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9th November 2010

CIX Announces Top 25 Hottest Innovative Companies

CIXCanadian Innovation Exchange has just announced the 25 finalists for Canada’s Hottest Innovative Companies, selected to present at CIX. There was a particularly large number of submissions from amazing companies, and the Selection Committee had an extremely difficult time in narrowing down the list of presenters.

CIX extends its thanks to all of the companies who entered their profile, and also congratulates the Canadian innovation community as a whole for its very strong showing in this year’s showcase search.

Canada’s Hottest Innovative Companies:

* 360 Replays Ltd. * Adenyo * BlueCat Networks * Calisolar/6N Silicon * cfactor Works Inc. * Chango * Chaordix * ENBALA Power Networks * Ethoca * GestureTek Inc.
* Global Emissions Systems Inc. * Global Wind Group Inc. * GreenMantra Recycling Technologies * gShift Labs * Kobo Books Inc. * Locationary * Nemalux LED Lighting
* Psyko Audio Labs * Social Game Universe * Teldio * Trend Hunter * Tungle Corp.
* Vineyard Networks * Wantsa * Xtreme Labs

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9th November 2010

Canadian War Museum Launches New Online Exhibit

Canadian War MuseumThe Canadian War Museum is marking the 100th anniversary of Canada’s navy with a dynamic new online exhibition that brings Canada’s rich naval history to life. Canada’s Naval History is a compelling and substantial resource offering online access to an extraordinary range of evocative photographs and art, rare artifacts, fascinating archival documents, and educational materials.

“Canada’s Naval History explores the wide range of this country’s naval experiences over the past century, making this a valuable addition to the Museum’s online offerings,” said Mark O’Neill, Director General of the Canadian War Museum. “This online exhibition is both an innovative means to preserve and share Canada’s naval history with all Canadians, and a wonderful way to mark the Canadian navy’s centennial.”

This new online exhibition allows users to explore Canada’s naval history from its origins to today. The exhibition showcases about 750 items in a contemporary, visually engaging format that will help to tell the story of the country’s naval history and highlight the experiences of the men and women associated with it. The exhibition will appeal to a wide range of visitors from across Canada and around the world, who can navigate the site to explore highlights from Canada’s naval collections, research the past and use a variety of educational resources.

The War Museum is committed to the continued development of freely accessible, bilingual information through web initiatives, and to presenting Canada’s unique history by preserving and providing access to a nationally important collection of artifacts, artworks, and archival material collected over the past 125 years. Past collaborations have led to the creation of the online exhibition Canada and the First World War, and the digital archive Democracy at War: Canadian Newspapers and the Second World War.

The Museum is also marking the navy’s centennial with a travelling art exhibition. The Navy: A Century in Art opens at the War Museum in Ottawa on Remembrance Day, November 11, and closes on March 20, 2011. It has been presented at The Military Museums in Calgary and at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic in Halifax. Already, more than 85,000 patrons have viewed the exhibition.

Canada’s Naval History is funded in part by the Department of Canadian Heritage, and draws on a wide selection of material from the collections of the Canadian War Museum and its partners, including the Department of National Defence, the CFB Esquimalt Naval and Military Museum, the Naval Museum of Alberta, and the Naval Museum of Quebec.

The Canadian War Museum is Canada’s national Museum of military history. Its mission is to promote public understanding of Canada’s military history in its personal, national and international dimensions.

The Canadian War Museum’s new online exhibition, Canada’s Naval History, provides a fascinating and extensive overview of the country’s naval history in war and peace over the past century. The exhibition’s launch takes place during the centennial year of Canada’s navy, which was created in 1910.

Visitors to the online exhibition will discover almost 750 historical objects, photographs, artworks and archival documents that have been photographed and digitized specifically for this project. Each item can be examined in detail and is accompanied by an extensive caption.

Drawn from the collections of the Museum and its partners, the Department of National Defence, the CFB Esquimalt Naval and Military Museum, the Naval Museum of Alberta, and the Naval Museum of Quebec, these artifacts present Canada’s unique naval heritage, including the experiences of Canadians at sea and ashore, and the navy’s roles in war and peace.

