22nd June 2011

AccelerateAB and UrtheCast Launch

accelerateABIf you’re in Alberta, you are invited to AccelerateAB, presented by The C100, A100, Startup Calgary, StartUp Edmonton, Calgary Technologies, and TEC Edmonton, who have all joined together to present this transformative community event on July 13th at the Roderick Mah Centre for Continuous Learning, Mount Royal University.

Focused on the topic of “Building World Class Companies” this conference will offer Alberta tech entrepreneurs relevant and practical content to grow their companies up to the next level.

digital albertaAlbertans are also invited to the launch of UrtheCast, a multi-country initiative between Canada, Russia and the United Kingdom. UrtheCast is building and will exclusively operate the world’s first ever live streaming HD video camera mounted on the International Space Station (ISS).

Join Digital Alberta and special guest speakers for lunch on June 28th from 11:30am to 1:30pm at the Calgary Chamber of Commerce. Come be inspired by Astronaut Dr. David Williams as he discusses space flight, exploration, technology, performance, risk management and environmental stewardship. Tickets for this event are free, but space is limited to 200 attendees.

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UrtheCast will supply video data and imagery of Earth collected by two HD cameras on the Russian module of the Space Station. This data and imagery will be down-linked to ground stations around the planet and then displayed in real time on the Internet and distributed directly to UrtheCast’s exclusive partners and customers.

The UrtheCast web platform will allow Users to constantly track the location of the Space Station, anticipating when it will pass over a particular geographic location. Users will be able to search for videos of a particular location, type, or theme and will have the ability to interact with the HD video feed from the UrtheCast servers. They will be able to zoom in and out, virtually steer the camera from side to side, rewind, and fast forward as they check out areas and things of interest on Earth. UK based Rutherford Appleton Labs is building two high definition cameras. A medium resolution camera will provide a three colour image with a swath of 45 kilometers and a resolution of 5.5 meters. The high-resolution camera will offer a video image with a frame rate of 3.25 frames per second with a resolution that is comparable to much of Google Earth. This will allow Users to see man-made objects and groups of people.

As a result of all this unique functionality, the UrtheCast web platform will spark a great deal of awareness, creativity, and unique user events from around the world. The UrtheCast website will feel like a blend of Google Earth with the video playback and search functionality of YouTube. The UrtheCast web platform will combine a consumer centric website, mobile application for smart phones, and an open Application Program Interface (API). The API enables third party developers to create their own applications and upload them to the UrtheCast web platform.

“Users will be able to view Earth from space. It will operate seamlessly with social media sites like Facebook and Twitter,” explains Scott Larson, President of UrtheCast. ISS is a low orbit, human-inhabited satellite. The station travels at 26,000 km/h, orbiting Earth sixteen times per day, at an altitude of approximately 350 km. The ISS is a collaborative project between the Russian, Canadian European, Japanese, and US space agencies. UrtheCast has signed an exclusive agreement with RSC Energia, who maintains operational control of the Russian segment on the ISS. RSC Energia will take UrtheCast’s cameras, install them on the outside of the ISS, and provide the necessary maintenance and transfer of the data. The cameras are being built by UK based Rutherford Appleton Laboratories (RAL), who is a world leader in building cameras for aerospace and satellite purposes.

“Being part of a project that not only taps into the recent renewed interest in space, but also provides a connection between people and the rest of the world is what is most intriguing about this project,” Richard Holdaway Director, RAL Space.

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22nd June 2011

Steven Stamkos the New Face of EA Sports NHL 12

Electronic Arts Inc. announced tonight at the 2011 NHL Awards™ hosted at the Pearl Concert Theater in the Palms Hotel in Las Vegas, that Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning® will be the new face of the EA SportsNHL® 12 videogame. Stamkos’ image will appear on packaging worldwide when NHL® 12 hits retail stores this September.

