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For Some Cord Cutters, Streaming Super Bowl Was a Nonstarter

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Watching the Super Bowl over the weekend turned out to be a not-so-superb experience for some owners of streaming devices like the Apple TV and Google’s Chromecast.

When the big game aired on Sunday, dozens of people trying to live-stream the Super Bowl through the CBS Sports app took to Twitter to report problems with the service. The issue appeared to be tied to CBS’s service rather than the devices themselves, as some Apple TV and Chromecast users said all their apps worked except for the CBS Sports app on Sunday.

Representatives for Apple and Google directed press inquiries to CBS. Annie Rohrs, a CBS spokeswoman, declined to comment. However, CBS’s support account on Twitter acknowledged a temporary failure of its service for Apple TV users.

Multiple users reported getting a black screen when loading the CBS Sports app on Apple TV. M.G. Siegler, a venture capitalist, said that on his new Apple TV, the app initially worked but cut out, loading nothing but a black screen. After two dozen attempts to reopen the app, he gave up and streamed the game from the CBS website.

Some Chromecast users had other problems. Robert Utter, of North Stonington, Conn., said apps for PBS and Netflix worked perfectly, but the CBS Sports app failed to stream the game to his television. He ended up watching the game on his computer on his dining room table. “Needless to say, I was angry and disappointed,” he said.

Despite the hiccups, CBS said its live stream drew 3.96 million unique viewers across streaming devices, computers and mobile devices, representing 3.5 percent of the overall 111.9 million viewers of the Super Bowl.

One conclusion is that for cord cutters, an antenna could be a more reliable way to watch the Super Bowl after all, so long as you can pull in a strong signal.

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More groups join in support of women in STEM program at Carleton

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OTTAWA — Major companies and government partners are lending their support to Carleton University’s newly established Women in Engineering and Information Technology Program.

The list of supporters includes Mississauga-based construction company EllisDon.

The latest to announce their support for the program also include BlackBerry QNX, CIRA (Canadian Internet Registration Authority), Ericsson, Nokia, Solace, Trend Micro, the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, CGI, Gastops, Leonardo DRS, Lockheed Martin Canada, Amdocs and Ross.

The program is officially set to launch this September.

It is being led by Carleton’s Faculty of Engineering and Design with the goal of establishing meaningful partnerships in support of women in STEM.  

The program will host events for women students to build relationships with industry and government partners, create mentorship opportunities, as well as establish a special fund to support allies at Carleton in meeting equity, diversity and inclusion goals.

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VR tech to revolutionize commercial driver training

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Serious Labs seems to have found a way from tragedy to triumph? The Edmonton-based firm designs and manufactures virtual reality simulators to standardize training programs for operators of heavy equipment such as aerial lifts, cranes, forklifts, and commercial trucks. These simulators enable operators to acquire and practice operational skills for the job safety and efficiency in a risk-free virtual environment so they can work more safely and efficiently.

The 2018 Humboldt bus catastrophe sent shock waves across the industry. The tragedy highlighted the need for standardized commercial driver training and testing. It also contributed to the acceleration of the federal government implementing a Mandatory Entry-Level Training (MELT) program for Class 1 & 2 drivers currently being adopted across Canada. MELT is a much more rigorous standard that promotes safety and in-depth practice for new drivers.

Enter Serious Labs. By proposing to harness the power of virtual reality (VR), Serious Labs has earned considerable funding to develop a VR commercial truck driving simulator.

The Government of Alberta has awarded $1 million, and Emissions Reduction Alberta (ERA) is contributing an additional $2 million for the simulator development. Commercial deployment is estimated to begin in 2024, with the simulator to be made available across Canada and the United States, and with the Alberta Motor Transport Association (AMTA) helping to provide simulator tests to certify that driver trainees have attained the appropriate standard. West Tech Report recently took the opportunity to chat with Serious Labs CEO, Jim Colvin, about the environmental and labour benefits of VR Driver Training, as well as the unique way that Colvin went from angel investor to CEO of the company.

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Next-Gen Tech Company Pops on New Cover Detection Test

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While the world comes out of the initial stages of the pandemic, COVID-19 will be continue to be a threat for some time to come. Companies, such as Zen Graphene, are working on ways to detect the virus and its variants and are on the forefronts of technology.

Nanotechnology firm ZEN Graphene Solutions Ltd. (TSX-Venture:ZEN) (OTCPK:ZENYF), is working to develop technology to help detect the COVID-19 virus and its variants. The firm signed an exclusive agreement with McMaster University to be the global commercializing partner for a newly developed aptamer-based, SARS-CoV-2 rapid detection technology.

This patent-pending technology uses clinical samples from patients and was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. The test is considered extremely accurate, scalable, saliva-based, affordable, and provides results in under 10 minutes.

Shares were trading up over 5% to $3.07 in early afternoon trade.

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