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Apparently some people played football at Superbowl LI this weekend but I was too busy being set on fire by Lady Gaga’s halftime performance to notice. Not only did she actually sing the entire set (no lip-synching for her), and entirely on her own (no guest performances either), but she also propelled down from the ceiling, danced almost non-stop for 13 minutes, and jumped off a ladder in heels while catching a football. I feel tired just writing that.

One of the best parts of the performance wasn’t achieved by Gaga at all, but by science! And by that, I mean the 300 drones that floated behind her at the start of her set while she sang God Bless America. Though only there for a couple minutes, those little robots performed their own perfect show in the sky: first sparkling like stars, then like the Pepsi symbol, then like the American flag.

 

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So who’s behind this technology? Well, that would be Intel, and it’s called their Shooting Star drone squad. They recently finished a three-week run at Disney World and last year they flew 500 synchronized drones over Sydney, setting a new world record for most unmanned aerial vehicles airborne at the same time.

Take a look at Intel’s video showing off their 500 Drone light show below:

Pretty incredible right? I want to go to a drone show ASAP. I love how they can float like fairies at one moment, and then in another sync up to create a flawless design like the Intel logo.

As Wired’s recent post details, each drone is about a footlong square, weighs just over eight ounces, and has a foam body to soften any inadvertent blows. Their LEDs have a potential four billion colour combinations and “dance” according to the coding from a central computer that each drone communicates with. Before the show, this computer checks each drone’s battery level and GPS signal strength and assigns it a role accordingly. If any of them fail, there are backups ready to fly into place. You can see how this kind of technology could be limitless, and I wouldn’t be surprised if instead of fireworks on our national holidays, we start seeing drone-works.

That being said, there are laws concerning drones, including where and how high you can fly them. That’s why the drone display you saw yesterday was actually filmed a week ago, so as not to harm any potential fans below.

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When you realize the planning and combined efforts that must have gone into that first couple of minutes of this performance, you realize how huge the Superbowl halftime show has become. I can only imagine where it will go in the future.

Not to mention where this drone technology will go. Intel envisions them being used for search and rescue missions or commercial applications like inspecting hazardous construction sites.  Personally, I see their creative potential, and can envision spectacles of art and “sky graffiti” lighting up the night. I just hope they don’t fall on anyone’s head.

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Check out Lady Gaga’s full halftime show here.

 

Sources: https://www.wired.com/2017/02/lady-gaga-halftime-show-drones/

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Candice Irvine, Blogger, Marketing Specialist, Graphic Designer


I'm addicted to games of all kinds: boardgames, video games, card games, mind games... nah, just kidding about that last one. Or am I?


5 Ways to Host a Great Super Bowl Party

Posted by cchalkley on February 3, 2017

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This Sunday is Super Bowl 51 in Houston, Texas. In case you didn’t know, The New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons will be playing in this NFL championship game. Canadians love the Super Bowl. Last year, 8.3 million people in Canada watched the Super Bowl! Those are some huge numbers, that means 1 in 4 people in all of Canada watched the game.  If you’re planning on watching the big game or planning to host a Super Bowl party, Here are a couple of ideas that can help you prepare for the big night of football festivities.

Football Cheeseball
1. Food

If you are hosting a Super Bowl Party then you need to think about what food you will be serving your guests. Some of the basic game day foods are chips, wings and pizza. While those are some great options for grub, why not theme your food and make everything look like footballs? Try this Jalapeno Popper Football Cheese Ball or make a Football Cheese Plate? For desserts you can try these Chocolate Strawberry Footballs or Football Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Blondies. If you are looking for healthier options, Canadian Living posted these recipes for Turkey Chili Nachos or for a Mexican Popcorn Spice Mix.

