10th March 2011

March 10th Noon News Round-up

Register Now: The Great Canadian Appathon happens this weekend, don’t miss out on this opportunity for some collaborative learning and great prizes.

Congratulations to our friends over at Greedy Productions – the studio announced this morning that Electric Playground and Reviews on the Run now have an additional slot on CityTV Vancouver and will begin airing from 6-7pm nightly in addition to the 12-1pm & 11pm-12am time slots.

footloose gamesFootloose Games has launched Munchies Lunch, a game that the Cavechild took a look at back Munchies Lunchin December. Munchies Lunch is a puzzle game that involves some quick and clever maneuvering of your characters in order to avoid becoming a monstrous lunch entree for the Hungries, the story’s bad guys. The game’s premise is that you must lead your family away from the dangerous Hungries who are invading your forest dwelling. Travel the world to find safety in the far-away jungles, gathering food and power-ups for your family while eluding those nasty Hungries. Available now for Windows XP,  Vista and Windows 7, you can try the family-friendly Munchies Lunch before you buy it. With the low price tag of only $5.99 and a high replayability factor, Munchies Lunch offers good value for its price.

Additional System Requirements for Munchies Lunch:

CPU: 1 Ghz
Ram: 512 MB
Hard-Drive Space: 150 MB
Video Card: Must support Pixel/Vertex Shader 1.1

Siggraph 2011Most of you already know this, but I’m going to share it anyway. Science fiction novelist, blogger, and technology activist Cory Doctorow has been selected to present one of the keynote presentations at SIGGRAPH 2011, the 38th International Conference and Exhibition on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques taking place this August 7th-11th at the Vancouver Convention Centre.

diomaticDi-o-matic is offering a free 85+ minutes masterclass, where viewers will learn many key techniques from modeling to rigging as well as animation using Autodesk 3ds max, MotionBuilder, FBX, Mudbox and Softimage FaceRobot as well as Di-O-Matic Facial Studio, Morph-O-Matic and Maskarad. As an Autodesk Authorized Developer, Di-O-Matic earlier announced that new versions of all Di-O-Matic plugins will be made available shortly after the release of Autodesk’s 3ds max 2012, Maya 2012 and Softimage 2012.

comscorecomScore is pleased to announce the release of the 2010 Canada Digital Year in Review, its annual report on the prevailing digital trends of the past year and their implications for navigating the uncertainties in the year ahead. The report provides a comprehensive overview of the digital landscape in Canada including overall Internet usage, high-growth categories, online advertising, video and search.

* How are Canadians consuming digital media, and how does this compare to other countries?
* Which trends dominated the digital landscape in 2010?
* How does media consumption differ across age and gender segments?
* What trends are we seeing in the social networking space, and what impact does that have on email activity?
* How has digital advertising shifted in the last year, and how has social media played a part?
* Which content categories are serving up the most videos? Who’s watching online video in Canada?
* What is the current state of the search market?
* How will mobile media consumption in Canada stack up against other markets?

pwcNot surprisingly, the key motivator for consumers to pirate films and television programs is the reward of free content. But aside from the traditional reason of price, leading factors also include consumers’ desire for earlier access, a perception that “everyone is doing it” and the explosion of free content available online. This is according to PwC’s new piracy study from its US consumer research program measuring consumer attitudes towards piracy and related behaviours.

At the same time, consumers in Canada are being faced with escalating access fees and the usage based billing debate is ongoing. “Usage based billing if a reality will push consumers back to traditional and payment based methods of consuming content,” says Michael Paterson, a partner in PwC’s Canadian Entertainment & Media group.

Among key findings in the PwC study:

* 81% of the consumers who admit to pirating TV, movie and video content say they will likely continue to do so.
* 40% of those who report “pirating” content via traditional methods said they will probably also pirate on mobile devices within the next six months.
* US$3 for a movie and US$1 for a television show is the maximum amount consumers who admit to pirating are willing to pay to access content.

Combating piracy remains a struggle and a prime concern for entertainment companies – especially with the growing ease at which consumers can now access a variety of content on multiple platforms at their fingertips. Given the proliferation of smart phones, consumers are increasingly using their mobile devices to access the Internet—on average, 35 times per week.

“Mobile piracy is poised to escalate with the proliferation of smartphones, says Paterson. “This will need to be addressed in anti-piracy efforts. There is some good news in sight as consumers expressed concern about potential piracy pitfalls, including poor quality of some content and the possibility of downloading a virus or facing legal trouble.”

funcomFuncom has unveiled a new site design for The Secret World, along with a brand new trailer that offers gamers a unique glimpse into the world, the monsters, the myths, and the gameplay of the much anticipated online game. In ‘The Secret World’ players get to play the character they want to play without being limited to classes or levels, as they adventure through modern-day, real-world locations. No release date has been announced. The game is being co-published together with EA Partners, a division of Electronic Arts Inc.