Canada’s Naval History contains seven main sections:

1. Introduction – Michael Whitby, the distinguished Senior Naval Historian at the Department of National Defence’s Directorate of History and Heritage, provides an overview of the Canadian naval experience since 1910.
2. Explore History – Presents Canada’s naval history across the past century, including the birth of the navy (1910-1914), the First World War (1914-1918), the interwar period (1919-1939), the Second World War (1939-1945), the early Cold War, including the Korean War (1945-1968), the later Cold War (1968-1990) and the navy today (1990-2010).
3. Special Themes – Presents works from The Navy: A Century in Art, a travelling naval art exhibition created by the Canadian War Museum, and materials relating to naval culture and traditions
4. Objects and Photographs – Allows visitors to explore the exhibition’s collection of artifacts, photographs, maps, documents and artworks.
5. Teacher Resources – Offers educators and students of all ages access to a wide variety of activities and curriculum-linked programs based on content presented in the exhibition. Visitors can also find resources that include references for further reading and links to external online resources.
6. Navy at 100 – Contains information and links for events and programs related to the Canadian navy’s centennial celebrations.
7. My Navy – Allows visitors to store their favourite objects and exhibition content for future reference.

Ancestry.caIn honour of Remembrance Day, Ancestry.ca, Canada’s leading family history website1, today announced the first ever online launch of the largest collection of Canadian military records related to the death and burial of soldiers who fought in the First World War. The company has also announced that select Canadian, US and British military records will be available for free from November 11 to 14, 2010.

The collections, Canada, CEF Commonwealth War Graves Registers, 1914-1919, and Canada, CEF Burial Registers, First World War, 1914-1919 will be of immense interest to the millions of Canadians with ancestors who fought in the Great War. For the 30 per cent of Canadians who claim not to know whether their ancestors took part, the collections can help them potentially make discoveries about previously unknown military heroes in their family tree.

Individual records contain rich information about the soldiers who fought, such as their unit number, religious affiliation, date of death, circumstances of death, burial and name of nearest relative (next of kin).

The new collections will add to what is already the largest online collection of Canadian military records; one that includes Soldiers of the First World War, which contains the original Attestation Papers of all the 600,000 Canadians who enlisted. Soldiers of the First World War, along with all US and select British military collections, will be free to access from November 11 to 14.

Canada, CEF Commonwealth War Graves Registers, 1914-1919 contains more than 43 thousand records detailing the circumstances of death of approximately two thirds of the 68,000 Canadian soldiers who fought and died in the First World War in Belgium, France and the United Kingdom.

Canada, CEF Burial Registers, First World War, 1914-1919 detail the temporary and final resting place of Canadian soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice in the First World War. The authorities at the time kept track of the name and place of temporary burial locations. After the war, remains were brought together in the vast national military cemeteries.

Ancestry.ca Managing Director Karen Peterson comments: “Millions of Canadians have had an ancestor or a loved one sacrifice to serve our country, and some may not even be aware of their military heritage and how proud they should be. These new collections will offer so many an opportunity to discover more details about their ancestors’ invaluable and courageous contributions.”

Of interest in the collections is the date April 9, 1917, which stands out not only as the first day of the Battle of Vimy Ridge, but also as the date with the most Canadian deaths recorded in this collection, with records of death for 4,344 Canadian soldiers.

The Battle of Vimy Ridge was fought against the Germans in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region of France from April 9 to 12, 1917. The brave Canadian troops managed to capture the ridge within three days – a key turning point in the War in spite of the massive casualties suffered by the Canadian troops.

September 15, 1916 was another day of infamy, which is reflected in the death records for 1,832 Canadian soldiers. This date marked the last great Allied effort to achieve a breakthrough in the Somme Offensive, in the Battle of Flers-Courcelette. Two Canadian divisions were part of the battle that is remembered historically for being the first ever to feature tank warfare.

