Is Canada a mobile laggard?

INDEPENDENT MEDIA by Steve Anderson

There is something uniquely powerful about everyday people having access to the Internet from tiny devices in their pocket. That ubiquitous access to each other creates possibilities that are worth fighting for and saving. The mobile and wireless accessed Internet, combined with emerging open web and open data applications, has the potential to usher in a new era of connectedness, and with it, dramatic changes to social practices and institutions. If we get digital public policy right, Canada could become a leader in mobile communications, leading to empowerment, job creation and new forms of entrepreneurialism, expression and social change.

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Carcinogens and cooking

NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina

Have you ever thought of going mainly or entirely raw? You’d likely shed a few pounds. And that’s not all. Some of our favourite tastes are linked to by-products of cooking that are bad, bad, bad for us. When food is cooked, especially at high temperatures, by-products can form that pose a threat to health. Among the most notorious are heterocyclic amines (HCAs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), advanced glycation end-products (AGEs) and acrylamide. Let’s see what’s cooking.

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Tough coming of age stories

FILMS WORTH WATCHING by Robert Alstead

Fish Tank (out on March 12) is one of those gritty, working class, Brit flicks that makes few concessions to the demands of commercial cinema. Set in the grimy hinterlands of contemporary underclass England, it’s a rite of passage drama about a bored and stroppy teenager, Mia, whose transition into adulthood begins when her mum brings a new man home to their grungy, high-rise flat.

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Nature’s bottom line

SCIENCE MATTERS by David Suzuki with Faisal Moola

In December, Canadian specialty TV channel Business News Network interviewed me about the climate summit in Copenhagen. My six-minute interview followed a five-minute live report from Copenhagen, about poor countries demanding more money to address climate change and rich countries pleading a lack of resources. Before and after those spots were all kinds of reports on the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the price of gold and the loonie, and the implications of some new phone technology.

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Words of wisdom

WRITING ON THE WALL by Maya Angelou

Life lessons: I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. Each of us has that right, that possibility, to invent ourselves daily. If a person does not invent herself, she will be invented. So, to be bodacious enough to invent ourselves is wise. I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back.

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Chant enchantress – an evening with Snatam Kaur

by Alan di Perna

Concert, chantfest, musical group meditation, a yoga class in melody . . . how best to describe a live performance by Snatam Kaur and her band? It’s all of these things and more. Seated center stage, Snatam is an angelic presence, dressed in traditional Sikh attire, bejeweled dress, white turban and veil. She’s a diminutive woman, barely five feet tall, but possessed of a voice that could wrest tears from a stone gargoyle — crystalline and radiant, redolent of the simple yet powerful truth of the heart. That voice has made her one of the top selling artists in the field of world sacred music. Amid the swelling ranks of devotional divas and mantra mamas, Snatam stands tall.

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Olympics earn a bronze for climate action says Suzuki Foundation

The Vancouver 2010 Olympics have made the podium with a bronze medal for their efforts to reduce the event’s climate impact, according to a climate scorecard released by the David Suzuki Foundation. Achievements of the 2010 Olympics include building energy efficient venues, using clean-energy sources, relying on public transit during the Games and offsetting part of the Games’ emissions.

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