1st March 2011

Last Word of the Day

rethinkRethink Canada has released a free app on Apple’s iTunes App Store designed to help you create. Dubbed the Realizer, the tool allows you to create realistic presentation prototypes of apps that can be easily displayed on actual iPhone or iPad screens. The prototypes include working “buttons” that give a realistic simulation of the final user experience.nascent

The app, in beta testing since November, was created by Rethink in partnership with Nascent in Toronto. “We initially designed the Realizer for ourselves as a way to better communicate our vision when presenting app concepts to clients,” says Rethink Creative Director Dré Labre. “It proved so indispensable, in fact, we felt it a shame not to share the app with the rest of the ad and design community.” Labre says the Realizer can be used for everything from quick renderings of pencil sketches to fully designed comps. Its intended market includes designers, art directors, developers, testers and clients.

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“We loved helping bring this idea to life,” says Shawn Konopinsky from Nascent. “Apps are a new form of communication that can be difficult to simulate at the concept stage. We wanted to create a tool as simple and intuitive as these new platforms themselves.” Konopinsky says the Realizer will eventually be available on other mobile platforms, including Android. “There’s a real open-source spirit behind this venture,” he says. “We’re counting on our users to help us make this tool better and better.”

Today is the first day of the 2011 CorelDraw International Design Contest. With over $75 000.00 in prizes, it’s worth a try, particularly if you are a designer. If you don’t own CorelDraw X5, you can download the trial, because it will permit you to save your work so that it can be submitted and seen by thousands of people around the world. If I could draw, I would certainly be entering, because the Grand Prize is Roland VersaCAMM SP-300i printer, something we could Roland Versa CAMM SP-300i Printerdesperately use in this office. Click here to read the full prize list in a PDF.

Contest Categories:

  • Advertising/Marketing: Flyers, brochures, logos and other designs related to advertising, marketing or point of purchase (POP)
  • Signs/Awards/Personalization: Designs to be used in sign making, engraving, awards, dye sublimation and other related industries
  • Vehicle Wraps: Designs to be used for car, truck, boat or other vehicle wraps
  • Textile/Fashion Design: Designs for fashion, embroidery and direct-to-garment printing
  • General Illustration & Fine Art: Artistic, creative and unique designs
  • CorelDRAW Marketing Campaign: Create a design to be featured in a CorelDRAW marketing campaign. Entries can be of any style, and will be judged on creativity and overall theme

Students: In addition to the Grand Prize and category winners, Corel will present a top student award in each of the categories above.

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This contest runs until June 30th, 2011 and open to residents of Canada (except Quebec) over the age of majority in their respective province. Please click here to read a PDF of the complete contest rules.

Government of CanadaThe Competition Bureau will also be participating in Fraud Prevention Month, which this year focuses on the growing problem of online fraud. Fraud Prevention Month is an annual education and awareness campaign held in Canada and around the world.

One of the first activities during Fraud Prevention Month is the conference Preventing Fraud in a Digital Age, which will be held in Ottawa on March 7 and 8, 2011. This conference will unite participants from the private and public sectors, consumer groups, and law enforcement organizations committed to cracking down on this growing concern. Conference attendees will learn more about the current state of fraud in Canada and abroad, identify the most at-risk groups, share best practices on recognizing and preventing fraud, and ultimately provide recommendations that the partners in fraud prevention can implement to help protect consumers and businesses from online fraud.

The conference is being hosted by the Fraud Prevention Forum, which is co-chaired by the Competition Bureau. The Fraud Prevention Forum is a group of over 100 private sector firms, consumer and volunteer groups, government agencies and law enforcement organizations, concerned with fighting fraud aimed at consumers and businesses. During Fraud Prevention Month, Forum members will participate in a number of targeted activities across the country, designed to raise awareness among consumers and businesses about the dangers of fraud.

In addition, the Competition Bureau’s Web site provides important education and prevention information including a new interactive quiz designed to test consumers’ and businesses’ fraud awareness. Visitors will also learn more about some of the various types of scams that they should watch out for: job opportunity scams, fake news sites, fraudulent health products, prize scams, and advertisements on social networking sites.

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1st March 2011

Protecting Yourself and Your Company

RCMPThe RCMP would like to remind all of you about the top five scams currently in play around the world. Mass-marketing frauds use the internet, email, mass mailings, personal phone calls, texting, television, radio, and all forms of social networking to rip you off. The RCMP has an excellent, highly detailed anti-fraud resource site, please make use of it to protect yourselves and your family.

1. Advance Fee Fraud. This is the scam that victimized John. The most common variation is the prize pitch, or lottery scam. You are told you have won a large sum of money or a big ticket item but to collect you must pay fees or taxes in advance. You will either never hear from the organization again or receive more and more requests for money.

The criminals sometimes include a cheque to cover “taxes.” The victim is told to wire the “tax” amount to the criminals and take the rest for themselves. Just like in the Overpayment Scam, the wire transfer will leave the victim’s account before the cheque is returned as counterfeit.
In another variation of the Advance Fee fraud, criminals exploit the economic crisis by offering guaranteed loans in spite of your bad credit-rating, but with an up-front fee for processing costs.

Solution: If you have won a prize in Canada there are no fees or taxes to be paid. If you have doubts about any organization, contact the Better Business Bureau for further information.

2. The Grandparent or Family Emergency Scam generally targets seniors. Fraudsters will call the potential victim and claim to be a grandchild or other close family member and will ask for money to help with a serious situation. Common themes have been that the grandchild has been in an accident or arrested and the money is needed for hospital bills or bail. The victim is told not to tell other family members as the “grandchild” is embarrassed or doesn’t want to alarm anyone else in the family.fraud

A variation of this scam involves the misuse of hijacked email accounts, where the fraudster sends an email claiming to be the email account holder to everyone on the compromised contact list. The email will claim that the sender has been robbed while traveling abroad and needs money to get home or for living expenses.

Solution: Before you send money anywhere, check the facts. A quick call to other family members can quickly confirm or disprove the information provided by the fraudster.

