Technology | The Canadian Encyclopedia

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  • Article

    Alberta Oil Sands Technology and Research Authority

    AOSTRA was merged into the Provincial Ministry of Energy's Oil Sands and Research Division in 1994. The corporation was dissolved in 2000 and its assets and liabilities were vested in the Alberta Science and Research Authority.

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  • Article

    Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Canada

    The term artificial intelligence (AI) refers to the capacity of a machine to simulate or exceed intelligent human activity or behaviour. It also denotes the subfield of computer science and engineering committed to the study of AI technologies. With recent advancements in digital technology, scientists have begun to create systems modelled on the workings of the human mind. Canadian researchers have played an important role in the development of AI. Now a global leader in the field, Canada, like other nations worldwide, faces important societal questions and challenges related to these potentially powerful technologies.

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  • Article

    Canadian Astronauts

    An astronaut is an individual involved in flight beyond the Earth’s atmosphere. Since the National Research Council of Canada held its first recruitment campaign in 1983, 14 Canadians have completed astronaut training and nine have participated in 17 missions to space. Specifically, they have flown as payload specialists, mission specialists, and flight engineers on NASA shuttle flights and expeditions to the International Space Station (ISS). Canadian astronauts have played key roles in repairing satellites and building the ISS using the Canadarm and Canadarm2 robotic technologies, and have advanced scientific knowledge by conducting a variety of experiments in space. (See also Robotics in Canada; Space Technology.)

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  • Article

    Bomarc Missile Crisis

    The CIM-10B Bomarc was the world’s first long-range, nuclear capable, ground-to-air anti-aircraft missile. Two squadrons of the missile were purchased and deployed by the Canadian government in 1958. This was part of Canada’s role during the Cold War to defend North America against an attack from the Soviet Union. Prime Minister John Diefenbaker’s refusal to equip the missiles with nuclear warheads led to a souring of Canada’s relationship with the United States, especially once the Cuban Missile Crisis brought the issue to the fore. The issue split Diefenbaker’s Cabinet and contributed to his party losing the 1963 election.

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  • Article

    Canada Science and Technology Museum

    The Canada Science and Technology Museum collects and preserves objects and data relating to scientific and technological history and development in Canada. It also carries out research, and sponsors exhibits and public programs. The museum is located in Ottawa, Ontario.

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  • Article


    The Canadarm was a remote-controlled mechanical arm, also known as the Shuttle Remote Manipulator System (SRMS). During its 30-year career with NASA’s Space Shuttle Program, the robotic arm deployed, captured and repaired satellites, positioned astronauts, maintained equipment, and moved cargo.

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  • Macleans

    Canadarm2's Broken Wrist

    This article was originally published in Maclean’s magazine on May 27, 2002. Partner content is not updated. It was a bad day at the aerospace office. Around 9 a.m. on March 5, NASA called Richard Rembala, a lead engineer for CANADARM2. There was a problem.

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  • Article

    Computers and Canadian Society

    Canadians use computers in many aspects of their daily lives. Eighty-four per cent of Canadian families have a computer in the home, and many people rely on these devices for work and education. Nearly everyone under the age of 45 uses a computer every day, including mobile phones that are as capable as a laptop or tablet computer. With the widespread use of networked computers facilitated by the Internet, Canadians can purchase products, do their banking, make reservations, share and consume media, communicate and perform many other tasks online. Advancements in computer technologies such as cloud computing, social media, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things are having a significant impact on Canadian society. While these and other uses of computers offer many benefits, they also present societal challenges related to Internet connectivity, the digital divide, privacy and crime.

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  • Article

    Direct-to-home Satellite Broadcasting

    Direct-to-home (DTH) satellite broadcasting is a form of SATELLITE COMMUNICATION which offers consumers significantly more entertainment options than those offered by local cable companies.

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  • Article


    For many centuries, a legend has persisted that gunpowder was invented in China. Until recently, however, there was no real proof to support the story. In 1986, a team of researchers headed by Dr. Joseph Neeham at Cambridge University published the necessary evidence.

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  • Article

    Five Digital Technologies and their Challenges

    In the span of several decades, digital technologies have changed how Canadians work, communicate, consume products and access information. Although technologies like self-driving cars and the Internet of Things may seem advanced, many such tools are still in their early stages. With the growth of the digital economy, digital technologies will continue to present opportunities and challenges. Here’s a look at five of these technologies and some of the risks that come with them.

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  • Article


    The first known Canadian glass factory or glasshouse, the Mallorytown Glass Works in Upper Canada, began operation in 1839 and closed in 1840. Glassmaking involved a large investment in raw materials, equipment and salaries.

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  • Macleans

    Hi-Tech Education Controversy

    The handsome redbrick building, its flag snapping in the breeze, looks every bit the traditional schoolhouse.This article was originally published in Maclean's Magazine on August 26, 1996

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  • Article


    Attempts to create a hydrofoil were made in England as early as 1861. A hydrofoil sustains its motion by the lift achieved by hydrofoil-plates that function in the water as airplane wings do in the air.

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  • Article

    IMAX Systems Corporation

    IMAX emerged from the Expo 67 cultural context. Corporation co- founders Graeme Ferguson, Roman Kroitor and Robert Kerr all participated in some of the popular large- and multiple-screen film experiments that were part of the Montréal Expo.

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