The collections also provide opportunities for Canadians to learn the details of the death and final resting grounds of some of the key figures of the war, including:

* John McCrae (1872-1918) – soldier and poet; author of the famous poem recited by Canadians of every age at Remembrance Day, In Flanders’ Fields
* George Lawrence Price (1898-1918) – the last Commonwealth soldier killed in the First World War. Price was shot and killed at 10:58 a.m., November 11, 1918, just two minutes before the armistice ceasefire that ended the war went into effect at 11:00 a.m.
* Henry Norwest (1884-1918) – the most famous sniper in The Great War, he held a record 115 fatal shots and was often selected for special missions due to his superb stealth tactical skills and expert use of camouflage

These collections were created by the Ministry of the Overseas Military Forces of Canada, predecessor of the Department of National Defense. Along with all of Ancestry’s military collections, they can now be accessed at www.ancestry.ca/Remember.

Access to this collection, along with the other 128 million historical Canadian records available at Ancestry.ca, is part of the reason the company was recently short-listed by Canada’s History Society for the 2010 Pierre Berton Award, Canada’s top history prize, recognizing excellence in bringing Canada’s history to a wider popular audience.

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9th November 2010

The Changing Views of Social Media and How It Can Invoke Change

accountempsAs social media makes its way into the workplace, executives are weighing the potential risks and benefits. Nearly half (47 per cent) of chief financial officers (CFOs) interviewed recently for an Accountemps survey said their greatest concern is that employees are wasting time during business hours using sites such as Facebook and Twitter. CFOs also expressed worries their staff may behave unprofessionally or post inappropriate information online. However, almost one in four financial executives (24 per cent) said these sites can help staff members expand their networks of valuable business contacts.

The survey was developed by Accountemps, the world’s first and largest staffing services firm specializing in accounting and finance. It was conducted by an independent research firm and is based on interviews with responses from more than 270 CFOs from a stratified random sample of Canadian companies with 20 or more employees.

CFOs were asked, “What is your greatest concern for your company regarding employees using social media?” Their responses:

Wasting time at work………………….. 47%
Behaving unprofessionally……………… 14%
Posting negative comments about company…. 11%
Posting financial/confidential company information… 5%
No concerns………………………….. 12%
Access not allowed……………………. 3%
Other……………………………….. 3%
Don’t know/no answer………………….. 6%

Total: 101% (*Responses do not total 100% due to rounding)

CFOs were asked, “What is the greatest benefit to your company of employees using social media?” Their responses:

Expand networks of valuable contacts……. 24%
Enhance company’s reputation…………… 22%
Provide better customer service………… 18%
Can secure new business……………….. 5%
No benefits………………………….. 21%
Access not allowed……………………. 3%
Don’t know/no answer………………….. 8%

Total: 101% (*Responses do not total 100% due to rounding)

“Many organisations are still determining how social media fits into their workplaces,” said Kathryn Bolt, Canadian division president of Accountemps. “Executives are concerned with the possibility of added distraction from their employees’ daily duties, which may affect productivity and efficiency on the job.”

Bolt also added, “On the other hand, more firms are realizing that the rewards may outweigh the risks, as social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter can be used by employees to expand their networks of valuable business contacts and enhance the company’s reputation.”

war child canadaMeanwhile, on the other end of the spectrum, four digitally savvy and socially conscious young blogging Canadians are socially suiting up for an opportunity of a lifetime that will see one of them join War Child on an upcoming visit to Ethiopia.

War Child Canada‘s War Child Challenge has bloggers reporting on a variety of issues to win a ten-day trip with War Child to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.  The challengers are blogging for the chance to tweet and report on War Child Canada’s Ethiopian efforts.

“The War Child Challenge is one example demonstrating War Child’s consistent leadership in adopting new social media practices,” said James Topham, director of communications, War Child Canada.  “Thanks to funding from the Canadian International Development Agency, the War Child Challenge can illuminate the issues faced in Ethiopia in particular, and the developed world more generally, by communicating on a platform that is much more apt to generate discussion and concern around global youth issues and the Millennium Goals.”

Challengers Joel Kelly (Halifax, NS), Sara Hamil (Belleville, ON), Christine Estima (Toronto, ON) and Ben Boudreau (Halifax, NS) are tackling a variety of multi-media citizen journalism challenges. The War Child Challenge is made up of three main parts: the challenges, vote tallies and post evaluation by a youth jury for clarity, focus, originality and creativity.  The challenges include:

  • Creating an image gallery of an event occurring in their community which offers a contribution to overcoming Hunger/Poverty, Conflict, HIV/AIDS, Basic Education, or Gender Equality.
  • Profiling a person or organization in their community who is making a difference in one of the following areas: Hunger/Poverty, Conflict, HIV/AIDS, Basic Education, Gender Equality.
  • Creating a video up to 5 minutes in length that conveys their thoughts, feelings, etc. regarding the global impact of Hunger/Poverty, Conflict, HIV/AIDS, Basic Education, or Gender Equality.
  • Building a feature article which includes video, text, audio and images to tell their story of why they want win the War Child Challenge.

