A Les Misérables Lover’s Journey from 1989 to 2012 Christmas – #LesMis Part 1

Friday, 14 December, 2012

Les Mis @RoyalAlexandraTheatreTorontoCanada

Les Mis 1989

Love is a mysterious thing. During the 1989 Christmas holiday, a visiting friend and I walked pass the Royal Alex by chance. We, on a whim, decided to buy the cheapest last minute tickets available to see Les Misérables. Cheap seats were cheap for a reason and we ended up sitting in the absolute worst seat (yes, last row against the wall) in the theatre. To my surprise, even sitting in the worst seats, we quite enjoyed Les Mis. So much so that I bought a copy of the full-Toronto-cast-signed charity Les Mis poster (donating the minimum ~$35, close to or more than the ticket price). I treasured that signed poster for many years until a national mover lost it! Yes, it kinda suck for me!

Les Mis 2012

I’ve been quite excited about Les Mis again once I realize the creative gamble Oscar winning director Tom Hooper is trying with Les Mis (2012 film). To prepare for writing this series of articles, I went to Calgary Public Library and borrowed the following:

1) three Les Mis music CDs (sang by the 10th anniversary cast, the 25th anniversary cast, plus an international cast recording),

2) Les Mis (1998 film),  and

3) Les Mis (25th Anniversary Concert in 2010).

I remember watching Les Mis (1998 film) in the theatre when it was released and quite enjoyed it. To be honest, knowing the Les Mis (2012 film) is live sung by the cast, the dramatic 1998 film suddenly seem lacking in emotional impact (to me) when compare to what I hope to see from 2012 film. I ended up enjoying the music CDs a lot more than the 1998 film.

Watching Les Mis (25th Anniversary Concert in 2010) for the first time also was quite nice in terms of sound quality and the bonus material of the original cast singing at the end of the DVD. My one complain is the fact that the 25th anniversary performance was a concert so see the cast dressed in costume and sang standing in front of a mic reduced the emotional impact greatly for me.

Christmas 2012

Listening to all the CDs and watching the 25th Anniversary Concert has put in such a mood that I bought a ticket to the Christmas Opening show last night, for me, an unheard of 12 days ahead of the opening!

2012 #LesMis

I can’t wait to see Les Mis! Do you plan to see Les Mis? On Christmas Day? This article is cross-posted on examiner and is part 1 of my #LesMis series. More to come. Here is “Les Misérables – International Trailer

Why are @IKEACanada and Leo Burnett silent in global trending Twitter #ikeamonkey?

Monday, 10 December, 2012

Why are @IKEACanada and Leo Burnett silent in global trending Twitter #ikeamonkey?

I wrote humourously about #ikeamonkey in my article “Top 10 Reasons why Monkey Darwin shops at Ikea & No charges by T.O. police!” so I won’t repeat those points here. In this article, I will take a more serious look at the business side of things.

I’m first of all puzzled and wondering “Why is @IKEACanada silent during global trending Twitter #ikeamonkey ?” I see people from around the world on Twitters write and write about #ikeamonkey. And the media outlets not just in Canada but from around the world are also turning this into a viral discussion! But then paradoxically, I see the @IKEACanada account (yes, the official verified IKEA Canada Twitter account) being completely silent on #ikeamonkey! Why is the IKEA Canada social media tweeting nothing about #ikeamonkey? And, more seriously, why is the Toronto-based Leo BurnettIKEA’s creative agency of record (since March 2011) NOT convincing IKEA Canada to do something creative and fun to engage all the people tweeting about IKEA!

Questions for Leo Burnett & IKEA Canada

Why is Judy John, chief creative officer, Leo Burnett and her team doing nothing? Are there heavy resistent from IKEA Canada? Now, may be they are doing something but in the Twitter age inside a perfect viral storm, one viral #ikeamonkey day is easily more than 100 human days! Since monkey Darwin was first spotted by shoppers at 2 p.m. ET Sunday, so one viral #ikeamonkey day (100 human days) has officially passed without something fun or engaging from @IKEACanada or Leo Burnett! What a waste of social media positive energy.

