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Starlink one step closer to providing high-speed internet - BayToday.ca
Last month North Bay City council endorsed a resolution by the Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities that supports exploring all options in the quest for improved broadband internet capability, including emerging models of satellite internet, such as …
BayToday has recently carried stories about how North Bay and surrounding rural communities are demanding better internet service. Last month North Bay City council endorsed a resolution by the Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities that supports exploring all options in the quest for improved broadband internet capability, including emerging models of satellite internet, such as the Elon Musk-backed Starlink. See: Council looks to the stars in search of faster internet And: NetSpectrum moving forward with fibre plan in East Ferris And: Louder voices needed for faster internet service News came yesterday that The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has approved Starlink’s application for a Basic International Telecommunications Services (BITS) licence. It means SpaceX Starlink is now a registered telecom provider in Canada, but there is still work to be done to get approval for its satellite service in Canada. “The commission notes that a BITS licence does not by itself authorize an entity to operate as a facilities-based carrier or non-facilities-based service provider,” the CRTC’s Secretary Council Claude Doucet stated in a letter to SpaceX CFO Bret Johnsen. "With performance that far surpasses that of traditional satellite internet, and a global network unbounded by ground infrastructure limitations, Starlink will deliver high speed broadband internet to locations where access has been unreliable, expensive, or completely unavailable," says the Starlink website. Elon Musk recently tweeted that SpaceX will hopefully be able to launch a public beta in southern Canada once the satellites reach their positions. The post CRTC approves SpaceX’s BITS licence application for Starlink project appeared first on MobileSyrup. You can get updates on Starlink news and service availability in your area here.
Time to book your flu shot - BayToday.ca
Last flu season, the district had 124 laboratory-confirmed cases of influenza
Flu season is around the corner. The North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit is recommending that everyone get their flu shot. Last flu season, the district had 124 laboratory-confirmed cases of influenza. "By getting the flu shot, you can help protect yourself and the ones you love, and help reduce the burden on the hospital system during the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic," says a news release. The first shipment of the flu vaccine has been received by the Health Unit and is being shared with hospitals, long-term care homes, retirement homes, health care agencies, and health care providers. The vaccine is also available now, free at pharmacies around town. As of October 19 the Health Unit will offer appointments for the flu shot at the North Bay and Parry Sound office locations. To book an appointment call 1-800-563-2808 ext. 5377. Community flu clinics will take place, starting early November across the district. Additional information, including date, time, and location of the clinics will be made available closer to the date. The flu shot, including the high-dose flu shot for individuals 65 years of age and older, is also be available at pharmacies and through your primary health care provider.
The Backyard Astronomer: Mars closest this Tuesday - BayToday.ca
As the latter months of 2020 tick by, Mars will continue to dim as our distance increases. Our next close encounter occurs in December 2022
Over the past few months, the planet Mars hs been steadily brightening and is now at its peak. While it takes Earth 365 days to orbit once around the sun, Mars lies farther away from the sun taking 687 days to complete one lap. Every 26 months and an odd number of days, Earth catches up with slower Mars, allowing us to see greater detail on its surface through the eyepiece of a telescope. With a separation of 60 million kilometres on October 6, Mars is big and bright. Dubbed the “red” planet, Mars appears more orange than red and is the result of a large amount of rust otherwise known as iron oxide that covers much of the Martian landscape. It is now rising in the east after sunset and is visible all night long. Jupiter and Saturn are still seen in the western sky and set at midnight. Mercury is also in the west close to the Sun and harder to locate. Before the night ends, brilliant Venus is seen rising in the east around 4 a.m. The days of the week were derived from these five wandering planets along with the Sun and the moon. As the latter months of 2020 tick by, Mars will continue to dim as our distance increases. Our next close encounter occurs in December 2022. Ever since the first successful flyby by NASA’s Mariner 4 in July of 1965, dozens of missions have been sent to Mars to learn its secrets and answer to the ultimate question, is there life on Mars? With the help of orbiters, landers, and rovers, more and