The War Child Challenge officially ends on Monday, December 20.

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9th November 2010

Canadian Students Say Science Is Not Cool

I see a great opportunity for Canadian interactive media developers, technology and schools coming about, perhaps spurred by the results in this study.

lets talk scienceScience and technology-based careers may have exploded in recent years, but Canada’s youth have little interest in studying science after they graduate from high school. According to a new Angus Reid Vision Critical survey, only one in three (37 per cent) Canadian teens aged 16 to 18 are interested in taking a science course at the post-secondary level – and these are teens who are currently enrolled in at least one high school science course.

This is a surprising statistic, especially given that more than eight out of 10 (82 per cent) teens recognize that studying science opens many different career options and believe that if fewer students pursue science it will have an impact on our society long-term (84 per cent). Across the country Canadians agree, with nearly 90 per cent saying that young people’s interest in science is essential for Canada’s future prosperity.

“There is clearly a disconnect between Canadians’ theoretical belief in the value of a science education and students’ actual intentions,” said Bonnie Schmidt, president and founder of Let’s Talk Science, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the importance of science learning. “We need to encourage more teens to pursue science and technology learning at high school and post-secondary levels. The reality is that science education opens many more doors for career opportunities than people realize. A basic understanding of science is also needed for everyday life.”

The problem may be that Canadian teens do not think of science as ‘cool’. According to the survey, Canadian teens perceive people working in science related professions as intelligent (81 per cent) and serious (54 per cent), but only four per cent think they are ‘cool’. Yet, the number and variety of science-related careers available to youth today is higher than it has ever been before – and go beyond the obvious careers in medicine and computer technology. Science can lead to careers in the sports and entertainment industry or the business and financial world.

W. Brett Wilson, Chairman of both Prairie Merchant Corporation and CANOE Financial LP, as well as a scientist and entrepreneur, wants to help Canadian youth see the value and ‘cool’ factor of science. “The scientific skills learned at the high-school and post-secondary levels are critically important to virtually every career area,” said Mr. Wilson. “For me, studying science as part of my engineering degree has made a world of difference in my success. I use those skills every day in my own business, and in analyzing the potential value and utility of new business ideas. Now I am encouraging my own children, who have all taken sciences at a post-secondary level, to leverage those skills in whatever career paths they might choose.”

Partnerships like those between Let’s Talk Science and Amgen Canada are essential when trying to raise awareness of the importance of a science education among Canadian youth. According to the survey, eight out of 10 Canadian teens said that having access to mentors or assistance with homework would help them be more successful in science. Let’s Talk Science is a pioneer in developing programs that stimulate the interest of young people in science, including outreach programs that provide role models and real-world experiences in science and CurioCity, an interactive ‘place’ tailor-made for teens to explore and discover the science, engineering and technology in their lives. At CurioCity, teens have access to insightful articles that relate to their own interests and activities, such as health issues, technology, entertainment, sports and relationships, as well as a careers profile section that highlights the integral role science plays in career opportunities.

“Making science relevant is key to helping teens see the possibilities science brings to their own future,” said Dr. Schmidt. “Resources, like CurioCity, take science to where teens are – online and mobile – so they can explore science in ways that are meaningful to them. It’s very exciting, and the feedback by those who have used the website is very encouraging.”

Supporting educators in an effort to engage students in science in novel ways is also important – especially given that 70 per cent of teens say their science teachers have influenced their perception of science. The Amgen Award for Science Teaching Excellence (AASTE) recognizes four outstanding Canadian science teachers each year for their extraordinary contribution to elevating science literacy through creativity and innovation in the classroom.