Lets have some fun IKEA Canada & Leo Burnett

There are many ways to engage and have fun. I spent a few quick minutes to come up with a few. Feel free to post and share yours in the comment.

Here are my free #ikeamonkey ideas/advices 2 @IKEACanada & @LeoBurnett #hint #youshouldreallypayme4myideas #yyc #canada

Some fun ones:

How about: You’r right! @IKEACanada our furnitures are a ton of fun to monkey with! #ikeamonkey

How about: Yes, @IKEACanada We let you monkey with your furnitures with no extra charges! #ikeamonkey

This one is just a nice way to thank monkey Darwin for all the positive & free publicity (good karma):

How About: Thx #ikeamonkey 4 your visit @IKEACanada We are donating $1,000 to your new home Storybook Farms Primate Sanctuary in Sunderland

At this point, some thoughtful social engagement by @IKEACanada about #ikeamonkey will tremendous good for IKEA as a global brand.

Now, I don’t mean to criticize Leo Burnett (Toronto) too harshly as I think they have done some great work over the years like this one, “Ikea’s Cardboard Outdoor Posters Fold Down Into Moving Boxes Take one and start packing.” But I just can’t help but think about the wasted positive worldwide fun & positive attention to IKEA (not just IKEA Canada). What a waste! I feel like someone dumping tons and tons of preciously liquid gold randomly into ocean, once lost, they can’t be found again! It sucks!

Update: I rethink a little, since this is an article about social media, I will wait & see if @IKEACanada or @LeoBurnett see my Twitter tags re this article or do anything today. If I have time or want to do a followup article on this, I will then call up Leo Burnett and see if I can get a comment.

Note: This post is cross-posted by me at examiner.

Top 10 Reasons why Monkey Darwin shops at Ikea & No charges by T.O. police!

Monday, 10 December, 2012

Top 10 Reasons why Monkey Darwin shops at Ikea

#10 Even a monkey wants 2 Hot Dogs & Soft Drink for $2!
#9 It’s a smart monkey!
#8 No monkey can resist sampling free candies!
#7 Shopping at Ikea is like going to the zoo!!
#6 He will blend right in with all the Ikea soft toys!
#5 The parking lot is so BIG!
#4 Hello CNN’s Anderson Cooper! He is so cute!
#3 He will blend right in with all the Ikea shoppers!
#2 It will be a fun day out!
#1 Only Ikea lets you monkey around with the furnitures!

On a more serious not, according to Globe & Mail report after discussing with people at the holding centre of Toronto’s Animal Service, the five-month old monkey Darwin is “not very happy right now. He’s comfortable, but he’s having a bad day.” In case you don’t know, Toronto’s Municipal Code prohibits keeping monkeys are pets and the owners have been fined $240 and agreed to transfer ownership of Darwin to the city.

Toronto Police Service media officier Wendy Drummond stated in a twitter message that

Toronto police not laying any charges in #ikeamonkey incident. No further investigation/involvement by police.

which lead to City News Anchor/Reporter Roger Petersen asking,

@drummond17 how does the #ikeamonkey not do jail time for the fashion crime he/she committed with that coat?

and a merciful reply by Wendy, stating categorically,

@rogerfpetersen lol…while some fashion statements might be considered a crime, it’s not our jurisdiction!

Update: Love this idea, Assembly so easy, a Monkey can do it” from @ChristinJerome

Update 2: TorStar has this latest update (with video), “Ikea monkey Darwin took shine to me, owner says“. I truly feel sorry for Darwin’s owner Yasmin Nakhuda for that they are now separated. While it must be painful Yasmin and Darwin now, I hope it works out better for Dawin in the long run as it does need special care.

More videos: “Happy Halloween From Darwin

Darwin Giving First Kiss to Human Mom

dog and baby snow macaque at play” (this is so cute!)

Darwin the Monkey At The Office

Darwin and his Nuk Nuk

Use of Social Media tool in Police Services – Interview with Toronto Police Constable Scott Mills

Wednesday, 4 July, 2012

Interview with Toronto Police Constable Scott Mills - Use of Social Media tool in Police Services

I am in the process of writing an in-depth article about how Police Services in Canada and around the world use social media tools. Average readers may not know but police services are now using social media tools to help communicate with citizens, report crimes, and, in some cases, even prevent crimes. Think for a moment, “prevent crimes” amazing right?! Watch the video and see for yourself and you will realize it is dedicated and good policing assisted by new social media tools.

