25th October 2010

More Canadian Top Tech Business News

padworxPadWorx Digital Media’s first eBook, Dracula: The Official Stoker Family Edition, has been named Apple’s iPad App of the Week! Launched only days ago, PadWorx Digital Media’s debut has clearly made good on their promise to create a new, immersive, user-driven reading experience on Apple®iPad™.

Become part of the timeless vampire story with this new App for your iPad, which features nearly 300 interactive pages of user-driven reading. Dracula: The Official Stoker Family Edition is available exclusively on the App Store for the introductory price of $4.99! Dracula also features an original soundtrack, as well as 21 songs from indie rock performers Adaline, Christa Couture, Emily Spiller, Eve and Ocean, and Phoebe Sharp. Each song sets the tone for a different chapter from the book, creating yet another whole new way of experiencing the classic story.

New Ventures BC CompetitionThirty-nine BC businesses are advancing to Round 2 of the BCIC-New Ventures BC Competition: Regional after completing and fulfilling the eligibility requirements in Round 1. These businesses will be presenting to the jury over four days (Nov.29-Dec.2) onsite in Kelowna and Victoria. The regional competition was open to businesses located outside of the Lower Mainland and the breakdown of applications by place is as follows:

Island: 17 (44%)
Okanagan: 12 (31%)
Thompson: 5 (13%)
Kootenays: 4 (10%)
North: 1 (3%)

The 39 businesses who are advancing, in alphabetical order: Read the rest of this entry »

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25th October 2010

Sierra Wireless Airlink Provides Mobile Connectivity for San Jose Police

Sierra WirelessVancouver-based Sierra Wireless and Oregon company Feeney Wireless, an authorized Sierra Wireless value-added reseller, have announced that the San Jose Police Department has selected the Feeney Wireless Cellular Internet Routing Appliance (CIRA) with integrated Sierra Wireless AirLink™ 3G gateway to provide comprehensive mobile connectivity for its officers in the field. The total deployment will see 452 patrol cars equipped over a 36-month period.

Responsible for the safety of more than one million residents in California’s third largest city, the San Jose Police Department creates more than 100,000 reports per year. The deployment of the joint Feeney Wireless and Sierra Wireless solution is part of an ongoing project to decentralize and digitize the Department’s records and field communications systems.

“We needed a scalable platform that would take us into the future, including camera systems, video and remote sensors and communications equipment,” said Deputy Chief Diane Urban. “We are going to send reports seamlessly, wirelessly – via a truly integrated paperless reporting and management system.”

Ms. Urban went on to say, “Technology is the way of the future, it’s all about regionalizing services, being more efficient and more transparent. Everyone expects quicker results, and we have the responsibility to provide that to the public.” Read the rest of this entry »

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25th October 2010

MAKE Technologies Announces Strategic Alliance with Deloitte

Make TechnologiesVancouver’s Make Technologies, a privately held leading legacy modernization software and services company, has launched its new Partner Network Program, starting with a new strategic alliance with globally recognized firm Deloitte. The two companies will work together to develop a joint program targeting enterprise modernization initiatives.

“We are extending our success in the enterprise marketplace with this program,” said Jean-Guy Faubert, newly appointed Executive VP Global Alliances for Make Technologies. “There is strong demand for legacy application modernization solutions that allow companies to innovate and support business processes for competitive advantage, while leveraging existing investments. System Integrators play an invaluable role as trusted consultants to guide their customers through application modernization success. We’ve been successfully working with Network members and their customers on these mission-critical applications. Now we are expanding our outreach with active recruitment and strategic alliances.”

Deloitte has enrolled in Make Technologies’ newly formed Partner Network Program which provides program participants with support, specialized education and training, and access to its patented Transformational Legacy Modernization (TLM®) solutions and products. This program will help in the implementation of application modernization initiatives.

As a part of its Partner Network Program, Make Technologies has introduced categories to recognize the various needs and specialties of participating vendors. Make Technologies is looking to recruit strategic System Integration organizations focused on legacy application modernization projects and providing them with the solutions and services they need to effectively target this space today.

“Legacy application modernization is a growing market. This is a top of mind issue for most CIOs as they need assurance of project success with little to no interruption of service while transitioning from critical legacy applications,” said Ian Tait, Deloitte partner. “Organizations want to focus on their core competency, and not be in the business of maintaining custom code. Deloitte’s goal is to work with clients to ensure a strategy that can provide operational efficiencies and long term value.”

