1st December 2010

TransGaming Announces New Partnership

TransGamingTransGaming, Inc. and UK-based Amino Communications have announced a collaborative partnership to provision TransGaming’s on-demand video game platform, GameTree TV, into Amino Communications’ Freedom hybrid/OTT media centre. The addition of GameTree TV enhances the Freedom media centre by offering a comprehensive and powerful interactive consumer entertainment experience that will address a broader consumer market for operators through a single platform.
Amino Communications is among the world’s leading IPTV and hybrid/OTT (Over the Top) innovators. The award-winning Freedom media centre, based on the Intel® CE4100 Media Processor, offers Managed Service Operators (MSOs) a powerful platform for the seamless delivery of TV, movies, home media, and a new world of television apps to the consumer.

The GameTree TV Platform is the premier on-demand video game solution for consumers, optimized for the next generation of set-top boxes and connected consumer electronic (CE) devices. GameTree TV delivers to consumers an ever-growing catalog of video games that can be transacted through a variety of flexible pricing models. The Platform provides operators with an interactive gaming solution that will enhance their current entertainment portfolio and generate new and sustainable revenue streams by catering to the broad family demographic represented in their subscription base.

“The Amino Freedom platform is an exceptional next generation device that delivers a wealth of media and entertainment options to consumers”, commented Vikas Gupta, CEO & President of TransGaming. “The GameTreeTVaddition of GameTree TV enriches the Freedom media center even further and allows consumers to enjoy all forms of entertainment, linear and interactive, through a singular experience. This collaboration allows both Amino and TransGaming to access a broader consumer marketplace and deliver an even more compelling value proposition to operators and consumers globally”.

The GameTree TV Platform supports the MeeGo™ operating system, a collaboration between Intel® and Nokia®, that is quickly becoming the operating system of choice for a range of next generation devices, including media centers, set-top boxes, net-books, tablets, or smart phones. GameTree TV is being optimized to support MeeGo and a variety of embedded Linux platforms, making it a highly versatile gaming solution for a range of consumer electronic devices.

“We are delighted to work with TransGaming to bring their GameTree TV Platform to the Amino Freedom”, stated Andrew Burke, CEO of Amino Communications. “GameTree TV will bring a rich entertainment experience to the Freedom media centre, by offering consumers a high quality gaming platform, and providing our business partners with a great new revenue stream that also aids in reducing churn within their retail operations.”

TransGaming and Amino Communications are both members of the Intel® Consumer Electronics Network (CEN), a community of hardware, software and services providers that accelerates the development and time-to-market of Internet-connected CE devices.

Budge StudiosBudge Studios invites you to experience Dora’s Christmas Carol Adventure like you never have before! This interactive episode brings the experience of reading, watching and playing together in one fun-filled App. Join Dora as she helps Swiper get on Santa’s nice list and as they travel through time to learn the true spirit of Christmas. The app features activities, animation, songs, and is narrated by Dora herself!
Dora's Christmas Carol Adventure
*Play several interactive activities and mini-games designed for preschoolers
*Supports reading and listening comprehension and Spanish vocabulary
*Teaches wonderful lessons on sharing and the spirit of Christmas
*Features a special Christmas song sung by Dora that users can interact with
*Preschoolers can listen to Dora’s narration of the story or turn narration off and read together with their parents.
*The iPad version features stunning HD graphics

Dora’s Christmas Carol Adventure is available now in the iTunes App store with a special launch price of $1.99 USD.

Microsoft CanadaDevelopers interested in Microsoft’s Windows Azure platform should register for (and attend) AzureFest, which is taking place at Microsoft Canada’s Mississauga campus on December 11th. Presented in Open House format, there are two sessions, one at 9:00a.m. and the other at 1:00p.m. The event is free and includes refreshments. Windows Azure

By attending AzureFest, you can learn how developing and deploying Azure Applications is fast and easy. You will learn how to set up your Azure account and how to take a traditional ASP.NET application and convert it for Azure. Publishing Applications to the Azure Developer Portal is a breeze. You’ll learn how to set up the Azure SDK and Azure Tools for Visual Studio right on your laptop.

Digital Hot ListCongratulations to the six companies named to nextMEDIA’s 2010 Hot Digital List as the hottest emerging online properties, the most innovative new apps, games and tech solutions, and the freshest ideas from online content creators:

Hot Online Property

Hot Technology

Hot Video Content

VantrixMobile video optimization and delivery solutions developer Vantrix has been awarded the 2010 Frost & Sullivan Mobile Video Optimization Solution of the Year Award for Vantrix Bandwidth Optimizer. Vantrix was selected as this year’s recipient for its solution’s unique approach to improving mobile operators’ economics, while preserving the end-user experience.

“It is an honor to be recognized, for the second year in a row, by Frost & Sullivan. This award further validates our leadership in mobile video optimization for mobile operators,” said Patrick Lopez, Chief Marketing Officer of Vantrix. “As mobile video continues to take a dominant place in our daily lives, mobile networks are challenged to handle the increasing demand. Vantrix Bandwidth Optimizer alleviates this strain and maximizes the mobile operators’ network capacity by making on-the-fly adjustments to the way videos are delivered to end-users. This solution not only stops the ‘waste’ incurred by operators in delivering Internet videos to smartphones, tablets and laptops, but also effectively doubles the capacity of existing network infrastructure, while reducing the OPEX and CAPEX necessary to increase the networks capacity.”

Thanks to iPads, iPhones and Android, people are watching mobile video more than ever before. In fact, it is predicted that by 2015, video will represent more than 70 percent of all mobile traffic. As mobile video becomes ubiquitous, mobile networks are challenged to handle the increasing demand. Vantrix Bandwidth Optimizer optimizes all video content and delivers it in real-time to the recipient, while maintaining the best quality of experience. To highlight the benefit of bandwidth optimization, Vantrix has created an interactive tool called the Vantrix Bandwidth Savings Calculator. This tool enables mobile carriers to calculate the savings they can experience by implementing Vantrix Bandwidth Optimizer in their network.

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23rd November 2010

Aliens Pocket Gods and Sharp Pointy Things

Rocket 5 StudiosRocket 5 Studios, an emerging independent game developer, today announced the release of their latest iPhone app, Alien Booth. The app features the ability to easily transform pictures of friends, family, coworkers and even pets into amazing looking aliens. Alien Booth is available on the iTunes App Store today for $0.99.

