Twitter account tracks anonymous Wiki edits from House of Commons addresses

Government of Canada Edits (@gccaedits) is a Twitter bot that automatically tweets whenever a Wikipedia entry is edited anonymously from a House of Commons-associated IP address…. Nick Ruest, a York University digital assets librarian, tailored the program to pick up changes from the House of Commons, the Department of National Defence and Industry Canada. “It’s a way to empower the citizenry to see what’s going on,” said Ruest in the Toronto Star July 16. Read full story.

Municipalities vie for postsecondary campuses
Some of Ontario’s fastest-growing municipalities, looking to host their own campuses, have partnered with universities in a bid for provincial funding to create postsecondary spaces in areas of projected enrolment growth, reported The Globe and Mail July 15…. York University chose from six municipalities in the York Region before partnering with Markham in a proposal to launch a third campus, its first outside Toronto. Read full story.

BRICS nations reach historic accord
The leaders of the world’s biggest emerging market nations reached a historic accord on Tuesday, creating a $50 billion (U.S.) development bank that is meant to rival the World Bank. The leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – collectively known as the BRICS nations – also established a $100 billion reserve fund which member states can use to support their currencies in the event of a crisis. “The fact that they showed the political will to do it, that’s a potential game changer,” said York University political science Professor Gregory Chin in the Toronto Star July 15. Read full story.

Purple martin mystery
Nature Canada’s Purple Martin Project is a part of an international initiative looking into the possible reasons behind the declining bird populations of aerial insectivores, and specifically the purple martins…. Working with researchers from York University and the University of Manitoba, Nature Canada is hoping to find ways to help restore and conserve these birds, reported the Kingston Whig-Standard July 13. Read full story.

Daughter brings parents’ business into Internet age
To make an informed hiring decision, entrepreneurs need to understand their cost structure, including overhead, direct and indirect expenses. This will facilitate being able to calculate the level of sales required to break even, and an understanding of whether it is best to hire somebody full-time or part-time, and how they should be paid, said Janne Chung, a professor of accounting at York University’s Schulich School of Business, in The Globe and Mail July 15. Read full story.

Why we need to push kids into careers in STEM-based industries
The Sanofi BioGENEius Challenge Canada (SBCC) is a biotechnology research competition that encourages students from across the country to pursue studies and careers in the exciting field of biotechnology, reported The Huffington Post July 14…. This competition is a real-life example of what can be created when industry, government and academia work together. Coordinated by Partners In Research, the SBCC is sponsored by Sanofi Pasteur Limited, Sanofi Canada, the Centre for Drug Research and Development, York University, the National Research Council Canada, Canadian Institutes of Health Research and Genome Canada. Read full story.

China’s challenge in Africa: avoid blame of neo-colonialism
“Talking about ‘South-South cooperation,’ making plans, is easier than doing it – especially in an increasingly integrated and competitive world economy. China is learning this while navigating the growing testiness in its relations with leading economies in Africa,” wrote York University political science Professor Gregory Chin in the Asia Sentinel July 14. Read full story.

Readers are better romantics, studies suggest
Several studies suggest fiction readers not only show more empathy than their peers, but are also more likely to fall in love, and develop intimacy with another person, reported The Huffington Post July 14. Raymond Mar, a York University psychologist, and Keith Oatley, a former cognitive psychology professor from University of Toronto, published two studies on this direct connection in 2006 and 2009. The pair writes “deep reading” helps fine-tune one’s “theory of mind,” through intense sensory immersion in literary material. Read full story.

Bored to death? Tips on surviving the ennui
Boredom is among the least studied epidemics inflicting the world, with brain doctors still being largely clueless about how tedium affects people’s lives, reported the Hindustan Times July 12. In Perspectives on Psychological Science, psychologist John Eastwood of York University in Toronto describes boredom as “an unfulfilled desire for satisfying activity,” where a person wants to be stimulated and do something, but is unable to connect with the world around. Read full story.

East Gwillimbury’s Pangos family makes point with basketball camp
Bill Pangos is the long-time head coach for York University’s Lions women’s basketball team. Daughter Kayla, 23, is a recent graduate of that Lions program. Son Kevin, 21, is preparing for his senior year on scholarship at Gonzaga University in Spokane, Wash. Mom Patty is a former star at McMaster University in Hamilton…. It should come as no surprise, then, that the Pangos Family Basketball Camp is a winner in the local basketball community as it gears up for its fifth season next month, reported the East Gwillimbury Era July 11. Read full story.