3. Overpayment Fraud, also known as Cash Back Fraud, usually starts when you advertise something for sale- often on a free online classified site. The criminal sends you a cheque, money order or bank draft. The sum is much larger than your asking price, and you are asked to wire transfer the difference. Since cheques take longer to clear than electronic bank transfers, the money leaves your account before the cheque is confirmed as counterfeit or forged. Lawyers, realtors, gift shops, restaurants, and especially landlords are targets.

Solution: Don’t wire money to strangers. Always be wary of buyers offering more than your asking price.

4. The Nigerian/West-African Scam has been around for years:

* You receive an “urgent” business proposal “in strictest confidence” from a Nigerian/West-African civil servant /businessman.
* The sender has come into possession of profit from real estate, oil products, over-invoiced contracts, cargo shipments, or other commodities, and needs an offshore partner to assist in transferring the money out of his or her home country.
* Since their government/business position prohibits them from opening foreign bank accounts, the senders ask you to deposit the sum, usually somewhere between $25-50 million, into your personal account, and you will receive between 15-30% of the total.
* You are told to provide your bank name and address, the name of your beneficiary and, of course, your bank account numbers.
* The criminals will ask for money to pay for shipping costs, bank fees or bribes, and may even resort to threats and intimidation.

Solution: Unsolicited letters are not to be believed. If in doubt, contact E Division RCMP Commercial Crime Section, your local Better Business Bureau, or the Canadian Anti-Fraud Call Centre.

5. The Mystery Shopper Scam usually starts with an unsolicited letter containing a cheque. You are told to deposit that cheque, make a few small purchases, and wire transfer the balance to an account controlled by the fraud artist. The cheque that you deposit will be returned as counterfeit, forged or stolen and you are on the hook for the money that you wired.

A variation is the Work from Home Scam where an “international company” wants to expand but needs someone with a bank account in Canada to process its cheques and keep a small percentage for themselves. Once again, this scam relies on the lag between the time the cheque is deposited and the time that the cheque actually clears.

In all of these scams, fraudsters stress the need for confidentiality. They will tell you that your reward will be lost if you don’t keep the transaction secret. This is to keep you from discovering that you are being scammed.
The solution here is the same as with all scams and frauds. Victims are either blinded by the opportunity to make a quick buck or are too trusting. Victims often represent the most vulnerable members of society- the elderly, the lonely, the poor. Be aware, be skeptical, and do your research. Make sure you have a conversation with your loved ones, and make 2011 fraud-free.

eDiscovery CanadaLegal IQ, a division of IQPC, announces the 2nd Annual eDiscovery Summit Canada being held March 28-30, 2011 at the Toronto Marriott Bloor Yorkville Hotel in Toronto, ON to develop practical skills required to comply with electronic record management regulations.

With the eDiscovery rules in Ontario, British Columbia and Alberta in full operation, the climate for eDiscovery in Canada is changing fast. The eDiscovery Summit Canada brings together in-house counsel, IT experts, document management, law firms, solution providers, judges and regulatory experts to demonstrate how to improve your eDiscovery processes, while saving time and money despite heightened regulatory scrutiny and onslaught of litigation.

Each year, Clearwell predicts the top trends for e-Discovery and in 2011 they examined evolving technologies and the global landscape. There are clear challenges when it comes to the cloud, social media and the global marketplace. Clearwell’s article on the top 5 trends in eDiscovery is available on the event’s website.

Discussions at the event include:

* Lessons learned from the GasTOPS v. MxI and Enbridge Pipelines Inc. v. BP Canada Energy Company cases
* Protect your intellectual property during eDiscovery
* Minimize privacy risks during eDiscovery to ensure compliance with privacy principles
* Explore how global companies are successfully implementing eDiscovery principles
* Effectively manage the burdens and cost of eDiscovery
* Address the importance of overcoming in-house politics to implement eDiscovery solutions

Tom Allman, Senior Counsel of Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw LLP and Former SVP and General Counsel of BASF Corporation commented on the event: “This is a very distinguished and comprehensive program! Very thorough, very impressive.”

Participating organizations include:

* Bell Canada
* TD Bank
* Vale
* Xacti
* Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada
* City of Toronto
* Sedona Canada
* Seventh Circuit Electronic Discovery Pilot Program, Illinois
* Davis LLP

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1st March 2011

Two Enterprise Solutions Offered By Open Text and Make Technologies

Open TextEnterprises will now have an easier time keeping their global workforces productive with the release of Exceed onDemand 8 by OpenText™, an X11 window server that gives users fast, reliable and secure remote access to applications over any network connection. Exceed onDemand 8 offers support for the popular Mac OS X platform along with a number of performance and productivity enhancements that enable customers to centrally distribute and manage access to UNIX, Linux and Microsoft Windows applications.

Trusted by millions of enterprise users, the Exceed family of products is known for its dependability in mission-critical environments and “pixel-perfect” screen and color rendering capabilities. Exceed onDemand offers companies a centralized, scalable and load-balanced platform to manage the distribution of critical line-of-business applications to a geographically disparate user population. Exceed onDemand offers an all-in-one remote application access solution for stock trading, electronic design automation (EDA), computer-aided design/manufacturing (CAD/CAM) and high-end 3D modeling, among others, and delivers such benefits as lower infrastructure costs, improved security and easier team collaboration.

“Enterprises are facing increasing pressure to deliver better results on time and on budget. Exceed onDemand helps them improve the performance of their business operations by simplifying and extending their application delivery infrastructure – and we’re continuing the momentum with this new release,” said Eugene Cherny, General Manager for OpenText’s connectivity solutions. “Its industry-proven architecture offers automatic workload balancing and scalability, helping to accelerate access to business applications while boosting user productivity through real-time team collaboration.”

