How does it work? Basically, says Honey, chief technology officer of Sportvision, the high-tech company with headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., and New York City that he founded in 1998, "There's a guy in the stadium with a pair of binoculars and an intercom. He calls it into our system." That's the easy part. The hard part was coming up with the technology, which uses advanced computer graphics to lay the line on the screen. But Honey, 45, had done it before: He was also the reason stay-at-home hockey fans thought they saw an illuminated puck skittering across the ice and why drivers can map their routes with dashboard computer systems. (His 1985 ETAK system was the first.)
The son of David, a Pasadena executive, and Joan Honey, a fundraiser, Stan, who studied engineering and applied sciences at Yale, developed his obsession with location while navigating boats as a teen. A 1983 meeting with Atari founder and avid yachtsman Nolan Bushnell led him into commercial high tech. "He's frighteningly clever," says David Hill, chairman and CEO of FOX Sports Television Group, for which he developed the glowing puck. "Everything he does pushes the envelope."
Married since 1997 to sailmaker Sally Lindsay, 56, Honey is at work on his next project, illuminated cars in TV auto races, due in the spring. "Once the leaders lap the pack, it's hard to follow," he says. "This will allow viewers to see the actual race."