Wednesday, 22 October 2014, 7:59 am

Apple keeps watch-ful eye on wearable technology

By BECKI CREWE
Staff Writer
Say goodbye to bare wrists and start watching your calendar for the new Apple Watch set to release in 2015.
Apple has announced its new Apple Watch with the same features and performance techniques as an iPhone and other smartphones. Apple’s watch can call, message, navigate, run applications and will send notifications and alerts relevant to the user’s life schedule.
“I think it’s a very necessary step in the evolution in smart technology,” said Conor MacNeill, a professor of the Game Development program at Niagara College.
In a press conference introducing the unique device, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook said, “Apple Watch is the most personal device we’ve ever created. We sought to make the best watch in the world, one that is precise.”
“Because you wear it, we invented new intimate ways to connect and communicate directly from your wrist.”
The watch is designed with a digital crown multifunctional device that...

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NGN gains its independence

By KAITLYN ANDREWS
Staff Writer
Nerds and Geeks of Niagara (NGN) Club is standing on its own.
As of Oct. 5, NGN decided  to become more than an exclusive student only club.
“The amount of paperwork involved in running a club with over 100 members is staggering,” said former NGN President Mazie Bishop. “Adding work and school to that puts a lot of pressure on the president and the group committee.”
Along with members of the club having conflicting schedules, whether it was work or school, it made it hard to schedule club events.
“I think it is the best decision for the group,” said Bishop. “With outside resources to support them, it gives the group more opportunity to go and explore Niagara.”
Now that the club is officially independent, members have an opportunity to go out into the community.
“This is an empowering move for the club because it allows for free speech and opinion,”...

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Valued costumes at Value Village

By COLIN KASPER
Staff Writer
Shown are Value Village front-end employees Miranda Mason as a flapper, Hailey Masterson as Alice in Wonderland, Maddy Leblanc as a witch, Lisa Friskie as Jack Skellington, Renita W as a mermaid, Darien Peacock as Al Capone and Rebecca Hunt as “Grr.” PHOTO BY COLIN KASPERThousands of brand new Halloween costumes, accessories and a nearly endless selection of thrifty costumes and clothes are available at Value Village. And besides nifty costumes, sales help generate funds for research into cerebral palsy.
Every donation dropped off at the storefronts, benefits the Ontario Federation for Cerebral Palsy regardless of whether it can be sold. Sometimes items don’t meet their resale criteria due to rips or stains. It doesn’t matter because the non-profit partners, the Ontario Federation for Cerebral Palsy as well as the Canadian Diabetes Association, will receive funds as Value Village contributes proceeds based on the weight. Everything on the sales floor is commonly assumed by the public as being free to Value Village, but the organization has paid for every item.
“We have our own line of costumes, called Alterego, you can only find that at Value Village or SaversStores because we’re owned by...

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Ash trees borer-ed to their death

By JOEL OPHARDT
Staff Writer
Jennifer Hopkins stands beside her dying ash tree. Photo by Joel Ophardt.As cooler weather begins to pluck withering leaves from ash trees around Ontario, tiny invaders feast ravenously behind their bark. The emerald ash borer, an invasive beetle from Asia, has quietly killed millions of ash trees in North America, and stands to end the changing of the seasons for billions more if left unstopped.
Justin Gaudon, a PhD student specializing in forest entomology at the University of Toronto's Faculty of Forestry, is looking to stall the ash borer’s momentum through his research on native parasitoid wasps and their effect on the ash borer. These stingless wasps use the ash borer as a host for their larvae, eventually killing the beetle. 
The research could not come sooner, as the North American ash is in desperate need of relief. The ash tree has been used extensively in urban planning throughout North America, and features prominently in Ontario’s forests. According to Joshua...

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Haunted tunnels reveal Niagara’s secret history

By BECKI CREWE
Staff Writer
Photo by Becki CreweE
very town has its secrets, some darker than others, but history doesn’t lie and people don’t forget.
The Screaming Tunnel and the Blue Ghost Tunnel have been frightening youths and Niagara Region residents for years.
Brock Thompson, Dustin McCabe and Mackenzie Heath, of Niagara Falls, said they have been coming to these tunnels for over five years, each time having a different experience with the presence of ghosts and spirits.
The Screaming Tunnel was initially constructed for drainage to remove water from farmlands and into the valley below. Farmers also used this tunnel as a way to transport goods and animals safely since the Grand Trunk Railway lines (now the Canadian National Railways) ran above.
It is near Warner Road, Niagara Falls and was constructed in the early 1900s. It is 16 feet high and 125 feet long. 
Over the years, it has developed a dark history.
Thompson said, “I...

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More than just the Old Canal

By KEVIN  FARRELL
Staff Writer
Young members of the South Niagara Canoe Club demonstrate the multi-use indoor tank at the Welland International Flatwater Center.  PHOTOS BY KEVIN FARRELLSanctuary, event centre, world class venue. All of these are encompassed in the 1,000-acre area of the Welland recreational canal lands. 
On Oct. 1, at the Welland International Flatwater Centre, the Welland Recreational Canal Corporation (WRCC) had Stephen Fischer, manager of business and operations, speak about efforts to improve the surrounding area, including the canal and waterway. 
The motto is: Protect the lands and waterways that make up the recreational waterway. All 1.3 million square metres of calm, clean, water and 24 kilometres of trails. 
The WRCC was established in 2001. The canal lands came under its management in 2008. In the next two years, it and the City of Welland “disentangled” costs associated with the canal lands from the city. 
This includes water, gas, hydro installations, staffing and vehicles. Under its jurisdiction is 1,035 acres, 635 acres of land and about 400 acres of water. The jurisdiction stretches from Port...

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Battle of Cook’s Mills re-enacted

By JAKE CAMUS
Staff Writer
The fight is on with over 400 citizens bringing the battle of Cooks Mills to life again. PHOTO BY J.T. LEWISIt’s been 200 years since Canadian soil was invaded by a foreign army. American forces were advancing through the Niagara Peninsula in 1814. Throughout the summer, the Americans had taken the town of Chippawa, Lundy’s Lane and Fort Erie. Finally, in October, they were ready to take Cooks Mills, just outside Welland. 
To commemorate this historical event, the 1812 Bicentennial Committee has organized a re-enactment on Oct. 18 and Oct. 19. 
There will be more than 400 participants from The United States as well as various parts of Canada. Roughly 300 of them will be acting as soldiers with another 100 or so acting as surgeons, campers and in female roles.
Along with the re-enactment, other activities will be available to the public such as a merchants’ row for vendors of historical souvenirs. 
Historic merchants, like Suttler’s Village, will be attending the event to sell their goods while dressed in...

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