Clicks of the Day: Monday, May 14, 2012 Edition!

Welcome to Monday, May 14 2012′s Clicks of the Day!

Clicks of the Day is a daily round up of news posted Sunday through Thursday.

    Edmonton/Alberta/Canada

  • Dry conditions fuel wildfires across Northern Alta.
  • “Tinder, dry conditions across the province are feeding the flames in three out of control wildfires burning in the central and northern parts of Alberta. Two major blazes are burning near Lodgepole and Boyle. And at least one family in the Grasslands area has already lost their summer home.”

    I hope these don’t turn into Slave Lake Part 2.

  • Oil Kings claim WHL championship
  • “The Edmonton Oil Kings built an early lead on Sunday and never relinquished it for a 4-1 victory over the Portland Winterhawks to win the Western Hockey League’s Ed Chynoweth Cup. Edmonton now advances to the Memorial Cup for the first time in modern franchise history.”

    Good for them! There’s nothing quite like Edmonton hockey fans celebrating the successes of their team. :)

  • Quebec’s education minister resigns as protests continue
  • “After months of violent student protests over tuition increases, Quebec’s Education Minister Line Beauchamp resigned from politics Monday. At a news conference with Premier Jean Charest, Beauchamp said she’s not leaving office because she was intimidated by the strikes and demonstrations. ‘I am not giving up in the face of vandalism and civil disobedience,’ said Beauchamp, who will give up her Montreal-area seat. ‘I am resigning because I no longer believe I’m part of the solution. I haven’t been able to solve this important conflict and I take responsibility.’”

    And the drama continues.

  • Federal cuts called a ‘disaster’ for Canadian science
  • “The microfungus collection and herbarium at the University of Alberta has been nurturing fungi for more than 50 years. And since 1990 it has been considered a “unique” national resource worthy of federal money. No more. Funding for the collection, and dozens of other “major” and “unique” science facilities and resources across Canada, has been hit by federal cuts in what is being described as a “disaster” for Canadian science.”

    Unfortunate.

  • Canadian bankers release mobile payment guidelines
  • “New standards for financial institutions and telecommunications companies to guide the use of mobile devices in retail purchases were released Monday by the Canadian Bankers Association. The voluntary guidelines set out how these two industries will work together as the new smartphone technology is rolled out across the country. While mobile banking using an app on your smartphone isn’t exactly new technology, paying for items with a swipe of that device may soon be the norm. It’s also expected some of the country’s major banks will soon announce partnerships with telecommunications companies to get the technology off the ground.”

    Making mobile shopping/digital wallets official!

    World

  • Trayvon’s mom gets eight months of donated vacation days
  • “Trayvon Martin’s mother will get eight months of paid vacation time from her Miami-Dade County job thanks to donations from her colleagues. The Miami Herald reports that 192 county employees took advantage of a county resolution allowing them to donate some of their own paid vacation days and sick leave to Sybrina Fulton and Martin’s aunt, Yolanda Knight Evans, who received nearly nine weeks of vacation time. Fulton works at the county housing authority; Evans works at the water and sewer utility.”

    Really nice co-workers.

    Health

  • ‘Barcoding’ viruses could help detect mutated strains
  • “A team out of the University of Leeds has already produced molecular signatures for two forms of a childhood respiratory-disease virus… The researchers say their next step will be to test more lethal strains of influenza, such as bird flu, and compare the resulting barcodes. Because flu viruses can mutate so quickly and so often, being able to test new strains quickly could help public health officials better manage coming epidemics and perhaps even ward off global pandemics.”

  • Medical ink trending up — but can tattoos save lives?
  • “Having your medical condition publicly announced is rarely welcome, as anyone with an indiscreet pharmacist can attest. But for a growing number of Canadians, advertising illness can be a matter of life and death — and they’re choosing a decidedly permanent way of doing so. The Canadian Medical Association Journal reported Monday that medical tattooing “appears to be a trend on the rise,” with people inking everything from chronic conditions to emergency health directives onto their skin.”

    Interesting!

