TechTalk Blog
Tech News: Canadian Technology Sector Needs to Engage Women Better: Report

Bring on the ladies!!! Read this interesting article that was posted on Tech Vibes today.

Original article available here and written by Knowlton Thomas.

Canadian Technology Sector Needs to Engage Women Better: Report

According to the Information Technology Association of Canada, our nation’s information and communications technology companies are performing “about as well” as other sectors in terms of the engagement of women on their boards of directors. But the ITAC says this isn’t necessarily a good thing.

A new report from the organization suggests that there are “compelling strategic reasons to do better,” cautioning against complacency. The report notes that “studies have repeatedly found that, on average, companies with the highest representation of women on their boards financially outperform those with the lowest.”

The boards of the 10 largest Canadian ICT companies are 16.5% female compared with Spencer Stuart’s 2012 Board index of larger Canadian companies which average about 17%. But Karen Wensley, the author of the study Gender Diversity of Boards of Directors of Canadian ICT Companies, points out that the ICT sector lags significantly behind Canada’s five largest banks whose boards are nearly 30% female. And she adds that Canada overall is falling behind other countries, slipping to 9th place among industrialized nations.

According to the report, the ICT industry chronically faces a shortage of skilled workers to fund its growth: “The ICT sector has struggled to attract young women. And many young women in high school believe ICT companies would not be places at which they would want to work. Women board members can be role models who can help change this picture.”

“The engagement of women in our workforce has hovered around 25% for over a decade,” says Lloyd Bryant, vice-president of Hewlett-Packard Canada, who chairs ITAC’s Diversity Advisory Group. “ITAC has made improving the gender ratio a priority for the association. Women on ICT boards is an important focus for our work. Diverse boards of directors are a very important public expression of a company’s commitment to a more inclusive work environment. If enough companies step up to improve their board diversity, then the industry itself starts to look much more welcoming to the major contribution women make.”

Parking Lot Upgrades!!

You may have noticed some activity in the main parking lot at VITP and we’re happy to announce that we are finally upgrading our parking lot with an AquaPave Permeable On-site Stormwater Source Control System provided by Bricklok Surfacing and Landscape Supplies.

Sticking with VITP values, we have chosen an environmentally friendly and LEED approved system that has many positive benefits. AquaPave offers lower construction and life cycle costs with its pedestrian and disability friendly surfaces that eliminates surface runoff, reduces pollutants in the environment and provides water harvesting, traffic calming and geothermal systems solutions. It is a highly recognized product for storm water management and we are proud to house this product on our property.

The AquaPave system helps to clean and improve the quality of runoff water by filtration through the base and microbial action, and in many instances the outflow can actually be re-used for irrigation of domestic and commercial landscapes.

Phase 1 of this project will see two full sections of the parking lot completed, as well as the main entrance. Construction began in July 2013 and is expected to be finished sometime in September, while the rest of the parking lot will be completed at a later time. We appreciate your patience while this is taking place. If you have any questions regarding the upgrade process please feel free to contact VITP maintenance!

For more information on this product and its benefits, visit their website.

Stay connected on our blog and Facebook page for updates and pictures of the process!

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Tech News: Cisco to buy IT security firm for $2.7-billion

VITP tenants Cisco Systems Inc. had some big news to share today!

As posted in the Globe and Mail.
Click here to view.
Written by: Nicola Leske

Cisco to buy IT security firm for $2.7-billion

Cisco Systems Inc. said on Tuesday it plans to purchase cybersecurity company Sourcefire Inc. for $2.7-billion (U.S.), a deal that should spark more acquisitions in the industry as large vendors seek to profit from growing demand for IT security.

Cisco, which has been seeking targets to boost its network security business, said it will pay $76 per share in cash for Sourcefire, a premium of 28.6 per cent over its closing price on Monday of $59.08.

“We looked broadly at all the major players…Sourcefire fit perfectly,” Cisco’s business development chief Hilton Romanski said.

Sourcefire shares rose 27.7 per cent to $75.48 in noon trading while Cisco stock was relatively flat at $25.73.

Analysts said the valuation may be high but the deal made sense for Cisco, which has lost market share in network security to small, innovative rivals such as Juniper Networks Inc., Check Point Software Technologies, and Palo Alto Networks Inc.

Cisco wants to be the top player in security and shed its reputation of lagging in that area, company security head Chris Young told analysts on a conference call.

“We will not rest until we are the number one security partner for our customers, hands down,” he said.