“As we move towards a knowledge-based economy, we need to work together with supporters of science education to ensure our youth understand its importance, as well as make the connection between cutting-edge science and its everyday applications,” said Karen Burke, director of regulatory affairs, Amgen and vice-president, Canadian Society for Chemistry.

“At Amgen Canada, we are committed to raising the value of science literacy in Canada and hope to attract bright young minds into the field of science for many years to come,” continues Daniel Billen, Vice President and General Manager of Amgen Canada.

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9th November 2010

Today In The Business of Canadian Innovation

Canada Media FundThe Canada Media Fund would like to remind the development community that there are only four days left to tell them what you think about their programs and services. Your comments will help the Fund’s review for the 2010–2011 CMF program guidelines, scheduled to be published in December. You can offer your input in one of three methods:

* Comment on the CMF Forum
* Download a Word version for comments and submit it via email
* Take the short CMF survey

The CMF has also announced the latest round of funding awards, totaling $1 million for eight Television and Digital Media project applications in the Diverse Languages Program. The projects are to be produced in Italian, Mandarin, Portuguese, Punjabi, and Tamil languages, and will receive $898,000 for the television components and $102,000 for the Digital Media components. Of the total, seven are television components and four are digital media components. The successful projects include one children and youth show, five documentaries and two dramas. Of the projects approved for CMF funding, five originate in Toronto, two in Montreal, and one in Vancouver.

D-BoxCineplex Entertainment, Canada’s largest and most successful motion picture theatre exhibitor, and D-BOX Technologies Inc. have signed an agreement to add approximately 250 D-BOX MFX Seats to be installed in 10 theatres across Canada over the next 12 months with an option for 10 additional locations on the same terms.

“We are very proud of this agreement with Canada’s leading theatre circuit, which will provide movie-goers across the country with the opportunity to experience our unique technology,” said Claude Mc Master, President & CEO, D-BOX Technologies Inc. “This Canadian expansion will complement D-BOX’s foray into foreign markets while increasing visibility at home. More so, this significant milestone clearly demonstrates the attractiveness of our business model driven by the growing worldwide acceptance of our technology.”

As of November 19th, three Cineplex theatres will feature D-BOX Motion Systems and will feature Warner Bros. Pictures’ Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1. Disney’s Tron Legacy (3D), which opens December 17th will be the next movie available utilizing D-BOX Motion technology.

Scotiabank Theatre Montreal, 977 St. Catherine Street West, Montreal
Cineplex Odeon Beauport Cinemas, 825 Clemenceau Street, Beauport
Cineplex Odeon Queensway Cinemas, 1025 The Queensway, Toronto

Rogers Digital MediaRogers Media has announced that it is the exclusive digital media sales agent for NBA Canada. Through this partnership, Rogers will sell advertising across NBA.com platforms including display ads, video content and mobile applications.

Rogers Digital Media, known for creating innovative advertising solutions, will leverage the NBA’s strong sports and lifestyle brand to develop customized programs for Canadian advertisers looking to connect with the NBA’s growing fan base in the country.

poyntPoynt Corporation announced yesterday that their Poynt Local Search application is available for Windows Phone 7 and was selected as a launch partner in Canada. Poynt for Windows Phone 7 is now available in Canada and the United States.

Poynt harnesses the power of multiple applications in one intuitive package. Users can view search results, call businesses and get driving directions, as well as view restaurant information and even make dinner reservations. The movie section provides showtimes, trailers and the ability to book movie tickets through the application. Poynt for Windows Phone 7 also features movie ratings, giving users an overall ranking of how critics feel about the latest movies. The App also provides local weather forecasts and has an integrated weather screen.

Poynt is a free application that connects Windows Phone 7 users to business, movie, retailer, restaurant, and local weather information. The App integrates with the device using click-to-call, click-to-browse, map location and email results to friend in addition to using including some of the unique features of the device including the pivot feature to facilitate toggling between different features and screens.

AngossAngoss Software Corporation has acquired the mobile solutions assets of Hitgroup.ca, formerly operated as “The Hornby Solution”.

The Hornby Solution reflects more than a decade of domain expertise in the Canadian loyalty and rewards space. Hitgroup founders Blair Calder and Stevi Hanson are assisting Angoss with transitional support and collaboration on sales and business development for existing opportunities after closing.