The new version of Exceed onDemand offers a number of significant enhancements:

* Empowers the growing population of Apple Mac OS X users with high-performance remote application access
* Helps enterprises take control of the distribution of Microsoft Windows applications on UNIX, Linux and OS X platforms
* Enhances access security through the integration with LDAP based enterprise directory services
* New dynamic screen scaling capability offers superior user experience and improved productivity

“Exceed onDemand 8 supports the Cadence EDA360 vision by empowering engineering teams to collaborate virtually, fully realizing complex designs as efficiently as possible in a globalized work environment,” said Steven Lewis, Product Management Director of Cadence. “We’ve worked closely with OpenText to ensure that Exceed onDemand 8 works smoothly with the Cadence Virtuoso custom IC technology, maximizing both design throughput and resource utilization, while lowering overall hardware costs.”

Make TechnologiesMake Technologies® Inc. is proud to introduce the Make Technologies® Enterprise Suite, an end-to-end solution for application portfolio modernization. Customers can expect to dramatically reduce the amount of custom code in their legacy portfolio without changing workflows or the way they run their business.

The Make Technologies® Enterprise Suite is built on top of Transformational Legacy Modernization (TLM®), the company’s proven modernization platform. TLM® is fit-for-purpose software guided by a mature methodology and supported by the best practices of our modernization experts.

The Make Technologies® Enterprise Suite allows customers to build a pragmatic application roadmap that is closely aligned with the strategic initiatives of its business, based on strong data points such as code dependencies and application usage patterns. The result is a marked reduction in code maintenance, giving CXOs the freedom to pay more attention to essential business matters while gaining a competitive edge in their industry.

“The challenge with all organizations is their ability to do more with less and in a resource-constrained environment companies are finding it challenging to support and maintain legacy applications and simultaneously innovate. As noted in Forrester’s Enterprise and SMB Software Survey, North America and Europe, Q42008 showed that a fairly stunning change has taken place in IT leaders’ plans and priorities. Application modernization supplanted the hot topics of prior years: eBusiness, Agile, Lean, cloud, etc. In fact the three most important software initiatives for IT decision-makers all focused on application modernization: 1) update/ modernization legacy applications; 2) upgrade enterprise applications; and 3) consolidate or rationalize enterprise applications. The data highlights a sharp turn in IT leader’s thinking, with them coming to realize that streamlining bloated application portfolios is no longer an optional activity. Rather, modernization is the best new opportunity to cut waste on low-value applications and thus free the corresponding resources for new projects and innovation.” (A Workable Application Modernization Framework is Job No. 1 Now Forrester Research, Inc. independent Report April 26, 2010)

Make Technologies® Enterprise Suite allows businesses to:

* Lower the cost of application maintenance by lowering the amount of custom code and creating an easy to maintain application.
* Maximize the speed and quality of implementation with state-of-the-art, integrated tools supporting collaboration, analysis, code generation and data migration.
* Control the output quality continuously throughout the engagement.
* Verify the functional completeness of the modernized applications.

“As legacy systems continue to age and the speed of business continues to increase, the need to modernize enterprise-level IT is at a record high,” said Bill Bergen, CEO of Make Technologies Inc. “Many companies are investing millions of dollars into a modernization project and cannot afford setbacks or failure. Organizations are looking to understand what they own – to quantify the business value and maintenance of their applications so as to devise a rational plan for streamlined modernization efforts. Make Technologies® Enterprise Suite ensures complete project success through its combined software, methodology, and best practices.”

Canada PostCanada Post announced today the launch of CentrSource.ca, a new online marketplace that connects advertisers and consumers instantly – where they live. This pay-for-performance model means that small to medium-sized businesses can effectively target consumers in their neighbourhood by offering products and services online and in-store that are relevant to them. It is also possible to search the entire network for offers from businesses across Canada. Until now, there has been a gap for consumers in getting targeted, local, time-sensitive content from traditional search engines.centrsource

“CentrSource.ca is an attractive tool for businesses of any size – especially small and medium-sized businesses. It helps them promote their products and services in the online marketplace, even if they don’t have a website, and makes it possible for them to compete on equal footing with larger competitors,” says Laurene Cihosky, Senior vice-president, Direct marketing, Advertising & Publishing business. The newly launched initiative is the result of a strategic alliance between Canada Post and CentrSource SA, a progressive Swiss-based company that provides e-commerce platforms.

“The power of CentrSource.ca is that it benefits both advertisers and consumers equally. Advertisers can reach customers instantly with offers that are geo-targeted, and consumers can improve their online shopping experience with searches that return time-sensitive offers on products and services only in the neighbourhoods they want to shop,” says Bob Westrope, Founder and CEO, CentrSource SA.

Through CentrSource.ca, national businesses such as Walmart and local businesses such as Calgary’s Community Natural Foods have unprecedented access to every type of consumer. This is made possible through the partnership of dozens of media/communications companies that make up the CentrSource network such as AOL Canada and Reader’s Digest. Today, CentrSource.ca features tens of thousands of offers from small businesses and large retailers across Canada. New offers are added daily in the language(s) chosen by the retailer and are targeted based on the location of the business’ customers.

As part of its vision to deliver a modern post, Canada Post is seeking new and compelling ways to extend their services by connecting businesses with their customers – whether it is through physical or electronic channels or a combination of both. CentrSource.ca is part of a growing number of online initiatives recently launched by Canada Post.

Another Telecom wants you to increase your data usage by offering another digital product. Five dollars per month gets you 10 hours of Mobile TV.

Fans of Vancouver Whitecaps FC will be able to get closer to their team anytime and anywhere thanks to Bell’s Bellcommitment to make all Whitecaps FC matches available live on Bell mobile phones. It’s the first time ever that all home and away matches of a Major League Soccer (MLS) Club will be available live on mobile.

“Being a fan of the Whitecaps just got better with Bell,” said Loring Phinney, Vice President, Corporate Marketing for Bell. “We committed to an enhanced experience for soccer fans when we announced our jersey sponsorship, and we’re thrilled to assist the Whitecaps in being the first MLS club with access to live matches on the screen of the fan’s choice.”

With TSN already announced as the MLS Official Broadcaster, Whitecaps FC fans will have their choice of watching matches in High Definition on TSN and TSN2, all Whitecaps FC games on the regional broadcast and now on Bell mobile phones and tablets with Bell Mobile TV.

