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Curtain calls take to the Net
A new way to take to the theatre is sweeping the globe. Last month saw the launch of Montreal-based TornadoTheatre.com, a live performance Web site that uses 360-degree video streaming along with traditional Web technologies to bring the theatre experience to the PC. In addition to the show, the company said live broadcasts of auditions and rehearsals are available for viewing, along with artists bios, headshots, scripts and a discussion forum that includes a guestbook and live chat. The site is currently running an archived version of Tornado Theatre’s first production Neon-Brite. Auditions will begin broadcasting live in the spring.
Elderly get connected
Last month a Toronto facility for the elderly celebrated the opening of its first computer lounge for residents. Seven Oaks Home for the Aged in partnership with the L.I.F.E. Institute of Ryerson University opened the Connections Lounge that offers residents access to a computer and the Internet. Plans are underway to create similar lounges in each of Toronto’s 10 directly-operated homes for the aged.
Xerox colours the skies
Air Canada’s executive class customers need not worry about last minute printing of vital documents. Thanks to Xerox Air Canada flyers can print with ease while waiting for take-off. Xerox has installed its Phaser 860 solid ink colour printers in the Xerox business centres of Air Canada’s Maple Leaf lounges across North America in order to meet the needs of the airline’s premium business travelers. The printers offer a colour print speed of 16 pages per minute, replacing a fleet of monochrome printers that were previously used in the business centres and join an array of other business equipment and technology made available to Air Canada executive customers.
ITTW hits jackpot
Last month, Ontario’s Information Technology and Training for Women (ITTW) program was presented with $298,630 during International Women’s Week. ITTW offers low-income women in Ontario government-funded specialized training that enables them to qualify for entry-level jobs in IT. According to the ITTW, at the end of the nine-to-11 month entry-level program that includes in-class training, placements and a mentorship program, students will become qualified for positions such as Webmasters, database administrators and software developers. Started last April, the ITTW targets low-income women who are unemployed, underemployed, immigrant women with IT skills who lack certification, women with disabilities and female clerical and administrative staff with some computer training whose current positions are being phased out by technological change. For more information visit www.gov.on.ca/mczcr.
RIM starts talking
Waterloo, Ont.’s Research In Motion has begun to hear voices. Last month the BlackBerry makers announced that their handhelds are among the first that can support GSM/GPRS networks in North America. The new BlackBerry 5810 offers e-mail, phone, SMS, browser and organizer capabilities and is Java-based. The built-in phone supports optional features such as call waiting, call answer, conference calling and call forwarding. The device includes an earpiece and microphone that attaches for hands-free conversation. Find RIM at www.rim.com.