I’ve started collecting research materials for the article. The following is my first video interview. The interview was actually conducted and broadcasted LIVE this morning using Google+ and YouTube technologies (two of the social media tools used in Toronto).

I want to thank Toronto Police Constable Scott Mills (@GraffitiBMXCop) for his time in sharing his insights. Have a watch of the video. Stay tuned for more interviews (I am planning a few more) and the in-depth article to be posted later.

Interview with Toronto Police Constable Social Media guru Scott Mills @GraffitiBMXCop

Finding Jan Wong Out of the Blue – The ugly sides of Globe and Mail & Manulife

Monday, 14 May, 2012

Jan Wong Website page pix 01

As a long time reader (and fan) of Jan Wong‘s (website, twitter) newspaper articles and “Lunch with” columns, it came to me as a total shock when I belatedly discovered the real reason of why Jan is no longer working for the Canadian newspaper Globe and Mail (she was fired from the fallout of one article) and why Jan, a successful books author and highly skilled writer, has to self-publish her memoir Out of the Blue (Amazon) (this is a story in itself).

Check out this video “For my review of Jan Wong’s “Out of The Blue” & news report” and the following insightful articles and interviews.

* CBC News, “Q&A: Jan Wong’s long march from depression to reinvention”

* CBC Books Radio interview, Michael Enright’s interview with journalist Jan Wong about her latest book”

* 2012, May 11, TVO Allan Gregg video interview, “Jan Wong On Her Battle With Depression

* TorStar Apr 27, “Toronto author Jan Wong’s book on workplace depression an instant classic

* Ottawa Citizen, Jan Wong’s blues – “Journalist chronicles her controversial descent into workplace depression

* Now, “Jan Wong wronged? The Bestselling journalist wound up self-publishing her memoir?

* Now Book review, “Out of The Blue – Wilful Wong

* backofthe book.ca “Jan Wong’s Globe and Mail blues

* The Chronicle Herald “Old China hand explores Canada’s mysterious East

* Quill & Quire Book review, Out of the Blue: A Memoir of Workplace Depression, Recovery, Redemption and, Yes, Happiness”

Ref: 2006 Sept article from Premier Jean Charest.

Disclosure: I own shares of Manulife and I am shocked and angry of Manulife’s unacceptable business practices. Setting personal feelings aside, it is just bad business to deal with legitimate insurance clients like it did with Jan. These kind of unacceptable behaviours can rightfully drive potential future clients away. I may write a separate article about this. Will see.

Jan Wong Website page pix 02

Pre-Ceremony intro for Queen’s Park Ontario Police Memorial this Sunday (May 6th)

Friday, 4 May, 2012

Pre-Ceremony intro:site test for Queen's Park Ontario Police Memorial this Sunday (May 6th) - pix 01

It was my honour to work with Toronto Police Constable +Scott Mills this afternoon in preparation for this Sunday (May 6th, 10:30am EST) Queen’s Park Ontario Police Memorial LIVE broadcast. More info here.

Watch the video to see the site for yourself.

Pre-Ceremony intro:site test for Queen's Park Ontario Police Memorial this Sunday (May 6th) - pix 03

Pre-Ceremony intro:site test for Queen's Park Ontario Police Memorial this Sunday (May 6th) - pix 04

Pre-Ceremony intro:site test for Queen's Park Ontario Police Memorial this Sunday (May 6th) - pix 05

Pre-Ceremony intro:site test for Queen's Park Ontario Police Memorial this Sunday (May 6th) - pix 06

I especially love this last screen capture where a beautiful butterfly lands next to the broadcast equipment.

Pre-Ceremony intro:site test for Queen's Park Ontario Police Memorial this Sunday (May 6th) - pix 07

U2 documentary “From the Sky Down” – a film that is “for anyone who is interested in how songs get written.”