Make Technologies’ program participants will gain potential new revenue stream opportunities with this new program. They will also enjoy the benefits of marketing support, sales and pre-sales support and training programs. In addition, Make Technologies will also be offering accredited certification and training programs available through workshops and online courses.

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25th October 2010

Canadian Innovation Making Its Mark

Play mpeDestiny Media Technologies, the developers of Play MPE® and ClipStream® is pleased to announce that it will be upgrading its head office to the prestigious downtown Vancouver Scotiabank / TSX Venture Exchange tower effective tomorrow, October 26th. The new secure location is centrally located and features 24/7 security guard and monitored restricted card access clipstreamthroughout the building and within Destiny’s headquarters. The building features both a Skytrain and Canada Line station in the basement, providing direct rapid rail access to the airport. This new location also adds another fiber optic based failover server facility to the existing three server facilities in Vancouver and the UK, ensuring the highest level of “up time” for Play MPE® users.

D-BoxLongueuil’s D-BOX Technologies Inc. has signed its first agreement in the Northeast US with O’Neil Cinemas for two of its movie theatres, O’Neil Cinemas’ Lisbon Landing Cinema in Lisbon, Conn. and Apple Tree Cinema in Londonderry, New Hampshire. The two theatres will feature 27 and 26 D-BOX MFX seats respectively and will unveil D-BOX immersive movie experience Nov. 19 with the much-anticipated Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1.

“We’re very proud to team up with O’Neil Cinemas, an established theatre brand in the marketplace, and bringing our technology to the Eastern movie fans,” said President and Chief Executive Officer of D-BOX Technologies, Claude Mc Master. “The success of D-BOX in existing markets continues to serve as a proven testament to the added value we bring and continues to drive interest from theatre companies around the world.”

“To be the first theatre company on the East Coast US to offer D-BOX is incredibly exciting,” said Dan R. O’Neil, Executive Vice-President of O’Neil Entertainment. “We pride ourselves in providing our patrons with the highest level of service and entertainment in a state-of-the-art atmosphere and the addition of D-BOX is another facet to that continued commitment. We are excited to partner with such a forward looking, cutting edge company.”

TIO networksVancouver’s TIO Networks Corp. announced today that it has expanded its partnership with IPP of America Inc.  and iSend to provide consumers with easy access to cross border bill payment services at participating convenience store and retail locations in the TIO network.

Cash-preferred customers use self-serve automated kiosks to securely and conveniently pay their families’ wireless, utility, cable and other bills, and recharge cellular phones for relatives in Central and South American countries, including but not limited to Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Brazil, Jamaica, and the Dominican Republic. This service is available for a convenience fee per transaction and will be expanded with additional countries and services on a periodic basis. Content for this service is provided by IPP, a leading provider of retail payment services, through its partnership with iSend, a leading provider of international electronic payments to Latin America and the Caribbean.

Payments can be made 24 hours a day, seven days a week, by inserting cash directly into the terminal’s bill acceptor. Once the cash is accepted, TIO uses an Internet link to ensure real time connection to the customer’s account with most payments posting the same day.

mechtronixThe Honourable Tony Clement, Minister of Industry, has announced a repayable investment of $18.6 million from the Strategic Aerospace and Defence Initiative (SADI) program to Motreal’s Mechtronix Systems Inc., an MWC company, a world leading manufacturer of Flight Simulation Training Devices (FSTD). This will allow Mechtronix to launch a $60 million investment in R&D over a period of 5 years; the aim is to increase R&D capabilities and offer new technologies for game-changing flight simulator training products. This project was named NOVA after the word “innovation” which is at the core of Mechtronix philosophy and culture. With the funding, Mechtronix will continue to offer the most innovative flight simulation solutions to the aerospace industry reinforcing their position on the market. These developments will also lead to the creation of new job opportunities in the R&D department. Read the rest of this entry »

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25th October 2010

Homefront Gets The Novel Treatment

HomefrontTHQ Inc. and the Random House Publishing Group today announced that a novel set in the Homefront universe and co-written by John Milius (Red Dawn and Oscar Award-winning Apocalypse Now) and New York Times bestselling author Raymond Benson (author of two Metal Gear Solid books and multiple James Bond novels) will be published by Random House’s Del Rey imprint, and arrive in early 2011 to coincide with the release of the first Homefront game.

“We’re delighted to confirm the first element of what will become a vast transmedia strategy for Homefront,” said Danny Bilson, Executive Vice President – Core Games, THQ. “John Milius has already Del Rey Booksworked with us extensively on the Homefront game, and we’re thrilled to have him and Raymond on board as we develop our near-future world into other types of media. Random House is a great partner to help us reach an even broader audience.”