“I’ve grown up playing EA Sports NHL videogames so it’s an honor to be chosen for the cover this year,” said Stamkos. “I love how authentic the game is and thought it was great when I scored a one-knee, one-timer goal as myself in NHL12!”Steven Stamkos on NHL 12 Cover

At just 21 years old, Steven Stamkos is one of the fastest rising stars in the NHL®. He was drafted first overall in 2008 and on February 6 of this year, Stamkos became the first player in the NHL to reach the 40 goal mark in the current season. His skill on the ice earned him the Maurice Richard Trophy, awarded to the player with the most goals in the NHL®, which he shared with Sidney Crosby in 2010. This year, Stamkos was nominated for the Ted Lindsay Award, presented annually to the “Most Outstanding Player” in the NHL®, as voted by fellow members of the NHLPA. His performance in the 2011 Stanley Cup® Playoffs is another example of his perseverance and skill as he battled his way with the Tampa Bay Lightning to Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Bruins.

“The cover reveal is a highly anticipated annual tradition at EA Sports and a great way for us to highlight the most talented rising stars in the world of sports,” said Jordan Edelstein, Vice-President of Marketing for EA Sports. “Stamkos is a fan of the NHL series and a great ambassador for the sport; we’re excited to welcome him to the EA Sports family.”

NHL® 12 delivers the authentic action and energy of real life hockey with the all-new Full Contact Physics Engine – from players to the environment, everything is now live on the ice including dynamic goalie interaction, goalie fights and net battles. All-new gameplay presentation puts you in one of the biggest hockey events of the season, the 2011 NHL Winter Classic® at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, and the new EA Sports Action Tracker provides a shift-by-shift breakdown of stats and key moments leading up to your next shift to ensure you don’t miss a beat. When you’re ready to give it your all shoot for the chance to be the next great legend in the revamped Be a Pro mode as you play your way to superstardom and shatter records to cement yourself in NHL® history.

Starting June 23rd fans will have the chance to see what it’s like to grace the cover of an NHL® videogame on the EA Sports NHL Facebook page. Fans of the page will be able to pick their favorite team, upload their picture and create their very own personalized NHL®12 cover. EA Sports NHL 12 is rated E10+ by the ESRB.

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22nd June 2011

BCIC New Ventures Golf Tournament

BCIC New VenturesJoin BCIC-New Ventures for their second annual golf tournament on July 19th. This year they’re golfing at Kings Links by the Sea, a traditional par 72 links style course with spectacular views of the surrounding Coastal Mountains.

Play Texas Scramble rules. Create your own foursome, or let BCIC put you in a group. Open to all levels, this is a great chance to network with the New Ventures community in a fun setting.

Your golf tournament fee includes a round of golf, dinner, and prizes. Tee-offs start around 12:30pm. You will be notified of your tee-time in advance.

Early Bird Registration by June 30: $90 | Regular Registration by July 13: $105 | Dinner-only: $25

bcic golf tourney

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22nd June 2011

Completion of Canadian P3 to Develop and Implement Environmental Software

greenland groupIn May 2008, the Greenland Group announced that important funding had been allocated by Canada’s National Research Council – IRAP to assist with further developing the CANWET (or CAnadian Nutrient and Water Evaluation Tool) modelling software. This week, CANWET-4 was launched in Newmarket, ON at the offices of the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority and also with representatives from the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and local Municipalities.

Three years ago, GREENLAND® developed an earlier model version that was later used for source water protection, assimilative capacity, nutrient management and water allocation projects. CANWET was also used last year by the Government of Ontario to prepare the Lake Simcoe Protection Plan. The total public (research) and private sectors investment to complete CANWET-4 was over $600,000 and included one of the largest grants from the National Research Council – IRAP initiative.