Beer Margaritas

2. Bevvies

Now any good party host not only provides the food, but has beverages to serve their guests as well. The most common alcoholic beverages to serve would be beer and wine. But you can do better than that, right? Here are some beer cocktails that would turn you into the hostess with the mostest! Beer Margaritas, Beer Sangria, Lime Beer Cocktail and Frozen Beergaritas

Super Bowl Squares
3. Games

These Super Bowl Party games will help keep your guest entertained during the 4 hour game.  Super Bowl Squares is a simple game that all your guests can play. First you’ll need to create a chart (here are some printable versions that you can use). Have your guests write their name on each of the squares until the whole board is filled. On the axes, assign each row and column with different numbers ranging from 0-9. So after each quarter, the person who owns the square with the final digit of the point total of each team is declared the winner. For example, if the score of the game is 27-2 then the person with the square 7-2 would be the winner. 

Super Bowl Bingo

Another game to play is Super Bowl Bingo. Here are some free game cards that you can print at home.

4. Pick your commercials!

This year will be the first time Canadians will be able to watch the American Super Bowl commercials. The CRTC made a decision to remove the simultaneous substitution during the Super Bowl event. In prior years, this meant that the Canadian broadcaster airing the Super Bowl was able to show the Canadian commercials over the American signal. This year, you will be able to watch the Super Bowl on either the Canadian signal(with Canadian commercials), or the American signal(with American commercials).  The cost of a commercial to run in America is around $5 million for a :30 spot. With a budget like that, no wonder these commercials have high end productions and celebrity cameos!  

Here’s is a sneak peek of some of the American commercials that you will be able to catch this year:

2017 Kia Niro “Hero’s Journey" Starring Melissa McCarthy

This commercial follows comedian Melissa McCarthy on a mission to save the world.

Febreze 2017 Super Bowl Commercial – Halftime #BathroomBreak

This extended cut of this funny Febreeze commercial tells the story on how so many people watch the game so intently that they wait until halftime for a bathroom break.

Wix.com Big Game First Spot with Jason Statham & Gal Gadot

This commercial for Wix.com features Jason Statham & Gal Gadot kicking some butt in a restaurant.

T-Mobile - #UnlimitedMoves

This commercial features Canadian Justin Bieber showing off some dance moves.

Snicker Live Ad with Adam Driver

Snickers will be doing something new this year and creating a live commercial to air in real time starring “Star Wars” actor, Adam Driver.  They have released some funny teasers to promote their live ad.

5. Practice Your Dance Moves

And lastly, what is a Super Bowl without a big spectacular Half Time show? This year Lady Gaga will be performing. Lady Gaga is known for her crazy outfits and over the top and sometimes controversial performances.  She wants to keep her performance a secret, so no spoilers here on what songs she will sing or what stunts she will be performing. Here’s a sneak peek at the choreography rehearsals.

There is no doubt that this year’s Super Bowl will be a must watch for millions of Canadians. Super Bowl 51 starts at 6:30 pm on Sunday February 5th, and can be seen on CTV or Fox. Execulink customers can watch the game in SD on channel 13 and 16 or in HD on channels 213 and 216.

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Christine Chalkley, Marketing Coordinator


I love things that make me laugh including sitcoms, sketch comedy and anything my kid does. When it comes to parenting I take Amy Poehler’s advice: “Always remember where you put your kid. Don’t let your kid drive until their feet can reach the pedals. Use the right size diapers... for yourself. And, when in doubt, make funny faces.”


10 Ways to Make The Most Out of Your Next Networking Event

Posted by cirvine on February 1, 2017

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­­Molly goes to a networking event and meets Gerald. “So, Gerald, what do you do?” asks Molly. Gerald waits a second to respond. He has a million different ways he can answer this question and if the goal is to create a contact or lead, then there is absolutely a right way and a wrong way. But there’s more to networking than just how you interact with people conversationally. To get the most out of your next networking event, the work is done not just during the event, but before and after as well. Here are the 10 best ways you can get the most out of your next one.

1. Know Why You’re There Before You’re There

Why are you going to this event? It may be such an obvious first step that it’s hardly thought about, but it really does deserve some consideration. If you feel like a fish out of water the entire day, you’re not going to be on your A game, and that means less chance of any real connections. Also, it’s worth asking yourself if the event is actually going to be a valuable investment of your time. In general, you should be able to answer the following questions with relative ease:

  • How does my job and company specifically relate to this event?
  • What are my goals (make them specific)?
  • Do the potential benefits of this event outweigh the cost of time being here?
  • How long am I prepared to be here for?