“We promised Whitecaps FC fans that, together with our partners, we would provide a unique experience for our inaugural season in Major League Soccer and today, thanks to Bell, we’re delivering on that promise,” stated Paul Barber, Chief Executive Officer, Vancouver Whitecaps FC. “Bell is a world leader in creating great experiences across multiple screens in top level sporting environments. With this historic announcement, our club and our fans will be the beneficiaries of Bell’s innovative market leadership.”

In addition to all Whitecaps FC matches, Bell mobile customers will also have access to 24 MLS matches featuring Toronto FC and Vancouver Whitecaps FC on TSN and TSN2, as well as the MLS All-Star Game, MLS Playoffs and the MLS Cup.

Bell Mobility customers can purchase 10 hours of the Mobile TV Sports package for $5 per month. This includes access to live games and highlights from the NHL, NFL and now MLS Official Broadcaster matches and Vancouver Whitecaps FC.

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1st March 2011

Fight Night Champion and Rango The Video Game In Stores Now

EA SportsEA SportsFight Night Champion is now available in North America and will launch worldwide on March 4, 2011. Fight Night Champion is an intense and deep new mature experience that builds on the rich legacy of the Fight Night series, which is one of the most critically acclaimed sports franchises of the past five years. Fight Night Champion full version and demo version are available for the Xbox 360® and the PlayStation®3. The game has been rated M for Mature by the ESRB.

Fight Night Champion features new gameplay innovation that delivers the rawness and brutality of the most realistic boxing simulation ever created. The title is packed with a deep menu of new modes and features, including: the all-new cinematic, narrative-driven Champion Mode; more than 50 licensed boxers including Muhammad Ali, Mike Tyson and Manny Pacquiao; Full Spectrum Punch Control; the deepest career mode yet, Online Gyms, and much more.

“The EA Sports Fight Night franchise has consistently pushed the boundaries of innovation in sports videogames, from ushering in the new console generation in 2006 with Fight Night Round 3, to Fight Night RoFight Night Championund 4 which introduced real world physics to the franchise two years ago,” said Dale Jackson, General Manager, Fighting, EA Sports. “Fight Night Champion advances the critically-acclaimed series with genre-defining new gameplay innovation, a deep feature set and an all new type of experience for the EA Sports gamer.”

Champion Mode brings cinematic storytelling to the Fight Night franchise and is the first such story mode in EA Sports history. Written by Academy Award®-nominated screenwriter Will Rokos, Champion Mode allows players to step into the shoes of up-and-coming middleweight prospect, Andre Bishop, as he discovers that the road to becoming a champion in professional boxing is one that is filled with corruption, personal struggle and more than just what happens between the ropes.

Fight Night Champion also introduces a host of gameplay improvements. The refined punching system, dubbed “Full Spectrum Punch Control”, brings the most accessible and responsive controls ever to a Fight Night title. A new anaerobic stamina system tracks individual muscle groups separately, punishing a player’s over-dependence on a single punch and encourages combination punching and diligent stamina management. In addition, improved visuals, multiple control schemes, realistic damage, boxer-specific animations and multiple stun states round out the key gameplay improvements players will experience in Fight Night Champion.

behaviour gamesParamount Digital Entertainment, Electronic Arts Inc. and Behaviour Interactive would like to remind you that Rango The Videogame, rated E by the ESRB, is now available worldwide for the PlayStation®3, Xbox 360®, Wii™ and Nintendo DS™. This action-adventure game is inspired by the forthcoming Paramount Pictures/Nickelodeon Movies animated feature film, Rango in theaters on March 4th . Set in the gritty, Wild West town of Dirt and filled with wily and whimsical characters, Rango The Videogame invites players to continue on Rango’s wild Rango Zombiesjourney with all new tall tales, brimming with intense action and outlandish scenarios inspired by the movie.

“Rango’s fondness for telling tall tales allowed us to push the limits in creating new adventures for players of all ages to enjoy,” said Thomas Lesinski, President of Paramount Digital Entertainment. “We worked closely with the Rango filmmaking team on a unique game storyline and integrating stunning visuals from the film to create a game that delivers a great variety of game play that has already impressed the critics.”

Rango The Videogame lets players explore a wide variety of environments featured within and beyond the film and challenges them to achieve near-impossible feats as they work to uncover a plot that threatens the entire population of Dirt. Along the way, players will encounter Zombie rodents, Alien spaceships and even an 8-bit shootout inside an arcade machine. This family-friendly title captures the spirit and humor of the movie, with an extended storyline that goes beyond the vivid world of Dirt. Some of the features include:

Rango’s All New Tall Tales – Play as the quick-thinking chameleon Rango, the best Sheriff the town of Dirt has ever known, and explore a variety of new missions and environments that expand beyond those seen in the film.
Ride Roadrunners and Desert Bats – Speed through the desert atop these unconventional chariots as players engage in extraordinary acrobatic gunplay and more.
Interact with the Dirtonians – From a group of mariachi birds that provide color commentary to a gang of wild rabbits, the townsfolk of Dirt will provide no shortage of fun and entertainment.
Wild West Action and Adventure – Face hordes of hostile zombie rodents as you show the town who’s boss in good, old-fashioned shootouts where fists are flyin’ and spurs are shinin.’

pocketgamerI just realized that I forgot to check on which studios UK-based PocketGamer named to the top 10 and top 20 sections of its Top 50 last week, and upon checking see that GameLoft and EA Mobile were listed at number 1 and number 10 respectively. While neither developer/publisher produces 100% Canadian product, they do have a large number of mobile games developed in Canada, and both have major dev houses in Quebec, so congratulations to both of them. PocketGamer has also revealed the winners of its 2011 Awards, and again Canadian-made products were honoured.