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

“It is truly exciting for us to show gamers just how much freedom they will be able to enjoy in ‘The Secret World’,” says Director and Producer Ragnar Tørnquist. “The video perfectly encompasses the four important pillars of ‘The Secret World’: the modern-day setting, the freeform character progression, the dramatic storyline, and the unique secret society conflict. It feels great to reveal new details on the ‘The Secret World’ as we continue to make strides in the development of the game.”

scoremediaScore Media Inc. and WWE have expanded their partnership with a multi-year agreement that will bring more high-energy WWE entertainment than ever before to fans across Canada. The unprecedented deal builds on Score Media and WWE’s already successful, exclusive television relationship to include online, mobile and VOD rights. In addition, theScore and WWE will work together to bring new original WWE content to Canadians across all platforms.

Canadian Telecom SummitMore than 60 leaders who shape Canada’s ICT industry will speak at the 2011 Canadian Telecom Summit, being held this May 31st – June 2nd in Toronto. The event will include over 15 keynote addresses offering insights into the future of Canadian ICT, examining the services, technologies, consumer & business trends and regulatory & policy initiatives that drive the information economy. This year, in addition to its always popular Regulatory Blockbuster panel, the conference is featuring sessions devoted to:

* LTE: The future of mobile
* Connecting Canadians: Delivering broadband to all
* Wireless Broadband: Our insatiable thirst for spectrum
* Privacy & Security: Guarding information in a transparent world
* Unified Communications: The evolving future of business
* Evolution of Consumer Communications: Compete or collaborate
* Tablets, TVs and Smartphones, Oh My!: The explosion of the multiscreen universe
* Cloud Computing

fairplayFair-Play has launched its new website. An essential reference tool, the site allows both industry people and the public at large to find out more about Fair-Play’s many television products among which are Quebec’s current mega hits Les enfants de la télé and Peut contenir des Rachid. Headlining the company’s latest news and featuring an exhaustive production catalogue, video excerpts, and a Who’s Who of the Fair-Play team, the new site profiles a company founded in 1998 now firmly established in prime time and on the Web.

Television series, variety shows, documentaries, comedy, drama, live performance recordings, public affairs – their catalogue has grown over the years and will continue to expand. As the organization looks forward to producing more entertaining and provocative content, it remains proud of the creative environment it strives to foster for its writers, creators, performers and other colleagues.

canonCanon Canada Inc. has announced the availability of its Cloud Portal software for imageRUNNER ADVANCE software enabling a broad range of Canon imageRUNNER ADVANCE office systems to access Google Docs and Microsoft SharePoint Online cloud-based services directly from the MFP panel. Using its MEAP technology, Cloud Portal for imageRUNNER ADVANCE software is available as a free application that allows users to scan and store paper-based documents directly to the cloud, as well as to print documents stored in the cloud to imageRUNNER ADVANCE office systems.

The Cloud Portal for imageRUNNER ADVANCE software is a server-less, driver-less application that requires no additional hardware to enable direct connection to the cloud via the MEAP application. By facilitating direct integration with leading cloud services, the new application increases end-user flexibility and helps to increase productivity by allowing users to access cloud-stored data from a PC, tablet device or smart phone, and print or share the data with multiple users across locations. To print from the cloud, the Canon Direct Print Kit or the PS Printer Kit needs to be installed on the imageRUNNER office system. Please see the Canon site for full information not covered here.

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10th March 2011

Telus Offers Facebook On Optik

I have mixed feelings about this – I guess in households that don’t have laptops or have to share a PC this might be great, but I seriously don’t need to watch what’s going on on Facebook this closely, and should it become available on Shaw, I highly doubt that I’d use it.

TelusTELUS is giving Western Canadians something new to “Like” about Optik TV. TELUS has introduced a new Facebook application on its Optik TV platform designed to provide customers convenient access to Facebook features and content without missing a second of their favorite TV shows. This innovative application is a Canadian first, and brings a whole new dimension to both TV watching and social media. Through “Share my View”, users are able to post what they’re watching on their Wall, creating a social TV viewing experience that brings their whole friends list into the picture.

“IPTV is the future of television, and with Optik TV the future is here at TELUS. We are committed to enabling a truly connected home, offering new ways for our Optik TV customers to stay connected and multitask while enjoying television, and to that end we plan to launch a number of applications this year,” said David Fuller, Chief Marketing Officer, TELUS. “TV applications are a great example of the power of Internet-enabled TV. This Facebook app brings social networking to the living room – it’s all about making TV viewing a social activity again, in an exciting new way.” Read the rest of this entry »

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10th March 2011

Ontario Advanced Network Turns Up First Operational 100G Network Segment

orionORION, Ontario’s advanced research and education (R&E) network, today turns up its first segment of the network to 100G in production, part of a major technology upgrade to deploy a 100G operational network in Canada and the first R&E network in the world to deploy a 100G production network to support research and education. The upgrade means that Ontario is leapfrogging from a 10G backbone to 100G capacity in key parts of the ORION network.