Friday, 9 September, 2011

Sept 8, 2011, LA Times, “Toronto 2011: U2’s Bono shows ’em how it’s done

Sept 8, 2011, LA Times, “Toronto Film Festival: Director talks opening night U2 doc

Bono on the red carpet at the Toronto International Film Festival

The business of selling and buying movies at TIFF.

Kevin Roberts, CEO worldwide Saatchi & Saatchi keynotes nextMEDIA Toronto 2011

Thursday, 11 August, 2011

Kevin Roberts, CEO worldwide Saatchi & Saatchi at nextMEDIA Toronto 2011

I’ve been reading Kevin Roberts‘s ideas for years and even created Kevin’s Wikipedia page. So it is wonderful to see Kevin is coming to Canada to share his insights. The following is from the nextMEDIA Toronto 2011 (Dec 5 – 6) press release. If you are in Toronto during that time, register to attend.

CEO worldwide for creative agency Saatchi & Saatchi, Kevin Roberts is a marketing pioneer with a heart for nostalgia and has been bringing popular brands to market and straight into consumers’hearts since the early 1970s. Roberts has worked with large-scale international clients such as Carlsberg, TMobile, General Mills, Procter & Gamble, Sony Ericsson, JCPenney, Toyota and VISA Europe among others.

Roberts is the author of a number of best-selling books, including Lovemarks: The Future Beyond Brands, in which he describes the emotional connections we create with the brands we’ve grown tolove.

So, here’s the real question: How does your brand achieve Lovemark status? Well, fear not, Roberts is heading to nextMEDIA Toronto this year to help you solve that very problem.

Named one of the top ten ideas of the decade in 2010 by advertising and marketing news website AdAge, Lovemarks transcend brands, leaving their iconic symbols emblazoned in the hearts and memories of consumers worldwide.

Join Kevin Roberts at nextMEDIA Toronto 2011 for an informative keynote session about hisLovemarks theory, offering crucial insight into the future of marketing and an analysis of the way we identify with our favourite brands.”

Microsoft, defeated by Toronto i4i at US Supreme Court, ordered to pay $290 million for patent infringement

Thursday, 9 June, 2011

Microsoft, defeated by Toronto i4i at US Supreme Court, ordered to pay $290 million for patent infringement. See full US Supreme Court decision.

See my previous Microsoft v. i4i articles here (2011), here (2011), and here (2009).

1001 Chairs for Ai Weiwei

Monday, 18 April, 2011

Toronto Star report, “1001 Chairs for Ai Weiwei, Toronto version” (Facebook photos)

Torontoist, “Scene: Where is Ai Weiwei?

Protest pictures, details and comments posted onto the worldwide 1001 Chairs for Ai Weiwei Facebook group. Pix from New York City here, herehere. Pix from Munich here.

NPR, “Art And Consequence: A Talk With China’s Controversial Ai Weiwei

This Sunday, at Chinese embassies all over the world, protesters are planning a global sit-in to protest the detention of the internationally renowned Chinese artist Ai Weiwei. Ai was taken into custody by Chinese authorities nearly two weeks ago for what government officials now say are questions about his finances.

The protesters will be bringing chairs to sit on. They aren’t worried about getting tired. The design of the protest is a homage to a piece by Ai that was exhibited in 2007 at Documenta 12, a major arts festival in Kassel, Germany. Read the rest of this entry »

Toronto’s i4i v. Microsoft at US Supreme Court

Sunday, 17 April, 2011

“The United States Supreme Court will begin hearing arguments Monday for and against changing U.S. patent law to make it easier to invalidate patents – the latest chapter in a historic legal battle between a small Toronto company [i4i] and the largest software firm [Microsoft] on earth.”

For some insightful discussions and “light” readings, see following from Patently O,

* “Microsoft v. i4i: Shifting Weight of Evidence versus Shifting Burden of Proof

* “Briefing Microsoft v. i4i: Amicus Briefs Supporting Easier Invalidation of Patents in Court

Lady Gaga performs Born This Way with Maria Aragon in Toronto

Friday, 4 March, 2011

First of all, here is a video of last night (March 3rd, 2011) performance.

Here is another video from closer.