CANWET-4 is a continuous, GIS-based software suite to inform decision making around river basin and watershed management; water supply and waste water treatment infrastructure; food security; and, climate change adaptation. Its ability to quickly and accurately estimate daily water balance, nutrient, erosion sediment, and bacteria loadings from GIS input data allows CANWET-4 to serve as a powerful decision support system. This latest release of CANWET is VB.Net database-driven and web-aware, and features an integrated open source GIS environment. Its relative ease of use and ability to take advantage of commonly available spatial data makes it a solid choice over other water quantity and quality computer models. In addition to the integration of current watershed and climate change science from renowned researchers at the University of Guelph and Penn State University, CANWET-4 also incorporates a large suite of Beneficial Management Practices (BMPs) for assessing proposed reductions in phosphorous, nitrogen, sediment, and animal coliforms from rural and urban lands. Multiple practices can be added in parallel or in series. CANWET-4 also calculates costs for typical BMP applications based on unit-costing. The completion of CANWET-4 was important for GREENLAND® to support other Canadian and U.S. collaborations now underway about the Lake Winnipeg, Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay Basins.

“I am extremely pleased with the completion of CANWET-4 and sincerely thank Canada’s NRC-IRAP for its funding assistance over the past few years,” says R. Mark Palmer, the President of GREENLAND®. “Our P3 completion announcement, affirms the commitment of the Canadian Government for environmental research, as well as lake and river basin management programs. The development of CANWET-4 also highlights our niche Mission Statement that recognizes the environment first while complying with best available science and proven technologies.”

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22nd June 2011

Desire2Learn Mobile Dev Program And Metranome Acquistion Announced

desire2learnDesire2Learn Incorporated has announced the acquisition of Metranome Inc. and the availability of the Desire2Learn® Mobile Developer Program, which enables third-party developers to build their own functionality and incorporate that functionality into applications built with Desire2Learn Campus Life. Developers can create solutions that extend the capabilities of their mobile applications, integrate their products or services, and provide customized functionality. With the Desire2Learn Mobile Developer Program, existing mobile applications can be converted to work with Desire2Learn Campus Life quickly and with minimal effort.

The Mobile Developer Program supports all Desire2Learn Campus Life platforms including iOS for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android and BlackBerry®.

Benefits of the Program include:

  • the ability for clients and developers to write custom features for inclusion in their applications
  • a framework to simplify development, and APIs for extensibility
  • use of Desire2Learn Campus Life standard features and broad platform support enabling individual and unique solutions
  • licensing and distribution opportunities

“Desire2Learn Campus Life provides a range of extensibility options which enable our customers to optimize the solution to their unique mobile needs,” states David Kruis, Director, Mobile Strategy, Desire2Learn. “With our Mobile Partner Program we are further expanding this optimization by working with technology partners and third party developers to bring additional innovative features and functionality to mobile learners worldwide.”

Desire2Learn also officially announced the acquisition of Waterloo company Metranome Inc. Founded in 2007, Metranome’s award-winning mobile media platform serves international clients in the media, publishing, entertainment, and travel industries. Smartphone applications built on Metranome’s platform have been featured by Apple, Google, and RIM and made available worldwide on iOS, Android, and BlackBerry smartphones. Over the past six months, Metranome’s technology, leadership, and vision have been integrated into the Desire2Learn platform and are now part of the Desire2Learn suite of solutions serving all market sectors. Desire2Learn Campus Life, launched in March of this year, was built on the Metranome platform and is one of several mobile solutions available today.

“We’ve expanded upon Metranome’s years of mobile industry experience and their strong relationships with platform vendors in presenting this latest addition to our extensive mobile platform,” says John Baker, President & CEO, Desire2Learn. “Our clients are seeing higher learner retention and satisfaction rates, improved outcomes, program growth and reduced costs. Our continued focus on user experience, accessibility and mobility, as well as platform security and reliability, means users will always have access to rich and engaging content anytime, anywhere.”

