Archive for: ‘October 2018’

The Breaking of the Plates!

23/10/2018 Posted by admin

Good day everyone,

I had the opportunity this weekend to MC a fabulous event called “An Evening in Greece”. It waslocalfundraiser in support of the Hospitals Of Regina Foundation. Over 700 people contributed with plentiful donations and they had the opportunity to enjoy an exquisite Greek dinner and desert buffet, dance the night away to a wonderful Greek Band called “First Generation” and they got to smash up some plates (aGreek tradition).The smashing plates tradition is a way of showing approval, replacing an earlier tradition that involved throwing knives into the floor at the dancer’s feet! It was very interesting to see people dance and break plates as they sipped GreekOuzo (a delicious greek liquor). I enjoyed myself thoroughly, and no, I did not actually break a plate myself… or have too much Ouzo.

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On another note… A person I would like to give a shout out to is Greg Johnson from Regina, SK. Greg islocal photographerwho I am looking forward to chatting with in the near future about his exciting passion for Storm Chasing. He has a special interest for Tornados. Check out this link that explains about who he is and what he does: 杭州桑拿按摩论坛 . I hope to go out on a chase with him one day.

Lastly, here is a great link that shows how the Shuttle Discovery looks from the air. Check out these pilots who thought they were flying high until…


the outside kids

23/10/2018 Posted by admin

 Thank you Janet for telling me your kids were out in the mud and snow, even in Fort St. John. They are brave kids. And it makes me feel good to know somebody is outside breathing real air, and free of living through some hand sized piece of plastic with buttons on it.  

  But a funny thing. Right after I wrote the blog about never seeing kids outside I ran into a bunch of kids outside, so I did a story about them. The only problem was they were ordered outside by their teacher who was starting a new class to teach kids how to play on grass without computers.

  Your kids were doing it on their own. Bravo.

  And I know, for all the people who are now saying “My kids play outside.”  Yes, I know they do. And bless them. But there was a time before this generation was born, before 24 hour a day video games, when ALL kids played outside. They were thrown out by their mothers.They didn’t want to go in. They played ball or tag and invented games.  They were not overweight. They did not have trouble getting to sleep at night. They talked and laughed, and cried sometimes.

   Now the playgrounds are often empty. I know crime is terrible, but even the back yards are empty. The kids are inside, pushing buttons and not blinking.

   I know I harp on this too much. But thank you Janet, and thank you eveyrone whose kids are outside.

  And no more will I complain about the sidewalks that no longer have hop scotch squares drawns on them.


ps.   some ten year old is now asking, “What’s hop scotch?”


Bowdle, SD Hit Hard by F4 Tornado in 2010-We Spoke to the Residents…

23/10/2018 Posted by admin

We went to the town of Bowdle, SD yesterday where an F4 tornado touched down on May 22, 2010. There were no loss of lives and the damage, as significant as it was, was luckily directed at one farm, missing the main street of the town of 500 people when the storm tracked NE instead ofdirectly for the town centre.We had a chance to speak to a young lady that worked on this farm and witnessed this memorable weather event that changed their lives.

Last night we made it to North Platte, NE. We ate some some tacos and checked the models once again with Dallas Hicks (Environment Canada trained Meteorology expert) for the next few days and things are looking very promising:) The storms are looking particularly great on Thursday and Friday…specifically the NAM on the 1000-500 mb level chart indicating strong WAA advection off the Gulf of Mexico (major storm ingredient) and also strong vorticity at the 500 mb chart showing some positive spin and the best part of all of this is the position of the jet stream with the most influencial part of this being the jet streak left exit region where studies have shown greater likelihood of tornados forming. The best thing we can hope for is some significant daytime heating to help the low level cloud dissapate and allow convection to occur.

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Yesterday was a different story: we were still locked up under a big area of high pressure until we headed south to Nebraska where we encountered an area of low pressure and saw some storms in Colorado. We saw some lightning in the distance and figured it was not much more than that. We just found out now, that there was asmalltornado reported in Washington, CO approximately 188 miles away from us!

Here is a clip of some of what we sawyesterday inBowdle,SD


Here is another story to watch featuring Greg Johnson.


