Edmonton-based startup teaching elementary students code

Local startup founded by U of A graduates teaches basics of programming in more than 30 Edmonton-area schools

Edmonton-based startup teaching elementary students codeU of A graduate students are teaching Edmonton elementary students how to write computer code for simple games and apps. The coding may be simple – just a few instructions enabling a computer to calculate whether it’s too cold for recess, for example – but the logic is the same as you find in more…

With a little help, clean tech will revive Alberta’s economy

Let’s hope our government has the vision to ensure we make the most of this golden opportunity

With a little help, clean tech will revive Alberta’s economyAll the hand-wringing and anger over the way the Rest Of Canada treats Alberta and its oil and gas sector obscures the fact that some very, very interesting things are developing in clean technology. It seems that cynical Canadians both to the east and west of this province are too ready to dismiss claims that…

Vision, not ideology, will lead Albertans into the future

Alberta’s leaders need to recognize that technology is changing everything, everywhere, and fast. Here's a roadmap

Vision, not ideology, will lead Albertans into the futureThe Alberta election on April 16 will be won or lost on the basis of how Albertans view its economy. A pivotal part of that is the health of the province’s associated innovation ecosystem. In March, the Alberta Council of Technologies Society (ABCtech) and Economic Developers Alberta (EDA) together surveyed more than 500 business and…

Why the Alberta technology sector can’t seem to pull ahead

Dispatches from the Alberta technology trenches

Why the Alberta technology sector can’t seem to pull aheadNow that the energy industry is no longer the engine of growth it once was, Albertans are finally waking up to a cruel reality; we’ve put all our economic eggs in one (carbon-emitting) basket. Albertans' new urgency to diversify their economy will require changing the way we do things. At a minimum, we will need…

Putting artificial intelligence to work for Alberta’s future

The increased use of AI changes the job market. Some jobs disappear. New jobs are created. AI applies to more existing jobs

Putting artificial intelligence to work for Alberta’s futureAlberta’s job market is a powerhouse. We had the highest employment rate in the country last year with 66.7 per cent of our population age 15 and over working at a job. That’s five percentage points above the national average and 16 points higher than the lowest rate, which is found in Newfoundland and Labrador.…

How to seed Alberta’s future as a tech giant

It’s time for the provincial government to get involved in tech development by providing venture capital insurance

How to seed Alberta’s future as a tech giantYou hear a lot of talk these days that Alberta needs to “go green” and that technology should be to the 21st century what energy was to the 20th. But if the energy industry is supplanted, how will the Alberta government replace the billions of dollars in resource royalties that flow into its treasury every…

Oil price instability a wakeup call for Alberta

The province's undercapitalized and underperforming technology sector could, if adequately supported, deliver above-average returns for 20 or more years

Oil price instability a wakeup call for AlbertaThere’s an old saying in the strategy game: “Nothing fails like success.” A company (or a provincial economy) that has been very successful in the past will cling desperately to that formula long after its breakdown is obvious. That's true in spades for the oil-and-gas-driven Alberta economy. Albertans need to quit treading water policy-wise, hoping the…

Planting the seeds for Alberta’s next innovation generation

Rainforest Alberta is connecting Alberta innovators to create conversations and relationships that could be incredibly important to the province’s future

Planting the seeds for Alberta’s next innovation generationHere’s a word to add to your vocabulary: autopoiesis. It’s not likely you'll ever drop it in casual conversation but it should help frame any discussion about the next generation of Alberta innovation. A Greek word, autopoiesis refers to systems that sustain and nurture themselves. The concept is rooted in biological systems but the underlying principles are now used…

Unleashing Alberta’s technology sector

Alberta's tech sector needs to escape the Starvation Zone to become successful commercial businesses

Unleashing Alberta’s technology sectorHere we go again. Alberta Premier Rachel Notley is commissioning a panel to study methods to diversify Alberta’s economy. The public may be forgiven for shrugging their shoulders; after all, diversification has – theoretically – been a top priority since former Premier Peter Lougheed. The truth is, when it comes to diversification, we know what…