Using simple on-screen controls, create fun and realistic looking aliens from pictures taken with the iPhone camera or that are already stored in the iPhone, iPad or Touch photo library.
Alien Booth
Easily share aliens on Facebook, Twitter or email from within the app. Save aliens to the photo library and then send them via MMS. Shake the device to see before/after versions of the alien or toggle between before/after portrait and side-by-side views.

Alien Booth features a cool, interactive interface that includes a fingerprint scanner, animated laser image scanner, sound effects, detailed help screens with tips and more.

Alien Booth is fun at parties – it’s a great way to meet new people and share contact information. There’s virtually no limit to the wild alien effects that can be created with Alien Booth. And the aliens make great avatars for use on social networking sites.

How it works:

1. Take a picture or choose one from the photo library.
2. Position the markers over the eyes and mouth.
3. Press “GO” to see the face magically transformed.
4. Adjust the color of the alien.
5. Share with friends and family.

Alien Booth is available exclusively through the iPhone App Store in the Entertainment category.

frima studioQuebec’s Frima Studio and Bolt Creative, a San Francisco-based developer of original iPhone applications and games, have announced that the best-selling game Pocket God will officially make its way to Facebook later this fall.

Originally developed by Bolt Creative for iPhone and iPod Touch, the Facebook version of Pocket God is being developed by Frima Studio and will feature a brand new way to experience the colorful, death-inducing, all-powerful and hilarious universe of Pocket God across the world’s most popular social network. With all-new socially integrated features, episodic updates and a host of hilarious ways to both dispose of and resurrect the immortal pygmies of each island, the Facebook iteration of Pocket God will offer a fresh experience for both fans of the iOS versions, and those looking for an omnipotent new twist in online social gaming.

“There were very few partners who could truly understand the essence of what Pocket God has become to its legion of devoted fans,” said Dave Castelnuovo, CEO of Bolt Creative. “Frima knew exactly what needed to be done in order to take Pocket God from being an application for millions of individuals, to a shared experience for hundreds of millions more.”

Pocket God throws players into the role of an almighty deity, commanding a small island full of god-fearing followers who unquestionably bend to the user’s whim. Benevolent players can choose to feed and care for their subjects while vengeful gods will have more fun torturing the Pygmies in a variety of wacky ways that have entertained players since the title’s iOS debut.

“Working in the Facebook space, we simply could not have asked for a more exciting and irreverent franchise so perfectly suited for the world of social gaming,” said Steve Couture, CEO of Frima Studio. “What Bolt has created has become more than just a game or an application; Pocket God is a true pop culture phenomenon with millions of fans across the globe. Everything fans have grown to love about this game and its characters has been happily fed to the sharks and tossed into the volcano, only to be resurrected onto Facebook in a way that fans are truly going to love.”

Pocket God will officially move into a closed beta later this year on Facebook, with exclusive access being given only to some of the game’s already rabid fanbase.

Dragon Age 2Florida-based EPIC Weapons announced today that it has launched the auction for the Grey Warden Sword and Darkspawn Greatsword as seen in BioWare’s Dragon Age. Each sword is embedded with a Game-to-Gear RFID chip for easy identification and certification, and comes with a Certificate of Authenticity and wall mount. Each participant who registers will be guaranteed the opportunity to purchase a Grey Warden Sword or Darkspawn Greatsword (of their choosing) with delivery following the auction winners in the order of sign-up. All auction participant shipments will be completed prior to any Christmas or introductory offers.

Epic Weapons will be offering a Christmas introductory offer for the first 200 Grey Warden Swords and Darkspawn Greatswords.

Grey Warden Sword:Grey Warden Sword

The chantry teaches us that it was the mages who brought the horror of the blight down upon the world of Dragon Age. Twisted and corrupt, the magisters of the Tevinter Empire decayed into the malformed Darkspawn and were driven underground. There, they spread. The ancient dwarven kingdoms were all but obliterated, leaving their ancient empire a festering breeding ground for these twisted creatures. When they rose to the surface, in countless hordes, led by an undying draconic Archdemon, the first blight began, and the world stood on the brink of destruction.

That is, until the Grey Wardens. Men and women of every race, these battle-hardened veterans counted mage, warrior, commoner and king among their ranks, sacrificing all to turn aside the Blight, and restore some semblance of peace to the land. Blades much like this were forged with the Warden’s iconic gryphon symbol, remember the mighty flying mounts the Wardens once rode into battle. While the gryphons are extinct, the Wardens fight on, grimly remembering that in war, victory, in peace, vigilance and in death…sacrifice.

Darkspawn Great SwordDarkspawn Greatsword:

Of the brutal, corrupt “race” known as the Darkspawn, the Hurlocks are by far the most numerous. While they share some physical similarities to humans, their unnerving grin, pallid skin and beastial nature mark them as anything but. Constantly fighting amongst themselves like packs of animals, the Hurlocks pose less of a threat than they could, until the awakening of an Archdemon unites them under a single purpose.

Marching to the surface in endless swarms, these inhumanly strong creatures arm themselves with wickedly sharp blades, often coated with their own blood, blood that infects any who taste the razor sharp edge. The mighty greatswords wielded by the strongest of the Hurlocks makes for a terrifying sight on the battlefield. A single Darkspawn wielding one of these might blades can scythe through opponents, cleanly cutting through armor, flesh and bone while leaving a deadly infection that will finish off any unlucky enough to survive the initial assault.

gamerkraftToronto’s Game Bridger Entertainment has announced an update to their new free-to-play parkour racing game, FreeJack. The free update, which is available now, brings new character clothing items and “MyRoom” decorations, in addition to the all-new track “CosmosJack”, and an achievement system with more than 50 in-game achievements for players to collect.

Set in the dark recesses of space, “Cosmos Jack” lets players run along planetary rings, vault over orbiting satellites, and even grind through a wormhole! Upon their return from orbit, FreeJackers will be happy to discover that they can now unlock and collect more than 50 in-game achievements. The achievements are earned by completing various in-game tasks, with each one offering a valuable reward. This substantial free update is available now.