  • America’s hatred of fat hurts obesity fight
  • “The stigmatization of obesity begins in preschool: Children as young as 3 tell scientists studying the phenomenon that overweight people are mean, stupid, ugly and have few friends. It intensifies in adulthood, when substantial numbers of Americans say obese people are self-indulgent, lazy and unable to control their appetites. And it translates into poorer job prospects for the obese compared with their slim peers. It may be the nation’s last, accepted form of prejudice. But the stigmatization of obesity has repercussions beyond the pain it inflicts on its targets: It threatens to impede efforts to fight the obesity epidemic.”

    Sad.

  • Canadian diet a recipe for disaster, study finds
  • “Canadians have made slight progress in the battle to combat chronic disease through diet choices even as the nation’s children fall even further behind, a study from an independent think tank suggested Monday. While adults have slowly reduced their intake of damaging fats and stepped up their fruit and vegetable consumption over the past two decades, researchers at the Conference Board of Canada found that children’s eating habits have continually deteriorated over the same period.”

    Our society.

    Technology/Social Media/Internet

  • Twitter will email you top stories from your feed
  • “Twitter will soon begin emailing you a weekly digest of your own feed. The summary will include tweets and links that are likely to be important to you based on what the people who you follow share. It will also include the “most engaging” tweets and stories those people saw in their own feeds, if they retweet or favorite them.”

    Cool but hopefully this doesn’t mean you guys stop checking on my Clicks of the Day!

  • Canon moving toward robots-only full automation in digital camera production
  • “Canon Inc. is moving toward fully automating digital camera production in an effort to cut costs — a key change being played out across Japan, a world leader in robotics. If successful, counting on machines can help preserve this nation’s technological power — not the stereotype of machines snatching assembly line jobs from workers, Jun Misumi — company spokesman, said Monday. The move toward machine-only production will likely be completed in the next few years, perhaps as soon as 2015.”

    iRobot!

    Business/Work/Economy/Media

  • [Infographic]: Most restaurant-goers rely on online reviews
  • “Before setting foot outside, about 45% of consumers have already chosen where to eat with the help of an online dining guide. Online reviews are a huge decider of what’s for dinner — 57% of patrons rely on them.”

    True for me!

  • Being debt-free key to retirement dreams, survey says
  • “Nearly nine in 10 Canadian homeowners surveyed recently said that being debt-free was key to their idea of a successful retirement — even more than most lifestyle factors. Only having good health was listed by more people, according to the survey of about 2,000 Canadian homeowners conducted for Manulife Bank. The dream of being debt-free was more important to the respondents than living near family, keeping busy with a hobby or volunteer work or having a broad group of friends.”

    Makes sense.

    Environment/Space/Animals/Science

  • ‘Virus-tickling’ device creates clean energy
  • “A team at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has engineered a tiny device coated with viruses that generate electricity when stimulated by the touch of a finger. The postage stamp-sized device could lead to the development of a new class of “viral electronics” that run on clean energy harvested from the everyday movements of people such as walking across a floor or opening doors.”

    Weird!

  • Engravings of Female Genitalia May Be World’s Oldest Cave Art
  • “Since their discovery in 1994, the spectacular paintings of lions, rhinos, and other animals in southern France’s Chauvet Cave have stood out as the oldest known cave art, clocking in at about 37,000 years old.* But there have been occasional sightings of other cave art that is equally ancient, although its dating has been more uncertain. Now a team working at another site in the south of France claims to have discovered what appear to be engravings of female genitalia that are as old as or older than Chauvet, possibly making them the world’s most ancient cave art.”

    I feel like it could be something other than female genitalia it’s really just a circle with a line in the middle, lol.

  • Apparently some spiders hunt in packs. You’ve been warned.
  • “Arachnophobes can usually take comfort in the fact that spiders are solitary creatures. The vast majority of the almost 40,000 known arachnid species have pretty miserable social skills, so they tend keep mostly to themselves. But there exists a small handful of around two dozen species — known collectively as “social spiders” — that get on surprisingly, unsettlingly, terrifyingly well in the company of conspecifics. Anelosimus eximius is one such species.”

    Could you imagine a pack of spiders coming at you? Shudder.