The Hornby system provides a robust mobile marketing platform that enables marketers and their agencies to provide mobile loyalty and rewards programs including offers, coupons, and other location based services. It is especially well positioned to help retailers and other high frequency consumer services providers extend existing loyalty and rewards programs to create mobile marketing and rewards opportunities.

Angoss will be integrating the Hornby capabilities into its Intellimaxx™ integrated marketing solutions platform as Intellimaxx™ Mobile and extending its data capture, communications, promotions, loyalty and customer intelligence capabilities across Blackberry, iPhone and Android mobile platforms.

“By extending Intellimaxx™ with these exciting mobile capabilities, Angoss will be able to provide our customers with a comprehensive suite of customer management, insight, engagement and loyalty” said Eric Apps, President of Angoss. “In addition, this solution will provide us with valuable opportunities to provide more advanced analytics and measurement than currently exist in the mobile space to help marketers better understand the dynamics of the mobile marketplace”.

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9th November 2010

Youth Privacy Online Conference In Toronto This December

Verney Conference ManagementInformation about a new Youth Privacy Online Conference just came my way. Presented by Verney Conference Management, this event will “explore social networking and its relationship to issues such as online advertising, online scams, identity theft and online predators. Through a number of case studies, keynote addresses and discussions, the conference will show how providing too much personal information through social networking activity can lead to embarrassment, loss of career opportunities, disciplinary action and even danger. Whether the concern is privacy, online relationships or cyber-bullying – this is a conference that no educator, public employee, parent or youth exploring the Web 2.0 world, will want to miss.

The Youth Privacy Conference will take place on December 1st at the Toronto Renaissance Hotel, with individual tickets priced at $349.00 (+ HST). Group ticket pricing is also available.

The Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) CIRAwill be hosting two invitation-only events tomorrow, November 10th – one in Winnipeg, the other in Halifax. Both consultations will centre on how Canadians view the role of the Internet in their lives and the economy

The consultations are part of a CIRA-led initiative with the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) and the Media Awareness Network (MNet) to discuss, debate and propose directions for the development, deployment and governance of the Internet in Canada. IISD will help CIRA facilitate a group of about 20 participants in Winnipeg which will focus on the development of Canada’s digital economy, while in Halifax the discussion will centre on issues regarding digital literacy, including online privacy and identity, social media, social cohesion, and ethics.

Open TextOpen Text Corporation will convene with customers, partners, and Enterprise Content Management (ECM) industry experts from across the globe to share best practices, learn how to yield maximum benefits from content management technology and hear about Open Text’s vision and long-term strategy at Content World 2010, November 8-12 in Washington D.C. The company will also showcase its just released ECM Suite 2010, which was announced in September.

The power of ECM Suite 2010 is its wide ranging new functionality covering 90 products and modules linked through a consistent integration framework, and spanning everything from compliance, business process management and portals to integrated mobile experience and enterprise information archiving. The result gives customers the most complete content management environment available to handle the vast array of content types, languages, applications, user needs and business processes in their organizations.

The six-day conference, attended and sponsored by the world’s leading brands, is being staged at the award-winning Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center and offers more than 110 sessions, peer-to-peer networking events, panel discussions and a distinguished keynote speaker, this year’s event will explore how to ensure governance, improve efficiency and drive monetization of enterprise content management. Participants will also learn vital information about how to optimize current Open Text solutions—whether their focus is on lifecycle management, engagement, or transactional content. They will also learn how Open Text Everywhere boosts productivity by bringing the full power of the ECM Suite to smartphones.

YANGAROOToronto’s Yangaroo Inc. has signed an agreement with the Academy of Country Music (ACM) to power online review and professional member voting for the forthcoming 46th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards to be held in the spring of 2011. The Academy will employ Yangaroo’s patented Digital Media Distribution System (DMDS) Awards solution to securely distribute ballots in digital formats to its voting members. Through DMDS, members will be able to review materials online and vote electronically at the time that is most convenient for them.

Each year, the Academy presents awards honoring country music’s top talent and the industry’s hottest emerging talent. Awards are voted on in three rounds by the Academy’s professional members. The 46th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards will be broadcast LIVE on the CBS Television Network, on an as-yet-unannounced date.