FreeJack is a free-to-play parkour racing game for Windows PCs supporting Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7. Players race head-to-head across the urban metropolis of New Jack City in high-octane foot races, chaining together stylish flips and tricks into combos to increase their speed and cross the finish line first!. Players can personalise their character with fresh outfits and running gear and even customise their own unique in-game living space with cool furniture and accessories to show off to friends! FreeJack also supports online leaderboards, a club/clan system, in-game friend lists, and more.

iStockphotoiStockphoto today announced that voting for the new “Stockys” award competition is now open to the entire iStock community. The Stockys were created to recognize excellence in stock photography, illustration, video and audio in 10 categories including Technical Achievement, Stockiest Stock and Coolest Abstract.
One of the finalists in the "Funniest" stock category for the iStock "Stockys" awards by artists mrPliskin. Credit: iStock/mrPliskin
Throughout the first part of November, iStock has collected more than seven thousand submissions and the company’s panel of judges has chosen 20 finalists for each category. iStock’s community of more than 6 million members will select the winners in each category by popular vote and everyone who votes will be entered for a chance to win $2,000 cash and 2000 iStock credits.

While iStock has held competitions to honor its artists’ work in the past, those awards were segmented by medium. The Stockys take things in a completely new direction and focus on the different aspects of great stock rather than the specific file type. This allows the competition to focus on what matters most – great content and the ability to help tell a story or define an idea, feeling or concept.

“The concept of stock has come a long way in the decade and we wanted to create a contest that would reflect that,” said Kelly Thompson, COO of iStockphoto. “We have fantastic artists and this is our way of showcasing their amazing talent and rewarding the best of the best regardless of how that talent is manifested.”

Each type of file available on iStockPhoto is eligible for every part of the competition. The complete list is as follows:

* Technical Achievement
* Artistic Vision
* Best Composition
* Funniest File
* Coolest Abstract
* Concept Execution
* Stockiest Stock
* Most Emotionally Evocative
* Story Telling
* WTH (What the H*ck?)

The results of the competition will be announced on December 13. The winning contributor from each category will be awarded a $2,000 cash prize. An additional $3,000 will be awarded for “Best in Show,” as selected by iStockphoto judges.

Inside Gaming Awards 2010Congratulations to all of the Canadian nominees in Machinima.com’s Inside Gaming Awards 2010:

Game of the Year: Mass Effect 2 and Assassin’s Creed® Brotherhood
Best Trailer: Deus Ex: Human Revolution E3
Best MultiPlayer: Assassin’s Creed® Brotherhood
Best Animation: Shank
Best Game Play Cinematography: Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Conviction™
Most Compelling Character: Jack (Subject Zero) – Mass Effect 2
Best DLC: Lair of the Shadow Broker – Mass Effect 2 and Dead Rising® 2: CASE ZERO
Best Control: EA Sports MMA
Best Original Score: Mass Effect 2
Best Weapon: Chainsaw Bike – Dead Rising 2

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17th November 2010

Strong Canadian Showing For Spike Video Game Awards

Congratulations to all of the Canadian nominees who were named today by the Spike Video Game Awards show:

Bioware’s Mass Effect 2, is the only Canadian-made title in the Game of the Year category, and Bioware is the Spike VGAonly Canadian studio nominated for Studio of the Year. Mass Effect 2 was also named in the Xbox 360 Game of the Year, PC Game of the Year, Best RPG, Best DLC and Best Original Soundtrack categories.  Bioshock 2, which carries work done by Digital Extremes, is nominated as Best Shooter, while Ubisoft Montreal’s Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood is nominated for Best Action Adventure but overlooked for Soundtrack. What I’m sure is a surprise to many, Shaun White Skateboarding is the only Canadian title nomintaed in the Best Individual Sports category, and unsurprisingly, EA Canada’s FIFA Soccer 11 was named in the Best Team Sports category.

Spider Man: Shattered Dimensions from Beenox received a nod in the Best Adapted Video Game category. In the voice performance categories, Martin Sheen has been nominated in the Best Performance By A Human Male for his role as the Illusive Man in Mass Effect 2, while Neil Patrick Harris was nominated for his portrayal of Peter Parker in Spider Man: Shattered Dimensions. As for the Best Performance By A Human Female, Mass Effect 2 gains two more chances to rack up some serious hardware with the nominations of Jennifer Hale as the female Commander Sheppard while Yvonne Strahovski was nominated for her role as Miranda Lawson. Ubisoft Montreal and Ubisoft Chengdu share the nomination for Best Downloadable Game with Scott Pilgrim vs The World: The Game. ModNation Racers, the debut title from United Front Games, received two nominations – Best Driving Game and Best PS3 Game.

Bioware also revealed a new advertisement today, teasing gamers about the studio’s next big title – the name of which they will share with the world during the Spike VGA’s broadcast. Personally, I think it’s going to be Mass Effect 3. Take a look at the TV spot:

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EA Sports™ NBA JAM —in high definition and featuring online play (Restrictions and conditions apply)—for the PlayStation®3 and Xbox 360® is in stores now throughout North America. Featuring gameplay that is true to the original, two distinct game modes—Classic Campaign and Remix Tour—plus a full complement of online modes, EA Sports NBA JAM offers something for everyone. EA Sports

For the first time ever play the arcade classic basketball game online with every online feature available immediately through a free title update for all connected fans. Gamers can take on all rivals playing Classic 2-on-2 online, measuring their success on Friends and Global Leaderboards. Connected fans will be able to team-up locally to compete online in Remix Games, including Domination Free-for-All, Elimination, and 21. Fans will also be able to make it a Jam Party online by inviting up to 3 friends on separate consoles to play. Plus, gamers will be able to take on the world in Online Progression, levelling up through a series of challengers and secret online NBA JAM Challenges to unlock online exclusive NBA Jamrewards and hidden content in the ultimate quest for global bragging rights.

In Classic Campaign, players can take a trip down memory lane, individually or with a friend, as they play all 30 teams in the NBA in a worst to first ladder tournament. In Remix Tour, players will be faced with a new twist on the traditional NBA JAM experience. From boss battles against some of the NBA’s greatest legends, to half-court game modes with distinct challenges and winning conditions, players will be taken through an NBA JAM experience completely unique to the basketball videogame genre while demonstrating classic arcade hoops at its best.