    Entertainment

  • Britney Spears, Demi Lovato are new X Factor judges
  • “Britney Spears and former Disney Channel star Demi Lovato officially joined the U.S. version of The X Factor on Monday, leading creator Simon Cowell to pledge the second season would seriously kick butt when it returns in September. Spears, 30, the world’s biggest pop phenomenon of the 2000s, and Lovato, 19, will fill the judge’s slots left open by Paula Abdul and Nicole Scherzinger, who were both fired by Cowell after a disappointing first season in 2011.”

    I don’t understand how Demi Lovato is supposed to be better than Paula or Nicole. Not that I really watched the X Factor or will even watch it this year but I just find it strange. She doesn’t have that much experience!

    Weird News, Other News & Fluff

  • Man attached to iPod – literally
  • “Professional body piercer Dave Hurban is a man attached to his iPod. Literally. Hurban, 21, who works in a tattoo parlor in Newfield, New Jersey, implanted four metal studs in the skin of his wrist and secured his iPod to them magnetically.”

    I guess that’s … innovative … of him?

  • You are what you read, study suggests
  • “Novels may have a lot more power than we think. When you identify with a literary character, like Katniss Everdeen of the “Hunger Games” books, there’s a good chance you’ll become more like her, new study shows. Researchers have found that when you lose yourself in a work of fiction, your behaviour and thoughts can metamorphose to match those of your favorite character, according to the study published early online in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. The researchers believe that fictional characters can change us for the good.”

    Neat.

  • Indonesian man faces prison for ‘God doesn’t exist’ Facebook post
  • “Alex Aan faces up to 11 years in prison, ostracism from his family, community, and country, and possible physical violence for admitting he is an atheist in a country where faith in God is mandatory. Indonesia is home to the largest Islamic population in the world, but the government grants freedom of religion to Islam and five other belief systems: Catholicism, Protestantism, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Confucianism. However, insulting a major religion is a crime, and denying the existence of God is considered blasphemy and is punishable by jail time.”

    Unbelievable.

  • N.Y. man spends $60,000 in dog custody battle
  • “Anyone who has ever been in a custody battle can probably attest to how difficult, and expensive, the proceedings can be.
    One N.Y. man is going through a costly battle in court. He’s fighting to regain custody of his dog.”

    Wow! Well animals really do become a part of your family but wow!

  • Texting while walking? In N.J. town, it’ll cost you
  • “Texting while walking could land you a ticket in Fort Lee, N.J. As with most other states, texting while driving is already banned in the state. But now, Fort Lee Police Chief Thomas Ripoli is also holding pedestrians accountable for their “dangerous walking,” including texting-while-trekking — if it leads to them ignoring crosswalks and lights. Ripoli, however, told MSNBC that his town is not specifically banning texting while walking. Folks who are texting while walking in Fort Lee are issued a jaywalking ticket, but only if they also happen to be jaywalking at the same time, the article says.”

    Lol.

  • Reality TV, religion give birth to top baby names
  • “Reality TV is giving birth to some of the most popular baby names. No, not Snooki. But Mason, as in Kourtney Kardashian’s son, jumped 10 spots to become the second most popular name for newborn boys in 2011. The more traditional Sophia is the new top name for girls, while Jacob is No. 1 for boys for the 13th straight year, according to the list released Monday by the Social Security Administration.”

    At least the most popular this year isn’t Tree or something, lol.

  • 100 balloons popped with a laser
  • Cool!

Thor (and/or Loki) Photo of the Day:

Lol we walked into the bedroom and found the kitties like this! With Pascal! SO CUTE!!!!


Have your say on some of these Clicks of the Day’s! Leave a comment! Or tweet me!

Linda

Clicks of the Day: Monday, April 16, 2012 Edition!

Welcome to Monday, April 16 2012′s Clicks of the Day!