“Homefront represents a fascinating vision of the near-future,” added John Milius. “After completing my work on the game, it became clear that there were many more stories to tell, and this book will offer a Digital Extremeschilling look at this near-future world.”

Homefront the videogame is a thrilling first person shooter set for release on the Xbox 360®, PlayStation®3 and the Digital Extremes-developed Windows PC in March 2011.

Homefront tells the story of a stricken America, fallen to savage military occupation in the year 2027. With the country’s infrastructure shattered and military in disarray, America has fallen to a savage occupation by the nuclear armed Greater Korean Republic.

Abandoned by her former allies, the United States is a bleak landscape of walled towns and abandoned suburbs. This is a police state where high school stadiums have become detention centers, and shopping malls shelter armored attack vehicles.

Join the Resistance, stand united and fight for freedom against an overwhelming military force In Homefront’s gripping, cinematic single player campaign, and experience epic, ground breaking multiplayer action all set in a terrifyingly plausible near-future world.


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22nd October 2010

hyperWALLET introduces hyperREMIT

hyperwalletVancouver-based global payment solution provider hyperWALLET Systems Inc. has just announced the launch of hyperREMIT, a revolutionary new and low-cost SMS international remittance service from Canada to the Philippines. hyperREMIT enables Canadians to quickly send funds to recipients in the Philippines using a variety of secure remittance options, starting from just $6.00 CAD per transfer.

Through hyperREMIT, Canadians can transfer funds via bank deposit, cash pickup and door-to-door delivery, or via Smart Money transfers and prepaid airtime top-ups (coming fall 2010). Transfers can be quickly initiated over the phone or through SMS text messaging, and funds are typically available to Philippine recipients within 1 business day. With the upcoming Smart Money transfer option, remittances can be sent to any Smart subscriber’s mobile phone and accompanying reloadable Smart Money MasterCard cash card, providing them with quick and convenient access to their funds.

“Filipino Canadians rely on text messaging to stay in touch with loved ones. Now they can use the same mechanism to remit funds back home,” states Lisa Shields, President & CEO of hyperWALLET Systems Inc. “Through hyperREMIT, we are introducing a new paperless and agentless model for the remittance industry — a model that strengthens community relationships, rewards loyalty, and dramatically lowers the cost for senders.”

Canadian senders can sign up for hyperREMIT at www.hyperremit.com. There, they can fund their hyperREMIT account via pre-authorized debit or bill payment, add or manage Philippine recipients’ account details, or review remittance transaction details at any time. Using hyperREMIT’s mobile remittance service, senders can easily conduct ongoing Philippine money transfers by telephone or SMS text messaging, enabling quick and convenient remittances from the comfort of their own home or while on the go.

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22nd October 2010

Never A Dull Friday

UbisoftUbisoft has released a video dev diary for Assassin’s Creed: The Fall, a comic book written and illustrated by Award-winning artists Cameron Stewart and Karl Kerschl and colored by Nadine Thomas, produced by Ubi Workshop and published by DC Comics. The first of the three issues will release on November 10th, 2010.

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Assassin’s Creed: The Fall follows 19th century Russian assassin Nikolai Orelov as he strives to claim an artifact of immense power from the hands of the Templars, encountering historical figures such as the ruthless Tsar Alexander III. Meanwhile, in modern times, a troubled young drifter copes with unsettling visions of a possible past life – visions that have irreversible consequences for the present.

Eidos MontrealEidos Montreal’s Deus Ex: Human Revolution is going to get a special preview tomorrow (today in AU) at The Mana Bar, a video game bar down in Brisbane, Australia. A team from Square Enix will be presenting a game demonstration, which will be followed by an exclusive video from the developers. Prizes and competitions giving away unique Deus Ex merchandise to the bar’s clientele during the day.

Loud Crow InteractiveVancouver’s Loud Crow Interactive Inc., a digital book publisher founded by a group of interactive entertainment veterans, announced today the redefining of e-books with its first release, PopOut!™ The Tale of Peter Rabbit, now available for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch in all non-European territories.Pop Out Tales

With decades of combined experience in interactive digital media, the team at Loud Crow has applied its creative talents and technical expertise to revolutionize the reading experience. “For us, it’s all about making the reading experience fresher and better than ever,” says Calvin Wang, Founder and CEO. “We blend traditional content with rich, interactive elements such as audio, animation, and even touch and tilt gestures. Using the original illustrations and text, we’re able to achieve an authentic, yet modern experience that our readers will find unique and inspiring.”