EA Sports stays true to the original NBA JAM with Tim Kitzrow reprising his role as the legendary announcer voicing all the classic lines from the original, unmatched player likeness and reactions that exaggerate the outrageous moves that make up the core NBA JAM experience, and hundreds of characters, secret teams, courts and secret items to unlock.

Described by Gamesradar.com as “virtually perfect”, EA Sports NBA JAM for Wii™ is available in stores now everywhere. It is currently the 8th highest rated sports game ever on the Wii (according to Metacritic.com as of Nov. 10). EA Sports NBA JAM is rated “E” for Everyone by the ESRB. The MSRP on the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3 versions is $49.99 USD.

EA MobileEA also announced today that through their partnership with Blue Planet Software, Inc., the company that manages the exclusive licensing rights to the Tetris® brand, Tetris by EA Mobile is now available for the PlayStation®Network (PSN). Millions of players worldwide on Sony PlayStation® 3 systems will now have the opportunity to download and play the game with crisp 1080p high-definition (HD) graphics, high-quality 5.1 surround sound audio, and all-new ways to play including online against other Tetris players from around the globe. The Tetris game is one of the best-selling games of all time, with more than 100 million paid mobile downloads.
Tetris for PS3
“EA has developed Tetris on more than 15 platforms to date, and we’re excited to bring Tetris to millions of gamers worldwide on PlayStation Network,” said Adam Sussman, Vice President of Worldwide Publishing for EA Mobile. “With new gaming modes, stunning HD visuals and the enhanced audio experience, this truly is the definitive Tetris experience for PlayStation Network.”

“This is Tetris made for a big screen,” said Alexey Pajitnov, creator of the Tetris game. “We’re very excited to bring Tetris to PlayStation Network with new game modes offering different and fun new ways to play. With high-definition graphics and surround sound, this Tetris game is a full experience. We’re thrilled to bring this unique game to longtime fans and new players. We hope everyone shows it off in their home ‘theaters!’”

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In addition to stellar audio and visual qualities, Tetris players can now play online or locally with up to six friends in all-new game modes. For those that play well with others, “Shared” mode enables two players to team-up in a single matrix to combine efforts and clear lines together. On the other end of the spectrum, “Team Battle” is the ultimate competitive match-up that allows two teams of two to play against one another, alternating between offense and defense as they compete for the win. Even the well-known “Battle” mode has been enhanced with new Power-Ups for more fast-paced fun.

And long-time Tetris fans need not worry, as Tetris for PSN also includes the famous “Marathon” mode. But for a new twist, now multiplayer games let up to four players locally play “Marathon” mode at the same time. Also included is the new “Challenge” mode, which allows players playing “Marathon” mode or any of the 12 variants to try to beat “replays” of either friends or some of the best Tetris players in the world. Additionally, players can see how they stack up to the best Tetris players internationally by checking out worldwide and regional leader boards, which are refreshed weekly.

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15th November 2010

Upcoming Events and New Contests Announced

AnnexProThere a number of events recently announced for the Canadian interactive and digital media industries, including the Annex Pro Expo 2011, which will be held on December 8th at the Vancouver Convention Centre. This free-to-attend event will feature some of the latest technology solutions for VFX, animation, games as well as post-production for TV, film and music.

Expo Agenda:

3:00 p.m. – Technology Open House featuring Adobe, AJA, Aspera, Autodesk, Avid Audio + Video, Chaos V-Ray, Craft Animations, G-Tech, HP, Wacom and Blue Arc
5:00 p.m. – Drinks + Apps, Industry Networking, Open House
6:00 p.m. – Keynote: “Trends in Post-production Infrastructure” presented by Tom Burns from Technicolor Creative Services
7:00 p.m.+ Drinks and Open House

Space for the Annex Pro Expo 2011 is limited, so make sure you’re on the list by pre-registering now.

IABC TorontoBlogs, online conversations, and social networking have exploded over the past couple of years, making social media expertise a must-have skill for today’s communicators. Opportunities for online engagement, promotion, and monetization are limitless, but when adopting social media, it is critical to demonstrate its business value.

In an exclusive breakfast seminar taking place at the Marriott Downtown on November 17th, Cyrus Mavalwala, ABC, Founding Partner of Advantis Communication and IABC/Toronto Board Member, will draw on his experience as a communications expert to offer practical advice on integrating social media into communication programs and measuring success.

In Selling, Implementing and Measuring Social Media, communicators will learn how to develop their sales pitch and a practical plan to integrate social media into external communications. They’ll also learn how to get approval to double their budget the next time around by tracking the right metrics with the right tools.

WordCamp Fraser Valley, which will be taking place at the SFU Surrey Campus on November 20th has posted its schedule:

John Bollwitt – Building an Intranet using WordPresswordcamp fraser valley
Raul Pacheco – Build your Online Community
Tris Hussey – Hacking and Creating Your Own Theme
Dave Zile – WordPress SEO BootCamp
Danny Bradbury – Tools for Gathering Topics for Blog Posts
Lynne Robson – Designing with Child Themes
Kulpreet Singh – To be announced
Leah Cross – Video Blogging

Tickets for this full day event are available online, and cost $45.00 each.

the citizen labThe Citizen Lab, an interdisciplinary laboratory based at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs that ferrets out cyber attacks and espionage, will be awarded the Canadian Journalists for Free Expression (CJFE) 2010 Vox Libera Award. The Citizen Lab was selected for its dedication to free expression and access to information online. World leaders in the field of “hacktivism,” the Citizen Lab’s members focus their research on documenting cases of internet espionage and censorship around the world, reinforcing the idea that the Internet should remain a safe, public domain.

In 2010, Citizen Lab (and its partner the SecDev Group) uncovered 1,294 computers in 103 countries (embassies, government agencies etc. including to the desktop of the Dalai Lama) that had been compromised by a virus originating out of servers in China. The Citizen Lab developed the psiphon censorship circumvention software, and continues to provide “red team” research, threat analysis, and support for open source development for Psiphon Inc through the Psi-Lab project.

