Tuesday April 23, 2019
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MONITOR

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Investment

Canada partners with Quantum Valley Investments to invest in ground-breaking technology and businesses

Investment in quantum and artificial intelligence-related innovation to create and support hundreds of jobs

The Government of Canada is helping to build the foundation for Canadian innovators to invest, strengthen communities, grow our economy and create advanced-class jobs in the Waterloo's Quantum Valley. This will mean smarter security systems to better protect Canadians’ homes, more powerful digital security tools to secure their online transactions, and more efficient medicines to improve their health. “Simply put, quantum mechanics allows us to do things that are impossible under classical rules. Our vision for the Quantum Valley was not only to build state-of-the-art Canadian labs with world-class researchers that can develop new and transformative quantum technologies but also to help establish and grow exciting new Canadian businesses that will take these technologies to global markets. To me, it’s all about people. Attract and retain the most promising people and enable their success and big things will happen," said Mike Lazaridis, O.C., O.Ont., FRS, FRSC, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Quantum Valley Investments


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Retail Sales

An upside surprise, though signs of stagflation emerging

Retail sales surprised to the upside in February, rising by 0.8% compared to the consensus expectation of a 0.4% gain; Much of the increase in the month was due to higher prices; real retail sales posted a small gain; Overall, real retail sales have been flat for several months, while prices are starting to rise, in part, owing to tariffs on US imports - By David Watt

Retail sales rose by 0.8% m-o-m in February. This was higher than the consensus expectation of a 0.4% increase. Sales excluding autos were also higher than expected, rising by 0.6% m-o-m (consensus: 0.2%). Higher retail prices were the main factor behind the increase in the value of retail sales in the month. In February, retail prices were up by 0.6%, led by service stations, home furnishings, groceries, and shoes. From a year ago, retail prices are up by 0.2%. Real retail sales rose by 0.2% m-o-m, led by a 0.9% increase in sales of motor vehicles, and an increase in sales at service stations. Real retail sales excluding autos and service stations (core retail sales), which account for almost two-thirds of the total, fell by 0.2%. From a year ago, real retail sales are up by 1.7%.


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Game Changer

Inside the black hole image that made history

Sheperd Doeleman led the global team behind the Event Horizon Telescope that captured the historic, first-ever image of a black hole.

At the center of a galaxy more than 55 million light-years away, there's a supermassive black hole with the mass of several billion suns. And now, for the first time ever, we can see it. Astrophysicist Sheperd Doeleman, head of the Event Horizon Telescope collaboration, speaks with TED's Chris Anderson about the iconic, first-ever image of a black hole -- and the epic, worldwide effort involved in capturing it.


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Bad Data

New AI tool able to better identify bad data

Researchers have developed a novel tool for managing the quality of your data.

The revolutionary tool, HoloClean is the first to use artificial intelligence (AI) to sift out dirty data and correct errors before processing it. “More and more machines are making decisions for us, so all our lives are touched by dirty data daily,” said Ihab Ilyas, a professor in Waterloo’s David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science. “If organizations like banks or utility companies are working with bad data, it could negatively impact things such as credit scores or mortgage approvals.”


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Health Care

Ontario Passes Legislation That Changes Integrated Health Care System

The People’s Health Care Act will help end hallway health care while building a modern, sustainable and integrated health care system

Across Ontario, care is too fragmented, with patients, families and caregivers left to navigate their own way through the health care system with limited information. Patients experience frequent gaps in care, and are asked to reiterate their health concerns over and over. Digital tools lag and care options have not kept pace with the growing technological sophistication of Ontarians. Care providers are discouraged from working together in teams in support of better patient outcomes. With the April 18, 2019 passing of The People's Health Care Act, all of that is suppose to change. Ontario's Government is attempting to build a public health care system that is focused on the needs of patients and ending hallway health care - fingers are crossed.


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Education

U of G Launching Unique Cybersecurity and Threat Intelligence Program

The increase in smart devices and digital networking has created opportunities for hackers to infiltrate our homes and disrupt our businesses and governments. With the demand for highly skilled cybersecurity experts growing every day, the University of Guelph will launch a new graduate degree in cybersecurity and threat intelligence to train the next generation on how to stop cyberattacks before they happen. “We are expecting 1.5 million unfilled cybersecurity positions by 2025,” said Prof. Ali Dehghantanha, who teaches in U of G’s School of Computer Science and is director of the new program. “Attacks are becoming more complicated, digitalization is pervading more of our world and too little attention has been paid to educating cybersecurity professionals. These three issues together make the situation critical, and this new program will be part of the solution.”