Best iPhone Freemium Game: Lil’ Pirates (Capcom Mobile) – developed by IUGO Mobile Entertainment
Best Developer: GameLoft – in both iPhone-iPod Touch and Mobile categories
Best Publisher: EA Mobile – in iPhone-iPod Touch and iPad categories
Best Developer: Hemisphere Games in iPad Category
Best Action/Arcade Game: Mirror’s Edge for iPad (EA Mobile)
Best Sports/Driving Game: Madden NFL 11 for iPad (EA Mobile)

QuickPlay MediaQuickPlay Media has unveiled Pocket Cinema™ – a service that offers consumers the ability to download, rent and watch popular movies on their video-enabled mobile device. Initially, the service is available exclusively for BlackBerry® TorchTM 9800 smartphone customers in the UK. Over time, QuickPlay plans to extend the service to additional mobile platforms and geographical markets. Customers who purchase a BlackBerry Torch from UK retailer Phones4U in March 2011 will receive a voucher for a complimentary movie download from the service.

Beginning today, BlackBerry Torch users will have access to a catalogue of hundreds of films by simply downloading Pocket Cinema on BlackBerry App World™. Users will then be able to access the movies on their BlackBerry® smartphone. Once downloaded over Wi-Fi®, the film is cached on the device and available for an unlimited number of views for 48 hours. Users don’t need a mobile signal or network connection in order to view films they have downloaded.

techdataTech Data Canada has introduced the StreamOneSM Software License Selector, a new application only available on techdata.ca. The Software License Selector is the first in a series of exclusive e-business services the company is building on its new StreamOne software platform, which improves how the channel sells and distributes software by making it more efficient and less complex.

The StreamOne Software License Selector significantly surpasses contemporary software license tools in breadth and ease-of-use. In four simple steps, the StreamOne Software License Selector guides resellers through the entire software-purchasing process, sifting through hundreds of thousands of software SKUs and each vendors’ complex licensing rules to identify the right software part number, the most accurate pricing and the correct license type.

The StreamOne Software License Selector establishes the industry’s most accurate and efficient software license distribution channel, reducing the cycle time from quote to license from days to minutes. For resellers, it lowers licensing processing costs, instantly provides accurate pricing and makes it easy to attach software to all hardware sales. For vendors, it provides the opportunity to increase their channel partners as more resellers will now be able to sell software using the Software License Selector.

The StreamOne Software License Selector automates tasks like SKU selection and order qualification for 27 major software vendors—representing more than 99 percent of the software licenses purchased through Tech Data. The StreamOne Software License Selector aims to quickly solidify Tech Data’s position as the premier software license distributor for the world’s leading software companies. Additionally, the StreamOne Software License Selector will help Tech Data strengthen software sales, especially among small and medium businesses.

Software vendors supported by the StreamOne Software License Selector include: Absolute Software, Acronis, Adobe, Autodesk, BitDefender, Computer Associates, Check Point, Corel, Diskeeper, Double-Take, Filemaker, Ipswitch, Kaspersky, McAfee, Microsoft, Novell, Oracle, Parallels, Red Hat, Sage Act!, SAP, SCO, SolarWinds, Symantec, Trend Micro, Vasco, VMware.

Wicked InteractiveMission Against Terror (M.A.T.), a free-to-play shooter published by Toronto’s Wicked Interactive, has teamed with GamerSaloon.com, the world’s largest player-to-player videogame tournament network, for cash prizes. To get things started right, GamerSaloon.com is hosting a special kickoff competition.

“We are very excited to be working with Wicked Interactive. Mission Against Terror is an excellent addition to our competitive roster,” said Justin Becker, Director of Affiliated Partnerships, GamerSaloon.com. “Whereas other pay and free-to-play titles claim to be perfectly balanced for robust, satisfying competitive gameplay, M.A.T. delivers, thanks to the significant investment that was made in developing the title along with the constant user-generated improvements and enhancements.”Mission Against Terror

“We are thrilled to be part of this opportunity,” said Sam Ho, Director, Wicked Interactive. “GamerSaloon.com is a gamer community unlike any other. Rather than just talking big, games on GamerSaloon.com back up their talk with cold, hard cash.”

How to Get Started:

1. Download M.A.T. from GamerSaloon.com (www.gamersaloon.com) to be entered into a sweepstakes to win $50 Bonus Cash
2. Spend your Bonus Cash however you see fit on tournaments, generating winnings and what-have you.
3. Invite your friends to join you for the chance to win. (4- and 8-man competitions available)

Special Kickoff Competition Prizes:

1st Place: $100 + headset
2nd Place: $25 + headset
3rd Place: headset

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1st March 2011

Canada Media Fund invests $11.5 million in 36 new interactive projects

Canada Media FundThe Canada Media Fund (CMF) has just announced its investment of $11.5 million in 36 new innovative interactive projects submitted in the second round of its Experimental Stream. The CMF offers financial assistance to support projects at various stages of their completion: production, development or marketing.

In production, the CMF is investing $8.6 million in 17 new projects: 8 games, 4 websites, 4 mobile applications and 1 software application. Six of these projects are in English, 3 are French and 8 are bilingual. The average commitment to each project is $509,000. Two projects are being carried out in British Columbia, 1 in Manitoba, 6 in Ontario and 8 in Quebec.

In development, the CMF is investing $1.9 million in 13 projects: 4 in English, 4 in French and 5 are bilingual. The average amount offered for each project is $150,000. Two will be developed in British Columbia, 3 in Ontario, 7 in Quebec and 1 in Nova Scotia.

Finally, in terms of marketing assistance, the CMF is investing $960,000 in 6 projects, with an average contribution of $160,000. Three of the projects are in English, and 3 are bilingual. Three projects are from British Columbia, 1 from Manitoba and 2 from Quebec.

“We’re proud to announce our participation in funding these projects. The wealth of content and technological innovation demonstrated in the selected projects is truly remarkable”, said Valerie Creighton, President and CEO of the CMF. “The new approaches found to engage with users truly enrich the quality of our project portfolio. It’s a statement to the creativity and vitality of the Canadian interactive digital media industry.”