Once you can answer these, it will become obvious whether this event is worth your time.

2. Do Your Research

Ok, so you’ve decided you’re attending. Now what? A little preparation goes a long way. It’s a great idea to make a rough outline of what your day will consist of. This includes which speakers you want to hear, which booths you want to check out, and who you might want to introduce yourself to. You can usually get a rough idea of who might be attending from social media. If there’s a Facebook event attached to it, you could find the attendee list there or from people tweeting about it via a common hashtag.  

If you want to go the extra mile, have a question or two ready based on your research of the highlighted panelist. Asking your question in front of a crowd will leave a lasting impression in people’s minds as someone who is both knowledgeable about his/her field and bold enough to be centered out in a crowd.

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3. Be Ready With Materials

Looking unprepared obviously gives off a bad impression and can lead to an awkward interaction, but it also affects your confidence and throws you off your game overall. Nobody wants that. So it’s important to come to your events prepared with any materials you might need. Business cards are a must, obviously, but don’t forget other palpable reminders of what you do: sell sheets, brochures, swag. Make sure everything has your contact information on it and that it’s going to stand out in the pile of endless marketing material that people will receive that day.

4. Dress to Impress (For the Crowd)

There’s an enormous difference between trying to impress 100 management-level executives and trying to impress 100 entry-level game developers. Dress to impress the crowd that you’re interacting with. A harsh reality of our world is that people do judge a book by its cover. That being said, you don’t want to be someone you’re not, as people can often sense if you’re being phony. As long as you don’t overdo it, you should be fine.

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5. Prepare an Elevator Pitch

At these kinds of events you meet a lot of people in a short amount of time. You’re going to want to have a quick pitch ready of who you are and what you do. However, be careful when you say it that it doesn’t sound like you’ve been repeating yourself all day. Remind yourself that the other person is hearing this for the first time, so make it sound fresh. If you’re unsure of what your pitch should sound like, here are a few guideline steps you can follow:

For starters, it should be around 60 seconds. In that time you should go over who you are, what you do, and the hook.

  • Step 1 – Start with the basics. This is who I am and this is what I do (in simplest terms). “Hi, I’m Gerald Smith and I’m a Marketing Rep with Biz Co.” You don’t need anything too flashy; you just need to get your foot in the door.
  • Step 2 – Tell an interesting story that leads to the reason for you being there. “I’m excited to learn more about online marketing. This year we found our sales go up 5% just from tweets and keeping an eye on what’s trending.”
  • Step 3 – Drop a casual call to action. This is important. “I figure if I can do learn a bit and make a few connections while I’m at it, it’s worth the trip. Speaking of which, let me give you my card.”

Of course, you want to make it your own and be comfortable with it. Once you figure it out, practice, practice, practice.

6. Let Other People Talk

Almost as important as having a pitch is the other side of things: asking questions and listening. What is a typical year like in their business? What has their year been like? How did ____ affect their business? Keep it topical and interesting, but not invasive. By asking and understanding their business, you may uncover needs that they didn’t even know they had.

7. Spice Up Your Small Talk

The only thing worse than being stuck in a boring conversation with someone, is realizing that you’re the one making it boring. If you say the same shtick over and over you’re going to start sounding like a dull, skipping record. Make sure you sprinkle a little fun into your conversations. Ask yourself from time to time if you’re really engaging with this person or just going through the motions.

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8. Be Passionate & Care About What You Do

An easy way to spice up your small talk is to just be passionate about what you do. Talking to someone that is truly excited about their work –or excited to improve on their work—is at once captivating and contagious. When people hear the excitement in your voice, they will be more eager to share their story with you and value your feedback.

9. Don’t be Negative

It’s easy to be negative and start pointing out what’s wrong with the event, the people there, your job, your competitors. Don’t start down that road. Not only are negative people less charismatic, but they are also less interesting. You’re doing yourself 0 favors by being “that person”. Even if you have to force yourself a little bit, put a smile on and see how much further it gets you.

10. Follow up

The event may be over but there is still work to be done. The next day, gather up any business cards or contact information you’ve received and get typing. Email your contacts and be sure to include your LinkedIn profile so they can see who you are and remember you.  By circling back with people you are giving yourself an advantage over the potential crowds that person met the day before.

