Techie tweets Olympic treats

Adam Naisbitt developed a Twitter feed to alert people to the availabilty of Olympic tickets going on sale
Adam Naisbitt developed a Twitter feed to alert people to the availabilty of Olympic tickets going on sale

A CITY computer expert is set to become an Olympic hero after inventing a frustration-free way of buying tickets.

This week, as tens of thousands of people battled with the Olympic website’s daily release system, Adam Naisbitt’s technological brain had only one thought.

“I knew there must be an easier way for people to get tickets – so I set about building one,” he said.

Olympic tickets can only be purchased from the official site or from travel firm Thomas Cook.

But neither website has an ‘alert’ facility, which means ticket seekers must sit, often for hours, constantly pressing the refresh button on their computer to check what becomes available.

Adam, who runs his own technology company Cooper Banks MacKenzie at Linford Wood, said: “I think the Olympic organisers really dropped the ball on the technology involved in buying tickets.

“It needed a system where someone could be alerted when tickets listed for resale are released.”

On Sunday after a frustrating hour trying in vain to secure gymnastics tickets for his fiancée Sarah, Adam started work on his own ticket-searching programme.

He compiled a list of every Olympic event, matched them to the session codes on the official site, then built in a high-powered electronic search facility.

Finally he fed his programme through Twitter, calling it @2012TicketAlert.

“Basically it’s an electronic version of someone sitting at a computer and pressing refresh or F5 continuously. My programme does all the work for you.

“It scans the website every three minutes on your behalf and finds every ticket that gets relisted for sale.”

When the ticket comes up, a tweet goes to the buyer’s phone or computer with a URL link straight to specific ticket on the Olympic website.

Launched on Monday morning, the time-cutting Twitter site has already attracted thousands of fans and Adam hopes to have 100,000 followers by the end of the week.

“We make no money out of it. We just thought it would be cool to help people – as an Olympic public service if you like,” he said.