Monday, June 22, 2020

BlackRock, Fruit Farmers and Federal Contact Trackers: The June 22nd Episode of the Age of Ingenuity

Welcome to the June 22nd, 2020 episode of the Age of Ingenuity.


The world’s largest and perhaps most influential financial institution has sunk its carnivorous teeth into our current Federal government and will have a great deal of influence on Canadian innovation going forward.

Sources cited during this episode include the following:



"Age of Ingenuity" tracks Canada's "innovation ecosystem," the organizations, agencies and individuals attempting to turn innovative Canadian start-ups into world class, billion dollar "unicorns," able to anchor industries and create jobs.


Age of Ingenuity Credits


Producer and Host - Chuck Black
Host and Contributor - Brian Orlotti
Host and Contributor - Al Calder
Associate Producer and Contributor - John Penturn

Music: Freesound House Flow by Jaturo licenced under a Creative Commons 0 Licence.

The Age of Ingenuity is created using ZOOMOpen Shot Video EditorGimp, various laptops and cell phones, plus lots and lots of coffee.

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Copyright disclaimer under section 107 of the US Copyright Act of 1976, allowing for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism and under section 29 of the 1921 Canadian Copyright Act allowing for “fair dealing” exemptions for criticism, review and news reporting.

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3 comments:

  1. Part 1

    My name is John Penturn. I'm a producer who works with Chuck on AOI. I'll be commenting on the show after its done each week to give you a bit of a behind the scenes look on what went into distilling the ideas arrived at for any episode & a bit of a critique of how that manifested. IMPORTANT - If you've any ideas/suggestions of ANY kind, lay them on me/us here. We deeply consider all of them (even or especially questionable ones to figure out how we stimulated that response). If we like them we'll use them to shape the show & if we really like them (I've talked Chuck into this) we'll quite literally make you an honorary producer for that show, put you on the masthead & give you an on air mention. Seriously. We really are as dedicated as we appear to be. I'll be posting here, vimeo & bit chute for starters & engaging with many/most who respond as much as possible.

    Now writing about money issues is always a headache because making it into cogent story grounded in life as it's lived is always a challenge. We tried to not make it unduly abstract here & give you a sense of the mighty powers at be flexing their muscles & not impersonal, depersonalized greed being the gorilla in the room that sits where it wants & we're supposed to be fascinated by it sitting there taking up valuable real estate. The personalities & philosophies of those about to likely be in a position of power we go over in this episode. Also the nature of Black Rock & how they bestride our whole tech & general economic ecosystem& in what ways. The Yin & Yang of Brian, always grounded yet surprisingly nuanced vis a vis Al the eternal contrarian & skeptic (yet never an outlier or a cynic) is always usefully disturbed by Chuck our moderator in chief who's just what he seems to be, an engaging intellect who always has a twinkle in his eye - & brings that to any story in an a fervent attempt to always enlighten, practically.



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  2. Part 2
    If it isn't usefully enlighteningly inspiring - I don't want it in the show. Which brings us to the second segment. Chuck & I went back & forth on it& in the end could not find the data to put in what I thought was essential to make it just sing (getting a weekly show out - to our standard is definitely not for sissies & hard choices too often have to be made). Very useful info throughout but the soul of it was not quite there as in our best work. So, I'll now share the centrepiece that had we more time would've made it mesmerizingly more humane, intriguing & enlightening. Have you ever tasted an Ontario Strawberry & compared it to the California varieties? Not subtle. The On ones have a joie de vivre & vividly spirited taste the Cal ones can't touch. Not hyperbole. Even a little. If you taste a regular On Strawberry & compare it with a U.S. Organic (always tastier then standard because the extra pesticides used on berries are gone & it frees up the taste) the OPn berry is STILL has more flavour. I sat down with an On. Strawberry farmer at a Farmers Market & asked what the heck was going on, Americans should be more capable then that. They are but are darned peculiar about it I was told. Their priorities are incredible durability for shipping & then that they look perfect & new - & then lastly that thy have flavour. Canadians have a certain stubborn integrity & they reverse that order. Taste comes first, then durability & then superficial looks.

    I says something about the Canadian Character & how we express that in the products we make & our approach to life. You see it elsewhere too if you just look for it. The proverbial bimbo high on looks but short on everything else is not generally our first choice in just about any context.

    The last story in contact tracing had extra angles & new perspectives to make it worth watching. No retread of stuff we've covered before. We brought it to a higher level & made it far more current. Our commentators arguing about it really are arguing & passionate about expressing crucial & higher truths. We don't do snideness for it's own sake. Ever. Legitimate passion in the service of some higher good always. Take my word for none of it. Just look at them, its completely plain to see. Mind you Chuck (quite literally) spends hours & hours editing the best of what they all say into the 22 minutes or so of the show - but it's all authentic. Chuck uses his decades of journalism related experience at Global & elsewhere to find & shape the best stories that he & all of us find & then we speak our truth with the purity we appear to. In the end (or any part of the process) it really is for you to say. Tell us what you think. Really.

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  3. Part 3


    This being my first comment, I've noticed, I didn't flesh out the creative genesis of this show in terms of the personalities & resulting, specific input of all concerned. While Chuck is as always the overall editor, choosing & shaping the material, he frequently defers to us in what stories we cover & how, sometimes to a substantial degree. This Show's lead story on Black Rock & all related was Als baby. We all made contributions in his wake. The tone, thrust & much of the direction of it (including his comments) had his fingerprints obviously all over it. His skepticism concerning great carnivorous forces muscling their way into Canadian society & industry, he's always exquisitely sensitized to & no one pulls a fast one on him at all easily. He helps keep us all honest & psychologically lazy he;s not. Some of the most vividly interesting insights are often enough stimulated by Al. Never ever boring & some of the essential spice that keeps the show so tasty.

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