More acquisitions should be on the way in the tech security sector, which Research firm IDC has said spending this year should generate 7.8 per cent revenue growth for vendors.

“We view this morning’s news as ‘game changing’ for the cyber security space as we expect a surge of consolidation to take place over the next 12 to 18 months,” said Daniel Ives, a tech analyst with FBR Capital Markets.

He added that larger technology players such as IBM, Juniper, Symantec and EMC could look to acquire smaller security players to help drive growth given the high priority security has in IT spending.

Brian White, an analyst at Topeca Capital Markets, said Dell Inc. and Hewlett Packard could also be candidates seeking to expand their security offerings and that the Sourcefire acquisition could be the beginning of more transactions.

Potential targets are smaller, more nimble companies that provide up-to-date network security to combat advanced hacking attacks. Security protection needs have grown more complex with the proliferation of web applications, social media and video streaming.

Palo Alto Networks, FireEye, Fortinet and Barracuda Networks are considered top picks.

FBR’s Ives said Fortinet could be worth around $39 a share for example.

Cisco said it will integrate Sourcefire, based in Columbia, Md., into its security business. Sourcefire chief technology officer Martin Roesch and other top executives will join Cisco’s security group.

BMO analyst Tim Long said adding Sourcefire gives Cisco’s business about 20 per cent more scale and improves the cloud security offering.

“We see this acquisition turning Cisco’s security business from low single-digit growth to mid high-single-digit growth,” Long said.

Cisco said the deal should close during the second half of this year, and it expects the acquisition to be slightly dilutive to non-GAAP earnings in fiscal year 2014.

Young did not rule out further acquisitions because cyber security threats were constantly changing and adversaries were well-funded.

“As the landscape changes we will respond, organically and non-organically,” Young said.

Cisco chief executive John Chambers said in December that Young had a “blank check” to overhaul the business.

Business Process Technology Solutions workshop coming to VITP on September 19th!! RSVP now!

Check out this exciting seminar coming to the VITP Conference Room on September 19th. It will be full of excellent speakers and provide plenty of useful information!

Business Process Technology Solutions – Local Resources 

This workshop is supported by the Digital Technology Adoption Pilot Program & Camosun’s Center for Applied Research & Innovation (CARI)

  • Thursday, September 19th (includes FREE lunch)
  • 11:00am – 1:00pm
  • Vancouver Island Technology Park / Boardroom– 4464 Markham St
  • RSVP – John Juricic (john@harbourdigitalmedia.com)

1. Camosun’s Center for Applied Research & Innovation (CARI) – Introductions 

  • PowerPoint “Support for Innovative Businesses (Includes detailed DTAPP Overview) – Industrial Technology Advisor / National Research Council

2. David Lokhorst – Founder, Poncho Wilcox Engineering

  • Purchasing Mgt Software for SME’s
  • Small and medium-sized manufacturing and design shops need easy-to-use solutions to maintain control of their purchasing process, but existing systems are designed to meet the needs of much larger companies.  PartsMinder automates the purchasing process without requiring a large investment in time, infrastructure, or training.  PartsMinder was designed to expressly solve the needs of small and medium sized companies.

3. Tony Bjorson – CEO MerchAdvisor 

  • Quickly and easily save money on your credit card processing
  • receive multiple quotes from leading payment providers
  • find everything you need to process payments

4. Mary Colak – CEO MNC Consulting Group Ltd. 

  • Putting “Lean” into technology
  • Technology can help you work smarter, but only if your processes are efficient in the first place. Use Lean practices to identify and eliminate your organization’s “DOWNTIME” to improve customer value and make technology work for you, not against you.

RSVP as soon as possible to guarantee your spot!

View the online website here!

 

Registration is open for the Power to Score charity soccer tournament!!

PowerToScoreRevenueWire is hosting the first annual Power to Score charity soccer tournament right next door at PISE!

The event will be held on Saturday, August 10th from 11am – 5pm with all proceeds supporting Power to Be – Adventure Therapy for Kids. The tournament will consist of 18 teams of 5 players plus, and is open to men and women over the age of 13. All matches will be played on the PISE soccer field (located behind VITP at 4371 Interurban Road.) Each game will be 30 minutes in length with two 15 minute halves.

Registration deadline is July 26th, 2013. Click here to register!!

Cost: $250 per team. Each team will be able to choose the country they are to represent at the time of registration on a first come, first serve basis.

