Panasonic Vancouver 2010 Athletes’ Blog” is a special content, among many, that Panasonic has created for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games.
The website will feature blogs by 5 athletes who are trying to overcome adversities to secure their ticket to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games. Panasonic hopes to share the thrill and excitement of the Olympic Games by getting people from all over the world to send in words of encouragement and support for these athletes who worked day in and day out to make their dreams of competing at the Olympic Games come true.
Robel Teklemariam (Ethiopia) competing in Men’s Cross-Country Skiing made his debut at Torino in 2006. He was the first Ethiopian athlete to take part in the Olympic Winter Games.
Katharine Eustace (New Zealand) who competes in the Women’s Skeleton competitions only began competing in the sport 2 years ago, but she became one of the top 3 candidates to qualify for the New Zealand skeleton national team. Currently, she is working hard to qualify for the Olympic Games.
Kazuhiro Koshi (Japan), age 45, continues to pursue his dream of winning a medal in Men’s Skeleton despite many difficulties such as his age and also financing and lack of a proper environment he faces because skeleton is a minor sport in Japan.
Tuğba Karademir (Turkey) became the first figure skating athlete to represent Turkey at the Torino 2006 Olympic Winter Games. She is training daily to finish in the top ranks at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games.
Clyde Getty (Argentina) an athlete that competes in Men’s Freestyle Skiing missed his landing and finished last at the Torino 2006 Olympic Winter Games, but responded to the crowd with a smile of accomplishment. The 48-year-old athlete is currently training to overcome his age and to pursue his dreams of competing in the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games.
These 5 athletes may not be “star” athletes, but each and every one of them continues to train hard to realize his/her dream despite the adversities. Their blogs are available in English (Kazuhiro Koshi’s blog is also available in Japanese), so please take a look.
I recommend that you check the “Videos introducing the 5 athletes” before reading their blogs. In the 3-minute video of each athlete you can learn about who they are and watch footage from training session as well as their performance at the Olympic Games. These videos will also give you a glimpse of the countries they have grown up in, their feelings about the competition and the environment in which they are training. I’m sure you will get a feel for their passion and dedication by watching these videos (available in English/English subtitles), and if you read their blogs afterwards, it will surely make you want to support them!
Greetings from Richmond! The Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games are almost here!
edited by sharon at 2010-01-22 9:13 AM
Hello to you all and mino-san! This is Sharon. I grew up in Taiwan and currently reside in Richmond, BC, Canada. In Taiwan, I worked as a project manager in the design industry, and now I will be a blogger for the Olympic Games, which is sure to be breathtaking!
Now, guess what the city next to Richmond is! Yes, it’s Vancouver! After years of preparation, the Greater Vancouver is almost ready for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games! We have so much rain this season so the skies have been overcast, but this year, posters and banners for the Olympic Games are displayed all over town, so the city looks more beautiful than ever.
As a resident in Richmond, I will tell you how Greater Vancouver is preparing for the exciting Olympic Games and also about must-know local topics such as the great food and favorite spots. So stay tuned!
Let me introduce our special guest for the Vancouver project, sharon!
edited by mino at 2010-01-21 6:21 PM
As reported daily on TV and newspapers, the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games are about to begin. The must-see Opening Ceremony will start at 6:00 pm on Friday, February 12th. Given that there is a -17hr time difference between Vancouver and Japan, the ceremony will start at 11:00 am on Saturday the 13th in Japan.
The Cyber Showcase Blog usually only covers the Panasonic booth at various exhibitions. However, for this project I will be writing not only about the FULL HD 3D theater, but also about the city of Vancouver, the excitement it is experiencing, and Panasonic’s active involvement there.
Since I live in far away from Vancouver in Japan, my entries may not be sufficient in telling you what is happening, so I would like to welcome a guest writer from Canada, a Richmond-based writer, sharon, who will be sharing the excitement of Vancouver and the latest information with you. Please do look forward to the entries that will arrive shortly!
What will the "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater" opening in central Vancouver be like?
edited by mino at 2010-01-20 7:03 PM
It was more than 20 years ago, in 1988 - the year Calgary Olympic Winter Games were held and when the International Olympic Committee (IOC) began The Olympic Partner (TOP) program - that Panasonic became the Official Worldwide Olympic Sponsor for the audio/visual category. Since then, Panasonic has been an advocate of the Olympic Movement, which strives to bring about world peace. Upholding the slogan "Sharing the Passion" Panasonic will sponsor the 21st Olympic Winter Games to be held in Vancouver and launch various activities globally to share the magnificence and the passion and excitement of the Games with people all around the world.
Its corporate pavilion, "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater" is one of the ways Panasonic intends to share the passion of the Games. During the Games, which will be held from February 12th to the 18th, many people from all over the world will come to Vancouver to watch the Games. Besides the Games, these visitors will be able to enjoy various other events and services that will be made available. One of these attractions is the IOC-approved event area called the "Live Site" at the David Lam Park, which is located not so far from the main stadium, BC Place, in downtown Vancouver. And this is where you will find the "Panasonic FULL HD 3D Theater."
In this theater, you can watch sports and entertainment programs on a high-quality, greater-than-life full HD 3D that can make you feel as though you are actually experiencing what goes on in the screen. I am sure Olympic fans will be very moved when they experience the dynamic, immersive footage in full HD 3D. I can hardly wait to experience the various content that will be shown there.
When we think of 3D nowadays, we think of Hollywood movies, but wouldn’t it also be great if we could watch sports on TV in 3D? Perhaps by the next Olympic Games, we may even be able to watch the next Olympic Games at home in very dynamic, immersive full HD 3D, and we may feel as though we are at the Games taking part. Well, let’s not get ahead of ourselves just yet; let’s continue to look forward to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games that will begin in February. I am going to go to Vancouver on February 9th, 3 days before the Opening Ceremony. Please look forward to my entries about the excitement in the host city!
|On Panasonic’s special website, "Sharing the Passion" at the Olympic Games, you can find out about Panasonic’s involvement in the Olympic Games and the its sponsorship history. And for those of you who want to get a head start and begin the Olympic fever now, please take a look at the "VIERA Link Count Down News." It’s just a click away!|
A special project for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games is about to start!
edited by mino at 2010-01-19 10:30 PM
Hello. This is mino, a writer for the Cyber Showcase Blog. I hope you've checked out some of my entries for the International CES. And now, what we are looking forward to after the CES is the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games, which will begin in February. And its theme is "With Glowing Hearts". As it indicates, with only less than a month to go, many athletes are fiercely competing to secure their ticket to the Games.
Panasonic is the Official Worldwide Olympic Partner. And as a special project for the Cyber Showcase Blog, I will be going to Vancouver during the Games to report from onsite. I will tell you more about this later, so please look forward to my entries!
- The 21st Olympic Winter Games (Vancouver 2010)
- Period: February 12 (Fri) – February 28 (Sun), 2010
Venue: Vancouver, Canada
Organizers: The Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC)
Official site: http://www.vancouver2010.com/