The Desire2Learn Mobile team is participating in mLearnCon 2011: Mobile Learning Conference & Expo this week in San Jose, CA. Demonstrations will be available at the Desire2Learn booth (#206) on the Exhibit Floor Wednesday, June 22. Stop by to learn more.

Mobile developers are encouraged to visit the Desire2Learn.com mobile developers page, call 1.888.772.0325 or  email for further information and partnership opportunities. Additionally, a full slate of mobile sessions will be featured during the FUSION 2011 Post Conference. Registrations are currently being accepted for the Post Conference which runs July 14 and 15 in Denver, CO.

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22nd June 2011

Toon Boom Makes Flip Boom Classic Compatible with SMART Boards

Toon BoomToon Boom Animation Inc. has announced that Flip Boom Classic for K-6 students and its respective curricula, are now compatible with the SMART Board™ 600 series interactive whiteboard. Compatibility with the SMART Board 800 series will be completed in time for the International Society for Technology in Education Conference, to be held in Philadelphia from June 26-29, 2011. Demonstrations will be given at Booth 1403 during the conference.

Porting Toon Boom’s entry-level educational product to SMART Board interactive whiteboards is a natural step towards offering engaging creative applications on collaborative and interactive learning devices. Students will be able to create and export finished files for easy inclusion in the teaching resources of SMART Notebook collaborative learning software.

“Having Toon Boom products integrate with SMART Board interactive whiteboards raises the creative learning and visual communication potential,” says Linda Thomas, Vice-President, Products, SMART Technologies. “The combination of these products will create a more dynamic and stimulating classroom environment by getting students truly involved in lesson activities.”

“All our award-winning software applications and curricula targeted for K-12 are a perfect fit for SMART Board interactive whiteboards, which will surely make cross-curricular learning a whole new experience,” states Joan Vogelesang, President and Chief Executive Officer at Toon Boom Animation Inc.

In conjunction with this announcement, Toon Boom is launching the Flip Boom Classic Teacher Kit for SMART Boards, which includes a license of Flip Boom Classic as well as its respective curricula for $149.99. A Classroom lab license is also available for $499.99. Flip Boom Classic runs on MAC and PC.

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22nd June 2011

New Annex Pro Partner Event

AnnexProAnnex Pro will be hosting a free seminar session along with Atempo titled Managing Digital Content Throughout Your Workflow with Backup and Archive. This July 7th evening session will be held at the Annex Pro office on Dunlevy in Vancouver, and will teach attendees how to:

  • Preserve and protect your digital content throughout the workflow
  • Optimize your SAN or NAS storage by rolling out a low cost disk or tape archive
  • Create a content archive that’s easily accessible to all your users
  • Reduce clutter in shared work areas through automatic archiving
  • Manage your content’s metadata for more effective search and retrieval

This event is recommended for:

  • Creative or IT professionals who manage digital content and/or the storage systems supporting creative workflows
  • Anyone looking for a better way to control storage growth, especially HD, 3D and stereoscopic
  • Anyone wanting to simplify content reuse and monetize their existing content

The doors will open for registration, refreshments and networking at 5:30pm, with the speaker session running from 6pm to 7pm.

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22nd June 2011

D-Box Theatre Experience Just Got Bigger In Texas

D-BoxD-BOX Technologies Inc. has signed its first agreement with Texas-based ShowBiz Cinemas to equip ShowBiz Cinemas 12 in Waxahachie, Texas with 25 D-BOX MFX Seats.

“Texas continues to be one of our fastest growing U.S. markets and we are delighted to name ShowBiz Cinemas as one of our newest exhibitors, further expanding our global footprint,” said President and CEO of D-BOX Technologies, Claude Mc Master.

“A provider of first-class entertainment, ShowBiz Cinemas is looking forward to offering D-BOX in its first theatre,” said Kevin Mitchell, President and CEO of ShowBiz Cinemas. “We plan to thrill audiences with the debut of the new motion technology this summer and anticipate that guests will truly enjoy this one-of-a-kind immersive movie experience.”

