Unisys converts a trying time
THE Rugby World Cup Sevens, to be held at Scotland's Murrayfield next month, should run just that little bit smoother as a result of expertise gained at the Hongkong tournament.
The computerised management and administration system, which has been evolved over the past 10 years by Unisys Hongkong at the local Sevens, will provide the backbone of the World Cup scoring system.
The system primarily provides the administrative support for the organisers, as well as giving fast results - such as game draws, team lists and the like - to the world's press.
Rather than re-inventing the wheel, the World Cup computer system - which is being set-up by Unisys' British subsidiary - will use Hongkong-developed software, modified to suit their specialised needs.
Unisys Hongkong technical staff will be on hand at Murrayfield to help trouble-shoot the installation and running of the system.
According to the Unisys Hongkong marketing communications manager, Mr R. J. ''Shorty'' Weston, technical assistance between the company's subsidiaries on large-scale sporting events is a two-way flow.
Unisys' British experts have come to the Hongkong Sevens for the past three years to provide the technical assistance to supply on-screen graphics and statistics for television broadcasts.
During the 10 years the Sevens' scoring system has developed, it has grown with the tournament.
It is currently based on the company's U6000 UNIX platform, supporting printers and terminals in the stadium's press centre, the official's pavilion, and in each of the television and radio boxes.
The 1993 Hongkong Sevens were the most challenging yet. The new Hongkong Stadium made a stunning debut with the public this year.
But for the technicians faced with setting up a 20-workstation network across three locations, with the wiring for the system not complete, it was a trying - if not rewarding - experience.