The agreement with the Academy follows similar, previous deals Yangaroo has inked with The Grammys, The Junos, and others to provide award shows with a cost-saving and environmentally friendly solution.

“The Academy has always been ahead of the curve when it comes to adopting new technology that serves our membership and our mission to support the country music industry,” said Michelle Goble, Vice President, Membership and Events for the Academy. “We’re delighted to work with DMDS to streamline the time our dedicated professional members spend on the voting process.”

“Since the launch of our DMDS Awards solution two years ago, it has quickly become the standard for music industry award shows,” said Scott Wambolt, CEO of Yangaroo. “DMDS offers an easy to implement, cost-saving, environmentally friendly solution for music and broadcasting trade organizations. We are honored to be providing this for a renowned organization like the ACM and this is consistent with our profitable growth strategy of expanding our strategic relationships with key players across multiple music genres.”

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9th November 2010

Disney Institute To Teach A Day of Quality At Kwantlen

Disney InstituteDisney Institute is bringing its renowned professional development program, “Disney’s Approach to Quality Service” to Surrey BC this November 30th. Sponsored locally by Kwantlen Polytechnic University School of Business and the Surrey Board of Trade, the full-day event will demonstrate how anticipating and reacting to customers’ needs, wants, and emotions is an integral aspect of delivering quality service and achieving business results.

The program will be held at the Cedar Building Conference Centre in Surrey, and give participants new ideas for creating a service-driven organization that delivers excellence.Kwantlen Polytechnic University School of Business

Program registration is $395 per person and includes Breakfast, Lunch and all course materials. For more information or to register, call 877-544-2384 or visit the event information page.

“Delivering great service is critical for companies looking to survive and prosper,” said Jeff James, vice president for Disney Institute. “This program is a rare opportunity for Vancouver-area business professionals to go inside the Disney organization and learn innovative, easy-to-implement best practices that can give them the competitive edge.”

The full-day “Disney’s Approach to Quality Service” program will give participants an “insider’s look” at business practices that have helped Disney become respected for product and service quality. In 2010, Fortune magazine recognized Disney as the world’s most admired company for quality. Participants will learn how to exceed customer expectations using a well-defined service infrastructure, ongoing research and service standards.Surrey Board of Trade

“In an era where everyone is competing for business and market share, excellent customer service isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity,” James said. “This program is made for organizations – large and small – that are looking to create a service experience that exceeds customer expectations and drives repeat business.”

Disney Institute was created to showcase “the business behind the magic” – Disney best practices that easily adapt to other organizations. One of the most recognized names in professional development, Disney Institute travels the world offering engaging seminars, workshops and presentations, as well as fully customized programming. Immersive learning experiences are also offered at Disney destinations in the Americas, Europe and Asia, enabling participants to go behind the scenes and see firsthand how business theory drives operational excellence. The Disney Institute client roster includes Fortune 500 companies as well as a wide range of small businesses, non-profits and government agencies.

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9th November 2010

Mix Superstar From Digital Leisure Drops On WiiWare

Digital LeisureThink you can be the next big music star? Well now you’ve got all the tools right at your fingertips with Mix Superstar from Digital Leisure. Create, mix and record your own royalty-free musical masterpieces right on your Wii™ Mix Superstarsystem. There are over 1,000 Dance, Hip Hop and Techno loops included across multiple instruments like Drum, Bass, Synth, Guitar and even voice tracks.

Once you’ve got that next hit created, it’s time to show it off. Mix Superstar allows you to export your music creations, and download them to your computer so you can take them on-the-go. You can also use WiiConnect24™ to send those hits to your Wii Friends and even collaborate on mixes!

Also included is full support for both the Logitech® USB Microphone and Wii Speak™ so you can lay down your own vocals on that next hit.

You need to a flashplayer enabled browser to view this YouTube video

Looking to give your mix a unique flare? Over a dozen new music loop packs will be releasing via Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection Pay & Play™ to enhance your music creation experience. Thousands of additional loops from packs like Rock, Pop, Latin, House and even World.

Visit mixsuperstar.com to hear what you’ll be able to create with Mix Superstar, available today in North America exclusively on WiiWare for only 500 Wii Points™.