Projects were evaluated using the following criteria : innovation (40%), production team (15%), business plan (30%) and distribution strategy (15%). For projects at the production stage, the innovation and production team criteria (55% of the evaluation) were assessed by a jury of Canadian and international industry specialists (see their bios on our website): Wendy L. Bernfeld (Amsterdam), Lynda Brown-Ganzert (Vancouver), Sylvain Carle (Montreal), Jean-Pierre Faucher (Montreal), Dré Labre (Toronto), Lucie Lalumière (Toronto), Gavin McGarry (New York) and Catherine Warren (Vancouver). The remaining factors for the production projects, as well as the applications for development and marketing funding, were evaluated by analysts from the CMF Program Administrator|Telefilm Canada. All decisions made by the CMF are final.

Since the creation of its Experimental Stream in 2010, the Canada Media Fund has invested $27 million in 81 innovative interactive projects.

List of approved production projects:

Applicant Project name Project type Platform
Language Region Amount
Tribal Nova Inc. APPyWorld Application Mobile Bilingual QC $390,000
Available on tablets, AppyWorld is an assortment of edutainment applications for children ages 3 to 6, which serve to develop their creativity and to support discovery and enlightenment. The 5 individual applications are linked together, and can be customized to enrich each child’s experience and to provide an approach adapted to their needs and progress.
Lusio Film Inc. Enfants de la Bolduc (Les) Website Internet French QC $525,000
Les Enfants de la Bolduc is a transmedia project commemorating the 70th anniversary of the death of singer Mary Rose-Anna Travers. The project is a rethinking of online archiving and mobile broadcasting which invites the public to participate in a dialogue. Using the web, geo-locating mobile platforms and a traveling interactive installation that will be touring the music festivals, the audience will discover the legacy of the artist known as La Bolduc.
Herd Inc. Herd Application Internet,
English ON $599,250
Herd is a brand new mobile application and community platform created for location-based music discovery and social connectivity. Herd streams geo-tagged, GPS-enabled music files to a community which can then share songs based on location. It provides a revolutionary user experience that lets artists and labels reconnect with an audience that has the power to virally spread their music.
VeriCorder Technology
Hyper Local Network Application Mobile English BC $471,138
Hyper Local Network allows users to create videos, including video ads, and to post them automatically to IPTV sites administered by APTN. The Hyper Local Network system will also automate the creation and posting of video ads into the content stream, monetizing the site.
Phéromone Jeu de management d’équipe sportive pour réseaux sociaux Game Internet French QC $521,250
This game, available on the Web, gives the player the opportunity to act as the manager of a sports team. The players will be able to build their own team, hire a coach, plan practice sessions, develop game strategies, trade players and manage the salary cap. This project will offer socialization through blogs, reviews, forums, chats, player profiles, statistics and even a market to trade players. The first game for RDS, it will be integrated into their social network Le Grand Club (250,000 active members).
Radiant Media Inc. Juicr Website Internet,
Bilingual ON $366,751
Juicr’s groundbreaking utility will bring real business value to existing networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter through the application of technologies associated with the next generation, “intelligent internet”. Juicr will create a navigable, composite picture of Canada’s creative industries, and will help Canadian professionals expand existing opportunities and discover new ones.
Hungry Eyes Film & Television Inc. Music Biz Game Mobile English ON $585,000
In the Music Biz application, players build their own music label into three main areas: developing artists and managing their careers, producing music, and selling records. The game gives users the opportunity to stage world tours, create merchandise and movies, and even design their own clothing label.  A community will also be built, giving users the ability to share their music with each other and “Like” it.  Music Biz utilizes very simple touch screen controls so that experienced users feel in control, but its intuitive design will enable anyone to play.
Frima Studio Inc. Nun Attack Game Multiple Bilingual QC $565,268
Nun Attack is a Tower Defence-type multiplatform game for youth. It uses specific game interfaces designed for each platform on which the game will be available: mobile, tablet computer, video game consoles and computer. The game features a ragtag group of 5 over-the-top nuns traveling through space and time to accomplish different funny and absurd missions. With Nun Attack, the player takes on the role of the assailant rather than that of the traditional defender.
Minority Media Inc. Papo & Yo Game Game
Bilingual QC $1,000,000
Papo & Yo is an emotional simulation, an innovative new genre of video game. In Papo & Yo, Vander Caballero and colleagues have created an interactive fable in which the primal relationship between parent and child is brilliantly allegorized in the tale of a monster and his small friend.
7168799 Canada Inc. Project Contrast Game Game
Bilingual QC $415,042
Project Contrast plunges the player into the world of a dying mind where they must journey through vivid memories, long-harboured fears and emotions. In the world of Contrast, shadows act as the mind’s reflections—a canvas upon which memories and thoughts exist within the absence of light. Players discover these secret stories by illuminating the world around them.
2237933 Ontario Inc. Sceneverse Application Internet,
English ON $1,000,000
Lead by Canadian punkers, Sceneverse is a new social, mobile, online and augmented reality experience that will redefine how people “make” culture on the Web. It is the first media platform dedicated to supporting and enabling cultural “scenes”. An easy and fun way for people to celebrate, commemorate and coordinate all of their digital and non digital “sceneing” activities.
Pug Pharm Productions Inc Snoget.com Website Internet Bilingual BC $369,620
Snoget.com is the first “truly social” web and mobile gameplay experience. Simple minigames reward successful players with branded/interest-based virtual items that let players connect with entirely new networks for likeminded friends, share gifts among existing friends—or even win real prizes!
Xenophile Media Inc Time Tremors Game Mobile English ON $295,000
Time Tremors is a mobile and online game for kids aged 7-12—a multi-dimensional, multi-platform Treasure Hunt in which players explore space, time and alternate dimension to hunt, collect and trade a range of mysterious and bewildering Relics known as The Time Elements. The game leads the player through a labyrinthine quest of discovery and wonder in an absorbing multi-platform experience.
Toxa Inc. Unique Website Internet French QC $576,123
Unique is a series of interactive, multiplatform micro-travel guides exhibiting a selection of essential addresses for major cities around the world. Each micro-guide provides an experience that is both fun and sensory putting the user at the heart of the action by offering a customized virtual visit. Unique micro-travel guides offer two complementary features to users: interactive video clips and an interactive application to create itineraries and personalized recommendations called “My UNIQUE guide.”
Smokebomb Entertainment Inc. URL Game Mobile English ON $787,500
URL is a sci-fi mystery series blending first rate storytelling and animation with interactive gaming, all released in eye-popping glasses-free 3D for 3D friendly mobile platforms. Capitalizing on Spatial View’s 3Dee Slide technology, mobile devices can quickly be transformed into a 3D platform. Shaftesbury Films and Smokebomb Entertainment, working with Starz Animation, will fill these screens with an action-packed thriller that puts the viewer directly into the story via integrated gaming, giving them control over how the story unfolds, all targeted at the early adopter market of males/females aged 18 to 34.
Superstring Media Inc Virtuoso Music
Creation Software
Mobile Bilingual MAN $20,000
Virtuoso Music Creation Software is real-time music creation software for musicians, educators, producers and hobbyists using a patented technology that allows the user to experience a creative sensation and capture the results in an intuitive, interactive, and unrestricted movement using devices available now and to be developed in the future.
Trapdoor Inc. WARP Game Internet Bilingual QC $173,058
WARP is an action/adventure game with an emergent mix of stealth, action, puzzle and exploration gameplay. In WARP, you play as a Zero, an alien scout imprisoned deep beneath the ocean in a top-secret base. The unique visual and gameplay styles give WARP a distinct newness attracting 18-35 year old male gamers.
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1st March 2011