Victor Malarek, investigative reporter on CTV’s W5, and Anne-Marie Mediwake, news anchor and co-host of CBC News, will emcee the evening that honours the Citizen Lab and journalists from Cameroon and Mexico at the 13th annual CJFE Gala: A Night to Honour Fearless Reporting at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel in Toronto on Thursday, November 25, 2010.

“Freedom of expression on the Internet is very much under threat today,” said Ron Deibert, Founder/Director of the Citizen Lab and Professor of Political Science. “Citizen Lab is very proud to have been selected for this year’s CJFE Vox Libera Award. We hope that our work and that of our partners will help raise awareness of these threats and safeguard the Internet as an open commons.”

The Vox Libera Award is an annual award granted to a Canadian or Canadian organization that has demonstrated an outstanding commitment to the principles of free expression and has made an important and sustained contribution at home or abroad to those same principles. The CJFE Gala brings together approximately 500 members of Canada’s media, business and professional communities in support of journalists who are putting their lives on the line to defend freedom of expression. CJFE recognizes its annual award winners as well as journalists worldwide for their extraordinary courage and for overcoming tremendous odds to report on controversial stories despite dangerous circumstances.

Canadian Food Blog AwardsNominations for the 1st annual edition of the Canadian Food Blog Awards (CFBAs) will open on November 21st. Food lovers and blog readers alike are invited to nominate their favourite food and drink blogs from across Canada in sixteen categories including Best Writing, Best Photography, Best Professional Blog, Best Seasonal/Local Blog and Best Baking and Dessert Blog.

“We think there are some fantastic food bloggers across the country and it’s time that they were recognized and supported for their efforts,” says CFBA co-founder and veteran food blogger Sheryl Kirby. “Our hope is that through these awards, we will find Canada’s best online food writers, and that by presenting them with awards to acknowledge their work, this will set a standard of excellence to which food bloggers from coast to coast will aspire.”

Nominations will remain open until December 21st, after which a shortlist will be created for each category, and given to a judges’ panel to select the winners. The panel will consist of a veritable who’s who of Canada’s food and drink scene, including chefs, food writers, newspaper and magazine columnists, and industry experts. The list of judges, which continues to grow as more are confirmed, is available on the CFBA website.

In addition, there will be a special “People’s Choice” award for the overall Best Canadian Food Blog, which will be selected and awarded based on a public vote. Judging and voting will take place January 1st to 15th, and the winners in all categories will be announced on January 31st, 2011.

clickboxClickbox Software, creators of the ilumii.com Social Learning Community & Marketplace, have announced an exciting contest that will give aspiring entrepreneurs the chance to win everything they need to start their very own virtual school or training academy online. The “Teach The World” contest is part of the initiatives to celebrate Global Entrepreneurship Week–a global movement meant to inspire, connect, mentor, and engage young entrepreneurs around the world.

The grand prize package includes all the tools needed for an entrepreneur to launch and manage a fully-operational online school on ilumii.com. ilumii’s Virtual Academies, a new addition to the ilumii.com platform, allow entrepreneurs to deliver live, instructor-led educational courses online, receive payments for educational services, manage multiple instructors, and market their online schools across the globe. The grand prize, valued at close to $10,000, also includes training, advice, and the opportunity to be featured in advertising campaigns.

Daniel Del Mastro, CEO of Clickbox Software, said, “Our goal is to kick-start young entrepreneurs that are interested in education, and in sharing their knowledge with the world using technology. We know that there are many young, creative entrepreneurs out there wanting to start an education-based business, and through this contest, we can help them fast-track their business set-up and quickly get them sharing their knowledge, generating revenue, and creating jobs.”

To enter the contest, entrepreneurs must follow @ilumii on Twitter and tell us in 140 characters: “What would you teach the world if you won an ilumii online school?” Clickbox Software will select the top ten most compelling and innovative entries, in conjunction with votes collected by Twitter users, and one grand-prize winner will be chosen from this group. In addition to the grand prize, Clickbox Software is also giving away runner-up prizes, including books on entrepreneurship by Guy Kawasaki and Seth Godin, and free upgraded instructor memberships on the ilumii.com platform.

staples canadaEighty per cent of Canadians who use social media are on Facebook, and now, you can follow Canada’s largest office supply retailer on Facebook and Twitter as well – plus you could win a laptop complete with software, and a day as the president of Staples Canada via the company’s Easy Button Photo Contest. One lucky Staples Canada Facebook and Twitter follower who posts a picture or video with the Easy button in it has a chance to win an HP laptop with Microsoft Office Suite, and spend a day with the president of Staples Canada (excluding Quebec).

“Canadians are a plugged-in society, and very much interested in anything to do with social media. On Randy with his EasyButton in TorontoOctober 16th, we launched our social network pages on Facebook and Twitter to inform customers about promotions and deals, and any social corporate giving news, as well as invite them to communicate with us,” said Jameel Lalji, innovation and business consultant for Staples Canada.

“We’ve seen some great examples of people taking pictures with the Easy button around the globe. For example, it has been to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro and in the delivery room while a woman gave birth. We want to see people be creative – maybe underwater deep sea diving or in a jet. Who knows – the sky’s the limit,” continued Lalji.

Staples will fly the winner to Toronto for the day, where they will be presented with a new software-loaded laptop and spend the day with the president.

Best Buy CanadaAnd, starting today, Best Buy is asking Canadians to upload unboxing videos and videos capturing precious holiday moments for its first ever UNboxing Day Facebook contest.

Unboxing, the Internet trend of sharing videos where people open hot new electronics, has garnered a cult-like following in Canada and around the globe. Simultaneously, YouTube videos of exuberant children opening holiday gifts can garner millions of views in mere days. With its UNboxing Day contest, Best Buy celebrates both phenomena and offers Canadians the chance to win one of two $2,500 Best Buy gift cards.

Whether it is carefully unpackaging the soon-to-be-released Samsung Galaxy tablet or the shrieking joy of a child in front of the tree on Christmas morning, Best Buy is looking for Canadians to share their special moments with technology.

Canadians 18 and older can enter by uploading their best unboxing video between November 10 and December 31. Electronics enthusiasts and proud parents can go to the Best Buy Facebook page, click on the UNboxing Day tab and enter to win. Anyone who uploads a video by November 30, will also qualify to win the Early Bird prize of a $150 Best Buy gift card.

