18th July 2011

Orby Is Going To SIGGRAPH 2011

Orby Is Going To SIGGRAPHVillage Gamer will be at SIGGRAPH 2011 in Vancouver, and in keeping with our mandate of promoting Canadian digital interactive media, technology, film and TV to the masses we invite you to take part. We will be situated in Booth 1018, please see the map below to see where Orby is camping his spot.

We are looking for sizzle pieces and trailers that we can show in the booth, along with products and swag to put in gift baskets that we’ll be offering as prizes in business card draws. If you have postcards promoting your “Made In Canada” game, software, product, studio, association or services we are offering our booth as a point of distribution. If you would like to provide bags, pens or other swag to hand out, that is welcome too.

Ideally we would like to put together promo packs to give out encouraging businesses to Outsource to Canada. Please contact me with this special event address if you would like to help us help you. Your trailers must be available for us to download in the highest playable quality possible, preferably in 1080p – our screen is a 42″ HDTV, and we want to show your trailers in their best possible light.

For Vancouver area companies – if any of you have trade show equipment such as collapsible chairs,  TV stand, portable tables (like those tall, round, bar style), etc. that we could borrow for SIGGRAPH, we would be most grateful and of course acknowledge your contribution with promotional considerations. All equipment must be easily movable, as we have to move everything in by hand without the benefit of type of dolly cart unless we hire convention centre staff to move everything in from the loading dock, which we don’t have a budget for.

In keeping with our community theme, we’re trying for a “fireside chat” type of feel to the booth, so that our “on the spot at SIGGRAPH” interviewees can site comfortably while being interviewed on camera. If you are feeling generous and would like to help us purchase our own trade show equipment, we would also be eternally grateful – at the least we  will place your logo on our site as a supporter.

As mentioned above, we will be conducting in-booth interviews with Canadian attendees, so if you would like to represent, stop by and take a seat in front of the camera. Of course, we will also be covering as much of SIGGRAPH as we possibly can, and will have a roving video camera or two so don’t be surprised if you get recognized and hi-jacked while wandering the convention hall.

Also to be officially unveiled at SIGGRAPH will be our new project. We don’t want to reveal too many details just yet, but we can tell you that it will involve community, marketing and the creative Canadian spirit that has made this industry great. We will also be introducing our new collaborative partner, Code-name Alex  – and devs, Alex has an iPad – so, if you would like people to be able to play your game or try your app while visiting our booth and have a download code to spare, please send it via the contact link above, along with the game title, studio name and info page link, with the subject line SIGGRAPH iPad. Please note – this is only for games and iPad apps  made in Canada. Each of the games or apps loaded for SIGGRAPH will be included in our table-top info catalogue for attendees to browse through.
We also have need of two or three more volunteers to work alongside Alex and our lovely booth hostess Megan and the infamous CaveChild and assist in promoting the Canadian interactive industry. Ideally, we are looking for students, recent graduates or those already working in the creative development sector – this would include game designers, entertainment business managers, project management, marketing, or film students (a stationary video cam with an external mic for the in-booth interviews would be most awesome too).  You would need to be available for expo floor hours, which are as follows:

Tuesday, 9 August 9:30 am – 6 pm
Wednesday, 10 August 9:30 am – 6 pm
Thursday, 11 August 9:30 am – 3:30 pm

If you are interested in this volunteer position, which will include a SIGGRAPH expo pass, please contact me with your information and reason for wanting to help out with the show, with SIGGRAPH volunteer as the subject line.

Orby Marks The Spot

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18th July 2011

Sarbakan Moves Into Mobile Game Development

Sarbakan Game StudioSarbakan is ramping upits  efforts to further develop strikingly innovative mobile games in the instant gaming market. Combining sophisticated platform action and casual controls, Sarbakan is trailblazing the path to offering both dedicated and casual gamers premium, freemium, and full-featured games—on a variety of mobile devices, including Android and iOS phones and tablets.

While other developers usually rely on one specific type of feature, Sarbakan offers the unique blend of sophisticated combo moves, true-to-life rag doll physics, and powerful finger-swipe controls for continuously fresh, rich, and deep gameplay experiences.  Sarbakan compacts more technology, more compelling designs, and more complete 3D animations within Android- and iOS-based mobile devices than any “traditional” games currently found on the Android Market or App Store.

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Sarbakan’s newest release, Captain America: Sentinel of Liberty is available now on iTunes for $4.99 and is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad devices running iOS 4.0 or later. The game is rated 9+ for Frequent/Intense Cartoon or Fantasy Violence.


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18th July 2011

Wantsa Announces Request a Deal for Search and Directory Companies

wantsaDeal Exchange company Wantsa has introduced its “Request a Deal” button for search and directory companies looking to provide consumers with deals they are interested in. This is the first “Deal Exchange” that connects consumers and merchants in a mutually beneficial exchange that delivers what each group wants.

The Merchant – wants a customer, sale or hot lead
The Publisher – wants a significant source of new ad revenue
The Consumer – wants a relevant deal from specific merchants and services providers

Until now the deal industry has centered around outbound email marketing where consumers receive random daily deals from local merchants offering deep discounts in exchange for pre-purchasing consumers walking through their doors with personalized vouchers.

