New York Times has developed an interesting interactive global map of the last 100 years of Olympic medal wins.
When mapped globally, it's interesting to see just how trivial Canada is on a world stage. As much as politically we get invited to the G7 summits and in U.N. and other diplomatic functions and we get trumpeted as having a great multicultural framework that other countries should imitate, the question arises - does Canada really matter?
Don Tapscott puts forward a linked argument that Olympic medals is a function of economic importance and growth in the world. It's a compelling thesis when you see the medal gains of China and South Korea.
If so, then heaven help Canada's economy then as its current medal count for Beijing stands at...ahem...0 (for perspective, Togo and Tajikistan current sit at 1 medal each). There's likely another post in here and how Canada does a poor job of recognizing its best and creating centres of excellence for business, sports and culture. But in the mean time, have a gander at the differential in medal clout from 1992 to 2004 (visualized above).