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Environment

A personal air-quality tracker that lets you know what you're breathing

How often do you think about the air you're breathing? Probably not enough, says entrepreneur and TED Fellow Romain Lacombe. He introduces Flow: a personal air-quality tracker that fits in your hand and monitors pollution levels in real time. See how this device could help you track and understand pollution street by street, hour by hour -- and empower you to take action to improve your health.


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#overworked

Does the 12-hour workday work?

Chinese billionaire Jack Ma has once again defended his support for China's so-called "996" system, under which Chinese workers are expected to work from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., six days a week. Ma has said that working 12-hour days was "a blessing" and that without the 996 system, China's economy would "lose vitality and impetus." His comments have been backed by Richard Liu, founder of e-commerce giant JD.com, who warned that "slackers" were a risk both to national growth and his firm.


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Food Suppliers

Flanagan Foodservice Announces 2019 Supplier Awards

Pete Bozzer of Flanagan Foodservice with Magnum Food Brokers Inc., Steve Marshall, Suzanne Grub, Brad Heard, and Jeannette Macfarlane

Flanagan Foodservice presented several supplier awards at an event held on Tuesday, April 9th at Lot42 in Kitchener. Suppliers were awarded points for meeting strict criteria based on performance and service metrics that align with Flanagan Foodservice mission and business objectives. Once that baseline is established, the sales and marketing teams vote for eligible suppliers based on support, service requests and merchandising support.


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Budding Advantage

Capitalizing On Ontario's Competitive Cannabis Advantage

Report Outlines Multi-Billion-Dollar Economic Opportunity of Recreational Cannabis Industry

The Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) released its report, Supporting Ontario’s Budding Cannabis Industry. The report outlines Ontario’s competitive advantage and how to capitalize on Canada’s first-mover status in this fast-moving industry. “With Ontario home to more than half the licensed producers of recreational cannabis in Canada and the majority of cannabis employment held right here in Ontario, we are positioned to lead Canada’s recreational cannabis industry on the world stage,” says Michelle Eaton, Vice President of Communications and Government Relations of the OCC. “Ensuring the private retail market is successful is critical to the long-term viability of the sector. As Ontario’s business advocate, we are committed to shaping responsible public policy to establish us as a competitive, global leader.”


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Escape Challenge

Laurier’s Escape Room World Championships design team to share behind-the-scenes stories at public talk

Designing challenges for an international competition sponsored by a globally recognized brand is business as usual for students in Wilfrid Laurier University’s Game Design and Development program. For the second time, undergraduate students at Laurier’s Brantford campus have collaborated with faculty member Scott Nicholson to devise the games for Red Bull’s Escape Room World Championships. On Wednesday, April 24 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Nicholson and his team will offer a behind-the-scenes look at the process involved in creating the challenges that make up Red Bull’s annual Mind Gamers competition, a tour de force intended to baffle the brightest puzzle-solving minds from around the world. Joining him will be Shannon McDowell, the Laurier’s Red Bull Escape Room Research Associate, and some of the students who worked on the project. The talk takes place in the BGNlab (Brantford Games Network Lab) located in Grand River Hall, 171 Colborne St. in Brantford.


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BlockChain

Tangem Receives USD 15 Million Funding and Is Returning to the Crypto Valley

The Swiss company Tangem’s promising blockchain technology is now operational and ready for market-entry and everyday life. The hardware wallet in the NFC smartcard allows to physically distribute and store cryptocurrencies and other digital assets. Through blockchain technology, the decentralized data is stored securely and is forgery-proof. A user-friendly app allows easy and fast access to the data from a smartphone. The renowned Japanese investor SBI is supporting Tangem with an investment of USD 15 million.

An interesting new resident for the Crypto Valley, Tangem, is moving its headquarters back to Zug. And the startup isn’t coming empty handed: The Blockchain company is bringing a promising new technology to Zug and to the market. The specialists of Tangem have successfully developed a solution that gets storing and securing data and information on the blockchain ready for mass adoption. Tangem is producing a physical smartcard and a smart tag under the same name, which allow safe and unforgeable storage of digital assets such as cryptocurrencies, contracts or certificates on a blockchain. With the Tangem technology, which has been tested and approved by the Kudelski Group, the validity of a Tangem Smartcard, and the assets its carrying, can easily be checked with NFC in an app on a smartphone. The technology allows to store and carry digital assets on physical plastic cards with a chip, NFC antenna and Private Key inside.


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Environment

Implementing Recommendations of Ontario's 10-year Review of the Endangered Species Act & Launching $4.5M Species at Risk Stewardship Program

Ontario's is protecting what matters most by ensuring plants and animals at risk of disappearing from Ontario will endure through an improved provincial stewardship approach. Following the government's 10-year review consultations this past winter of the province's Endangered Species Act, the province is improving outcomes for species at risk by implementing recommendations received to modernize and improve the effectiveness of the act and improve outcomes for species at risk.