There will be prizes for the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place teams, with swag bags for all teams and will include a concession stand and beer gardens!

Additional events include: fastest shot and dribbling challenge for the kids. Extra bonus is that the official goalie of the UVic Vikes soccer team will be in attendance, blocking shots and signing autographs!

For more information on Power to Be, click here.

Tech News: Small Canadian invention marks ten-year milestone in space

Written by Peter Rakobowchuk
Posted in the Globe and Mail
View the original article here!

One of this country’s most notable achievements will be spending Canada Day weekend marking its own milestone anniversary in a unique place, floating up in space.

After 10 years in the ether, several times farther from Earth than the International Space Station, it remains the world’s smallest space telescope.

MOST was also Canada’s first-ever space telescope when it was launched into space on June 30, 2003.

Project head Jaymie Matthews just can’t stop singing its praises. Why? Because the suitcase-sized satellite, which cost the federal space program $10-million, has been helping to lay a roadmap for where to search for life outside our planet.

It has helped make Canada a leader in the field of micro satellites.

But Matthews is particularly enthused about all the other possibilities that might be opened up by the 60-kilogram MOST.

The colourful University of British Columbia astrophysicist firmly believes there is life outside our solar system.

“Certainly simple forms of life like microbial life is probably very common — and I hope complex life,” Matthews said in a recent interview. “If it’s out there, we’re finding the places where it’s most likely to live.”

MOST stands for “microvariability and oscillations of stars,” the type of data it has been collecting over the past decade.

The space telescope, which is orbiting 820 kilometres above the Earth, was only supposed to have an 18-month mission to observe 10 stars.

But it’s looked at more than 5,000 stars over 10 years.

Matthews said MOST has been doing science it was never intended to do and looking at parts of the sky he never thought would be accessible.

The Canadian Space Agency mission has determined the characteristics of two exoplanets that are circling two bright stars.

Exoplanets are planets that orbit a star outside our solar system.

“One of them (55 Cancri e) is this super-exotic, super-Earth that goes around its star in 17 hours and 41 minutes,” Matthews said.

“Science is now outpacing science fiction.”

A super-Earth is a planet that has a mass larger than our own planet, but smaller in size than a planet like Uranus which is 14 times larger than Earth.

“Our determination of the planet’s properties led theorists to claim this planet has a carbon-rich interior and the core could be essentially diamond.”

“The other (HD 97658 b) is a planet that may have a rocky, maybe solid metallic, core and liquid mantle atmosphere,” he said.

Just recently, three planets that could potentially support alien life were discovered by researchers around a star (Gliese 667C) that’s orbited by at least six planets.

The U.B.C. scientist even boldly predicted that one of the hundreds of Grade Four students he’s met may eventually be making a big announcement.

“On a time scale of 10, maybe 20 years, there will be somebody who will be announcing the first evidence of life,” he said.

Matthews also boasted that MOST could even outlast two bigger and more expensive space telescopes.

NASA’s $600 million Kepler telescope, which also hunts planets, recently lost two of its four reaction wheels which act as gyroscopes. The 1,000-kilogram satellite was sent into orbit around the sun in 2009 and scientists are trying to save it.

The main computers have also failed on the COROT space telescope, a French space agency mission launched in 2006, which Matthews said cost $250 million.

“We went up three-and-a-half years before the COROT mission and more than six-and-a-half years before the NASA Kepler mission,” he noted.

“Suddenly Canada had a front-row seat doing the kind of science which normally had an admission price of millions of dollars and we did it first and set the way.”

David Cooper, is the CEO of Microsat Systems Canada Inc. That company used to be the space division of Dynacon Inc., which was the lead contractor for MOST.

He said that when the space telescope was being built, his engineers were concerned it would have a short lifespan because of radiation from the sun.

“They were predicting 18 months, maybe because they thought the radiation by that time would kill the electronics as it had killed other satellites,” Cooper said.

“But we chose the parts very well and, 10 years later, the proof is in the pudding.”

Cooper also said he expected MOST to continue to operate for several more years until it runs out of power that’s being supplied by its solar panels.

“There’s no reason that the satellite couldn’t at least be partially functional, to do what its doing for another three or four years,” he said.

The technology developed for MOST has created a niche for Canada, which has become a developer of small, inexpensive satellites.

In February, an Indian rocket helped launch NEOSSat, a $12 million Canadian Space Agency asteroid-hunting satellite, which is a clone of MOST.