Videos will be shared on the Facebook page starting December 1, 2010. At that point, people are encouraged to ask friends and family to vote for their videos. The two videos with the most number of votes on December 31, 2010, will win the $2,500 gift card grand prizes. The Grand Prize winners will be announced on January 3, 2011.

The UNboxing Day prizes break down as follows:Best Buy Unboxing Day Contest

Grand Prize: Two $2,500 CAD Best Buy Gift Cards – The two videos that receive the highest number of Best Buy Canada fan votes on the UNboxing Day Facebook Page will win the two $2,500 CAD Grand Prizes.

Early Bird Prize: One $150 CAD Best Buy Gift Card – One $150 gift card is available to be won by anyone who uploads an ‘UNBoxing Day’ video on the UNboxing Day Facebook Page by November 30, 2010.

Weekly Prizes: Three $150 CAD Best Buy Gift Cards for voters and three $150 CAD Best Buy Gift Card for video clip submissions

As of December 1, for every vote made and every video uploaded, individuals will be entered into a weekly draw to win one of six $150 CAD Best Buy Gift Card prizes. The weekly prize draws will take place on December 13, 2010, December 20, 2010 and December 27, 2010 and will be selected through a random draw. Winners will be contacted via Twitter and/or Facebook and telephone.

For complete contest details, including eligibility, video uploading instruction, winner selection and prize description, visit the UNboxing Day Facebook tab. No purchase necessary, correct answer to skill-testing question required in order to win.

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9th November 2010

Today In The Business of Canadian Innovation

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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8th November 2010

filmpossible Winners Announced

Holland BloorviewSeventy-three entries, seven judges, and over 62,000 online votes cast has produced a winner: Taryn Green, a 28-year-old freelance film editor from Sudbury, Ontario, has claimed first prize of $5000 in Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital’s filmpossible contest, which challenged entrants to create a video bringing visibility to disability.

Taryn’s winning video, The Triangle Girl Retold, is a touching retelling of a story she wrote at age six, in which the triangle represents her disability, Cerebral Palsy. She longs to be like everyone else, but in the end, she becomes more confident and proud and embraces her disability, or “inner triangle”.

“Filmpossible was a great learning experience for me, as well as a very humbling one,” said Taryn. “I was competing against so many amazing videos that really challenged my own perception of disability. Through filmpossible, Holland Bloorview initiated a great change toward the public perception of disability. We need to keep this dialogue alive long after this contest is over. It is important to keep watching all the videos and to keep telling our stories.” Read the rest of this entry »

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2nd November 2010

Transgaming Launches New Site

TransGamingTransgaming Inc. has launched a brand new web site for its game development studio. Transgaming Studio features information about its launched titles, In The Mix Featuring Armin van Buuren, G-G-Goal, and the recently released PuzzleQuest: Challenge of the WarLords for iOS. Also featured is news about its latest game in development, Garage Inc. for the Mac, PC, iPhone and GameTreeTV. Garage Inc., a time management game set in 1928 Chicago, is based on an original IP by Global Fun and is being produced through a partnership with Breakthrough Entertainment. Players will guide recent Italian immigrant, Angelo Marito, as he tries to manage and grow a car garage. Game play features include the ability to diagnose and fix cars, hire workers, and try to steer clear of the ever-present mob while pursuing the American dream.

NinjaCAPCOMCapcom has announced that the Dead Rising 2 Ninja Theme Pack is now available on Xbox Live, Games for Windows Live and the PlayStation Network. With the new ninja pack, Chuck gains a “stealth mode” that allows him to evade zombies by making it harder for them to detect Chuck’s presence. Sword-type weapons (broadswords, katanas, etc.) have their attack power increased and will allow Chuck to perform new special attacks. Stackable items and throwing items such as nails, plates, gems, etc. will also do more damage and Chuck’s throwing speed is increased. The Dead Rising 2 Ninja Theme Pack is available for 160 Microsoft points, or $1.99 on the PlayStation Network.

audiokineticAudioKinetic’s Wwise 2010.1.2 platform has been nominated for a Game Developer magazine 2010 Front Line Award in the Audio Category. Also named as nominees in this category are FMOD Designer 4.32 (Firelight Technologies), Miles Sound System 8 (RAD Game Tools), ProRemote 2.0.1 (Far Out Labs) and ProTools 8.0.4 (Avid Technology). Read the rest of this entry »

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29th October 2010

The Friday Final Word

Congratulations to Bioware, EA Sports and Ubisoft Montreal for a triumphant run in the 28th Annual Golden Joystick Awards:

Action Game of the Year sponsored by Nuts – Assassin’s Creed II
RPG of the Year in association with GamesRadar – Mass Effect 2
Ultimate Game of the Year in association with GamesMaster – Mass Effect 2
Sports Game Of The Year in association with Mousebreaker – FIFA 10

Two Canadians have been named to the IGF Nuovo Award jury for the 2011 competition. Clint Hocking, formerly of Ubisoft Montreal now settled in at LucasArts, and independent developer Justin Smith, creator of 2010 Nuovo finalist Enviro-Bear 2000. The Nuovo Award is dedicated to honoring abstract, shortform, and unconventional game development which advances the medium and the way we think about games. Now in its third year, the Nuovo Award allows more esoteric ‘art games’ from among the almost 400 IGF entries to compete on their own terms alongside longer-form indie titles, and has been newly expanded to include eight finalists.

Media Awareness NetworkMedia Awareness Network (MNet) has released e-Parenting Tutorial: Keeping Up With Your Kids’ Online Activities, an online resource to help parents better understand and become actively involved in their children’s online lives.

Made possible through financial contributions from Inukshuk Learning Plan Fund and Bell, this engaging interactive tool helps parents increase their awareness of the ways that children and teens are using the Internet for learning, entertainment and socializing, and the issues they may be encountering along the way. Through the exploration of five key themes – homework, cyberbullying, marketing, online relationships and excessive use – parents can develop the knowledge and skills they need to help their children navigate the Internet safely, wisely and responsibly.

“Parents often feel unprepared when it comes to helping their children manage their online lives,” said Jane Tallim, Co-Executive Director of MNet. “e-Parenting Tutorial is designed to instill the confidence they need to help their kids become thoughtful cybercitizens.”

