Thursday November 29, 2018



Waterloo-inspired student starts company to help other females in STEM

Companies developing bionic arms that learn, a new type of water treatment system, a scalable biological manufacturing platform and a smart monitoring system for steam traps took home the top prizes at yesterday’s 23rd staging of the University of Waterloo’s Velocity Fund Finals (VFF).

Cyber Threats

High-Level Cybersecurity Meeting Warns of Dire Effects of Cyberattacks on Prosperity, Innovation and Global Collaboration

Lack of trust and cooperation are major barriers to sharing threat intelligence across sectors and industries; Skills gap and lack of diverse and qualified personnel bottleneck for cybersecurity

Cyberattacks are increasing in volume and sophistication, affecting an ever-greater number of people and institutions. Through artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT) and other new technologies, the threat surface and vulnerability are growing, spinning out in new threat areas facing citizens, consumers, companies and countries. To fight increasing cybercrime, the global community needs to overcome three major challenges: lack of trust, lack of cooperation and a lack of adequate skills.


Have your say! Local municipalities launch new public engagement platform

Waterloo Region – The cities of Cambridge, Waterloo, Kitchener and the Region of Waterloo are excited to jointly launch a new public engagement platform: Engage Waterloo Region (EngageWR). The new tool gives citizens the opportunity to have their say on local projects and initiatives. With evolving needs and the advancement of online engagement, the cities and the Region have switched to a new platform that will better facilitate public engagement through more robust tools and a modern, user-friendly design.


Conestoga grads honoured at 2018 Premier’s Awards gala

Two Conestoga alumni joined the ranks of Ontario’s most distinguished college graduates on Monday, November 26, when they were named as 2018 recipients of Premier’s Awards at a gala celebration held at the Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel. The awards, established in 1992, acknowledge the social and economic contribution that Ontario college graduates make to the province and throughout the world. Award recipients, chosen from nominations submitted by the province’s 24 colleges, have demonstrated outstanding career success related to their college experience and have made significant contributions to their community.

Sound in Water

AI could help cities better detect water leaks

Costly water losses in municipal water systems could be significantly reduced using sensors and new artificial intelligence (AI) technology.

Developed by researchers at the University of Waterloo in collaboration with industry partners, the technology has the potential to detect even small leaks in pipes. It combines sophisticated signal processing techniques and AI software to identify telltale signs of leaks carried via sound in water pipes.

Project Dragonfly

Google must not capitulate to China's censorship demands

Amnesty launches global day of action against secretive “Project Dragonfly”

Google’s plans to launch a censored search app in China could irreparably damage internet users’ trust in the tech company, Amnesty International said today, warning that going ahead with the app would set a dangerous precedent for tech companies enabling rights abuses by governments. "Google should be fighting for an internet where information is freely accessible to everyone, not backing the Chinese government’s dystopian alternative," said Joe Westby, Researcher on Technology and Human Rights The organization has launched a global petition calling on Google CEO Sundar Pichai to drop the app, which is codenamed Project Dragonfly and would blacklist search terms like “human rights” and “Tiananmen Crackdown”.

AI & Privacy

When technology can read minds, how will we protect our privacy?

Nita A. Farahany is a leading scholar on the ethical, legal, and social implications of biosciences and emerging technologies, particularly those related to neuroscience and behavioral genetics.

Tech that can decode your brain activity and reveal what you're thinking and feeling is on the horizon, says legal scholar and ethicist Nita Farahany. What will it mean for our already violated sense of privacy? In a cautionary talk, Farahany warns of a society where people are arrested for merely thinking about committing a crime (like in "Minority Report") and private interests sell our brain data -- and makes the case for a right to cognitive liberty that protects our freedom of thought and self-determination.

Office Dynamics

Why do certain people assume your tone of voice is rude when you're just being serious?

Human behavior is rarely a pleasant subject - by Gary Allen, Human behavior is rarely a pleasant subject.

Speaking from an American context, social style expects everything said to be light and pleasant, even if the message is negative in nature. You can see this in full effect in restaurants, where a table of three or four people converse in an invariably joking tone with frequent outbursts of laughter. I've noticed that often each person feels the need to make every one of their comments funny, and general laughter occurs after every sentence. It's a form of social bonding--or social control.

New Owners

N.R. Murphy Ltd. announces new owners after 75 years in business

Helder Armas to carry on family-owned firm’s historical commitment to quality

After three-quarters of a century in the business of providing top industrial air-quality solutions across North America, N.R. Murphy Limited has passed the torch to new owners. The Cambridge-based company – which manufactures dust collectors, fans, and similar equipment for workplaces in many sectors – announced that former sales manager Helder Armas has taken over the reins as the new president. Helder Armas is also now a co-owner with his wife, Lori Armas, who is the daughter of Norman R. Murphy, the company’s previous owner and its namesake.

Sunset Industries - Opinion

Will the Canada Pension Plan be hit by climate chaos? Or thrive by adapting its investment plans?