    Edmonton/Alberta/Canada

  • Few Canadians volunteer like Katniss Everdeen, stats show
  • “Katniss Everdeen, heroine of The Hunger Games, captured a nation with just two words: “I volunteer.” That may be because it remains a largely novel concept to most folks, if a new report is any indication. A scant 10 per cent of Canada’s volunteers accounted for more than half of all hours given to non-profit and charitable organizations in 2010, according to data released Monday by Statistics Canada. In other words, even as 47 per cent of Canadians age 15 and older volunteered at some point during the year, the majority of time came from a small proportion of citizens.”

    Sad. I admit I don’t volunteer as much as I want to (or should).

  • Chretien says Liberal-NDP merger would stabilize Canadian politics
  • “Jean Chretien is still promoting the idea of Liberals and New Democrats merging into one federal party, despite strong objections to the NDP’s approach to Quebec independence. The former Liberal prime minister tells The Canadian Press a merger would bring stability to federal politics.”

    Hm.

  • Five reasons Canadians should care about the Alberta election

    “The outcome of the election on April 23 will have reverberations across Canada. Global News looks at what is at stake for Canadians inside Alberta and beyond.”

    Lots at stake.

    World

  • El Salvador heralds 1st murder-free day in nearly three years
  • “No one was murdered in El Salvador on Saturday, officials said, in what was the first homicide-free day in nearly three years for the Central American country plagued by violent drug gangs. “After years when the number of murders reached alarming levels of up to 18 per day, we saw not one homicide in the country,” President Mauricio Funes said in a statement released on Sunday. The murder-free day was the first recorded since leftist Funes took office in June 2009.”

    Wow.

  • Rape victims say military labels them ‘crazy’
  • “These women joined different branches of the military but they share a common experience: Each received the psychiatric diagnosis and military discharge after reporting a sexual assault. CNN has interviewed women in all branches of the armed forces, including the Coast Guard, who tell stories that follow a similar pattern — a sexual assault, a command dismissive of the allegations and a psychiatric discharge. Despite the Defense Department’s “zero tolerance” policy, there were 3,191 military sexual assaults reported in 2011. Given that most sexual assaults are not reported, the Pentagon estimates the actual number was probably closer to 19,000.”

    That’s awful.

  • Rampage suspect says he acted to save Norway
  • “The man accused of killing 77 people in a bomb-and-gun rampage in Norway last summer said his actions were justified to save the country from multicultural forces as he went on trial Monday. Anders Behring Breivik raised his arm in a fascist-style salute — a symbol of “strength, power and defiance against Marxist tyrants,” to quote the 1,500-page manifesto attributed to him — as soon as his handcuffs were removed in court Monday. “I acknowledge the acts but do not plead guilty,” he told the court.”

    Hm.

    Health

  • Salty fast food: Canada has saltiest fries, sandwiches and salads, study finds
  • “French fries sold at major fast-food chains in Canada contain more than double the amount of salt of those sold at U.S. locations, according to a new international study that found salt levels in fast foods varied significantly in different countries. “Governments setting and enforcing salt targets for industry would provide a level playing field, and no company could gain a commercial advantage by using high levels of salt.” That’s why the federal government should consider the findings of the study and revisit its sodium-reduction strategy to require reformulation, said Campbell.”

    So unhealthy yet.. so delicious, lol. But I am happy to say I don’t eat at fast food chains really.

  • Birth numbers suggest female-fetus abortions more common in Asian-Canadian communities: study
  • “A study showing that South Korean- and Indian-born women in Canada have an unusually high proportion of boys born as second babies is shining a spotlight on the issue of sex selection through abortion. The study, published Monday in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, looked at all non-multiple births in Ontario between the years 2002 and 2007, which totalled 766,688. “Our findings raise the possibility that couples originating from India may be more likely than Canadian-born couples to use prenatal sex determination and terminate a second or subsequent pregnancy if the fetus is female,” says the study, which was led by Dr. Joel Ray, a physician at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto.”

    Awful. :(

  • Toronto reports first case of human rabies since ’31; 1st in country since ’07
  • “Toronto Public Health has confirmed that a person in the city is being treated for rabies. It is the first case of human rabies in Toronto since 1931 and the first in the province since 1967. Human rabies cases in Canada are very rare. There have only been three in the last 12 years: one in Quebec in 2000, one in British Columbia in 2003 and one in Alberta in 2007.”