We hope that some of these tips help you at your next networking event. Just remember, you’re spending the time to be there, so make it worth those lost hours. Although a bit of a chore sometimes, with the right preparation and attitude you can make those brief encounters into lasting impressions.     

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Candice Irvine, Blogger, Marketing Specialist, Graphic Designer


I'm addicted to games of all kinds: boardgames, video games, card games, mind games... nah, just kidding about that last one. Or am I?


Best of YouTube Videos January

Posted by cchalkley on January 30, 2017

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It’s the first Best of YouTube post in 2017! This month we have a mix of popular videos ranging from music videos, challenges and pranks.  So sit back, relax, press play and watch some of the fun videos that came out in January.

Power Rangers (2017 Movie) Official Trailer
21,944,920 views

A trailer for the new “Power Rangers” came out and it gave a look into the story of five high school kids who gain superpowers and go out to save the world. Now these Power Rangers look way cooler than the campy 90’s version that you probably remember. Even if you weren’t a fan of the original 90’s show, this movie looks like it’s aimed at all fans of superhero movies.

Ed Sheeran – Castle On The Hill (Official Video)
20,657,032 views

This is Ed Sheeran’s first music video from his upcoming new album set to release on March 3rd. Ed Sheeran is known for his catchy story telling songs. “Castle on the Hill” is a trip down memory lane as he reminisces about being a teenager and hanging out with friends. The video is shot in Ed’s hometown of Framlingham, England and cast with teenagers from a local high school. Wow, how did they manage to find Ed Sheeran’s doppelganger to play his younger self? Good casting choice!

Sia - Move your Body
12,147,559 views

I love the song “Move Your Body” by Sia! Every time I hear this song it just makes me want to get up and dance. The music video is an 80’s throwback featuring a young dancer wearing Sia’s signature black and white bob wig. The young child dances around and photobombs people’s glamour shots. Do you remember glamour shots? This was a huge trend in the 80’s when a person would get a glammed up makeover with big hair and makeup for a studio photoshoot. Just google “80’s Glamour Shots” and you’ll see some gem photographs like this one below.

Glamour Shot

We Trained Like Superheroes For 30 Days
12,063,952 views

Have you ever wondered how celebrities get those ridiculously good looking bodies for those superhero movies? These two people were challenged to train with a personal trainer for 5 weeks to attempt to look like their favourite superhero. They changed their diet and dedicated themselves to working out. After 5 weeks they had some dramatic results. Kudos to them for working as hard as they did! This looks like a cool challenge but I would never have the will power to give up cheese. I will have to just live with my muffin top for the rest of my life.

BuzzFeedVideo $27 Cake Vs. $1,120 Cake
11,756,463 views

This video is my favourite of all the videos on this list today. I love eating cake and watching this video made me so hungry! These two guys compared 3 cakes at different price points to find which cake was the best. The first cake they tried is a Milk’N Berries cake from a Cuban bakery for $27. This cake is right up my alley; it’s a tres leches cake with fresh berries, yum! The second cake is Espresso Chocolate cake from a Los Angeles bakery for $48. This cake is a devil’s food cake with espresso buttercream. The last cake is a custom celebration cake for $1,120.   This is one fancy posh cake! It’s a funfetti cake with strawberry buttercream designed to look like a birthday present. It looks way too fancy to eat! Try to get through this video without indulging in a pastry! Now if anyone can recommend where I can find a tres leches cake for me locally please?

Super Mario Odyssey – Nintendo Switch Presentation 2017 Trailer
10,890,973 views

Super Mario Odyssey is Nintendo’s latest Super Mario game that is due to come out late 2017 for the new Nintendo Switch console. This game looks like it would be super fun to play. In this 3D game Mario ventures into a New York style city climbing buildings, jumping on taxi cabs and swinging off traffic lights. And even watch out in this trailer for Mario’s rocking dance moves. Now I am not into gaming at all, but this latest Super Mario game looks like it could even get me hooked on playing it.