The publisher’s first title in the PopOut!™ series of interactive children’s books brings the age-old Beatrix Potter classic to life with signature PopOut!™ spin-wheels, pull-tabs, spring-mounted elements, and objects that literally pop out of the page. Complete with a beautiful classical piano soundtrack, fun and immersive sound effects, and a charming vocal performance, this is an experience you and your family won’t want to miss.

Majestic MediaItWowed.Me, a new smartphone technology platform developed by Majestic Media Ltd., allows businesses and brands to drive audiences to Facebook fan pages and convert them into fans.

“Like” something in real life? By placing a Quick Response (QR) code on real world objects, smartphone users can now scan these codes with their iPhone, Android, BlackBerry or any smartphone device and instantly “Like” the real world product or business on Facebook, thus sharing it with their friends on the social media site. Read the rest of this entry »

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22nd October 2010

New Investment Fund To Help Social Media App Developers

KPCB sFundThe sFund, a new $250 million initiative administered by California-based firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers to invest in entrepreneurs inventing social applications and services has opened for business. Amazon.com, Facebook, and Zynga, the leading companies defining today’s social and online environment; entertainment and media leaders Comcast and Liberty Media, and Allen & Company LLC, have committed to invest in the sFund and serve as strategic partners. The sFund will provide financing, counsel, and relationship capital for a new generation of entrepreneurs to deliver on the promise of the social web. According the sFund’s FAQ, the fund will invest in projects based outside of the United States.

“We’re at the beginning of a new era for social Internet innovators who are re-imagining and re-inventing a Web of people and places, looking beyond documents and websites,” said KPCB partner John Doerr. “There’s never been a better time than now to start a new social venture.”

The sFund will be led by KPCB partner Bing Gordon, former chief creative officer and longtime executive KPCB partner John Doerr, Amazon.com founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Zynga CEO Mark Pincus, and KPCB partner Bing Gordon (l-r) announcing the sFund in Palo Alto. Photo: Business Wireat Electronic Arts and board director of Amazon.com and Zynga. Gordon said, “Social is just getting started and the opportunities are vast. As in the early days of the Internet, the race is on. Today every business, organization, and entrepreneur should have a social strategy.”

“Social apps are viral, and when they hit, it often happens suddenly, and then they grow explosively. That’s one of the reasons the scalable, elastic, no capex, variable cost nature of Amazon Web Services is ideal for social apps,” said Jeff Bezos, Founder and CEO of Amazon.com. “The top three companies that develop for Facebook all use AWS.”

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, said, “The Web is being rebuilt around people, and we’re at a point where any app, website, or device can be designed to be social from the ground up. We’re focused on enabling entrepreneurs to build companies that can disrupt their industries.” Read the rest of this entry »

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22nd October 2010

Microsoft to Launch New Games For Windows Marketplace in November

Microsoft CanadaMicrosoft Corp. today announced the Games for Windows Marketplace, a new online PC games store that combines the convenience of the Web with the power of Games on Demand online distribution. Launching November 15th, the Games for Windows Marketplace will offer PC gamers a robust lineup of games they love, easier navigation and purchase, and recurring specials such as Deal of the Week.

“With Games for Windows Marketplace, we set out to create a digital store built for PC gamers end-to-end,” said Kevin Unangst, senior global director, PC and Mobile Gaming, at Microsoft. “And by integrating with our existing Xbox LIVE and Windows Live services, we’ve made it easier than ever for millions of gamers to see for themselves how easy buying PC games can be.”Games For Windows

Built from the ground up for convenience and performance, the Games for Windows Marketplace will remove the barriers between gamers and the games they love by offering the following:

* Online access, anywhere. Optimized for speed, the store allows for ultra-fast downloads; this means fewer clicks to purchase and download, delivering faster turnaround for gameplay. And since the service lives on the Web, gamers can download games on a PC, anytime, and can easily redownload games they purchase if needed.
* Deals and discounts galore. Gamers can check out screaming deals on select games every time they visit the Marketplace, as well as the Deal of The Week and other recurring and seasonal offers.
* Game search functionality. Gamers can search by titles or genres to quickly find the games they want; they can even find new games from their favorite publishers with dedicated publisher pages.
* Fresh design. The clean, intuitive look and feel makes browsing for games a simple, enjoyable experience. Gamers can easily navigate between pages as they search for the perfect game.

