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Friday , 30 January 2015

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A short guide to using colour in the home

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According to Professor Iain Stewart (How to Grow a Planet), we have fruit to thank for the colour in our world, or for our ability to see it. It seems that when fruit first appeared on earth sometime after the dinosaurs’ departure, animals, particularly primates, ate it up greedily, not waiting until the fruit was actually ripe. As a result, a lot of fruit was discarded half eaten, before the precious seeds within were ready to be dispersed. Since seed dispersal is crucial for a plant’s survival as a species, the fruit-bearing plants evolved a strategy to stop the waste: they made sure that their fruit would be sweet and ... Read More »

Not the safest, not the healthiest, but the best place to live is Toronto

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For anyone with an interest in how cities work, reports like the one just out from The Economist (Intelligence Unit), the one that names Toronto as the world’s best city to live in, are fun to explore. The report’s focus is security—it’s called the Safe Cities Index. It is not about which city has the nicest climate or best shopping, but about which cities provide the best health care, infrastructure, personal safety and digital security. One point the report makes is that cities are organic, in a state of ebb and flow, rise and fall. Conditions change, fortunes wane. Take crime, for instance. New York City had a shockingly high ... Read More »

Consumer group targeting toxic products at discount stores

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Bargain stores are great for some products, not so great for others. Everybody likes to get a bargain, after all, but there is that inescapable truth about getting what you pay for. Bargain or not, the customer still expects satisfaction. That depends somewhat on one’s budget and one’s expectations, but barring unforeseen catastrophes such as product recalls or complete failure on the first use, shoppers seem to be happy with the bargain stores. Would they be as happy if they knew that many of the products they are buying at those low low discount prices are toxic and could make them and their children sick? In the United States, according ... Read More »

Realtor named CEO of the year by PR group

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The CEO of Canada’s oldest and largest residential real estate company is the latest winner of the Canadian Public Relations Society’s CEO Award of Excellence in Public Relations. Phil Soper of Royal LePage was honoured with the award, first given in 1992, for his work in “defining the company’s vision and communicating it with impact.” According to the statement announcing the award, Royal LePage’s business has more than tripled its revenues and doubled the number of agents working under its banner since 2002 when Soper took over as CEO. He directed the restructuring of the company as it went public and expanded into multi-brand operations. During Soper’s decade leading Royal ... Read More »

Does choice of bike-friendly architect signal hope for Toronto’s bike plan?

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Toronto will be getting another building from famous London-based architect Norman Foster. Reports have it that he has been hired to design something for the corner of Yonge and Bloor where the old Stollery’s men’s clothing store stood for more than one hundred years. The city already has several Foster buildings, including the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy Building just south of Queen’s Park, on the campus of the University of Toronto. Foster’s latest building in his home town, where he also designed the “iconic” Gherkin building, is interesting for other than purely architectural reasons. The development consists of two residential towers, containing 930 apartments, and they contain one bicycle ... Read More »

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