To deliver what everyone wants, Wantsa created a simple button called “Request a Deal” for any online or mobile publisher that displays Directory Listings for local merchants. When this “Request a Deal” button is added to the publisher’s directory of business listings, consumers can simply click the button next to the listing of the business they are interested in to register their “request” for a deal.wantsa-screen

Through its automated process, Wantsa delivers to the publisher the aggregated consumer demand for the deal. The publisher, in turn, shares this information with the merchant, showing a proven “demand” for the deal. Through this unique process, publishers and sales agencies are able to deliver relevant offers to consumers anxiously awaiting deals from specific local merchants. In addition to connecting merchants directly to qualified consumers, Wantsa also has the capability to administer quick surveys to capture market research or leads.

To help publishers solve the problem of deal inventory, Wantsa has created a “Deal Exchange” where any company who has deal inventory can simply submit their supply into the “Deal Repository” and, conversely, publishers seeking deal inventory can access deals from various sources.

“Think of Wantsa as a major evolution of Ad networks. The only difference is that instead of creating an Ad that results in a click, companies are creating offers that result in real consumer transactions,” said Atif Hussein, Head of Product and Engineering for Wantsa.

Wantsa “Request a Deal” creates a win, win, win for all parties: Read the rest of this entry »

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18th July 2011

RewardLoop Expands Transaction-Based Restaurant and Retail Loyalty Programs

RewardLoopVancouver’s RewardLoop has announced a universal Point of Sale (POS) adaptor that enables restaurants and retailers of any size to simply and cost-efficiently deploy a secure, transaction-based mobile loyalty program. The patent-pending RewardLoop Connect adaptor connects easily to merchants’ existing Point of Sale (POS) systems and can be set up in minutes.

RewardLoop is also pleased to announce it has recently closed a seed financing round led by Canadian angel investor Boris Wertz (W Media Ventures) with the participation of prominent executives from leading online and offline retailers.

RewardLoop’s turnkey mobile loyalty programs are ideal for independent and chain merchants alike, including coffee shops, restaurants, retailers, local service providers, and other high purchase volume – frequency categories. RewardLoop differentiates itself from an ever-growing number of mobile ‘check-in’ -based loyalty programs by offering a first-of-its-kind transaction-based mobile loyalty platform that offers a level of security comparable to traditional card-based programs.

“For a mobile loyalty program to deliver value and be successful in our business, it needs to be transactional and secure. RewardLoop is the only solution we’ve seen that meets these criteria,” said Tim Kraus, Interactive Marketing Manager at Quiznos USA.

Through its RewardLoop Connect device, RewardLoop prints transaction-identifying QR codes on merchant bills and receipts. Consumers scan these secure, one-time-use QR codes with their mobile phones to earn and redeem merchant-defined loyalty rewards through RewardLoop’s cloud hosted platform. RewardLoop’s mobile-rendered stamp cards show users their earning progress towards each reward.

With its groundbreaking innovation, RewardLoop Connect is a device that sits between the merchant’s POS system and receipt printer. It intercepts the print data stream, adds a RewardLoop QR code, and then passes the print command to the printer. The printer prints the receipt exactly as delivered from the POS system, but inserts an extra footer that includes the merchant’s secure, one-time-use, RewardLoop QR codes. The device also prints QR codes for secure reward validation and redemption. When these codes are scanned by a customer the customer is delivered to a hosted, merchant-branded mobile application optimized for the user’s mobile phone. Read the rest of this entry »

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18th July 2011

National Post Launches Mobile App for Android

National PostThe National Post has launched its first Android app, available now for free in the Android Market. National Post Mobile for Android joins a growing suite of mobile news products and delivers the latest content from all of National Post’s core news channels, including the day’s top stories and business news from Financial Post. Android is a software system for mobile devices that includes an operating system, middleware and applications and was recently named the world’s best selling Smartphone platform.National Post for Android

“This is the first Android app from Postmedia, so we are very excited about it,” said Duncan Clark, Vice President of Digital Media, National Post. “Our readers want us to keep up with the latest innovation, so the introduction of this Android app helps us build upon the success of our iOS applications and continues to move us forward in our digital first strategy.”

The new Android app includes the following features:

  • All of the award-winning reporting, engaging content and opinion National Post readers have come to rely on – updated throughout the day.
  • Sharing – Readers can activate their preferred social media accounts and share stories.
  • Offline reading – With a few clicks, readers can curate a custom list of selected stories for later reading or download all available content before hopping on the plane or subway to read later.

The app was designed for and is available on most Android devices. New features are planned for release in the coming months.

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18th July 2011

CMPA Launches 2011 Edition of the Atlantic Mentorship Program

CMPAThe Canadian Media Production Association (CMPA) is pleased to announce the 2011 launch of the Atlantic Mentorship Program. Interested parties have until August 17th to get their applications in.

“It is important to the CMPA to offer regional programs and to support the retention of local talent,” said Susanne Vaas, VP of Business Affairs & Recording Secretary, CMPA. “We are grateful for our partners’ support of this important program and we look forward to another successful program year.”

