In previous Olympic games there has been very little design effort put into the podiums, as seen by the simple boxes of the 1950's..
(1956 Olympic podium)
And the somewhat creative but still subtle podiums at the recent 2008 games...(2008 Beijing Olympic podium)
The Vancouver podiums by James Lee and Leo Obstbaum (who unfortunately passed away last year), there were 23 different models made in various sizes and shapes. The undulating wood forms hint at a digitally fabricated process of CNC milling. Its very exciting to see these new processes and technologies being used in such a high profile arena.