Welcome to Tech Talk With Vertical Motion, where we recap the biggest tech news, events, and headlines to keep you in the know.
Accelerate Okanagan Announces the Winner of the 4th Annual OKGN Angel Summit
2022 winner of the 4th annual OKGN Angel Summit. Photo: Accelerate Okanagan
On March 16th, OKGN Angel Summit investors cast their vote, selecting Sami Majadla, CEO of CertiCraft as this year’s winner. Founded in Nelson, British Columbia, CertiCraft is a compliance software company that simplifies the reporting process for cannabis producers. Following an intensive 10-week program, Accelerate Okanagan awarded CertiCraft a grand prize of $150k to assist further business growth. This year’s investment fund comprised contributions from 11 female and 21 male angel investors in the Okanagan region.
Co-founders Angela and Brady Rogers of The Rogerie, also took home money winning this year’s $5k People’s Choice Award. The Rogerie is a Kelowna-based business that manufactures consumer products out of plastic recovered from local landfills.
From everyone here at Vertical Motion, we want to congratulate all participants of the 2022 OKGN Angel Summit. The determination and dedication shown by each business is a true testament to Canada’s growing startup landscape. We wish all participants continued success and look forward to next year’s summit.
Gaming Giant Unity Calls Calgary Home in Latest Office Expansion
Unity is a cross-platform game engine developed by Unity Technologies. Photo: Verizon
The popular game engine Unity, whose advanced technology created Subway Surfers, Temple Run, and Pokémon Go, is now calling Calgary home. Founded in 2004, Unity powers approximately 70% of the mobile gaming market with over 5,000 employees across 45 locations. This exciting expansion into Alberta will play a big role in creating a major development hub for the metaverse, which is projected to grow by $640 billion in the next four years.
Located in Brookfield Place, the Innovation Centre for Digital Transformation totals 25,000 sq. ft and features 12-foot ceilings, uneven walls, and nursing rooms for new mothers. Designed with creativity, flexibility, and inclusivity in mind, this space is not exclusive to just Unity and its clients. As the Calgary Herald explains, the innovation centre will also help startups and other innovative companies develop their ideas.
Brad Perry, President and CEO of Calgary Economic Develop, expects Unity’s latest investment to encourage other companies to come to Calgary. As Perry explains, when companies like Unity invest in new areas “you start to get other companies that want to be around them… and build on top of their technology.” Unity expects to grow its Calgary location to 150 employees within the next 12 months and investigate further office expansion opportunities in the coming years.
James Webb Space Telescope Captures First Image of Test Star
James Webb Space Telescope captures a breathtaking photo during alignment evaluation. Photo: NASA/STScl
The space community was blown away on March 16th, 2022, following the release of the first image captured by the James Webb Space Telescope.
The image shown above is the 2MASS J17554042+6551277 star which is said to be 16 times brighter than the sun and located 2,000 lightyears away. But capturing this image was no small click of a button. The James Webb Space Telescope comprises 18 panels that move along 7 axes to form Webb’s 6.5-meter mirror. Ground controllers spent the last few months making nanometer movements to align the 10 billion dollar machine. NASA says that final adjustments to the telescope will finish by the end of May, with remaining calibrations wrapping up by late June or early July.
During NASA’s press conference, Associate Administrator Thomas Zurbuchen had this to say. “More than 20 years ago, the Webb team set out to build the most powerful telescope that anyone has ever put in space and came up with an audacious optical design to meet demanding science goals. Today we can say that design is going to deliver.”
Original Nikola Tesla AC Motor Can Power Your Electric Vehicle in This Rural Kootenay Community
Tesla’s alternating current motor at the Silversmith Generating Station. Photo: FACEBOOK/Randy Glover
Driving through the beautiful Kootenays and in need of a charge? Tesla, Nikola Tesla, that is, has got you covered. Located at the Silversmith Generating Station in Sandon, British Columbia, this alternating current (AC) generator has been in operation since 1897. Following Tesla’s trip to the Kootenays in the late 1800s, Sandon switched from the direct current (DC) invention of Thomas Edison to Tesla’s AC motor and hasn’t looked back since. The same motor was also implemented at Bonnington Falls, supplying power to the town of Rossland, becoming the longest high-voltage AC line in the world. Believed to hold the record for the longest continuously operating machinery in Canada, this generator has been in service for over 100 years.
As power plant manager Hal Wright explains, Tesla “probably changed our world more than any other single human being in terms of technology because he developed the first reliable way of transmitting power over any distance and it’s connected our world. If he only knew what he’d done.”
This Month in Tech History
Alexander Graham Bell’s Experimental Telephone. Photo: Smithsonian
March 10, 1876 – Alexander Graham Bell makes the first successful phone call to his assistant Thomas A. Watson.
March 12, 1989 – At CERN, Tim Berners-Lee proposes the World Wide Web to share information for academia and scientific institutions.
March 13, 1986 – Microsoft Corporation stock goes public at $21/share raising $61 million within the first day of trading.
March 15, 1985 – Symbolics Computer Corporation registers the first internet domain, which now stands as a digital tech museum.
March 21, 2006 – Former CEO of Twitter Jack Dorsey writes the first tweet saying, “just setting up my twttr.”
This is your communications officer on the bridge at Vertical Motion saying Godspeed and see you next month!
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Written By Tyler Mikitka, communications officer on the bridge at Vertical Motion.