The HST – A Canada Day Gift !

Ontario residents and non-residents traveling to Ontario will not be paying more taxes on the following :

  • CD, DVD, Blu-Ray Discs
  • TVs, Mp3 Players, DVD/Blu-Ray Players
  • Movie Tickets (reduction of 2%) / Cable Television
  • Computers, Hard Drives, Prepackaged Computer Software
  • Books, Audio Books & Retail Magazine Purchases
  • Music Lessons/Educational Services
  • Municipal Public Transit/GO Transit
  • Bridge, road, and ferry tolls
  • Products on which they paid both the GST and PST on prior to July 1st, 2010

But they will be paying more taxes on the following :

  • Internet Access Services in Ontario
  • Concert Tickets for events in Ontario
  • Alcohol purchases in Ontario
  • Gasoline/Diesel/Electricity/Natural Gas purchased in Ontario
  • Accommodation in Ontario (Hotels/Motels/Camping)
  • Airline, Bus and Rail Tickets/Taxi Fares in and from Ontario
  • Magazine Subscriptions (Ontario Residents Only)

In contrast British Columbia residents will be paying less in taxes to fuel up their cars and less on accommodation. But they’re still going to pay more for their utilities.

Isn’t this a FUN Canada Day gift ?!

Roger Ebert Hates 3-D Movies

On April 29th Roger Ebert posted his comments on the 3D film trend on his Newsweek column. And quite frankly I agree with most of what he had said.

3D appears to be a gimmick that Hollywood appears to think will make the consumer forget that their film plots are being recycled (ex. Dances With Tall Blue Aliens In Space).

So what if it pops out of the screen ?! There are limitations, especially when a person has astigmatism like yours truly. And I’m not about to pay more to become some beta tester.

Platinum Blonde On Tour

80’s rockers Platinum Blonde are back on tour :

May 8th, 2010 – Cobourg, Ontario
Park Playhouse & Performance Center
May 24th, 2010 – Oshawa, Ontario
General Motors Center
May 28th, 2010 – Peterborough, Ontario
The Montreal House

Platinum Blonde

Quick Fix For Windows 7 Audio Problem

I think Windows 7 is great but once every two months or so I run into a problem : The audio stops working from boot-up.

I have an Acer Aspire X1800 with HDMI connected to a Toshiba HDTV and sometimes when I boot up and start playing music or a video on Youtube no audio comes out.

Well, it appears that placing your computer in sleep mode for a few seconds fixes this problem.

I guess one of my audio drivers isn’t loading up properly. I’m assuming it’s one of the drivers that handle the HDMI audio because my speakers are connected to my HDTV and not my computer itself.

But of course it isn’t much of an issue because it happens so rarely. I’m sure Microsoft will get to the issue soon as well.

No Flash for iPad, iPhone & iTouch – Ever ?

Steve Jobs has posted an open letter basically claiming that Apple has moved on from Adobe‘sFlash for their iPad, iPhone and iTouch.

It appears that the company is not interested in providing Flash compatibility on those devices because Steve Jobs considers this technology to be antiquated and less secure in comparison to H.264 and HTML5.

Furthermore he claims that if Flash were implemented that the software required to decode older Flash material would drain resources in these devices, resulting in a significantly reduced battery life.

Shantanu Narayen, Adobe’s chief executive, responded to these claims on a Wall Street Online video.

a-ha will be no more

Having lost track of this Norwegian band after the release of their Lifelines icon album in 2003, I hadn’t heard that the band was going to officially split up at the end of this year, two years short of their 30th anniversary.

Apparently their latest release, Foot Of The Mountain, was quite the success in Europe and the trio had decided to go out with a bang, appropriately naming their final tour the “Ending On A High Note Tour“.

Not only was the album critically acclaimed but it topped the German charts, reached #2 in Norway and had debuted in the United Kingdom charts at #5 last summer.

It’s rather sad to see this pop institution go, Take On Meicon being one of the best known music videos of the MTV generation, followed closely by The Sun Always Shines On TVicon.

These videos, along with the videos for Train Of Thought, Hunting High And Low and their incredible cover of The Everly Brothers’ Crying In The Rain aired quite frequently on Canadian music video networks Much Music and Musique Plus from the mid 80’s to mid 90’s.

But of course these stations had pretty much dropped most of their music videos by the time Forever Not Yours and Lifelines were released in 2002 so their Lifelines icon album didn’t chart higher than the 28th position here in Canada at the time. And this album had topped the charts in Norway, Germany, Latvia and Estonia.

Actually, I don’t even remember hearing anything from Analogue (All I Want) on the radio when it was released in 2005, which was the band’s first UK top ten hit since 1988.

Well, at least Toronto residents will be lucky to see them perform live for one last time on May 10th at Massey Hall. I understand tickets are still available for the gig.