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Electric dreams

Electric dreams

In 1982, as the newly elected president of the St Andrew’s Junior High School Computer Club, my first official duty was to acquire for the group a copy of the Eliza program, an early foray into artificial intelligence. Before then our chief source of entertainment had been reproducing an image of a naked woman on […]

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Fancy diving too

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Fancy diving too

This being an election year, we can expect to hear from the perennial pool lobby, a group of earnest would-be swimmers who have been trying to get a recreation centre built in our community. Late last year, the committee published a study commissioned to determine if a pool would be economically viable. Common sense would […]

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The value of nothing

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The value of nothing

One of the currents crisscrossing the Highlands lately concerns the steady drip-drip of public sector contracts lost by local businesses. It’s an important topic because for most of the year, the public sector is the main source of money coming into the Highlands economy. Add the salaries of municipal and county employees, teachers, healthcare workers, […]

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Flapper, yessir

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Flapper, yessir

About 30 years ago my junior high school class took a trip to the Scarborough Roller Palace, our go-to alternative when there wasn’t enough snow for the scheduled outing, skiing. I don’t know how it fit into the curriculum, but every year we were invited to sign up for various activities each Wednesday in February. […]

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Get the message

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Get the message

After the flood earlier this year, the county sent a letter to the federal environment minister asking for, among other things, an independent review of what happened. After several months – so long that the original minister is no longer there – they finally received a response. Warden Moffatt and Reeve Reid are somewhat disappointed […]

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One more year

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One more year

In a few weeks, the reeves and deputy reeves of the Highlands – county council – will decide who will be warden for 2014. On its face it’s a straightforward and very civilized process; generally, the reeves take turns. There are exceptions, for example when Murray Fearrey stayed on an extra year to provide continuity […]

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Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice

A few weeks ago I ran into a neighbour at the supermarket. Alice, let’s call her, looked fantastic, a full 10 years younger than her 73-year old self. She beamed at me. I beamed back. I had seen that look before, a certain glow emanating from a woman of a certain age. Last time it […]

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Toe of frog

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Toe of frog

I think I finally understand Ford Nation. I received a survey recently. The survey asked whether I thought racialized people faced discrimination and if so, what options – from seminars to affirmative action – would I support to address it. Racialized, a word I’d never seen, according to the survey means, “expresses race as the […]

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Speak into the plant

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Speak into the plant

Nineteen-eighty, a hotel in East Germany. Two Westerners are having a conversation in their room as a spy listens in through a carefully-placed bugging device. The device is not working well; he can’t catch the words as they are spoken. Consumed with frustration he breaks all the rules and shouts through a speaker hidden behind […]

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At least the deer aren’t twerking

We are not, judging from letters received this week, done with our discussion of the Trophy Wall. ‘Tis the season, I suppose. It is true that in my travels I have never seen anything like it. As far as I know, we invented the whole concept, with much credit to those who inspired us with […]

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