    Eep.

    Technology/Social Media

  • Text messaging Canadians sent an average 2,500 texts every second in 2011, total of 78 billion
  • “In news that probably won’t surprise parents of text-obsessed teenagers, Canadians sent an average of almost 2,500 SMS messages every second last year, for a total of about 78 billion. That figure was up almost 40 per cent from 2010, when the texting tally hit 56.4 billion messages.”

    Unsurprising!

  • Twitter wanted to buy Twitter
  • “Facebook snapped up photo-sharing app Instagram last week for $1 billion, but the social network wasn’t the only one interested in purchasing the photo-filtering wonder app. Twitter “expressed interest” in purchasing Instagram just a few months ago, according to the New York Times.”

    Hot commodity!

  • Is Pinterest really worth $7.7-billion?
  • “Facebook values Instagram at $1-billion and LinkedIn has a market cap of $10-billion. Twitter claims it is worth $8-billion. So where does that leave the new kid on the block Pinterest? Well, it looks like you can pin $7.7-billion on your Pinterest board. Pinterest is important because the traffic is growing and statistics are impressive. It is known for its magazine-quality images. Pinterest is to artful images what Twitter is to artful words. What’s more, Pinterest appeals to college-educated females between the ages of 25 to 44. A sweet demographic known for its spending decisions and habits.”

    That’s a lot of worth.

  • Fake reviews leave business owners skeptical
  • “Thanks to the internet and social media, reviews of a business or restaurant are just a click away. But how many of them are fake? Business owner Lauren Bonnett and others, feel consumers should be skeptical when reading online reviews. Many websites allow you to rate a business. Some have staff and automated filters designed to catch fake or malicious reviews. But how easy is it for one to get through? Yelp, Tripadvisor, urbanspoon, google places and yellow pages. Of the 100 fake reviews, only 5 were caught and filtered out and only by Yelp, but the website did allow others through.”

    I wrote 25 of those fake reviews for this story. ;) Always take reviews with a grain of salt! I assure you all of the reviews I put on this blog are real though, lol.

  • Edmonton mother and son play video games together, and write a book
  • “Edmonton gamer Teace Snyder has co-written a book in defence of video games with, of all people, his mom. Mother and son figured it was time to balance out the misinformation and fear mongering that has led to “gamer shame” — gamers feeling ashamed for playing video games or spending time gaming. Snyder and other gamers have long known there’s more to video games than entertainment, he says, but he’s relieved and happy to see that verified by his mother’s research and the research of others. For example: video games are given to burn victims to reduce their pain because their attention is distracted; games are prescribed for relaxation; games are used to teach diabetic children what to eat; and games are used to train soldiers for combat. There’s also gamefication — using the principles of gaming to raise money for community projects.”

    Really interesting!

  • Japan bank to install palm-reading ATMs
  • “A regional bank in central Japan will become the country’s first financial institution to adopt automated teller machines that will identify users by their palms. Under the system, developed by Fujitsu Ltd., users will be able to prove who they are simply by scanning their hands and entering a PIN and date of birth, the bank said. Demand for a system that does not require a cash card or a passbook increased after the earthquake-tsunami disaster that ravaged northeast Japan last March in which many people lost personal possessions and were left without the means to get at their money.”

    Cool. (Interesting why the demand for such a system came from after the tsunami).

  • The technology beind the Tupac hologram at Coachella
  • “By now you have probably seen the footage of long-deceased rapper Tupac Shakur performing at Coachella. Whether or not you thought you thought it was creepy, the technology behind the holographic resurrection is actually pretty cool. The blend of previously recorded live footage and CGI was created by Digital Domain — James Cameron’s visual effects company that was also responsible for the ersatz Brad Pitt in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button — under the supervision of Dr. Dre.”

    Pretty cool.

