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Califf: Tapping into World Cup Online

The number four seems to set the incremental standard for numerous, intensely competitive battles for total domination. The smallest squared prime represents the number of years between America's cutthroat mudslinging of a presidential race, the world's salute to ancient Greece by partaking in the Summer Olympics, and of course, the tension-filled gap associated with the largest sporting event in the world: The World Cup. And with an abundance of newer technologies available to watch the month long contention for world dominance, this year's World Cup is likely to become one of the most watched events in human history.

Because of this monumental month of sports mayhem, I have scoured the Internet on behalf of those of you true Football hooligans out there who are sporting your favorite country's jersey under your daytime business costume, and have found what I believe to be the best places to stream, follow, and generally experience World Cup chaos on the net.

  • FIFA.com - The official website for the 2010 World Cup, FIFA.com, is thoroughly devoted to keeping Football fans in the know. The website gives news, interviews, a calendar timeline of daily bouts, a point summary of teams organized by group, country-centralized pages, statistics on your favorite players, and video/photo highlights of games or events you may have missed.
  • FIFA.com Widgets - The Fédération Internationale de Football Association also gives Football fiends the opportunity to customize a 2010 World Cup Widget based on league, and add the Widget to multiple Internet favorites like Facebook, Twitter, or iGoogle. FIFA.com also offers Widgets for those fans who crave real-time updates year-round, with a World Rankings Widget and World Leagues Widget.
  • ESPN3.com - The newly renovated ESPN3.com (previously ESPN360.com) gives World Cup Football fanatics the chance to watch day-to-day matches between their beloved countries. The Entertainment Sports Programming Network's website displays information about every soccer game by date and time, news associated with personally picked teams, and also archives every game - just in case the early soccer bird missed the worm.
  • FootieFox - Mozilla Firefox fans can easily download a football-focused extension to their browser, appropriately titled FootieFox. The FootieFox extension is displayed at the bottom right hand of the Firefox screen and allows soccer studs to add leagues and/or teams to the extension based on preference. The extension also offers customizable alarms for game time notifications, and even displays real-time alerts when a goal has been scored.
  • South Africa 2010 for Google Chrome - Google Chrome devotees will also have the option to install a 2010 South Africa extension to their browser. Simply go to https://chrome.google.com/extensions and search for FIFA World Cup. The FIFA World Cup - South Africa 2010 option shows real-time World Cup news, offers Facebook and Twitter chatting capability, and sports the chance to watch live streams of the World Cup games.
  • Twitter - Twitter.com/worldcup showcases a cleanly laid out web presence and asks the question, "What's happening?" The Twitter World Cup Page shows the latest real-time tweets about the competition, lists a schedule of upcoming games, and offers favorite team selection by country with a country-centered upcoming matches section, as well as real-time conversational tweets associated with a selected country. 

And there you have it - Six of my favorite ways to experience the 2010 World Cup right from your computer.

Caution: If streaming at work, please refrain from removing your suit, sliding knees-first into your boss' office, and yelling GOAL at the top of your lungs. This may be considered unprofessional behavior.

Originally published in the Athens Banner-Herald on Sunday, June 20th, as well as the Atlanta/Athens, GA web design firm Boxkite Media, and my personal blog - informitivechris.blogspot.com.

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