See reports from: Toronto Star, CBC News, MTVUK The Sun. For people who weren’t convince of the power of social media before Maria’s story, they should be 110% convinced now. A seemingly innocent YouTube video of a cover song has changed the life of a little girl forever. It is safe to say many Canadians are in love with little Maria now. And may be strangely, for non-fans of Lady Gala (I am one of those) are liking her a little bit now.

From Globe and Mail “10-year-old Maria Aragon a hit in gig with Lady Gaga”,

“It isn’t just that she has a singing voice far more mature than her 10 years. It isn’t just that she’s the perfect poster-child for the age of social media, made famous by a single tweet from Lady Gaga. It isn’t just that she went from the everyday life of a Winnipeg elementary school student to appearances on national television in a matter of days.

What’s most remarkable about Maria Aragon is that she’s handled her instant stardom with the poise and polish of an old pro.

And that professionalism was on full display Thursday as she deftly handled radio appearances and several interviews in Toronto during the morning, then joined her hero onstage at the Air Canada Centre for a gig that night.

About halfway through the concert, Aragon ran onto the stage into a big hug from Gaga, sporting a pink hoodie, black jacket, white flower-adorned hat and an orange monkey around her neck.”

Quoting Globe and Mail “Lady Gaga concert forceful, lurid and often bizarre” (emphasis added),

“You could say that little Maria Aragon stole this show, except that Lady Gaga handed it to her on a plate. What could have been a mere publicity stunt – pop star invites Winnipeg 10-year-old with a video cam to sing on the Monster Ball tour – became the most emotionally charged episode in a forceful, lurid and often bizarre concert.

Aragon, in a pink and black outfit and white porkpie hat, came on stage with a furry monkey Velcroed round her neck, sat on Gaga’s lap at the piano, and performed a three-handed duet version of Born This Way. The tearful star called her “the future,” but Aragon was more than that: She was the unscarred second draft of the come-from-nowhere success story at the centre of Gaga’s personal mythology.

Here is Maria’s YouTube video which started all this all. Currently viewed 17,781,115 times! Enjoy.

For the record, here is a version of the lyrics for “Born This Way”.

It doesn’t matter if you love him, or capital H-I-M
Just put your paws up
‘Cause you were born this way, baby

My mama told me when I was young
We’re all born superstars
She rolled my hair, put my lipstick on
In the glass of her boudoir

“There’s nothin’ wrong with lovin’ who you are”
She said, “‘Cause He made you perfect, babe”
“So hold your head up, girl and you you’ll go far,
Listen to me when I say”

I’m beautiful in my way,
‘Cause God makes no mistakes
I’m on the right track, baby
I was born this way Read the rest of this entry »

‘Officer Bubbles’ sues YouTube and users over cartoons

Saturday, 16 October, 2010

The $1.2 million defamation lawsuit as reported by Torstar in “‘Officer Bubbles’ sues YouTube and users over cartoons” is resulted from comments and cartoons triggered by the following video.

Setting aside the issue of whether the lawsuit is meritorious, the following video seems to show excessive use of police force at G20 and should not be accepted/tolerated in Canada. Since it costed Canadian tax payers over $1 billion to host the G20 and G8, so I expect a lot from from the police than this kind of unacceptable dictatorial police-state behaviours.

Twitter: @utpress @PrincetonUPress

Tuesday, 12 October, 2010

Recently, both University of Toronto Press and Princeton University Press have been trying to expand their online presence by using Twitter and Facebook. So to be supportive and to keep an eye on new and potentially interesting books, I started following their Twitter accounts @utpress @PrincetonUPress and Facebook accounts utpress PrincetonUniversityPress.

Now, to be fair, while I attended U of T and I still love UT, I have to say the social media team behind Princeton seems slightly ahead and more active than Toronto in using Twitter and Facebook. By the way, you can check out the titles by season at Princeton (sample chapters by title) and Toronto. [Thanks for the help from Princeton.]

I want to wish both University of Toronto Press and Princeton University Press good luck as I think university published books (hard copies and even e-books) may need some rework/rethink and better social media PR for these books to stay relevant in the new digital/YouTube age.

[ref my tweet & HT Paul (I guess, “no press is bad press”)]

Good University videos?