Games for Windows Marketplace will launch with a managed portfolio of 100 top-quality titles. The launch roster includes blockbuster games such as “Fable: The Lost Chapters” (Microsoft Game Studios) and “Grand Theft Auto III” (Rockstar Games Inc.) from some of the industry’s biggest developers, such as Capcom Entertainment Inc., 2K Games, Square Enix Co. Ltd. and more. In addition to top retail games, the portfolio will bring new indie titles to the forefront and continue to grow with many of the best games in the industry including titles such as “Lego Universe” (Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment) and “CarneyVale” (Microsoft Game Studios), which will hit the Games for Windows Marketplace and retail stores at the same time and date; recent hits such as “Dead Rising 2” and “Lost Planet 2” (both from Capcom); and perennial best-sellers such as “Max Payne” (Rockstar) and “Deus Ex: Game of the Year Edition” (Square Enix). Read the rest of this entry »

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21st October 2010

Thursday Tidbits

frima studioFrima Studio has put its popular puzzle title Big Brain Wolf on sale for $4.99 on Steam, a 50% reduction in price, until Friday, October 22 – what a howlingly good deal!

Big Brain Wolf is a downloadable 2D point-and-click adventure game for puzzle lovers. AsBig Brain Wolf an asthmatic, vegetarian wolf in training, you will face over sixty unique puzzles and six brain-training exercises, all while encountering a colorful twist on the characters from classic fairy tales of old, including a chubby Red Riding Hood, a long-nosed lawyer, three little pigs, seven dwarves and many more. This crime story takes place in a fairy tale kingdom and features a slew of hilarious characters. Big Brain Wolf is available now for PC and Mac, and can be downloaded at Bigbrainwolf.com or Steam for $9.99 and $4.99, respectively.

dhx mediaDHX Media has announced that WTTW, Chicago’s premier public television station, in partnership with DHX Media’s W!LDBRAIN Entertainment and The Michael Cohen Group, LLC, has won a competitive grant from the U.S. Department of Education to support a new five-year Ready to Learn initiative. Ready to Learn supports the development of educational programming and media for preschool and early elementary school children and their families. WTTW will team with DHX Media subsidiary W!LDBRAIN Entertainment, the award-winning production company and animation studio based in Los Angeles, to develop UMIGO (you make it go), a transmedia property created by Michael Polis, President of W!LDBRAIN Entertainment and Executive Producer of Yo Gabba Gabba!.

UMIGO will also be developed in collaboration with the Michael Cohen Group, LLC, a research and evaluation firm recognized for its work with children, media and education, and responsible for formative and summative testing of the UMIGO property. UMIGO will launch as a web-based property and is intended to later transition into a television series and line of consumer products.

“UMIGO is a fun and engaging virtual world where young minds can let their imaginations run wild,” said Polis. “When we were kids, we thought of all sorts of incredible things to invent. UMIGO will test the boundaries of even the most creative imaginations while providing a solid foundation in mathematics,” he continued. “Our multi-platform strategy will make UMIGO accessible to children and families of all socio-economic levels. We look forward to collaborating with WTTW and the Michael Cohen Group on a property that contributes to giving all kids an equal opportunity for success in school,” he added.

This is WTTW’s second Ready to Learn grant. Past Ready to Learn initiative grants from the U.S. Department of Education have funded some of the country’s most beloved children’s educational programming, such as WordWorld, Between the Lions, Sesame Street and SUPER WHY!. The most watched public television station in America, WTTW has 1.5 million weekly viewers and serves a four-state region.

cloudcorCloudcor today announced that Spirent Communications, a Gold partner at UP 2010 Cloud Computing Conference, will deliver a keynote address on cloud testing best practices and methodologies that help end-users in enterprises, as well as government agencies, streamline network operations and significantly mitigate their risk of migration to cloud environments.

“We are delighted to continue our world-class relationship with Spirent as our Gold partner for the UP 2010 conference,” said Khazret Sapenov, UP 2010 chairman. “Spirent has led the way and set the benchmark for excellence in testing and validating real-world scenarios in the cloud across both virtual, physical and hybrid environments.”

While cloud computing offers tremendous possibilities, it is critical to understand the limitations of this framework across key network attributes such as performance, availability, security and scalability (PASS). Real-world testing of a cloud computing environment is a key step toward putting any concerns in these areas to rest.

“Cloudcor has been spearheading the effort to uncover opportunities and issues in the cloud space while providing world-class guidance around key cloud concerns,” said Martin Vickery, marketing communications manager at Spirent. “We are committed to enabling IT professionals to leverage the benefits of cloud computing while overcoming challenges and ensuring a successful transition to this architecture.”

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