New Digital Industry Conference Announced For 2012

Dx3 CanadaA major new trade show serving Canada’s burgeoning digital industry has been announced. The show, Dx3 Canada, will cover three major aspects of the digital ecosystem; digital marketing; digital advertising and digital retailing. Dx3 Canada will take place next year on the 25th and 26th of January 2012, at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, in downtown Toronto.

According to the organizers, Hut2Hut Events, the digital market in Canada is well served with conferences, but there is no major forum that brings this industry together, to discuss and do business. Show Director Duncan Payne said, “Every major industry needs its own trade show – a marketplace where people come to buy goods and services that will help to grow their businesses. There is no doubt that the marketing, advertising and selling of goods both online and via mobile devices has become a major industry in its own right.”

Statistics from a number of recent studies back up Payne’s point of view. Canada’s Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) estimates that online advertising grew by 15% in 2010 to top $2.1 billion while Statistics Canada states that half of Canada’s 33 million population have bought either goods or services online.

Anthony Lipkin Dx3 Canada’s Marketing Director said, “visiting Dx3 Canada is free of charge, to anyone involved in marketing, advertising and retail, and there will be plenty to see and do for all companies whether they are just starting out on their digital strategy, or are one of the most tech savvy businesses in Canada. There is just such a fast pace of innovation and change that we are expecting to see thousands of visitors on both days.”

Dx3 Canada Advisory Board Member, Matt Hassell, who is the Chief Creative Officer for OgilvyOne Advertising in Toronto, recognizes the need for this type of event in Canada’s digital calendar, “Canada is a world leader within the digital space and now we will have a trade show where we will be able to see the latest trends, buy the latest products & services, and show the world what we can do.”

MaRSMaRS Discovery District is pleased to announce that MMB Research, a MaRS cleantech client, has successfully closed a private placement of $1 million with a group of angel investors from Toronto. MMB will use the net proceeds of the angel round to expand its sales and development teams and further solidify relationships with industry partners in North America, Europe and Asia.MMB Research

MMB has developed a combined software and hardware platform called RapidSE that significantly simplifies the process of getting home appliances and devices to communicate on a smart grid connected home area network. By automating significant portions of a complex wireless communications standard and adapting to different environments, RapidSE makes it easier and cheaper for device and appliance manufacturers to get connected products to market.

“MaRS has been instrumental in supporting the growth of MMB Research. Through MaRS, we have access to advisors with invaluable knowledge and experience. They have played an integral role in preparing and introducing us to investors and are directly responsible for the addition of one strategic member to our team,” says Daniel Moneta, CEO at MMB.

“Home energy management is a big piece of the emerging smart grid, it helps grid operators match electrical supply with demand,” says Tom Rand, Cleantech Practice Lead at MaRS. “We recognized early on that MMB Research brings real value to companies developing next-generation appliances and smart meters by helping them get to market faster with a more robust solution.”

guardlyToronto-based Guardly today announced its mobile personal safety application and service for smartphones. Guardly changes the way personal safety is delivered by enabling smartphone users that find themselves in an emergency situation to alert, connect, and then collaborate with their personal safety network and authorities with only a single tap on their device.

Guardly aims to significantly decrease the amount of time it takes for help to arrive at an emergency. For example, a heart attack victim in an apartment complex uses Guardly to contact neighbors and 9-1-1 simultaneously; neighbors arrive within 2-3 minutes to provide Aspirin and basic CPR and an guardly mobileambulance arrives in 6-10 minutes to escalate treatment. Actions taken during the first moments of an emergency can significantly affect the outcome of the incident. Guardly provides peace of mind when walking alone at night, traveling and dating, or for those that may be faced with an abusive or domestically violent relationship.

“Guardly is the first mobile personal safety service to give subscribers access to two safety networks at the same time,” said Josh Sookman, Founder and CEO of Guardly. “Our vision is to complement the existing 9-1-1 infrastructure and ensure that Guardly users are reached as soon as possible by their personal safety network and authorities in the event of an emergency.”

The North American mobile landscape has undergone rapid transformation over the last three years toward location-aware, media-rich and data-centric devices. In the US and Canada, there are currently 153 million smartphone users with 3G data plans[1] and over 60% of cell phones have GPS functionality[2]. Guardly leverages these trends and capitalizes on this unprecedented market opportunity to provide a true mobile personal safety service to the masses.

Guardly is unique in that it enables a user’s personal safety network to collaborate with them and amongst each other using the mobile web and web incident pages, SMS and voice conferencing for the duration of the emergency event. “You can think of Guardly as the mobile complement to your home alarm and monitoring service,” added Sookman.