DreamCatcherToronto’s DreamCatcher Games and its parent company JoWooD Group announce the launch of the official website for SpellForce 2: Faith in Destiny, which will be available on November 30th for $19.99USD.

SpellForce 2 opens four years after the Shaper’s defeat through the use of Archfire. During that time SpellForce 2scientists, dragons and inventors have tried to find to counter the mysterious deterioration of the portals – in vain. The portal network has now totally collapsed and the islands are cut off from one another. The dragons and the Shaikan act as the only connection between the races, but even their resources are limited.

Now, with the nations isolated from one another, a new nameless enemy strikes. Eo is completely at the mercy of the attackers ascending from demonic depths. In the midst of this chaos a new hero appears. To discover his destiny our hero must acquire new skills and do battle with enemies new and old. But wherever he goes – the Nameless always seem to be a step ahead, and futile battles break out in which the hero holds the destiny of all of Eo in his hands.

SpellForce 2 Features:

* An all new campaign that fits into the SpellForce series and enriches the world of SpellForce, including favourite characters and quests.
* An all new race of demonic enemies are also playable in multiplayer mode, featuring new units and structures.
* Ride into battle on a fierce dragon and use new spells and effects to enhance your tactical possibilities.
* Innovative new Role-Playing-Strategy Genre.
* Click’n’Fight and Quick-Action-Buttons: The revolutionary control system guarantees instant action, and a wealth of unique tactical possibilities at your fingertips.
* Easy Skill tree system that allows individual character development.
* Enjoy a highly detailed and living fantasy world that adapts to the actions of the player: Fight monsters, gather items, adventure, trade and collect mighty artifacts to use for your battles.
* 5 different fractions: Lead The Realm, The Clans, The Pact, the Shaikan and the Nameless to victory, with 12 very different units consisting of infantry, cavalry and flyers.
* 10 different races: heroic humans, powerful elves, strong dwarves, barbaric trolls,battle-tested orcs, destructive barbarians, powerful dark elves, unbreakable gargoyles, malicious shadows and mean demonic powers.

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9th November 2010

Garage Inc Nears Completion

TransGamingTransGaming, Inc. is proud to announce that its in-house game development studio, creators of In The Mix Featuring Armin van Buuren for the Nintendo Wii ™, is now in the final stages of development on its latest title – Garage Inc.
Garage Inc Customers
As we told you last week, Garage Inc. is an original title, developed from inception as a multi-platform game, and targets the rapidly growing casual gaming segment. Garage Inc. is slated to be released before the end of the year on PC, Mac, iPhone as well as on TransGaming’s new GameTreeTV digital home platform.

“The casual games segment is one of the fastest growing markets in electronic entertainment and we are incredibly excited to be creating original intellectual property for it,” commented Wojtek Kawczynski, Managing Director of TransGaming Studios. “Garage Inc. was designed from the outset to leverage TransGaming’s enablement technology and expertise to reach the broadest possible audience across multiple platforms at a streamlined cost, including gamers on our new GameTreeTV Platform.”

Garage Inc. is an innovative time management game that takes place in Prohibition-era Chicago, and features a rich cast of memorable characters. The story centers around Angelo Marito, a car mechanic and recent Italian immigrant who is trying to make a life for himself in the windy city. Players help Angelo fulfill his dream of opening his own car garage, but must navigate many challenges and plot twists as the local Mob gets involved. The casual nature of the game allows players to jump in and play in “bite-sized Garage Inc Mobster Carpieces”, which is ideal for mobile or smart-television experiences.

Garage Inc. is being developed by TransGaming Studios in partnership with Breakthrough Entertainment and is based on an original concept from GlobalFun. The iPhone version is made possible with the support of the Ontario Media Development Corporation.

“We are very proud of the work that TransGaming has done with the Garage Inc. property and are confident that it will perform well on all platforms”, said Dorothy Vreeker, Director, Digital Media at Breakthrough Entertainment.

Garage Inc. is being introduced to gamers worldwide through an innovative social media campaign on Twitter, where Angelo provides real-time updates of his journey from Europe, speaking of his new experiences as he settles in Chicago, 1928. The Twitter campaign can be found at @GarageIncGame and @AngeloMarito.

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