Coffee Briefing June 7, 2022 – Xero looks for tech talent across Canada; Square to bring Tap to Pay on iPhone to Square Sellers; Canadians are reliant on digital tech for travelling; and more

Coffee Briefings are timely deliveries of the latest ITWC headlines, interviews, and podcasts. Today’s Coffee Briefing is delivered by IT World Canada’s editorial team!

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Fredericton Innovator Wins Award for AI Platform that Helps Boost Athletic Performance

Pascal McCarthy. Source: Rob Blanchard Photo UNB

Pascal McCarthy has won a Mitacs Entrepreneur Award from Mitacs, a national innovation organization that fosters growth by solving business challenges with research solutions from academic institutions, for his first-of-its-kind AI platform that helps boost athletic performance.

McCarthy, a Mitacs intern who earned his Master’s in Science and Engineering at the  University of New Brunswick, has been analyzing and improving both the way pro athletes move, and their mental wellbeing, by using an AI-based platform he created.

The platform uses computer vision to detect a person’s silhouette on a webcam or smartphone video. It then identifies the position of all of their joints using an AI-based estimation model as they go through a set of evaluation exercises, like squatting, walking, or balancing with their eyes closed. The results are combined with answers from a clinically-validated intake form, used to determine mental health predictors like stress, anxiety, or depression.

Once the root cause of the performance issue is identified, proprietary algorithms suggest expert tips and training methods to efficiently correct bad habits and optimize performance.

He was presented with the Award on June 2 at a ceremony in Montreal.

Square announces plans to bring Tap to Pay on iPhone to Square Sellers later this

Source: Square

Square is signing on to support Apple’s new Tap to Pay on iPhone feature. The feature allows businesses to use an iPhone to accept contactless payments without the need for any additional hardware.

Square says that it will roll out support for Tap to Pay on iPhone through its existing Square Point of Sale (POS) app.

In a press release, the company said using just the Square POS app and an iPhone, sellers will be able to seamlessly and securely accept contactless payments with Tap to Pay on iPhone. 

According to Square, this feature builds on Square’s powerful software, which helps sellers drive more business with marketing and loyalty programs. It also helps easily track and manage product inventory, and simplifies businesses cash flow with business banking tools that provide them instant access to their Square sales.

Square said it will roll out the feature later this year; an Early Access Program was launched last week for select merchants.

CENGN Academy to offer two free courses to students from an ICT-related university or college program in Canada

CENGN Academy, has announced that, this July, it will be offering two courses (valued at $2,600 each) for free to 40 students from a information and communications technology (ICT)-related university or college program in Canada.

The CENGEN (Canada’s Centre of Excellence in Next Generation Networks) Academy is a pan-Canadian training program and a key driver in bridging the skill gaps identified by the most advanced companies in cloud computing and networking technologies. 

The two courses the academy is offering this summer are the Docker and Kubernetes Basics course and the Machine Learning (ML) with Python program. The academy recommends the Docker and Kubernetes Basics course for those who are new to Cloud and DevOps, and the ML with Python course for those who are interested in programming and data science. Each course will begin on July 4, 2022 and combines self-paced online training and labs which will be accessible until August 2, 2022. 

Participants can take the digital badge exam after completing the course and showcase their credentials on LinkedIn to make their profiles attractive for potential employers. 

Interested students can apply here by June 26, 2022.

New Cisco survey reveals if a travel app fails, 42 per cent of Canadians say it could ruin their whole trip

Source: Cisco AppDynamics

Almost 80 per cent of Canadians say they are looking forward to taking a trip this year. But as they plan their trips, a Cisco AppDynamics study has revealed just how dependent Canadians have become on digital applications to make summer vacations happen.

According to the study, from researching destinations to scheduling flights and booking hotels, the average Canadian uses 23 different digital applications throughout their vacation process. 