Last fall, ORION announced the 100G network upgrade project with the selection of Alcatel-Lucent and Cisco Canada to provide the next-generation optical transport and routing equipment, which has recently been installed along the London – St. Catharines link.

The first segment of the network to go live with the 100G provisioning spans 312 kilometres from London to St. Catharines with 3 In-Line Amplifier sites in between. Alcatel-Lucent’s 1830 Photonic Service Switch provision 100G, which uses next-generation coherent technology, transmits 100G over a single DWDM wavelength (single laser).

“This is exciting news for the 1.8 million researchers, faculty, students and innovators in Ontario who have access to ORION,” said Dr. Darin Graham, ORION President and CEO. “Moving from 10G to 100G is a generational leap forward in capabilities and a significant technological milestone. It helps move Ontario to the head of the pack in terms of having an extraordinary backbone in place to support new and innovative ways of enabling advanced research, innovation and scientific discovery.”

The $6.5 million project is made possible with a contribution of $4.8 million from CANARIE, Canada’s advanced research and innovation network, and a further $1.7 million investment from ORION. Read the rest of this entry »

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10th March 2011

SendToNews Offers Distribution Service

sendtonewsI am always happy to find new Canadian companies who offer a service that might make my job of news gathering a little bit easier, and this company does just that. Victoria-based newsroom content delivery service SendtoNews Video Inc. has launched its next generation, cloud-based multi-media distribution service that enables customers to extend the reach of their broadcast quality video content. Founded in 2008 by news veteran Keith Wells, the privately-held SendtoNews service gives every level of content creator immediate and simultaneous access to North American newsrooms from anywhere in the world, as evidenced by current customers, including this news site, and the BC RCMP, the BC Government, Canadian universities, hockey leagues (ECHL and AHL), Rugby Canada, Swimming Canada, the International Triathlon Union.

“Using SendtoNews, we get our video into the hands of the media almost instantly and, more importantly, Global BC Sports Director Squire Barnes and Ida Chong, Minister of Science and Universitiessimultaneously. We have received some extremely positive feedback from newsrooms across Canada” said Inspector Tim Shields, Head of Media Relations for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in British Columbia.

STN provides a unique business-to-business distribution service for all types of digital content, including high-definition video, photos, text and audio. The platform is powered by high speed file transfer technology that enables file uploads up to 75 times faster than HTTP or FTP protocols. In addition to these services, users can set up personalized news feeds as well as follow companies or representatives, as well as choose to see content from particular countries, provinces, and cities. As I’m only interested in the Canadian digital media industry, I don’t get “foreign” news mixed in with the Canadian news like I do on other press release sites. This makes me very happy. If you are a Canadian company, you should at the very least look into using SendToNews to get your news circulated.

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

This national rollout of its latest technology follows STN’s success powering the state-of-the-art media distribution system for the British Columbia International Media Centre (BCMC) during the Vancouver 2010 Olympics. More than 1,450 news reporters used STN’s service at the BCMC during the games.

“The 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games showcased British Columbia to the world,” says Ida Chong, Minister of Science and Universities. “It is fantastic to watch our technology companies benefit from the spotlight that was placed on BC.”

“Catering to the demands of HD video distribution for Vancouver 2010 literally put our technology to the Olympic test,” said SendtoNews Executive Chairman, Art Aylesworth. “We built up to, and are continuing, this SendtoNews Founder Keith Wells with Helijet's Troy McDonald and CHEK TV Sports Anchor Jeff Kingsuccess by providing next generation news distribution services for numerous high-profile clients such as the BC RCMP and various professional sports organizations.”

In today’s media marketplace, television continues to be the most popular source of news. At the same time, rapid growth is occurring in demand for video footage to support new media, Internet and wireless applications, while budget and staffing issues make it increasingly difficult for media outlets to send staff to cover every event.

STN offers free accounts for both content uploaders and newsrooms and a pay-for-performance news distribution model that is entirely unique in the industry, offering a conduit between content creators and newsrooms/assignment editors looking for high quality, newsworthy content to use as part of daily programming. SendtoNews offers its clients the opportunity to share their stories (including one or more HD videos, high resolution photos, audio files, etc.) directly with print, television, radio and online newsrooms by uploading them to the Company’s cloud-based news story management platform. SendtoNews then automatically optimizes the stories for fast preview and easy use by news editors and tracks usage so clients can monitor their local, national and international media coverage.  For more information or to open a fee account go to their website or call toll free 855-590-1991. SendtoNews also offers a Mobile Version and is active on Twitter and Facebook.

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