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22nd June 2011

Liberty Studios Ready To Open Doors In Toronto

Liberty StudiosLocated in downtown Toronto, Liberty Studios will officially open to musicians, producers, editors and film makers on June 27th.  Named by Mix magazine as “The Class of 2011:  A Collection Of This Year’s Hottest New Studios”, the Martin Pilchner designed, multi-million dollar studio, surpasses any facility of its kind in the city providing the ultimate one stop shop in audio and visual production.  Situated in Liberty Village, the 6,000 square foot media facility, blends top of the line innovative design elements alongside functionality, catering to every imaginable need.  Client services include production, composition and arrangements, recording and mixing tools, sound design, video / audio editing and video capture.

Liberty Studios contains a 1,600 square foot soundstage / live room aptly named The Liberty Ballroom.  It includes three isolation booths for sound control, an expansive drum room, an automated 16:9 screen and a 5.1 surround sound system. The sheer size caters to large-scale live recordings, lectures, film screenings, product launches and Liberty Studiosprivate events. The studio also includes a 600 square foot control room specifically designed for surround recording, a series of production rooms to create, record, edit and mix both audio and video, as well as a commercial kitchen.

Liberty Studios not only offers clients premier equipment, but also an experienced and accomplished staff that provide highly trained and seasoned services.  Newly appointed Vice President of Business Development and Sales, Brian Hetherman, brings his diverse experience to oversee client acquisition, client management and the creation of new business strategies.  Hetherman’s career highlights include Director of A&R at Universal Music, Head of MCA Music Publishing, Executive Director of the Radio Starmaker Fund, President of the Music Managers Forum in Canada and Vice President of Industry Affairs at FACTOR.  He also owns a management company, Cerberus Artist Management, and record label, Curve Music.

Hetherman joins Liberty’s President John Payne, a man with three decades of music industry knowledge in roles such as producer, engineer, technician, consultant and philanthropist.  In the early eighties Payne became Chief Engineer for S.O.L.A.R. Records’ roster of artists as well as many others including Bobby Brown and Paula Abdul.  In 1991, he co-founded the largest hip-hop label in history, Death Row Records, launching the careers of 2Pac, Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg.  Payne remains the owner of a production company, Payne Productions and Engineering LLC, a management and consulting company, END Management and Consulting LLC, and a publishing company, GJTM Publishing.

In addition to a space that caters to those in the entertainment industry, Liberty Studios is also a new event space in the city, perfect for music showcases, photo and video shoots, non-profit fundraisers, and private corporate events of a variety of sizes.

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22nd June 2011

Aviva Community Fund Competition Version 3

avivaAviva Canada, one of the country’s leading providers of home, auto, recreational vehicle, group and business insurance, is proud to announce that the Aviva Community Fund competition will return in the fall of 2011. In 2009 and 2010, Canadians overwhelmingly answered the call, proposing over 4,000 ideas and casting more than four million votes in support of causes from every province and territory. Do your local youth centres or seniors’ groups need support? Are you ready to make a difference? Year three of the competition kicks off on September 26, 2011.

The company will once again offer $1 million to encourage Canadians to lead, empower and support community initiatives across the country. Whether it’s a project that will help get at-risk youth off the street and back into school, or other ways to extend a hand to those in need, the Aviva Community Fund enables individuals and groups to not only submit a community initiative for funding, but also become actively involved in making change happen.

Launched in the fall of 2009, the Aviva Community Fund competition has already provided over $1.5 million in funding to numerous charities and community groups including youth programs, animal shelters, public schools, camps and centres for those affected by disabilities or illness.

Canadians are encouraged to submit their ideas on the competition’s website and visitors to the site are asked to vote for their favourite ideas so they can advance through to the competition’s final round, at that stage they will be evaluated by an independent panel of judges. Also visit, and Like, the Aviva Community Fund Facebook page for additional program information.


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