Additionally, 64 per cent of Canadians say applications and digital services are now central to their vacation experience. Seventy per cent say if a travel app, such as an airline or hotel booking, were to fail, it would disrupt their vacation, and 42 per cent say it could ruin their whole trip. About 40 per cent say if they experience a problem with an application when planning, booking or traveling on vacation, they’ll immediately switch to a different digital option.

Canadians are interested in going paperless when they travel, with over 40 per cent saying they don’t intend to carry any paper-based tickets, relying entirely on applications such as digital wallets throughout their trip.

Tech company Xero is looking for talent all across Canada

IT hiring, tech jobs

Xero, a global tech company from New Zealand that has established a new product and tech hub in Toronto to support small and medium businesses (SMBs) across the country with its cloud accounting solutions, is now hiring in Canadian cities such as Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver, with both remote and in-person opportunities. 

The company has more than 13 job opportunities in Toronto and about eight opportunities in Calgary. It is also looking to fill eight remote positions. 

Check out the full list here

More to explore

New owner of Canadian ransomware negotiating firm expands its mandate

Two of Canada’s best known names in cybersecurity are teaming up again, this time to lead a firm specializing in post-breach remediation.

Government of Canada invests $10 million to support innovation in the tech sector

Yesterday, the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, announced an investment of C$10 million for the Waterloo Accelerator Centre to launch the Venture Studio Innovation Program.

Info-Tech, Forrester analysts slam Broadcom buy of VMware

The May 26 blockbuster US$69.1 billion purchase of VMware by Broadcom has unleashed a flurry of negative reaction, not only among enterprise customers, but also within the analyst community.

Every house in P.E.I. to be connected to high-speed internet by 2025

Every house in Canada’s island province will be hooked up with fibre optic internet, the federal government announced last week.

Privacy commissioners find Tim Hortons violated privacy laws

Results of a joint investigation launched in June 2020 by the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada and Canada’s three provincial private sector privacy authorities in Alberta, British Columbia, and Quebec, directed at the Canadian operator and franchisor of Tim Hortons, The TDL Group and its parent company Restaurant Brands International have revealed that the company had violated federal and provincial privacy laws with its app’s location tracking.

Fix issued for critical vulnerability – Atlassian advises users to update Confluence collaboration software

Users of Atlassian’s Confluence collaboration software were warned last week to either restrict internet access to the software or to disable it due to a critical vulnerability.

Canada needs to develop digital policy to reach net zero, report finds

new report has found that digital policies are being overlooked by Canada as the country continues on its path towards net zero.

This Week in Ransomware – Friday, June 3, 2022

This week marked a number of ransomware attacks and continued growth of new means and methods of extortion practiced by ransomware gangs. The question that springs to mind is, of course – what can be done? We thought we’d devote this issue of TWIR to what you can do to fight back.

Channel Bytes June 3, 2022 – Unicon adds MSP licensing; ConnectWise Incident Response On-Demand now available; nominations open for LEAD Awards; and more

Staying informed is a constant challenge. There’s so much to do, and so little time. But we have you covered. Grab a coffee and take five while you nibble on these tidbits.

Listen to the latest episode of Hashtag Trending

Taiwan places harsh chip export restrictions on Russia and Belarus, a software engineer is suing Amazon for work-from-home costs, and Ford wants to move all EV sales online.

Listen to the latest episode of Cyber Security Today

This episode reports on critical security updates issued by Atlassian and GitHub, a ransomware attack on Foxconn and the  takedown of the FluBot Android malware

Listen to the latest episode of Hashtag Tendances (Hosted by Direction Informatique)

If you live in Quebec, or prefer to consume the latest technology news in French, our sister publication Direction Informatique has you covered. Follow them on Twitter as well.


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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Samira Balsara
Samira Balsara
Samira is a writer for IT World Canada. She is currently pursuing a journalism degree at Toronto Metropolitan University (formally known as Ryerson) and hopes to become a news anchor or write journalistic profiles. You can email her at [email protected]

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