The Branch Plant Economy

This article was originally published @ TechVibes. The term Branch Plant Economy is not a new one, and gained specific relevance for Canada in the early 20th Century, when US Companies began to build factories in Canada to circumvent pricey tariffs on importing their wares to the Canadian market.  One example where this really took […]

Read more "The Branch Plant Economy"

To The Moon, Alice

Why is it that every time a politician feels themselves sagging in the polls, they invoke some improbable, obviously impossible, pipe dream about the space program?  This pantomime is almost invariably played out in front of a NASA audience in Cape Canaveral, involves some completely ludicrous timeframe, and involved rockets.  Americans, apparently, love them some […]

Read more "To The Moon, Alice"

2009: The Year of the Hypocrite

It was a year that began with such promise.  Having elected an African-American democrat, America seemed to be shrugging off eight full years of its most oppressive, incompetent, and deceitful government of the modern era and was moving boldly into a new political and social revolution anchored by hope.  There remained the promise that from […]

Read more "2009: The Year of the Hypocrite"

The US Health Care Debate

American politics are so polarized at the moment around the issue of health care that it’s hard to envision a favourable outcome.  I would define a favourable outcome as a more cost-efficient system that guarantees coverage for all American citizens and provides non-elective treatment for free — or, at least, on a co-pay basis that […]

Read more "The US Health Care Debate"

The Fox and the Hedgehog: Which one are you?

“The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing.”  – Archilochus Which one are you?  The ancient parable of the fox and the hedgehog has come into increasing view in popular culture lately.  And while its origins are somewhat ambiguous, the allegory has been applied to entrepreneurs, scientists, philosophers, playwrights, business leaders, […]

Read more "The Fox and the Hedgehog: Which one are you?"

iPhone Skype for Canada — A workaround

Skype launched an iPhone client this week, everywhere except for Canada.  According to a Skype representative interviewed by Tom Keating, “There are some patent-licensing issues which prevent us from offering it there.”  Translation:  This is a long-term issue.  The representative further went on to state that “it’s codec related.” I’m thinking that might be a […]

Read more "iPhone Skype for Canada — A workaround"

The Yellow Pages: Adapt or die?

While there is much kvetching and hand-wringing of late regarding impending demise of the dead-tree business (sic) that is the newspaper industry, there is another dead-tree business that is descending quickly toward irrelevance:  The Yellow Pages. Every year, beginning around this time, trucks shunt around cities and visit every household in North America, and indeed […]

Read more "The Yellow Pages: Adapt or die?"

Another C-17 incident at Bagram

Last week a US Air Force C-17 transport plane (tail #96-0002) made a dazzling nighttime “wheels up” belly landing at Bagram Air Base in Aghanistan sending sparks and flames higher than the tailplane (which on the C-17 is five stories high).  The crash led to a three-day closure of the airfield for fixed-wing operations, as […]

Read more "Another C-17 incident at Bagram"