Tuesday, 12 October, 2010

If it is up to me: I say a University, in our age of YouTube and online videos, should consider posting videos of most (or all) of its invited guest lectures and cutting-edge seminars online for people to watch.

My logic is this: The most “expensive/valuable” part of a guest lecture or a seminar is arranging for an expert to come to speak and his/her time. The cost of capturing and creating the online videos should be very manageable and can even be handled by a department staff. Once these lectures/seminars have been captured, the videos can be viewed later by people who are unable to attend the event or for people who want to watch the presented material again.

[HT UofCMedicine]

P.S. I am a big fan of the OpenCourseWare movement and its goal of sharing university course materials freely with the world. MIT OpenCourseWare and Open Yale Courses are two examples that have done pretty good jobs.

P.P.S. These days, many TED Talks have also played important roles in knowledge dissemination. Some of the TED Talks speakers are actually doing a better job in educating the general public than most universities/colleges.

Birgitte Andersen, Chris Castle, Bob Tarantino – P2P filesharing research and Internet gossip

Tuesday, 5 October, 2010

The names Birgitte Andersen, Chris Castle, Bob Tarantino are unfamilar to me until this morning when I read “Falling off the edge of a flat world? – Internet gossip on P2P filesharing research – a response from Professor Birgitte Andersen“, I can say the article is more intriguing than some fictions. It is also painful to see when someone, her professional credibility, and her peer-reviewed research for Industry Canada (Andersen-Frenz report (2007): The Impact of Music Downloads and P2P File-Sharing on the Purchase of Music: A Study for Industry Canada, PDF version) are attacked in the manner described.

Here is an excerpt from Professor Andersen’s “Falling off the edge of a flat world? ” (comments and emphasis added),

Campaign to discredit

You have got to ask yourself, – who will spend time going through years (across 2005,06,07) of internal and informal emails (obtained under the under the Access to Information Act) between myself and one of my consultancy contractors (Industry Canada), a past reviewer’s report of an early draft, selectively reading my publications since 2001, and producing about 20 printed pages (in two parts) of menacing rant appearing to try to undermine my (Andersen’s) research credibility and the Andersen-Frenz (2007) study for Industry Canada on “The Impact of Music Downloads and P2P File-Sharing on the Purchase of Music”. [comment: Wow!]

Amazingly, this two-part diatribe (published in May and June 2010) attacking me and my research is published as an apparently ‘independent’ analysis representing facts and not taking sides in the ongoing international debate on how policy should respond to unauthorized filesharing on the Internet and the digital economy of the future.

The blogger is in fact Chris Castle from ‘Christian L Castle Attorneys’ based in Los Angeles and San Francisco USA, and the firm’s web site lists that they represent the record labels, film studios, among others. Thus, one could consider they have a clear financial interest in the debate on intellectual property (IP) policy in the digital economy.  Another blogger spreading this unsubstantiated gossip on the Internet is Bob Tatantino [sp? Tarantino] from Heenan Blaikie’s Entertainment Law Group in Toronto.

Is this type of work commissioned? Peer- reviewed? (not likely!), and what interests surround the making and publication of it? [comment: Good questions.]

Is it hypocritical, or even dishonest, that firms so closely linked to the interests on the one side of the copyright debate on digital economy policy present themselves as neutral carriers of ‘truth’ while accusing a neutral academic study of taking sides?  Do these firms have a conflict of interest? [comment: Interesting questions again.]

Interestingly, I was not informed of the publication of this work (but realized its existence as I received a number of unusual emails over the summer), which explains my late response.

[HT Geist]

Da Vinci’s dream fulfilled: Record-breaking human powered ornithopter flight (flying by flapping its wings)

Friday, 24 September, 2010

Human-Powered Ornithopter - pilot Todd Reichert and University of Toronto team

I am really excited that an U of Toronto engineering team has finally fulfilled Da Vinci’s dream of human powered ornithopter flight (flying by flapping its wings, see really cool video at the end of this article). Some information about the team members and photos (really cool).

Here is an excerpt from a Toronto Star article (emphasis added),

“The human-powered aircraft with birdlike wings and its pilot, Todd Reichert, are garnering international attention since news broke of its record-breaking continuous flight. Now they’re popping up on newsites, blogs and tweets from Canada to India to Switzerland.