Guardly’s LocationAssure™ technology uses intelligent algorithms to help mitigate common GPS and other location positioning errors during emergency incidents and enables responders to quickly determine their proximity to each other and the individual in need of emergency response. The Guardly mobile application is expected to be available in March 2011 through the iTunes App Store. A free and premium service will be offered. BlackBerry and Android versions are planned for the near future.

syncapseSyncapse Corp., a provider of cloud-based software and strategic services to help enterprises build, manage and measure their social media presence, has announced that ABS Capital Partners, a leading growth equity investor has committed to invest $25 million in the Company; $20 million of which has already closed. ABS Capital is the Company’s first institutional investor.

Syncapse will use the funds to invest in sales, marketing, and product development for the Syncapse Platform™. As a result of the financing, ABS Capital General Partners Ralph Terkowitz and Deric Emry will join Syncape’s board of directors.

Because social networks were designed for posting by individuals, they do not offer the management tools necessary to support the workflow or publishing requirements of a global enterprise. The Syncapse Platform combines social media publishing, customized workflow, content management and analytics. The Company’s professional services and agency relationships complement the Platform, creating a full service social media management offering. In October 2010, the Company added David Nelson-Gal as its Chief Product Officer to lead its team developing new products around the Platform. David has led many teams in content, community, mobility and systems solutions for enterprises for over 25 years. He has also held executive positions at numerous global technology companies, most notably Sun Microsystems and Interwoven.

Syncapse’s suite of enterprise solutions helps organizations such as BlackBerry®, Electronic Arts and others effectively manage and scale their social media marketing efforts across disparate social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, Orkut, YouTube, WordPress and MovableType. The Platform connects enterprises with millions of consumers worldwide, enabling corporations to create and maintain meaningful and mutually beneficial relationships with their customers. Syncapse also delivers critical analytics that enable chief marketing officers to measure their return on investment in social media marketing. This is Syncapse’s first round of venture funding, and RBC Capital Markets acted as the sole placement agent to the Company for this Offering.

pointclickcareMississauga-based electronic health care software service PointClickCare has announced that it has received a minority strategic investment from Baltimore- and San Diego-based JMI Equity, a leading software and healthcare IT growth equity firm. With the investment, JMI Equity will work with the PointClickCare leadership team to continue to expand the company’s innovative software-as-a-service (SaaS) product offerings and advance its market leadership through organic and inorganic growth.

PointClickCare’s web-based products and services are uniquely designed to help long-term care providers manage the complete lifecycle of resident care. The company serves over 5,000 facilities throughout North America, from single-home independent facilities to seven of the ten largest operators. PointClickCare’s SaaS offering seamlessly integrates clinical, billing and administrative processes to maximize reimbursements, enhance quality of care, improve operating efficiencies and increase staff productivity and satisfaction.

As part of the transaction, JMI Equity Founder and Managing General Partner Harry Gruner will join PointClickCare’s board of directors. “Mike and the rest of the PointClickCare team have done an excellent job positioning the company for continued success,” said Mr. Gruner. “The company’s SaaS offering provides customers with an affordable platform to manage the complete lifecycle of resident care, and its offerings align well with the market’s demand for tools that yield greater efficiency while improving patient care. We look forward to working with Mike and his team to build on the company’s success, further develop the company’s offerings and realize the many growth opportunities in front of the company over the long term.”

RBC Capital Markets served as placement agent to PointClickCare. Harris + Harris LLP served as legal advisor to PointClickCare, while Goodwin Procter LLP and Stikeman Elliott LLP served as legal advisors to JMI Equity.

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1st March 2011

This Post Brought To You By Telus

Telus…and I’m sure they want you to remember this investment when they start adding User Based Billing charges to your bill.

TELUS is investing $650 million across Alberta this year to further expand and enhance its wireless and wireline networks. This year’s network investment builds upon the $23 billion TELUS has invested in its operations and technology in the province in the last 10 years.

In 2011, TELUS will continue to invest in its Optik TV and high-speed Internet services as it lays thousands of kilometers of fibre optic lines to support growing demand in Alberta. The company will also deliver Albertans access to even better and faster wireless broadband services by installing 80 new cell sites and introducing HSPA+ Dual Cell technology, one of the most advanced wireless technologies in the world.

After a decade of focused investment in leading-edge technology TELUS has:

* Brought TELUS wireless service to 99 per cent of Alberta’s population. With the introduction of a world-leading 4G wireless network offering manufacturer rated peak download speeds of up to 21 megabits per second – and soon up to 42 megabits per second (Speed may vary due to the device being used, network congestion, distance from the cell site, local conditions and other factors.) – Albertans have access to extremely fast wireless high-speed Internet anywhere within TELUS’ vast network coverage area.
* Made wireline broadband available to 95 per cent of Alberta households, including a selection of Internet plans with speeds up to 25 megabits per second. The company also expanded availability of TELUS’ Optik TV to more than 1 million households across Alberta. By the end of last year, 314,000 customers had switched their TV service to TELUS.
* Enabled health care institutions to improve the flow of information across the continuum of care through electronic health records accessible on both wireless and wireline networks. Recently, 2000 TELUS team members and their families began a pilot of TELUS Health Space; paving the way for millions of Canadians to take control of their own health records with the ultimate goal of shifting the focus from remediation to prevention of disease.

“Our planned $650 million investment this year in advanced communications technology continues TELUS’ proud history of providing Albertans with access to telecommunications and entertainment services that are the envy of the world,” said Darren Entwistle, TELUS President and CEO. “This year, TELUS will continue to bring the innovations of Optik TV and faster Internet speeds to even more Albertans. We will continue to bring Albertans faster wireless broadband services as we introduce HSPA+ Dual Cell technology, one of the most advanced wireless technologies in the world, to more communities. TELUS is also committed to working with all levels of government in Alberta to advance the provision of life-changing healthcare and education services over our networks.” Read the rest of this entry »

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