Web, gadgets, games
It ain’t easy being the captain of a recreational sports team. Everyone is constantly hassling me—When’s the game? Do we have enough people? Who are we playing? Will there be beer? How much beer? Can I play shortstop? On and on and on. It’s enough to drive a sane manager into Lou Piniella–crazy territory. Which is why TeamSnap (teamsnap.com) is my new favorite website.
Matt Triplett, creative director at TeamSnap’s parent company Sparkplug, says he started working on a team-management application back in 2002. Over the next five years, he says they went through “several false starts” before nailing down the current version about six months ago. “We just felt that this was something we had to do,” Triplett says. “Every time a new hockey or basketball season came around, we were mad that TeamSnap only existed in our heads.”
TeamSnap is currently still in beta, so not every feature is fully armed and operational, but the good news is that it’s completely free. (Once it gets off the ground, the site will start charging for souped-up features.) Managers input a roster and schedule, and TeamSnap e-mails the players, keeps track of their R.S.V.P.s, even asks who’s bringing what refreshments. It’s all Web-based, so you can access it anywhere. The site currently supports just about every imaginable recreational sport—cricket, dragon boat, kickball, paintball and water polo in addition to the more usual suspects—and will be adding statistics-tracking features in the near future.
Beyond its sheer handiness, TeamSnap is the most intuitive and easy-to-use Web application since Gmail. A half-drunk lobotomized chimp could register a team. And probably play shortstop.—Margaret Lyons