“The CPP Investment Board is currently misleading Canadians. It is not taking climate risk seriously. It must take immediate action and stop investing in fossil fuels” observed John Bennett, Senior Policy Advisor, Friends of the Earth - Canada (FOE-C). If the CPPIB does not take immediate action warns Friends of the Earth, it will be negligent in its job as an investment manager, failing the economy by propping up sunset industries, and failing Canadian pensioners who will suffer from climate change.


A Moment to Honour Our Dwindling Farm Communities

By Abdul-Rahim Abdulai

We need to begin conversations on the challenges facing farming communities. Changing demographics in small-scale farming have had a severe impact on agriculture and affect farmer motivation, especially among youth. Agriculture has always been a necessity. However, we rarely take time to understand the realities of the industry as urbanization moves us further away from farming realities. When we do talk about food and agriculture, we pay limited attention to the “building blocks” of the industry: the farmers who toil on the land. I believe it is necessary to remember the importance of the farmer and reflect on some of the hard realities of agriculture today, especially in rural communities.

Saving & Financial Well-being

FCAC releases new data on Canadians’ budgeting behaviours and financial well-being

The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) presented the findings of two research projects during the National Research Symposium on Financial Literacy in Toronto on November 26 and 27. FCAC shared preliminary Canadian results of an international Financial Well-Being Survey and from the Agency’s latest behavioural budgeting research.

Student Wellness

New student wellness space opens at Doon campus

Employees, students and other members of the Conestoga community were invited to tour a new student wellness space at the Doon campus during an open house event on November 20. The space launched earlier this month to support student wellbeing and provides a calm, quiet area that offers individual peer support, peer group workshops and private rooms for meditation and relaxation.

Global Tourism

2018 Poised to Advance Tourism’s Leadership among Top Global Economic Sectors

The latest figures on world tourism issued by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) show that international tourist arrivals grew 5% year-on-year in the first nine months of 2018. This reflects continued strong demand in a favourable overall economic context.


Economic Development

Focus on the highest standards for sustainability, food safety and animal welfare

Largest Agricultural Investment in Ontario’s History will Bring New, Modern Plant to London

Ontario's Government announced a $34.5-million investment in Maple Leaf Foods' modern and innovative chicken processing plant in London over the next five years. "This is the largest investment in the history of Ontario's agriculture sector, it demonstrates industry confidence in our growing economy, and it's another example of how we're making Ontario open for business," said Ford. "It's great to see a company like Maple Leaf investing here in London. This innovative new plant will modernize processing and help make Ontario's chicken farmers more competitive."

Climate Change

100 solutions to climate change

Chad Frischmann is working to get humanity to "drawdown," the point in time when the concentration of atmospheric greenhouse gases begins to decline on a year-to-year basis.

What if we took out more greenhouse gases than we put into the atmosphere? This hypothetical scenario, known as "drawdown," is our only hope of averting climate disaster, says strategist Chad Frischmann. In a forward-thinking talk, he shares solutions to climate change that exist today -- conventional tactics like the use of renewable energy and better land management as well as some lesser-known approaches, like changes to food production, better family planning and the education of girls. Learn more about how we can reverse global warming and create a world where regeneration, not destruction, is the rule.

Mental Health

Student-led projects address mental health concerns in communities across Canada

The Co-operators has partnered with Enactus Canada to fund student projects focused on youth mental health. Over the 2018-19 academic year, a total of $45,000 will be shared among 18 student-led projects from Canadian universities and colleges. Projects are also supported by representatives from The Co-operators who will act as project advisors.


Holiday Spirit

Giving back to those in need this holiday season.

B@THEMUSEUM, in association with B.Hospitality, has once again partnered with THEMUSEUM in downtown Kitchener to give back to those in need during this special time of the year. On Monday, December 10th, 2018, B@THEMUSEUM and B.Hospitality will provide a holiday dinner for those in need. THEMUSEUM will offer those attending the dinner complimentary entrance to the current exhibitions: BRAIN: The World Inside Your Head, Connections & Contexts: Islamic Influences and Traditions, & TIFF’s digiPlaySpace.

Educational Leadership


The World’s Largest Leadership Event Returns to Cambridge

The world’s largest leadership event is back by popular demand! Drayton Entertainment and the Cambridge Chamber of Commerce will once again team up to host Leadercast, an educational event aimed at developing leaders across all industries and at any career level, so they are better equipped to take on the next challenge and inspire others. The 2019 event will be streamed live at the Hamilton Family Theatre Cambridge on Friday, May 10.

In search of a better place

Global Migration Film Festival coming to Waterloo Region

The Immigration Partnership is partnering with the United Nations Migration Agency (International Organization for Migration - IOM) to host the second annual Global Migration Film Festival (GMFF) in Waterloo Region. Launched by the IOM to celebrate International Migrants Day on December 18, the GMFF features new films that capture the promise and challenges of migration for those who leave their homes in search of a better life and shows the unique contributions migrants make to their new communities.

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Copyright, 2018