It was joined by Sapphire, Canada’s first military satellite, which was also launched by the Indian Space Research Organization. Sapphire had a price tag of $65 million.

Two other car-battery-sized satellites, which are part of the BRITE Constellation series of six satellites, were also on board. They will eventually make up the first space astronomy mission, which will use “nanosats” to study the evolution of stars.

All six were designed by the Space Flight Laboratory at UTIAS, the University of Toronto’s Institute for Aerospace Studies.

The BRITE (Bright Target Explorer) nanosatellites, a Canadian-Austrian-Polish collaboration, each weigh about seven kilos.

A nano satellite is described as a small satellite between one and 10 kilograms, while a micro satellite weighs between 10 and 100 kilograms.

Simon Grocott, the head of engineering at the U of T’s SFL, said in an interview that the space-flight lab was first organized in order to build MOST.

Now, 10 years later, the Toronto lab is producing small satellites for countries that include Norway, Australia, and Slovenia which has ordered an Earth observation micro satellite.

Grocott said that when it comes to nano satellites, the Space Flight Lab is one of the most successful groups in the world.

“We’ve got 14 satellite programs in development — that’s certainly more than any nanosatellite manufacturer around the world,” he added.

“People are coming to us because of our experience and our capabilities in our area.”

Tech News: Startup HR: Leadership is Not About Power

Posted on Techvibes.com
Written by Tricia Hollyer
View the original article here

Startup HR: Leadership is Not About Power

There are a multitude of programs to develop leaders in our business world today, and there is a broad school of thought on how to build the company culture you want.

But most frequently leadership and organizational culture are seen as two different things, which is a fundamental mistake.

We develop our most effective leaders through a values-based organizational culture that supports and expands them, and we build powerful, progressive cultures through transformational leaders that drive them.

Our challenge, as leaders in the 21st Century, is to understand the interrelated nature of organizational culture and leadership, and to create the required reinforcement within our cultures that allows transformational leadership to flourish. Ideal leadership is not the domain of the individual hero who swoops in and saves the day; it is the collective effort of a business culture steeped in values, community, and consistent practice.

It is virtually impossible to separate the individual leader from their organizational culture because they are parts of the same system and have direct influence over one another. Both the leader and the culture must be values-based in order for the right reinforcement to happen. If the values are what drive the culture, then they must also drive the hiring, development and promotion of leaders in that culture.

Shared values make such a difference for both the organizational culture and the individual leader because as leaders, and human beings, we continually struggle with ambiguity and uncertainty. Values provide us a compass by which we can navigate the emotional turmoil of leading. We tend to have a belief that “strong” leaders don’t show emotion, and as such we can be unprepared to handle the emotional challenges that are a part of every leader’s experience. Shared values between the individual leader and the organizational culture provide relief from those challenges by providing clear direction.

Cultures that are values-driven also gain a competitive advantage both in performance and in employee engagement. Various studies show a growth rate of four times faster for companies whose culture is based on shared adaptive values, with a 750 times higher profit performance ratio, according to John Kotter and James Heskett’s Corporate Culture and Performance.

Jim Collins noted in Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies that values-driven companies outperform companies that are not by six times, and the general stock market by 15 times. Basing the system of an organizational culture and its leaders on shared, adaptive values is not only good for the soul, it is good for the bottom line.

If individual leadership can have such a substantial impact on the organization’s culture and consequently its success, should we not focus our efforts just on developing strong individual leaders rather than on the culture within which they work? The challenges that face us as people and as organizations are complex and intertwined. Heroic leadership assumes that one leader can be in control, can both understand and resolve complex challenges on his or her own.

We need to abandon this notion of leader-as-hero and support leaders who know that problems are complex and that everyone who is a part of the system needs to be included in finding solutions. This means opening our doors more, being more transparent about the decisions we are making, including more members of the organization in debate and dialogue.

We develop better leaders when we focus on the whole culture, not just the individual. Leadership isn’t about individual power, it is about building healthy workplaces where leadership can grow. As Lao Tzu said, “The wicked leader is he whom the people revile. The good leader is he whom the people revere. The great leader is he whom the people say, ‘We did it ourselves.'”

Our goal as leaders is to recognize the interrelated parts of the systems within which we operate—especially our organizational culture—and to ensure that we base our actions on a shared set of ethical values that allow our own leadership and our organizations to thrive.

 

 

VITP tenants featured on Tech Vibes!

