When Apple introduced the iPad earlier this year, many critics dismissed it as a "consumption device". The iPad, they said, was good for passive consumption of media -- Youtube videos, games, ebooks, music, movies and television shows. But it couldn't be used as a creative device, the critics said. They were wrong.
I've been using my iPad for over a month now. I'm writing this column on it right now. I've created artwork (not very good, but that's my lack of talent, not the limitations of the iPad), I've retouched photos, I've uploaded content to Wordpress blogs, I've diagnosed and fixed problems on desktop computers remotely, and tweaked websites. And a lot more.
Yes, I've also read books, laughed at silly cat videos on Youtube, listened to podcasts and music and played games. The iPad is great for all that. But it's also a useful, productive tool. As a bonus, even when using it for work, it's a joy to use, thanks to its touchscreen, its elegant design, its responsiveness and its sumptuous display.
A motion coming to city council next week calls for the City to begin exploring the creation of modular housing in Vancouver, something Mayor Robertson says can potentially provide a solution to part of the affordable housing crisis in the city.
“Modular housing can be built much more quickly and for a lower cost than permanent housing, which makes it a good tool for easing the affordable housing crisis in Vancouver,” said Mayor Robertson. “We have over 1,500 new social housing units being built in partnership with the Province, but it will take years until they are all completed. We have a shortage of affordable market rentals, there is a lack of family and workforce housing, and seniors and students are being priced out of Vancouver.
“Given these conditions, it makes sense for the City to explore what options are available with modular housing, and to test its feasibility. We need to be looking at every creative housing option that’s viable.”
I have so many memories of the Folk Festival, but the one that stands out most for me is the moment I realized that there was nowhere in the world I wanted to live more than Vancouver. I was looking out at the water and the mountains and I literally heard the call.
I’m sure a lot of people have had similar experiences on beautiful sunny days here at the beach – really, who wouldn’t? – but I’m glad I followed through and actually made the move from California. I often respond, when asked the inevitable question, that I moved to Vancouver because of the Folk Fest. But, really, it’s because of what the Folk Fest represents to me. More than the natural beauty or the abundance of talent, it all comes down to the sense of community I experience at the Festival, the same sense that carries with me living in this city throughout the year.
“The problem is that they have sewn the laws so tight that people like Sandy can’t get through,” Pam Murray said of her mother-in-law who waited her turn to speak on the phone. “Sandy does not have a place to fit. It is not her fault that this is happening.”
Speaking from Mississauga, Ontario, Murray said she has been fighting for her mother-in-law for over a year. Diabetes and a bone ailment have made it difficult for Sandy Burke to manage the workload it takes to wrangle with the bureaucracy---with Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), Old Age Security (OAS), and the Government of Canada, all at the same time. So Murray has taken up the struggle on her relation's behalf, though she admitted that they are both somewhat fearful to talk to the press. Like many in their position, they did not want to make things worse than they already are. Fear of rocking the boat is common among people in Sandy's situation, a group whose numbers are hard to define but include hundreds if not hundreds of thousands.
On the evenings of June 26 and 27 in and around downtown Toronto during the G20 global summit, thousands of riot police repeatedly assaulted demonstrators, journalists, and Toronto residents in non-riot situations. Many journalists trying to document police actions were illegally arrested, assaulted, and had their equipment confiscated. According to several eye-witness reports many journalists were charged and attacked by police. Twenty, of the over 900 people detained and assaulted, have testified in this ground breaking report.
From August 12 to 22, audiences are invited to come out and play at the 2010 Vancouver Queer Film Festival. This year, more than 90 films will be screened during Vancouver’s second-largest film festival, produced by Out On Screen.
“The Queer Film Festival has been entertaining, enlightening and challenging Vancouver audiences with thought-provoking films for 22 years,” said Amber Dawn, Director of Programming. “Between the ground-breaking films, community connections, and our infamous parties, it truly is a festival for everyone... no matter what team you play for. Come and find out why being #2 is way more fun than being #1.”
Audiences are invited to dive into provocative documentaries, international dramas and spicy romances; the 2010 Vancouver Queer Film Festival has something for everyone. The festival also promises to build team spirit for queer youth: twenty-three films have been classified so those under 18 can also enjoy inspiring stories and share in queer culture.