This practical resource takes a light-hearted approach while tackling serious issues, with downloadable tip be web awaresheets and links to further resources to help parents out. The key message throughout is that parents need to talk with their kids about their online explorations and work together to develop ground rules that everyone can live with.

e-Parenting Tutorial is available for free on Media Awareness Network’s Web site. It is also available on Be Web Aware, an Internet safety Web site for parents developed by MNet in partnership with Bell. The e-Parenting Tutorial development and promotion partners are the Alberta School Councils’ Association, The Alberta Library and the Canadian Home and School Federation.

webcom Toronto 2010webcom is coming to Toronto next month, bringing decision makers together for a collaborative conference focused on empowering professionals from across industries to integrate digital communications into business planning. webcom-Toronto Don Tapscottfollows in the footsteps of internationally recognized webcom-Montreal, which is approaching its ninth edition. webcom-Toronto features a keynote address delivered by Don Tapscott, international best-selling author and chairman of nGenera Insight, focused on content from his new book Macrowikinomics: Rebooting Business and the World. He will examine how the evolution of new technologies, combined with the recent crises that have swept across industries have brought the world to a turning point.

webcom-Toronto will take place on November 3rd at the Chestnut Convention Centre. The conference opens at 8:00a.m. and runs until 6:00p.m., with the public welcome to visit free of charge after 3:00p.m.

Enter the GroupThe people at Project Education Technologies ask, “Have you ever worked on a group project from hell?” They claim many of us have been there at some point and asked if there was a better way to do things. This was their motivation in launching their new site, EntertheGroup.com.

Winnipeg-based EntertheGroup.com provides students and teachers with project management tools such as the ability to create their own group pages, event calendars, task management, project outlines, polls, checklists, file sharing and more. There are also important social networking features like blogging, instant messaging, a Q & A forum and Twitter feed.

The site enable teachers to create virtual classrooms which enable them to interact with students online, share handouts, post events (like exams) to a shared calendar, conduct polls and much more.

“Students typically complain about their group projects. Their biggest problems are free riders and group members who try to take over the group. Also, getting everyone organized and on the same page is problematic,” says Sal Pellettieri, CEO of Project Education Technologies, creator of the website.

“I built this site so that students could learn project management techniques and integrate them into the classroom. I think that many students are overwhelmed by their work and I think that the tools and advice the site offers will help a lot,” says Mr. Pellettieri.

An important feature of the site is that it’s free. Users simply have to register and they will gain access to all of the tools and the library of articles at no charge.

“I wanted students to be able to make use of this site and it’s unlikely they could pay for this service, so I made it free,” says Mr. Pellettieri.

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26th October 2010

Search and Mobility Continue Growth In Canada

Montreal’s Vantrix was honoured last week with a 2010 RCR Ecosystem Award in the “Best Mobile Content Provider” category. The annual RCR Ecosystem awards are presented to innovative and outstanding companies from each sector within the mobile arena that has had a significant impact in the wireless marketplace. The RCR Ecosystem Awards received more than 130 nominations across 12 categories, a true testament to the momentum behind the wireless and mobile industry.

“Vantrix is very proud to be recognized for its leadership in mobile video optimization,” said Patrick Lopez, Chief Marketing Officer of Vantrix. “The amount of video traffic on the mobile network continues to grow at an exponential rate, putting pressure on mobile operator networks. Vantrix Bandwidth Optimizer enables mobile operators to optimize their networks and reduce costs of delivering video to laptops and mobile phones by as much as 50 percent. This award acknowledges our innovation and accomplishment in the mobile video optimization and arena, and underscores our clear leadership in this market.”

Vantrix Bandwidth Optimizer optimizes all video content in real-time, while maintaining the highest quality of experience. It removes congestion on the network, thus enabling more data to be sent. Furthermore, it also delays investment in network infrastructure expansion – thereby helping to reduce CAPEX and OPEX. A constant innovator, Vantrix has created an interactive tool called the Vantrix Bandwidth Savings Calculator to help mobile carriers plan for the explosive growth of video in their data network.

“It was particularly difficult for us to judge this year’s awards, as the volume and quality of entries was reflective of an industry that continues to innovate and have an impact on our daily lives,” said RCR Wireless News Editor Tracy Ford. “Our program recognizes those contributions and we applaud Vantrix for its hard work, dedication and for continuing to move the dial forward for mobile subscribers, as well as operators, worldwide.”

A unique web-based service, offering simplified, first class results on anything and everything locally, has now launched. Thetop10.ca the top 10 canadalaunched Phase One, an exceptional Web Site / Directory service, utilizing SEO, Social Media and related technologies in tandem with proprietary elements in a manner never before done, providing end-users The Top 10 of anything they are looking for, locally and simply.

“How do you sort through the clutter on the Internet today and find the best of anything? The Top 10 offers this and so much more.” says project backer Mike Bullard.

A major complaint from Web Searchers today is the never-ending barrage of useless information one is forced to delve through to get to what they’re looking for – to get to the BEST of what they’re looking for. Thetop10.ca is the answer to this and many other business-search issues. A platform offering both casual web searchers and members the best of what they’re looking for locally. Additionally, MEMBERS only receive access to a growing number of perks, and membership is free.

Thetop10.ca is the first of its kind, offering members an opportunity to share their product and service experiences with others on various Social Media platforms, earning great Rewards Points for their opinions! The list of Member-only perks to come in phase 2 and 3 is remarkable. Utilizing existent technologies and a proprietary algorithm, there is no company directly comparable to thetop10.ca in Canada.

“This enterprise has resulted in a better service than I even anticipated; I’m confident this first-class alternative to basic search engines will grow exponentially, and we look forward to the inimitable additions already in the works for Phase Two.” says Caroline Risi.

Backed by the incomparable and trusted entertainer Mike Bullard, thetop10.ca looks forward to sharing its one-of-a-kind platform and interacting with both the business community and web searchers across Ontario and Canada. PHASE 2 of thetop10.ca will launch in November 2010.

Canada PostCanada Post has introduced Canada Post Comparison Shopper, a one-stop shopping website that helps Canadians instantly find, compare and purchase products online. The site uses a ranking system that filters through over 4 million products from 500 well-known and respected retailers that actually sell to Canadians. The patent-pending system evaluates criteria like price, return policies and customer service to determine which retailer offers the best match for the consumer’s search.

