2 min read

The art of time tracking isn’t confined to the office block towers that dot the landscape of cities and towns worldwide. As we mentioned in our last blog, the ability to track time has helped the evolution of the human race.

This profound and powerful fact made us consider some very important stuff this week in the Flapps office.

No, don’t worry; we haven’t decided to research some deep philosophical topic. Oh no! We have decided to go for a topic way more important. Sport!

You can look back through the history books of sport and find instances when the ability to track time, or indeed the inability to track time, has had a serious impact on the outcome.

We have decided to look at just two examples of a time when time tracking was overlooked and the consequences that followed


Our first example just happens to be the most recent and it comes from February 2015. The scene of the ‘crime’ is the University of Phoenix Stadium in Arizona, USA. The sporting event? Oh, just the epic Super Bowl clash between the Seattle Seahawks and the New England Patriots.

American football is often defined by strength, speed and money. The ability to manage the clock as the game hurtles to the finish line is as important as all of the aforementioned attributes.

You don’t need to be an expert to understand that keeping your cool and knowing exactly how long you have left in such a game would be incredibly important. Can you guess what happened next?

That’s right, a serious of butchered attempts to track time meant that the Seahawks had squandered their invaluable time outs with the seconds ticking away as they trailed their opponents by just four points.

In layman terms the Seattle Seahawks wasted their precious time by being disorganized with their time tracking. To cut a long story short they panicked and picked the wrong play with just 26 seconds left. It ended with them giving the ball away and losing arguably the biggest match of their careers.

Time tracking is also used to split winners from losers even when the naked eye can’t detect a winner.

The 2012 London Olympics saw the introduction of cutting edge timekeeping equipment with cameras equipped to take photographs 3,000 times a second.


The technology to track time down to thousands of a second is available to sports such as downhill skiing. Oddly enough there is sometimes a reluctance to use these accurate time tracking methods as was seen at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

The controversy arose during the final of the women’s downhill ski race when Slovenia’s Tina Maze and Switzerland’s Dominique Gisin both clocked a final time of 1:41.57. Under the International Ski Federation—or FIS—rules, competing skiers are timed to 1/10,000th of a second. But for some bizarre reason the governing body decided to round it up to 1/100th of a second and declared that both Maze and Gisin were Olympic champions. A first for the sport!

So as you can see from these examples, sport at the very highest level is often decided by something as simple as time keeping. A lifetime dedicated to training and perfecting a craft can come undone by an inability to track time.

But fear not, we here at Flapps take our time tracking very seriously especially when it comes to our coffee breaks.

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