Offering a total of six placements in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Newfoundland and Labrador, the program provides local talent long-term, paid training opportunities in the film, television and interactive media sectors.

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18th July 2011

Accellos Announces Visions 2011 Summer Conference Series

AccellosSupply chain execution software solutions provider Accellos announced today that it will be holding a Summer Conference single day event in Toronto, along with stops at Newark, Chicago, San Francisco and Atlanta.

Accellos Visions 2011 is designed to give supply chain professionals across North America the opportunity to join in educational sessions, networking opportunities and engaging dialogue with Accellos experts, customers and partners like Microsoft and Psion Teklogix. The event provides a forum for attendees to spend time face-to-face with their Accellos team, meet new colleagues with similar business interests in their area and industry, and learn how to drive even greater returns from current and future Accellos solutions.

The daily agenda (PDF) includes educational sessions covering topics meaningful to Accellos’ 3PL, Warehouse Management, Transportation Management and EDI customers and partners. The sessions will focus on profit-building strategies, industry insights, best practices, in-depth product information, technology road maps, and the vision for Accellos going forward. Speaking guests include Accellos top executives, product and brand managers, and representatives from Microsoft and Psion.

“We developed Accellos Visions with the aim of bringing together our customers, partners, and supply chain professionals from coast to coast,” said Accellos CTO Ross Elliott. “Our attendees will have the chance to learn about how our latest products can help them drive ROI, hear expert speakers from Microsoft and other partners talk about topics like Cloud Computing and Mobility, and get a glimpse of Accellos’ vision for the coming months and years. And the best part is that, rather than host a single event in one location, we will be bringing the show to our attendees.”

Early bird special registration pricing for Accellos Visions 2011 is available until July 22.

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18th July 2011

Zevrix Releases Deliver Express 2.1.6

zevrixToronto’s Zevrix Solutions has announced Deliver Express 2.1.6, a feature update to its automated solution to send and share files easily across the Internet and local networks. Deliver Express processes files automatically from watched hot folders and supports various remote and local services. The software can run absolutely unattended and offers variable e-mail notifications, delivery to multiple destinations, automatic file compression and encryption, and much more.

The new update introduces new variable e-mail tokens for date and time elements, giving users the flexibility to use their preferred format for date and time info in email notifications. In addition, it addresses some proxy-related connectivity issues and improves reliability of information stored in delivery history.

“What’s great about Deliver Express for organizations is the unattended nature of using a hot folder,” writes Jeffrey Mincey on Mac360.com. “It’s perfect for all kinds of file delivery. Sensitive documents, encrypted files, financial information, graphic files, photographs, large files and so on.”

Being used by such major ad agencies as BBDO, MacLaren McCann and Innocean, Deliver Express is ideal for companies and users that constantly send files to specific destinations. For example: ad agencies, photographers, audio/video studios, printers, etc. As a company-wide server solution, Deliver Express can run on a dedicated station processing files from network-based hot folders. Users only need to copy files to the hot folders, and they will be sent automatically with customizable e-mail confirmations issued upon delivery. The files can be easily retrieved through the link in notification e-mail.

Deliver Express offers the following key features:

  • Automate both external and internal delivery tasks with hot folder processing
  • Supports FTP, SFTP, WebDAV, Amazon S3, MobileMe, AFP, SMB and local destinations
  • Automatic e-mail notifications with link to retrieve the file
  • Submit files from both Mac and PC stations
  • Automatic file compression
  • Detailed delivery history

Deliver Express can be purchased from Zevrix website as well as from authorized resellers. The license prices are based on the maximum number of destinations and range from US$29.95 to $299.95. Trial is also available for download. Deliver Express is a Universal Binary and available for Mac OS X 10.5 and later.

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18th July 2011

Developer Selections For Summer Uprising 8 Revealed

IGSUOn Sunday July 27th, the final votes for the 8 developer selections for the Indie Games Summer Uprising were tallied and the organizers are now ready to announce the titles of the games which will headline the promotion:

T.E.C. 3001 Speedrunner HD
Raventhorne Take Arms
Train Frontier Express Cute Things Dying Violently
Doom and Destiny Battle High: San Bruno

The next step in the competition will begin on  Monday, August 1st and run until Sunday August 14th, when fans will have the opportunity to choose two titles that they would like to see as part of the promotion on any of the remaining candidates from the IGSU entries page. Voting will take place on the IGSU Facebook page. Winners will be announced during the #IGSU Twitter Chat.

The #IGSU Twitter Chat will be held on Tuesday Aug 16th – 9PM EST, and the gaming community will have the ability to speak directly with the developers, organizers, and journalists in a roundtable style chat. As mentioned before, the two winners from the fan vote will be announced at this time as well.

Indie Games Uprising Summer Schedule:

August 1st – August 15th: Community voting for 2 additional titles they would most like to play.
Tuesday August 16th – 9PM EST: IGSU Developer Twitter chat, community winners announced
August 22nd – September 2nd: Promotion and release of 8 developer and 2 community voted titles

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