The official London 2012 Countdown Clock provided by Omega will count down 500 days to the Olympic Games Opening Ceremony. The clock’s structure is made from nearly 4 tonnes of steel from a Preston-based company and the design reflects the look of the Games. Perhaps one of the coolest things about the Clock is that the beams of light on it are inspired by London's connection with the Prime Meridian in Greenwich – where time begins.
But the Clock is not the only thing that Omega is providing for the Games. As our official timekeeper, Omega provides all of the timing, scoring and results equipment for the Olympic and Paralympic Games, and it's pretty safe to say that they have come a long way since their first Olympics in 1932 where they used 30 stop watches to time all of the events!
Today, as a member of LOCOG's Technology team, working with Omega on a daily basis, I get to see firsthand how much more sophisticated timekeeping for a sporting event has become. From photo finish cameras in Athletics to electronic touchpads in Swimming, and GPS tracking in Sailing, there have been so many advancements in the technology and equipment used in sport competition.
Literally hundreds of thousands of man hours go into testing the systems and equipment that tabulate results for the Games – all to make sure that the performance of every athlete is captured down to the tiniest fraction of a second.
It might be for this reason that I am personally so excited about seeing the Countdown Clock in Trafalgar Square. Walking by it and being reminded that in 500 days we will get to see the world's greatest athletes compete at the peak of their ability, winning races and breaking records.
And when some of those moments are decided in a fraction of a second, I can take pride in knowing that these results will be backed not only by huge teams of highly trained people but also by nearly 80 years of technical expertise in measuring athletic performance. The only problem is that I'm not sure I can wait that long!