1st Day Of Our Storm Chase-Bismarck, ND

23/10/2018 Posted by admin

We made it to Bismarck, ND last night about midnight.We are staying at a reasonable hotel, the rooms are quite nice for the price.

On the way down we saw a damage path from a tornado that killed one Saskatchewan man when ripping though the area East of Bowbells, ND. The wreckage has been mostly cleared away, though what was particularly haunting about this site was the only evidence of what used to exist there was a concrete pad that still sits in the same spot where once house stood. There were also trees that were split right in half that still sway in the wind reminding you what happened on Aug 13, 2010.

Today we are leaving at around 10:30 am (got to sleep in a bit which was nice) to head south on highway #83 to Kansas.

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My favourite part of the trip so far was last night when we all decided to meet in the guys room for a meeting. It was 1:30 am and we all had our laptops in front of us. People were barely talking at first-they were so engaged with their individual computers on their laps:) We were all tweeting, facebooking etc. Dallas Hicks (who is a NAVCAN aviation Meteorologist is on this trip with us along with Vanessa Neufeld (photographer from Saskatoon). Dallas and I chatted about the latest model runs (Both Canadian and US) and we both feel like this storm could possible materialize into something juicy! If we can tap into some more moisture off the Pacific and if this larger Ridge breaks up and allow s for southerly flow off the gulf (eastern moisture) this would be great thunderstorm fuel!. Speaking of fuel, we went through half a tank of gas in Greg’s Nissan’s XTerra yesterday when driving head on into 80km/hr SE winds. WOW!

3:30 am was when we finished with storm discussions:)

Til next time,

Windows Phone Scam and Behind the Scenes with the HTC Incredible S

23/10/2018 Posted by admin


Daniel Hundt, responsible for the new skin-tight HTC Incrdedible S smart phone against a blow-up of Alexander Graham Bell’s first electrical voice device.

Check out my Monday Global TV Morning Show tech segment with co-host Mike Sobel:


I was in Vancouver recently, at an HTC Canadian tour on the evolution, usage and design of phones. It not only featured the latest HTC phones but included an interesting display of historical phones burrowed from The Telecommunications Museum currently displaying at the Pearson Electrotechnology Centre in Lachine Quebec.

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Among old rotary phones from the 1930’s right up to today’s cellphones, there was an intriguing blow-up planning sketch by Alexander Graham Bell on his first electrical calling device.

I met Daniel Hundt, Creative Director at One & Co. a wholly owned subsidiary of HTC. He shared some inside thoughts on how today’s smart phones get their unique functionality and looks.

“We are aware of the technology that goes in a phone, but every time you start a new project, you want to pull yourself away from all those constraints” he said, emphasizing the importance of pushing the limits with engineers and material vendours to design cool new phones.

“If you don’t do that, you will get the same phone design over and over again,” he said.

He used the new HTC Incredible Smartphone S, with HTC Sense, smart phone, available at Virgin Mobile Canada, as an example of innovative design. “We packed the electronics of this phone as tightly as we could and then used the concept of dipping it into paint, resulting in a skin-tight fit,” said Hundt, responsible for the Incredible S design. BTW, HTC Sense is HTC’s overlay looks on top of the Android OS, for getting around the phone’s features easier.

If you pick one up, you will notice the ridge on the back of the phone making it easy to hold on to, thus the concept of paint dipping.

You can get it from $99.99 without a term contract on the Virgin Mobile SuperTab. It runs on the fastest 4G network, on Android 2.2, does e-mail and social networks and shows MTV on the go with Mobile TV.

It has an 8 megapixel camera (1.3 MP front-facing camera too) and shoots HD video and can be a WiFi Hotspot for other devices. It features a huge 4-inch screen, FM Radio, 4GB internal memory and an included 8GB micro SDHC card. Virgin Mobile offers unique access to Member Benefits for tickets to the latest concerts, discounts at H&M and VIP access to store openings. Check it out at 杭州夜生活


Hey folks, just a “beware” note on a recent rise in Canada of scam phone calls offering to fix your Windows PC.

It starts with a person with a foreign accent calling you at home, saying he is from the Microsoft support team and that your computer has been monitored as acting suspiciously and it’s likely infected.