more discoveries are being made. One of the key ingredients to finding life is water. Every living organism on Earth requires water and scientist believe Mars had oceans some three billion years ago. As the planet continued to cool from its early creation, it lost its magnetic field protecting it from deadly solar radiation. The solar winds blew away the atmosphere and the water evaporated. There have been more recent discoveries of saltwater locked up in the permafrost. The next mission carrying rover Perseverance and a small helicopter named Ingenuity is currently on its seven-month journey to reach the planet in February 2021. Known as “The Backyard Astronomer”, Gary Boyle is an astronomy educator, guest speaker, and monthly columnist for the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. He has been interviewed on more than 50 Canadian radio stations and local Ottawa TV. In recognition of his public outreach in astronomy, the International Astronomical Union has honoured him with the naming of Asteroid (22406) Garyboyle. Follow him on Twitter: @astroeducator or his website: www.wondersofastronomy.com
North Bay firefighters heading to Oregon to battle massive wildfire - BayToday.ca
'In the spirit of cooperation, we want to do what we can to help our neighbours to the south during this difficult time'
Fire management personnel from North Bay and many other northern areas are being deployed to Oregon to fight the huge blaze at Holiday Farm fire near Redmond. "Our hearts go out to the people of California, Oregon, and Washington as they battle devastating and unprecedented wildfires, in addition to the challenges they face with the COVID-19 pandemic," Premier Doug Ford said today. "Ontario is an internationally recognized leader in wildland fire management with staff who are highly trained and skilled in fighting wildfires. We have been working together with other provinces and territories to field a Canadian team to support the firefighting efforts in Oregon." Yesterday, the province deployed 19 specialized MNRF personnel to assist with ground operations at the Holiday Farm fire spokeswoman Dinani, Maimoona told BayToday. "In the spirit of cooperation, we want to do what we can to help our neighbours to the south during this difficult time," added Ford. The Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre (CIFFC) says the MNRF contingent is among a group of 40 to 50 overhead personnel from Canada, including supervisors and technical experts, scheduled to arrive in the U.S. Pacific Northwest by today. The MNRF group is expected to remain in the US for 14 to 19 days. Other cities on the list in addition to North Bay:
- Sault Ste. Marie
- Sioux Lookout
- Thunder Bay
Can Elon Musk solve northern Ontario's internet woes? - BayToday.ca
The Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities board of directors passed a resolution Sept. 15 in support of Starlink — which is a low Earth orbit satellite system which can provide improved upload/download speeds and response times for rural residents
Internet access and remote/rural communities usually don’t go together well in a sentence, but Elon Musk’s satellite internet project aims to fix that. The Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities (FONOM) board of directors passed a resolution Sept. 15 in support of Starlink — which is a low Earth orbit satellite system that can provide improved upload/download speeds and response times for rural residents. “We know today our citizens require greater connectivity than 50/10 megabits per second,” said Danny Whalen, president of FONOM. “FONOM believes that the Starlink program is our best option.” See: Louder voices needed for faster internet service The resolution passed also calls on the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to permit the company a basic international telecommunications service license (BITS). Space Exploration Technologies Corporation (SpaceX) is the parent company of Starlink and it applied for a BITS license on May 1. On July 6, the CRTC published the procedural letter on its website which states that the CRTC “received a number of interventions, both in support of and in opposition” to SpaceX’s request for a licence. The letter further states that the CRTC provided SpaceX the opportunity to reply to these interventions. The interventions and replies are available on the Commission’s website. Discussions surrounding broadband and connectivity dominated much of FONOM’s recent board meeting, according to a release issued Sept. 16., as the federation is looking to work with municipal organizations and governments to bring improved internet services to the 110 communities it works with. SpaceX launched 180 satellites last month to grow the “mega-constellation” and Starlink has allegedly begun private beta testing. A tweet from Musk on June 24 stated that, “Canada is a major priority for Starlink!” Those interested in signing up for the potential to beta test Starlink can do so on the company’s website. FONOM said it will not be communicating with its partners to seek additional support for the Starlink program. Sarah Cooke is a Local Journalism Initiative Reporter with muskokaregion.com. LJI is a program funded by the Government of Canada.