    Business/Consumer/Media/Economy

  • Indie book publishers call Amazon, not Apple, a ‘predator’
  • “A growing number of independent book publishers say that by tying the hands of Apple and the major publishers, the United States will enable Amazon to mow down competition in a price war. The U.S. Department of Justice filed a lawsuit last week accusing Apple and the country’s five major book publishers of colluding to raise prices that consumers pay for electronic books (e-books). Three of the five publishers have already settled, largely by agreeing not to prevent retailers from discounting titles. But the DOJ got it wrong, say the indies. According to them, Amazon, not Apple is a bigger threat to competition. “I hope this lawsuit fails,” said Mark Coker, founder of Smashwords, an e-book publishing and distributing company. Randall White, chief executive of Educational Development Corp. (EDC), told The New York Times: “Amazon is squeezing everyone out of business” and he called the company a ‘predator.’”

    Intense.

  • When Big Brother watches IT
  • “The Wall Street Journal recently published an article on how IT departments are coping these days with the biggest threat to data security — namely, employees in the IT department. That the “enemy within” is the biggest threat to an enterprise is nothing new, but buried in the article was something that struck me as, well, Orwellian. The WSJ reports that some organizations “are even using new technology to look at the language of their IT staff’s emails to determine whether their behavior or mind-set has changed.”"

    Yeesh…

  • Online journalism shines in 2012 Pulitzer picks
  • “As far as awards go, the Pulitzer Prizes are the traditional standard of journalistic excellence. But this year’s winners, just announced, show that the judges continue to have an eye for new sources of quality journalism. While newspapers like The Philadelphia Inquirer and The New York Times celebrate their wins on Monday, online-native sites Politico and the Huffington Post are also breaking out the bubbly… This year, Pulitzer officials note that digital content “played a role in seven winning entries… Digital content was a particular emphasis in the breaking news category this year, with the call for entries that emphasize speed and real-time reporting.”

    Awesome. The way of the future. (The future is here?)

    Entertainment

  • The Office might get a reboot next season
  • “What do you do when negotiations with the cast of a seasoned sitcom stall? Well, if you’re the producers of The Office, you apparently think about replacing the actors wholesale. That’s right: According to Deadline, series executive producer Greg Daniels is debating making the next season of The Office a reboot, bringing in a slew of different characters to replace stalwarts John Krasinski, Jenna Fischer, Mindy Kaling, and B.J. Novak—not to mention the potentially farm-bound Rainn Wilson—whose contracts expire at the end of this spring.”

    Orrrr just end it because replacing the actors would make The Office not The Office anymore.

  • WAIT IT’S NOT OREGON? ‘Simpsons’ creator reveals actual Springfield location Sunday night
  • “”The Simpsons” used its blackboard opening sequence Sunday to reveal that Springfield is located… somewhere far from you. “The true location of Springfield is in any state but yours,” Bart wrote on the blackboard in the opening of Sunday’s “Beware My Cheating Bart” episode. That followed the beginning of the opening sequence, which read ‘The Simpsons Now Entering Oregon.’”

    Seems silly now. They’re just trying to backtrack because they didn’t make a whole special promotion out of the revelation.

    Weird News, Other News & Fluff

  • Sleepy Air Canada pilot thought Venus was a plane
  • “A sleepy Air Canada pilot first mistook the planet Venus for an aircraft, and then sent his airliner diving toward the Atlantic to prevent an imaginary collision with another plane, an official report said on Monday.”

    LOL what.

  • Fans say goodbye as ’1000 Awesome Things’ blog winds down
  • “Millions will say goodbye to a blog this week that since 2008 has shone the spotlight on some of life’s simple joys. On April 19, award-winning blogger Neil Pasricha will post his final entry on 1000awesomethings.com, a “time-ticking countdown of 1000 awesome things.” The blog began in June 2008, a time of darkness for the writer as he struggled with a failing marriage and a suicide attempt by his close friend. Each day Pasricha would post a reminder of the good things in life – small pleasures that are often overlooked, thought about but never written down.”

    I guess blogs can’t go on forever. I love 1000 awesome things!

  • [Video]: Policeman vs. Kitty
  • “An overly affectionate cat interrupts a very patient policeman while he has a driver pulled over.”

    Pretty bad video quality but funny nonetheless!


Loki Photo of the Day:

Big face Loki. :)


Have your say on some of these Clicks of the Day’s!

Leave a comment!

Linda