Prog Blog’s Flickr Photostream

eaves.ca: The dangerous mystique of the “open data” business

I’m frequently asked by people about how they can start an “open data business.” Let me first say that I love that the question gets asked. I love that people are interested in Open Data. I love that people want to learn more, they want to play, they want to think of ways of creating […]

Things Are Good: Philosophy is Needed in Corporate Boardrooms

It’s not often that you hear CEOs and other executives call for philosophers to be among their boards. In a recent Financial Times article, there is an argument that businesses need philosophers. People who are trained philosophers tend to look root causes and issues that impact whatever it is that they are looking at – something any company should be doing.

The added benefit of having a philosopher in the board room is that their presence can bring a more holistic sense to the company’s (and owners’) place in the world.

Asked to analyse a business, a philosopher would typically (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: Canadian Rocker Neil Young Blasts Stephen Harper, Alberta Tar Sands

Canadian rock legend Neil Young has blasted the Harper government for “trading integrity” in its single-minded appetite for Alberta tar sands dollars.

The post Canadian Rocker Neil Young Blasts Stephen Harper, Alberta Tar Sands appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Things Are Good: Selling Sustainability at All Levels of a Company

Every company ought to behave and operate in a sustainable way at all levels of operation. There is an obvious environmental argument for doing this, but some people don’t initially see the economic value. In this TED talk the economic efficiencies of sustainable manufacturing, distribution, and marketing are explored.

Molly'sBlog: THE SHADY SUCCESS OF THE SECRET SUSHI SYSTEM

THE SHADY SUCCESS OF THE SECRET SUSHI SYSTEM     Good old Time Magazine. It struggles on in the internet age, devoting more and more of its pages to bite-size “factoids” that rival websites for speed of transit through the intellectual digestive system. Each and every article has to be illustrated – over-illustrated. Colour and highlighting adds to the illusion of ethernet illusion, and the layout owes much more to Facebook than to any school of journalism. I love it, and I’m a long term subscriber who has lived through Time’s evolution.

     Every once in awhile it digs up some (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: Canada-EU CETA trade agreement has “troubling” elements: Yves Engler [VIDEO]

Yves Engler, a Canadian activist and author of The Ugly Canadian: Stephen Harper’s Foreign Policy, discusses the “troubling” elements in the Canada-EU CETA trade agreement.

The post Canada-EU CETA trade agreement has “troubling” elements: Yves Engler [VIDEO] appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Melissa Fong: Are UBC Sauder Business/Commerce students just jerks?

UBC Sauder School of Business is one of few business schools in Canada that produce some serious leaders in our capitalist economy (both here and internationally). These are the same people that will take top positions at big companies; the same people that will develop multi-million/billion(?) entrepreneurial companies; and the same people that play key roles in a massive sector of business that manages and employs the rest of us. Doesn’t it bother you that these “leaders” are becoming leaders by utilizing sexism and racism to bond with their future business fellows?

Blast Furnace Canada Blog: Where’s the draft text?

Today, Harper and EU President Jose Manuel Barroso initialled a trade and labour agreement between Canada and the world’s most powerful trading bloc. Like I said in my last post, I think open trade with the EU will be overall good for Canada.

But don’t you find it odd that there isn’t even a draft text available for public consumption? The final agreement may be two years off, but wouldn’t it

Blast Furnace Canada Blog: Here he comes, the PM in the big white sportscar …

The second session of Canada’s 41st Parliament opens today. And early word about the Speech from the Throne is that PMS (Prime Minister Steve) will make a move towards consumer rights.

Funny.

He was against pick-and-pay cable and satellite, before he was for it.

He was for long term cell phone contracts before he was against it.

He was against cell phone company mergers — now in the next

The Canadian Progressive: New study makes the case for postal banking in Canada

The reintroduction of postal banking in Canada would offer access to financial services not now available to many Canadians, says new study released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.

The post New study makes the case for postal banking in Canada appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Blast Furnace Canada Blog: Why I’ll be voting in Ontario on the minimum age

Currently, the minimum wage in Ontario is $10.25 per hour. Presuming a 40 hour week, no sick days and two weeks vacation, that works out to about $20,500 per year. Not a bad piece of change; but with the lowest marginal income tax rate of 20% and payroll taxes of 7%, that leaves $14965, well below the “low income cutoff” — a bastardized way of saying poverty line. And don’t forget, a

The Canadian Progressive: Reject Verizon, Establish Telecommunications Crown Corporation: Union

The Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada urges the Harper government to reject Verizon’s bid to become Canada’s fourth largest telecoms carrier and, instead, establish a telecommunications Crown Corporation.

The post Reject Verizon, Establish Telecommunications Crown Corporation: Union appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Eclectic Lip: The witless wisdom of Shai Agassi

Dunning-Kruger effect graphed by AddAttack on DeviantArt.