Edwin Braun of Cebas Visual Technologies and Brian Purdy of Bocbee Holdings founded Deetectee Microsystems Inc. and are making headlines with their Single Burst Optical Recognition Software! Check out the article below.

Posted on techvibes.com
View the original article here!

Canadian Startup Deetectee Creates Unobtrusive Way to Identify Strangers

Wearable technology is seen as the next big step in mobile computing, but with these new technologies come new security concerns.

A push by major tech corporations like Google and Facebook to implement facial recognition software into these new platforms has received wide criticism, as consumers grapple with the idea of being constantly identified without their consent.

A new Victoria-based startup, however, believes that they have a solution.

The idea came about when Edwin Braun, CEO of Cebas Visual Technologies, a special effects company, and President of Deetectee Microsystems Inc., set out to design a mobile gaming platform that would allow complete strangers in close proximity to play together.

“You cannot just go around tapping everyone on the shirt asking ‘do you want to play a game?” he says.

Trying to create an organic gaming experience with complete strangers, Braun researched existing technologies such as NFC, Bluetooth, and GPS. However none of these were effective in identifying a person within the range he was looking for.

His solution is called Single Burst Optical Recognition, which he developed over the course of a year alongside Brian Purdy, CEO of Deetectee. Its biggest advantage is that unlike facial recognition software, it can be turned off.

“I think we have a technology that could stop the evil right from the beginning,” says Braun. “Because if you look at facial recognition, for example, you cannot screw off your head. Once this technology is out there, you cannot take it back.”

Single Burst Optical Recognition is a patented technology that uses optical recognition software to identify individuals or objects within 20 meters, in any lighting condition.

Deetectee has developed a small, low-powered device that works in tandem with smartphones, tablets, or computers, and can identify other devices, but they believe there is a potential for Single Burst Optical Recognition to be integrated directly into wearable technologies, such as the Google Glass.

“Not only do you have the ability to accurately detect a device through this optical recognition capability, once the device is detected a query goes to a Deetectee server database in the cloud, and it retrieves the online identity of that device owner,” says John Plas, director of strategy and development for Deetectee. “That’s very important, because you’ve effectively separated the online identity and the device from each other.”

By downloading the Deetectee app and registering it with a Single Burst Optical Recognition enabled device, users can change security settings directly from their smartphones, tablets, or computer. For example, a speaker at a conference might want to switch their device to “professional mode,” which would allow the audience to view their LinkedIn profile and recent publications. That same speaker can later go to a bar and switch to “personal mode,” which would display their online dating profile to anyone interested.

The implications for this technology are endless, explains Braun, from hands free mobile payments to border security, healthcare to gaming, and of course, social media.

“We think our technology can be used in so many ways,” says Braun. “I just imagine what Facbeook could do with that. I can’t even envision what they would do with such a technology.”

Though still in its infancy, the Deetectee team hopes to see their technology integrated into the next generation of wearable devices, eliminating the need for more intrusive biometric identifiers such as facial recognition software.

Tech News: Most of Canada’s Fastest-growing Tech Companies are Business-to-Business. Here’s Why

Posted by Jacob Serebin on techvibes.com
View the original article here

Most of Canada’s Fastest-growing Tech Companies are Business-to-Business. Here’s Why

Most of Canada’s fastest growing tech companies have something in common: they’re selling to businesses rather than consumers.

Out of the over 125 software, IT and web-focused firms on Profit Magazine’s list of the 500 fastest-growing companies in Canada, released in early June, only nine are consumer-facing.

Only two of those managed to crack the top 30—Electronic Box, a Longueuil Que. based Internet service provider, at number 28, and Ashley Madison, the online dating service for people who are already in relationships, at number 29.

While the Profit 500 is self-reported, and not comprehensive, the data does line-up with other, similar, reports. And Deloitte’s Technology Fast 50, an annual list of the 50 fastest-growing tech companies in Canada, released in November, was made up almost exclusively of companies in a business-to-business market.

“It’s part of the Canadian landscape,” says John Muffolini, Technology, Media and Telecommunications industry practice leader for Deloitte. “We have fewer companies selling directly to consumers.

Part of this, according to Muffolini, is because of the higher cost of marketing in the consumer marketplace.

“When you’re marketing to consumers, you may have the best technology but it’s hard to remove the Samsungs and the Apples,” he told Techvibes. “Businesses tend to go for the best technology, the best value, if there’s a value-ad.”