Reichert, an engineering Ph.D. student at the University of Toronto, piloted the first continuous flight of an ornithopter back in August. Using just his legs, Reichert powered the bird for about 20 seconds, covering 145 metres.

The craft weighs just 43 kilograms and has a wingspan of 32 metres. It works by pumping a set of pedals attached to pulleys and lines that bring down the wings in a flapping motion.

The vice-president of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, the governing body for aeronautical world records, witnessed the flight. The organization is expected to confirm the world record in October.

“I understand the significance of this but in terms of dealing with the hype, I’m reasonably relaxed,” Reichert said Thursday.”

This last bit is very telling,

“Robertson said it was nostalgic being back at the barn where they spent so much time. He’s now working on an unmanned aircraft at an engineering firm in Brampton. Reichert still has to complete his Ph.D. but he doesn’t anticipate having trouble finding a good job afterward.

“Something like this,” he said of his dream job. “Where you can design and build and innovate and put into practice really quickly. At big aerospace firms, you sit at a computer and you design a very small component for 10 years.

“I need to be out building. I don’t really like doing what other people are doing.”

Here is a pretty cool video of some info and the flight set to music.

Here are some raw clips of the test flights.

Check out more Ornithopter Project videos here.

More information from U of Toronto:

Human-powered Ornithopter Becomes First Ever to Achieve Sustained Flight

U of T’s human-powered ornithopter becomes first ever to achieve sustained flight – Fulfils aeronautical dream first envisioned by da Vinci

Two great friends and documentarians – Werner Herzog and Errol Morris

Tuesday, 14 September, 2010

Roger Ebert wrote a wonderful blog entry and posted video clips about a 2010 TIFF chat between Werner Herzog and Errol Morris, two great friends and documentarians.

Here are the four video clips from Roger’s entry. Also check out the full 20 minutes documentary “Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe” (in honour of Errol Morris making his first feature film).

P.S. I found research almost always bring up new and interesting things. In this case, I haven’t seen the full documentary “Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe“, only short clips of the shoe eating bit. So it was wonderful to watch it for the first time.

16 May 2016 Update: Links to “Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe” kept on being broken (well, it is broken again).

8 June, 2017 UpdateWerner Herzog on his quest for ‘pure’ images. [HT Àngels Melange]

Someone posted this discussion and it is worth a watch. “Werner Herzog and The Ecstatic Truth” [HT Àngels Melange]

TIFF Fairy – 2010 Toronto International Film Festival

Wednesday, 1 September, 2010

TIFF Fairy (2010)

Thanks to my TIFF Fairy, I’ve just received my 2010 TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) t-shirt and program book, and other goodies.

Thank you my dear TIFF Fairy!

P.S. See my 2009 TIFF Fairy entry for links to two TIFF filmmakers’ interviews.

WIND Mobile exceeds 100,000 users

Thursday, 12 August, 2010

Anthony (Tony) Lacavera, Chairman of Globalive

WIND Mobile Chairman Tony Lacavera has confirmed that WIND now has more than 100,000 subscribers.

In early July I received confirmation that WIND Mobile had passed the 100,000 mark in terms of new subscribers. While we try and view all customers individually, we recognized that this was a major milestone for both WIND Mobile and for the Canadian wireless consumer.

Globe and Mail is reporting (emphasis added),

The [users] number, which the company reached in early July, came out as Wind’s Egyptian financial and operational backer, Orascom Telecom Holding SAE, reports its second quarter financial earnings. Orascom, previously, said it would include Wind’s subscriber numbers for investors.

Wind chairman Anthony Lacavera, who waged a high profile battle against the incumbent providers when he was denied the ability to launch by Canada’s telecom regulator for violating foreign ownership rules, said he is buoyed by the results and that they show the company is gaining momentum.

“We’re pummelling them,” said Mr. Lacavera in an interview. “We added subscribers in our coverage area at twice the speed of incumbents in the same time frame.”

WIND Mobile currently operates in Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, Toronto, and Ottawa and are licensed to operate in all provinces in Canada except Quebec.

Here is my July 2010 phone interview with Tony.

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