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EVENTS


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April 24, 2019

The Greater Kitchener Waterloo Chamber of Commerce presents the Access Student Talent Information Session

The Greater Kitchener-Waterloo Chamber of Commerce (GKWCC) has partnered with the University of Waterloo (UWaterloo), Wilfrid Laurier University (WLU),  and Conestoga College (CC) on an exciting initiative to help small businesses connect with post-secondary students who are available for experiential learning opportunities (including placements, capstone projects, co-op work terms, in-class projects, etc).


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April 26, 2019

CFFB’s Signature Series Launches with Dirk Schlimm: Influencing Powerful People

Business owners and advisors that support family enterprises are invited to the Centre for Family Business’s (CFFB) Signature Event of the year on Friday April 26th at 7am. In the age of transformational technological change and disruption, technical know-how is no longer sufficient. Building influence and strong working relationships with people in positions of power is in high demand. This CFFB Signature Event will be sure to inspire, challenge and encourage you in your pursuit of greater influencing skills.


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April 26, 2019

WRFN Presents: Evening of Elegance – 5th Annual Signature Fundraising Event

Since 2009, Waterloo Region Family Network (WRFN) has supported families of children with special needs, both with and without a diagnosis, in Waterloo Region by providing resources and facilitating meaningful connections in all life stages. As a peer - deve loped and peer - driven network, WRFN is uniquely able to understand how to serve the needs of exceptional families, so they can thrive.


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May 4, 2019

Science Odyssey events at Laurier invite public to engage with science

Wilfrid Laurier University is inviting people of all ages to have fun with science and technology through a range of free public events during Science Odyssey. On Saturday, May 4, Laurier’s Waterloo campus will host a full day of family-friendly, hands-on science activities. Four adult-oriented public lectures will take place later the same week in Brantford, Waterloo and Milton. Science Odyssey is a 10-day national celebration of discovery and innovation that engages and inspires Canadians of all ages with activities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Laurier is participating in Science Odyssey for the first time this year.


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May 4, 2019

Taste of the Region - Welcome to Italy

This one day premier event features touring some of Waterloo Region’s finest restaurants and establishments. With six buses lined up & three stops per tour, this is a great opportunity to enjoy exquisite cuisine and drinks. A funtastic day out with friends and support the work of KW Counselling.


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May 5, 2019


Lutherwood’s Steps for Kids 2019

Join us on Sunday May 5th, as we walk, run and take another big step towards ending the stigma associated with mental health. Steps for Kids is a fun, fabulous and family friendly event. It’s dog friendly too! The 3-5 km beautiful route will take you through the farms and trails of North Waterloo; watch live performances, enjoy snacks and refreshments and have a great day out! Come as an individual, join a team, bring your friends and colleagues, or come with your family. For more information, to register, volunteer or donate please visit: www.lutherwoodstepsforkids.ca


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May 9, 2019

United Way Waterloo Region Communities’ 2nd Annual Spirit Awards

Waterloo Region - United Way Waterloo Region Communities is pleased to invite community members to join them on Thursday, May 9th, 2019 for a celebration honouring more than 40 individuals and organizations nominated for the organization’s Spirit Awards. The 2nd annual Spirit Awards will take place May 9th at 5:30 pm at Whistle Bear Golf Club, 1316 Dickie Settlement Rd. in Cambridge. Tickets can be purchased at www.iamtheone.ca/spiritawards.


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May 10, 2019

Leadercast

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.


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May 28, 2019

Local Credit Unions Unite for Change: Charity Golf Tournament

Education Credit Union (ECU), Kindred Credit Union (Kindred), and Your Neighbourhood Credit Union (YNCU) announced their upcoming charity golf tournament, Credit Unions for Change. The fundraiser will be held at Rebel Creek on May 28, and it will include an 18-hole golf tournament, a boxed lunch, raffle table, and dinner. The three credit union hosts operate in the Kitchener-Waterloo area. They are sharing the costs of the event and directing all profits to their three chosen charities, which are in support of food security. ECU will support Nutrition for Learning, Kindred will direct funds to The Working Centre, and YNCU has chosen to send proceeds to the Food Bank of Waterloo Region.


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June 7, 2019




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June 12 & 13, 2019

Big Data and AI Toronto Returns for its Fourth Year

The annual two-day conference and expo is the largest event of its kind

The Big Data and AI Toronto Conference and Expo returns on June 12 and 13, 2019 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. Over 5000 attendees will take advantage of an expanded exhibition floor and new conference tracks tailored to both Big Data and AI professionals. With over 150 expert speakers and 90 sponsoring brands, the conference will address today's leading topics in data science, analytics and machine learning.





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Copyright, 2019