Local Film Industry ready to return - BayToday.ca
'We are very pleased to welcome back the industry to our community'
North Bay Mayor Al McDonald says the first new project in the area is set to begin filming in North Bay this Monday. "We are very pleased to welcome back the industry to our community," said McDonald, during a media conference relating to the film industry at city hall on Thursday. "We are seeing local productions start and they do employ our local residents, the rent local storefronts, they rent houses, they stay in hotels and the spinoff is significant." Film producers, who were actually permitted to reopen back in June are excited to be working in North Bay again. "We are very excited to be bringing back a number of Christmas features to North Bay in the coming weeks and continuing to invest in the infrastructure and the people in this community," said film producer David Anselmo, who starts work on the film "Too Close for Christmas" on August 24 in downtown North Bay in a release. In addition, some projects that were underway in North Bay when production was halted have since returned to complete filming. "COVID-19 necessitated the shutdown of our production 'Unsettled' with less than two weeks of shooting," stated Derek Diorio, District Features President. "Now with the reinstatement of production here in North Bay, we are back moving along with the welcome help of the City of North Bay and Nipissing First Nation." McDonald reflects back in mid-March when the city was prepared to release its impressive 2019 film industry stats. That press conference, of course, was halted due to COVID-19. "This is an announcement we have been holding onto for about 159 days," said Mayor Al McDonald. McDonald says the city is coming off a record year for production in 2019 with a total of 15 productions in 2019 resulting in more than $46 million in local spending. That spending includes everything from wages, local products, construction services, rentals, locations, and accommodations. That included 377 filming days, involving 264 different locations. While those numbers in 2019 are optimistic, McDonald admits 2020 will not be a record-breaking year in North Bay for the film industry. "As pleased as we are about last year's numbers we have to be realistic about the numbers for this year," said McDonald. "There is no question, given production was halted back in March they have had to amend or postpone because of the pandemic so we are not expecting these type of numbers in 2020, that would be unrealistic, and it will take a couple of film cycles to resume to our pre-COVID levels but we are optimistic that northern Ontario film and television industry will rebound."
Weekend last chance to see comet NEOWISE - BayToday
The comet, first discovered in March, is now travelling away from Earth but will still appear in the northwest sky between 11 p.m. and midnight for the next several days.
THUNDER BAY - Stargazers hoping to catch a glimpse of a visiting celestial body passing through the solar system better look to the night sky soon, because it’s light is starting to fade as it journeys back into interstellar space. The comet NEOWISE, first discovered in March, survived its orbit around the sun and is now quickly hurtling away from Earth. “You probably only have until the end of this weekend,” said local astronomy enthusiast, Dave Gallant. “It’s getting dimmer, so now it’s a good chance to get out and try to get a picture of it.” For the next several days, NEOWISE can be seen in the northwest sky between 11 p.m. and midnight just below the Big Dipper constellation. “Look halfway to the horizon below the Big Dipper,” Gallant said. “If you have a pair of binoculars look for a fuzzy streak in the sky with a pinpoint end on it.” Images of the celestial visitor have been circulating widely on the internet, with stargazers snapping pictures from around the world. According to Gallant, comets as visible as NEOWISE are a rare sight in the night sky. “Comets are not very often in our night sky,” he said. “A lot of them orbit the sun just like we do and this one takes about 6,000 years, so it’s a once in a lifetime comet to see.” “A lot of the comets don’t survive their trip around the sun. They get too close and are made up of ice and dirt and water and they get sucked into the sun or melt and evaporate. The fact that this one did and we get to see it is pretty cool.” NEOWISE survived it’s trip around our star in July, producing the familiar tail comets are known for from the heat evaporating ice and water inside the comet. If you happen to miss out on catching a glimpse of NEOWISE, there is another astronomical sight to keep an eye out for, one much closer to home. The International Space Station is expected to make several passes over the city in the coming days and it’s kind of hard to miss if you happen to be looking up. “We are in the middle of a number of International Space Station passes overhead,” Gallant said. “It looks like a bright star travelling across the sky. It takes five minutes to travel from one side of the sky to the other side. There’s a period of time for two weeks every two months that you will get three or four passes a night.” “You think about there is five people floating in space about 400 kilometers above us.” Several websites can help you track where and when the ISS will be passing overhead. To see NEOWISE all you need is a clear line of sight to the northwest. Being outside of the city and away from light pollution will also make it easier to spot.