“Canada Post has experience in building online solutions like epost,” says Louis O’Brien, Chief Customer Officer at Canada Post. “This innovative solution is a natural extension of our superior residential delivery in Canada. Canadians place a lot of trust in Canada Post and we plan to build on that trust to help Canadians shop online with confidence.”

The site offers search and filter capabilities not available on competing shopping sites. “Features such as product ranking and price history provide shoppers with confidence and assurance that they are making an informed decision”, adds O’Brien. “All the retailers on the site actually sell to Canadians, while most other sites contain retailers that do not ship to Canada.”

Another key feature of Canada Post Comparison Shopper is the ‘all-in’ price which estimates taxes, shipping and other fees – such as exchange rates and customs fees, if applicable. This will eliminate unwelcomed surprises when it comes to the actual total purchase price. Consumers can search for everything from electronics to fashion, and health and beauty products.

This new initiative is part of a larger growth strategy at Canada Post. Last month, the corporation announced a new online direct-marketing platform to leverage proven direct marketing practices to deliver local offers and advertisements in a dynamic, real-time online environment. Canada Post Comparison Shopper is expected to drive growth in the parcel business, and to reinforce the company’s position as the leading business-to-consumer delivery agent in Canada.

Consumers can access Canada Post Comparison Shopper through Canada Post’s website. They can search using keywords or advanced sort and filter functions, browse based on retailer, brand or category and finally purchase the product or service directly on the retailer’s site.

Bell AliantBell Aliant has reached an agreement with Bell to sell xwave, in its entirety, to Bell. With xwave now part of a national organization, customers will benefit from xwave’s proven expertise and also have access to a broader slate of national technology and professional services provided through Bell Business Markets.

“We believe the time and opportunity is right for this transaction and by divesting xwave now, Bell Aliant is able to further focus on our core priorities such as fibre-to-the-home, improve our balance sheet and ensure long-term value to our investors,” said Karen Sheriff, president and CEO, Bell Aliant. “We have known for some time that for xwave to continue to expand nationally and grow profitability they needed access to scale. Combining with Bell gives xwave access to a national market and additional IT capabilities they do not have today.”

xwave has operated as part of Bell Aliant and its predecessor companies for a number of years with particular focus on advanced technology solutions and IT professional services, including the provision of leading e-health solutions.

“We are eager to welcome the skilled xwave team, building on their excellent service to clients in Atlantic Canada. Combining xwave’s leading e-health, IT professional services and advanced technology solutions with Bell Business Markets’ national team of information and communications technology (ICT) professionals and our world-class broadband networks enhances our leadership in delivering the best solutions for healthcare, public sector and corporate enterprise customers,” said Stéphane Boisvert, president, Bell Business Markets.

The purchase price of CAD $40 million has been assessed as fair value by an independent valuator. The transaction is expected to close on January 1, 2011. Bell, Bell Aliant and xwave will work together to ensure a seamless transition for employees, partners and customers.

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20th October 2010

Air Canada Announces Winners of 2010 enRoute Film Festival

Air CanadaAir Canada is pleased to announce the award winners of the 2010 annual Air Canada enRoute Film Festival.

Best Short Film: Adam Shamash for La Khaima: The Tent of Mile-End (Montreal)
Achievement in Direction: Adam Shamash for La Khaima: The Tent of Mile-End (Montreal)
Achievement in Cinematography: Shervin Kermani and Aita Jason for Sofia (Toronto)
Achievement in Animation: King Mugabi for Red Snow (Toronto)

“After receiving this award, I feel very honoured to have been highlighted as an emerging filmmaker from Air Canada, enRoute and renowned jury members,” said Shamash, originally from Vancouver and a Langara College alumni. “The festival has given me an amazing platform to network and communicate my message.”Adam Shamash

Millions of Air Canada passengers around the world will be able to view the award winners on their personal entertainment system with 8.9-inch wide digital in-seat monitors and touch-screen controls offering hours of audio and video on demand programming at every seat.

Toronto’s Scotiabank Theatre hosted a free public screening of all the nominated films yesterday, followed by the awards celebration at The Drake Hotel. The grand prize winner was awarded $5,000 courtesy of Cineplex Entertainment. All winners were awarded an all-inclusive trip for two to the Whistler Film Festival courtesy of Air Canada.

Filmmakers, jury members and industry luminaries were in attendance at the exclusive event, including celebrity presenters Kari Skogland (Genie Award-winner for Best Adapted Screenplay, director/writer, Fifty Dead Men Walking), Carlo Rota (24), Rob Stewart (director, Sharkwater), and Kathleen Robertson (A Night For Dying Tigers, 90210).

Today's ParentJust in time for the holiday season, Rogers Media announced the launch of Today’s Parent’s first mobile application, the Today’s Parent Gift Finder application available for iPhone, iTouch, and iPad.

The free Today’s Parent Gift Finder application lets users find the perfect gift for any child based on a child’s age, play preference and price range. Users can also create wish lists for each child they are buying for and share the list with others through email, Facebook and SMS.

The majority of the toys in the Gift Finder come from the Today’s Parent “Top Toys” list, a highly anticipated annual feature in Today’s Parent magazine. The Today’s Parent Gift Finder Application is the first iPhone application from a Canadian parenting magazine brand.

“The Today’s Parent Gift Finder application is a great tool for anyone with a child on their shopping list – anytime of the year,” says Claude Galipeau, SVP & GM, Digital Media, Rogers Media Inc. “We are excited to launch this application using the reliable reviews from Today’s Parent to help parents, relatives and friends, pick out the best presents for the children in their lives. Santa himself will want this app!”

Presented by Toys”R”Us, Canada’s Greatest Toy Store, this app not only helps gift givers find the perfect toy, but gives them the opportunity to save money while doing so. In the holiday spirit, when users download the app, they will receive a special code which entitles them to save $5 off any purchase of $25 or more at Toys”R”Us stores across Canada.

The Today’s Parent Gift Finder iPhone app will be available exclusively to Rogers Wireless and Fido customers when accessing through a 3G connection and available to all users via their wi-fi connection. The content can also be accessed on all Web-enabled mobile phones at the Today’s Parent web site.

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