With less marketing dollars available, Canadian tech companies are playing to their strengths and going after low-hanging fruit, Muffolini says. This isn’t a new trend; both Profit and Deloitte’s past surveys suggest that the business-to-business side has been growing faster for some time.

“If you look at the past 10 years, there’s only a hand of Canadian companies that have been big in the consumer market,” says Muffolini.

In fact, on Profit’s 2012 list, no consumer-facing tech companies even made the top 40.

Muffolini says he’s optimistic about the future of customer-facing tech companies in Canada, and says he sees growing pockets in the app and gaming sectors. And when it comes to gaming, the lack of fast growth doesn’t mean it’s not big business.

“There are a lot of large companies with Canadian operations, using Canadian talent,” says Muffolini. “But they’re not Canadian companies.”

Despite the fact that most of the fast-growing companies in the Canadian tech industry are in the business-to-business market, they’re still rather diverse, with companies providing cloud services, network security, e-commerce platforms, analytics and custom solutions all posting strong growth.

And it’s not just established firms that are continuing to scale-up, who are making these lists, “there are quite a few that are emerging that have ramped-up pretty quickly,” says Muffolini.

Tech News: ‘Unseen world’ revealed as University of Victoria launches world’s most powerful microscope

Written by Carla Wilson and published in the Times Colonist on June 19th.
View the original article here.

 

‘Unseen world’ revealed as University of Victoria launches world’s most powerful microscope

The University of Victoria’s one-of-a-kind microscope is winning global interest from academics and businesses keen to find out what secrets the high-resolution device can reveal.

Workshops to train scientists studying everything from medicine to engineering on how to use the ultra-sensitive microscope are expected to start this fall.

“We have bragging rights. We have the highest resolution in the world,” Elaine Humphrey, manager of UVic’s Advance Microscope Facility, said Tuesday.

UVic scientists are learning how to use the new Scanning Transmission Electron Holography Microscope, or STEHM.

The seven-tonne, 4.5-metre-tall microscope, with a footprint of six square metres, exposes subatomic objects at a magnification of up to 20 million times larger than what a human eye can see.

It uses an electron beam and holography techniques to study surfaces and the insides of materials. Gold atoms have already been viewed at a resolution of 35 picometres — a pictometre is one trillionth of a metre — and Humphrey said the microscope will be able to reach higher resolutions.

The microscope is in a $1.2-million specially designed basement room in the Bob Wright Centre Ocean, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences on campus. The temperature-controlled room protects the microscope from electromagnetic waves and vibration.

It was built in Japan by Hitachi and moved to Germany for further work before arriving in parts at UVic a year ago. It has been assembled and tested.

Workshops for users could start in the fall, Humphrey said. The cost to attend a workshop has not yet been determined. This microscope has attracted international attention.

Academics will be the main users, she said. Departments that will be interested include chemistry, electrical and mechanical engineering, bio-chemistry, biology and physics. The easiest way for students to get access to the microscope is to work in a lab with a professor, she said.

Businesses interested include Redlen Technologies, a Victoria firm manufacturing high-resolution radiation detectors used in applications such as nuclear cardiology and baggage scanning. Another UVic scientist is working on fuel cell research with Vancouver-based Ballard Power Systems, Mercedes-Benz and the National Research Council.

“It has all kinds of new technologies in it,” Humphrey said. For example, when examining electrons, the better the vacuum, the better the resolution. The STEHM’s vacuum is between that of the moon and of space.

A typical transmission electron microscope has 20 electro-magnetic lenses to make the beam round. This one has 65, Humphrey said. Resolution improves with the roundness of a beam.

Its electron vortex beam allows researchers to move atoms around like a pair of tweezers.

The Canadian Foundation for Innovation, B.C. Knowledge Development Fund and UVic contributed $9.2 million. Hitachi contributed in-kind support.

Rodney Herring, a professor of mechanical engineering and director of UVic’s Advanced Microscopy Facility, spearheaded the move to acquire the microscope, starting his efforts in 2002.

“The STEHM will be used by local, regional, national and international scientists and engineers for a plethora of research projects relevant to the advancement of mankind,” said Herring, who has been testing the microscope.

“This enables us to see the unseen world.”

UVic is showcasing the microscope at the Microscopical Society of Canada conference running to Thursday. A public information session will be held Thursday from 4:30 to 5 p.m. at UVic’s Bob Wright Centre in Flury Hall.