Funnel clouds seen on Lake Nipissing - BayToday
Environment Canada says multiple funnel cloud and waterspout reports have been received late Saturday morning
A funnel cloud has been sighting on Lake Nipissing around 11:30 on Friday morning. "My husband just took a photo of what appears to be either a tornado or a funnel coming across lake Nipissing," said Mary Emma Frances in a Sturgeon Falls Facebook Group. "He said it seems to be heading towards North Bay.," said Mary Emma Frances in a Sturgeon Falls Facebook Group. "Our cottage is close to Garden Village." Shortly after her post, Environment Canada issued a weather advisory noting that conditions are favourable for the development of funnel clouds today in the North Bay-West Nipissing area. "Funnel clouds, in rare cases, these may develop into a landspout tornado," stated Environment Canada. Environment Canada says multiple funnel cloud and waterspout reports have been received late Saturday morning. "More funnel clouds and possible landspouts are possible through the afternoon," said Environment Canada. These types of funnel clouds are generated by weak rotation under rapidly growing clouds or weak thunderstorms. This weak rotation is normally not a danger near the ground. However, Environment Canada believes there is a chance that this rotation could intensify and become a weak landspout tornado.
Corbeil man wins big money through Encore - BayToday
'You wake up in the morning to know you have an additional $100,000 in your bank account. It’s surreal'
Saying “yes” to ENCORE paid off for James Braund of Corbeil. Jim matched the last six of seven ENCORE numbers in exact order in the April 14, 2020 LOTTO MAX draw to win $100,000. Jim, a 67-year old father and grandfather says he plays the same numbers regularly. “I was at the gas station where I purchased my tickets and the terminal froze when the retailer scanned my ticket,” he shared, while at the OLG Prize Centre in Toronto to pick up his cheque. “When I realized I won $100,000, I was so excited,” he smiled. The retired public servant plans to take a family vacation with his kids and grandkids when the time is right. “My wife spent some time shopping today while I was here at OLG collecting my prize,” he remarked. “This was amazing. You wake up in the morning to know you have an additional $100,000 in your bank account. It’s surreal,” he concluded. The OLG Prize Centre in Toronto has resumed in-person prize claims for winning-ticket holders of $50,000 or more by-appointment only. The winning ticket was purchased at MacEwan on Highway 94 in Corbeil.
Two COVID-19 outbreaks at long-term care homes in Timiskaming - BayToday
All affected residents are in isolation and are medically stable
The Timiskaming Health Unit confirmed today that two COVID-19 outbreaks have been declared at long term care homes in the district of Timiskaming. Two residents of the Northview Nursing Home in Englehart have been confirmed positive, while the Temiskaming Lodge has one resident and three staff members who have tested positive. "All affected residents are in isolation and are medically stable," says a news release. "Positive staff members have been notified and are in self-isolation." The Timiskaming Health Unit, along with local hospitals and Ontario Health, are working closely with the two facilities to ensure all measures are in place to protect residents and staff according to the release. Investigations regarding these cases continue with contact tracing, in order to further reduce the risk of spreading the virus. Dr. Glenn Corneil, Acting Medical Officer of Health for the Timiskaming district said, “Having had previous cases of COVID-19 transmitted through community spread we knew the possibility of more cases existed. Even if people have mild symptoms the risk of transmission needs to be taken very seriously, and everyone needs to continue to follow all recommended public health measures to protect themselves and others.” Ministry direction requires an outbreak be declared with a single laboratory-confirmed case in a resident or staff member. Earlier this week the Ontario government launched a province-wide surveillance testing initiative for all long term care home residents and staff, including asymptomatic people. There have been 12 positive cases, not including today's, in Timiskaming District. Eleven have been resolved and one is in self-isolation.