Rings – TV Store Prank
7,526,941 views

This prank was made to promote the new “Rings” movie that comes out in theatres February 3rd. In this video, we watch unsuspecting customers totally freak out when the creepy dead girl from the “Rings” movie pops out of a TV to scare them. I always wondered what my reaction would be if I ended up on a hidden camera show. I’ll admit that I’m a total wuss and I can’t watch any scary movies, so I would probably be beyond horrified if this prank were to happen to me. And no, this isn’t an invitation for anyone to pull a prank on me to find out how I would react.

Jimmy Fallon’s Golden Globes Cold Open
6,542,732 views

Jimmy Fallon hosted the 74th Annual Golden Globes this past month. This year’s opening number was full of celebrities including Nicole Kidman, Amy Adams, Ryan Reynolds, Kit Harrington, the cast of “Stranger Things” and Tina Fey. Jimmy Fallon’s BFF Justin Timberlake also made an appearance in a “La La Land” spoof.  Watch out for Justin Timberlake’s spot on impression of Jimmy Fallon.

Will & Grace – The Reunion is Coming
1,695,881 views

What fan doesn’t love it when their favourite show has a reunion? We’ve seen it recently with the television show Gilmore Girls coming back for a new season on Netflix. Now here is another show making a comeback 11 years after their series finale. “Will & Grace” is coming back with a new 10 episode season on NBC in 2017. I am the most excited about this reunion show! I watched this show every Thursday night while it was on air. Jack and Karen’s characters are some of my favourite television characters.  During this show’s 8 season run there were tons memorable celebrity guest starts like Madonna, Cher, Matt Damon, Jennifer Lopez, and Michael Douglas. I would hope the new season is filled with lots of surprise guest stars too. Catch this show on NBC in their 2017-2018 television season.  

This concludes the January’s edition of our Best of YouTube Videos of the Month series. We hope you enjoyed your time with us, and we’ll see you again next month!

 

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Christine Chalkley, Marketing Coordinator


I love things that make me laugh including sitcoms, sketch comedy and anything my kid does. When it comes to parenting I take Amy Poehler’s advice: “Always remember where you put your kid. Don’t let your kid drive until their feet can reach the pedals. Use the right size diapers... for yourself. And, when in doubt, make funny faces.”


#MORE_GoodNews Kudos and Comments

Posted by cirvine on January 23, 2017

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Last Thursday we surprised many of our customers by reducing the rates of their Internet packages considerably, which was a great feeling for both us and them! What made us smile most was reading the flood of positive comments from you about the discounted rates.  

Bravo ! Execulink you have just secured a customer for a long time . I actually thought it was some sort of scam but after talking to customer service i was informed that my bill has been reduced by $30.00 a month effective immediately ...Well done and thank you !
 –Glenn D.

I have been a customer for many years. I wouldn't change for anything as your customer service and plans are the best. Thank you Execulink.
–Lenene H.

YAY Execulink!! I always recommend you to people who ask about ISPs. Now I have even more reason to spread the word! Execulink is great!
–Carolyn H.

You guys haven't let me down in the last 12 or so years
–Sean H.

Such a nice surprise it was to hear this in my email. Thanks for the good news and for being the best ISP.  
–Shy C.

I was so happy to see my email today about the lower rates, you all rock and I thank you very much!
–Anna L.

Thank you #execulink you've restored my faith!!
–David H.

You're the best! Thank you!
-Kathy K.

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Some people even noticed that they could keep paying what they were before the discount, but upgrade their package to get a better speed or usage rate!

yes i got the 100 meg package now ty CRTC :) and cheaper then the 30 meg package i was getting
–Pete D.

Thanks, Execulink! I was already thinking of upgrading my package, now I have an even better reason to! Very happy customer.
–Tiffany R.

If you’re interested in upgrading your package or adding another service to your bundle, take a look at some of our plans here.

From all of us here at Execulink, thank you for all your kind comments. We love when we can give back to our neighbours this way and hope to fill this year with #MORE_GoodNews.

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Blogger-Candice-bio.jpg


Candice Irvine, Blogger, Marketing Specialist, Graphic Designer


I'm addicted to games of all kinds: boardgames, video games, card games, mind games... nah, just kidding about that last one. Or am I?