This is a scam tactic, not from Microsoft, but from folks who want to get access to your computer, supposedly checking it online and trying to sell you software charged to your credit card. I went through the motions, on purpose – don’t try this at home – and they had me run commands on my Windows PC to get information past my firewall with an advance notice they would fix my PC for a price.

So you know…Microsoft does not call people out of the blue, for nothing, unless you have instigated a help call to them.

A Cool Smartphone Mapping App for Riders and Walkers

23/10/2018 Posted by admin

It’s not often a cool bike/ walk mapping program is available on all big-name smart phone systems. The free Map My Ride App which I show today on my Global TV Monday Morning News tech segment is available for BlackBerry, iPhone and Android .

Check out the video segment with co-host Mike Sobel:


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It uses your smart phone’s GPS to record a walk or bike ride. It shows your turning points, elevation changes and can be shared with others by simply emailing them your route. It also counts calories burned on any route, factouring time, length and elevation changes…you have to share your age, weight and height for that to work.

You can also post on different social network sites including Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo!, Messenger, Aol, WordPress and more. But there’s a cool factour. Because the program works with Google Maps, it also shows 3D Flyover Video so you can see your real route, as a bird would, and share it, over and over again! That feature works best on computers.

The only downside to the free version, good enough for casual users, is the ad clutter. Three add-free membership rates are available from $5.99 monthly/$29.98 yearly to 19.99/$99.96 yearly with more services including reports.

This would be a great experience for folks participating at my co-anchor Mike Sobel’s upcoming MS Bike Tour:



Check out my son John’s recent rout in St. Albert, Alberta and see the fly-over of the gorgeous city we live in.



23/10/2018 Posted by admin

One more tablet joins the fray, the LG Optimus Pad, formally known as the LG-V905R. Available at Rogers for $449.99 with three year plan or $699.99 no term, it enters a growing arena, boasting unique features. A reminder, like other tablets, it’s not a phone – it has WiFi and is also wireless on Rogers’ Rocket data plan.

What’s special about it? It has the distinction of being the first 3D shooting tablet and it runs on Android platform 3.0, known as Honeycomb, a totally new Android operating system designed for tablets.

The first thing I noticed was the screen size. The 8.9-inch display is between the 10-inch iPad or Motorola Xoom, and the 7-inch BlackBerry or Samsung tablets. It’s actually easy to hold with one hand and the 1280×768 WXGA screen is bright and just as sharp as competitors. Now we have more incremental choice sizes in tablets.

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It runs on a one GHz dual core Nvidia Tegra 2 processor, at par with today’s tabs.

First let’s get the 3D out of the way. OK, it’s there and it’s a first for any tablet. It shoots in several 3D modes but the screen on the tablet is 2D (unlike the also new Optimus 3D smart phone, not available in Canada, yet). But you have options to watch 3D on the cheap. The onboard 3D player shows 3D for anaglyph glasses, the cardboard red/blue kind. The 3D files show better on any of today’s 3D TV’s, viewed with their glasses.

I watched my own shot 3D on the Optimus on the LG Cinema 3D passive and Sharp Quad active 3D TV’s and their respective glasses and it looks a lot better than the anaglyph experience (which BTW, shows on any 2D HDTV if you plug the Optimus Tab in via the included HDMI cable).

How good is the 3D? It works, but the quality is not as good as 3D dedicated cameras and cams, or even 2D cameras that shoot 3D stills.

I would not buy this tab for the 3D experience…but I would buy it for the perfectly sized screen that will surely be a sweet spot for many buyers.

The dual 5 megapixel 3D camera lenses also work fine in 2D, in fact the best 2D five megapixel still cameras on a tab I have seen. It also has a third camera facing you for video calls. The 2D video advertizes as 1080p but it’s actually 720p interpolated to 1080p. Sorry, not the same quality video as true 1080p tabs, like the BlackBerry PlayBook.

The rest of my experience was on the very cool Honeycomb OS, well matched for the feel, size and speed of the Optimus Tab. There’s plenty of power to go around for the multi-tasking capabilities and being tied to all things Google, this tab works well.

It may not fit in your jacket pocket, like 7–inch tabs but it’s just as easy to carry around and use, with more screen space.

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