LinkedIn has an “opinion leader” piece from Shai Agassi, founder of bankrupt car-battery-switcher Better Place, telling carmakers how they need to respond to Tesla’s success. Who better to give them advice than a guy who raised $850 million for an ignorant, impractical, impossible business model, then drove his company into the ground?

Inviting Agassi to share his clearly-witless wisdom about the auto sector, would have been like inviting André Maginot — architect of the not-so-great wall of France — onto the post-World War II lecture circuit to talk about the future of warfare.

(Read more…)

Eclectic Lip: A patent app mishap

I hope that if/when this patent application gets granted, they update the title… otherwise, someone at Samsung will have some ‘splaining to do!

The Canadian Progressive: ForestEthics sues Harper government over limits on pipeline hearings

A Vancouver-based environmental group ForestEthics and activist Donna Sinclair are suing the Harper government over new rules that drastically limit Canadians’ participation in pipeline project hearings and decisions relating to the energy industry.

The post ForestEthics sues Harper government over limits on pipeline hearings appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Blast Furnace Canada Blog: My take on Line 9

Over the last year, there has been a huge amount of debate over Enbridge wanting to reverse the flow of oil in a major pipeline — “Line 9″ — from east to west, to west to east. The claim has been made that an already fractured pipeline could become even more of a threat when raw tar sands oil makes it way from Alberta through our our neck of the woods. Indeed a lot of the protests have

The Canadian Progressive: Study Finds High Levels of Arsenic in Groundwater Near Fracking Sites

A new study by researchers at the University of Texas at Arlington found elevated levels of arsenic and other heavy metals in groundwater near natural gas fracking sites in Texas’ Barnett Shale.

The post Study Finds High Levels of Arsenic in Groundwater Near Fracking Sites appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Blast Furnace Canada Blog: What? Wireless companies can’t take the heat?

Over the last few weeks, the three big players in Canada’s wireless business — Bell, Telus and Rogers — have been running two separate but related series of ads which are related to the almost certain reality that America’s largest phone, cell and IPTV company, Verizon, will made bids to buy out two of the smaller and financially troubled carriers, Mobilicity and Wind Canada. They never

The Canadian Progressive: TransCanada’s Energy East oil pipeline will face fierce opposition: Council of Canadians

The Council of Canadians announces a national campaign to stop TransCanada’s proposed $12 billion Energy East pipeline, which would ship Alberta‘s dirty tar sands oil to Canada’s East Coast.

The post TransCanada’s Energy East oil pipeline will face fierce opposition: Council of Canadians appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

The Canadian Progressive: As Keystone XL Falters, TransCanada OKs Bigger Canada East Coast Pipeline

As Keystone XL falters, TransCanada introduces Energy East, a $12 billion pipeline that would ship Alberta’s dirty tar sands oil to Canada’s East Coast.

The post As Keystone XL Falters, TransCanada OKs Bigger Canada East Coast Pipeline appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Eclectic Lip: Electron democracy

A long-belated companion to Steven Chu’s “Time to fix the wiring” essay I posted earlier, this is the white paper I co-authored for the same McKinsey & Company series. Given the roughly five-month delay in uploading this, I suppose “Time to post the writing” might be an apt subtitle…

Ever the stickler for citing sources (in university, while writing up a chemical engineering lab report, I once cited a colleague’s report I made use of, in my bibliography of sources – yes, I was a wild one) I was pleased McKinsey kept the footnote crediting the work John Robb (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: Alberta Government Failing to Enforce Environmental Legislation: Study

A new study has found that environmental violations in Alberta’s tar sands operations are frequent, enforcement is rare, and there is a chronic failure to disclose important environmental incident information to the public.

The post Alberta Government Failing to Enforce Environmental Legislation: Study appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

The Canadian Progressive: Industry Canada dished out $22.1B in “corporate welfare” since 1961

A new report by the Fraser Institute reveals that Industry Canada gave businesses $22.1 billion in taxpayer-funded subsidies, aka “corporate welfare”, since 1961

The post Industry Canada dished out $22.1B in “corporate welfare” since 1961 appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Blast Furnace Canada Blog: OMB caves in to idiots at Hamilton City Hall with "Aerotropolis"

Earlier this week the Ontario Municipal Board gave final clearance to Hamilton destroying 555 hectares of virgin farmland for “development” lands around the Hamilton airport, when at least half that much exists in the wasteland of brownfields in the lower city. The so-called “Aerotropolis”. The claim is that businesses want clean land, and there really isn’t that much left in the brownfield

Blast Furnace Canada Blog: Raising the cap — still not a good reason to approve Northern Gateway

The Con government has announced that Canadian energy companies who cause an environmental disaster will be liable for a much larger amount. Currently, it’s just $30 million for the east and west coasts and $40 million for the Arctic. Now it will be $1 billion.

That’s fine, but when one considers Exxon Valdez has cost Exxon / Mobil $7 billion to date (and this disaster happened in 1989),