Browse "Science & Technology"

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Macleans

Artificial Heart Developed

This article was originally published in Maclean’s magazine on January 25, 1999. Partner content is not updated.

Before the end of this year, Ottawa heart surgeon Dr. Wilbert Keon hopes to open the chest of a patient whose heart has reached a state of "terminal failure" and install a shiny plastic-encased object a little larger than a man’s fist.

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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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Assisted Suicide in Canada

Assisted suicide is the intentional termination of one’s life, assisted by someone who provides the means or knowledge, or both. (See also Suicide.) Between 1892 and 2016, assisted suicide was illegal in Canada under section 241(b) of the Criminal Code. In 2015, after decades of various legal challenges, the Supreme Court of Canada decided unanimously to allow physician-assisted suicide. In June 2016, the federal government passed the Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID) Act, which established the eligibility criteria and procedural safeguards for medically assisted suicide. In March 2021, new legislation was passed that expanded eligibility for MAID.

This article contains sensitive material that may not be suitable for all audiences.

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Asthma

Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the lungs that is marked by recurring episodes of airway obstruction. It is one of the most prevalent chronic conditions affecting Canadians. Asthma often begins in childhood, but initial onset can occur at any age.

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Astronomy

Modern astronomy, however, is more concerned with the physical and chemical nature of matter beyond Earth, where conditions of temperature and pressure, and gravitational and magnetic fields allow astronomers to observe matter under extremes unattainable in terrestrial laboratories.

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Astrophysics

Astrophysicists use many branches of physics: nuclear physics to study power-generation in stars; atomic physics to understand the spectra of stars and gaseous nebulae; and gas laws and magnetic theory to probe starspots and flares on star surfaces.

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Atomic Energy Control Board

The Atomic Energy Control Board (AECB) was established in 1946 under the Atomic Energy Control Act, with the declaration that nuclear energy is essential to the national interest (and therefore under the exclusive jurisdiction of the federal government).

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Automobile

Few inventions have left as profound a mark on the world as the automobile. The first automobiles built in Canada were regarded as novelties, but the Canadian automotive industry eventually expanded to become one of the country’s significant manufacturing and exporting sectors. Assembly-line production helped reduce the cost of automobiles and made it possible for more individuals to purchase them. The rise of the automobile has impacted travel and it has necessitated research and regulations into pollution, safety standards and sustainability (see Transportation; Traffic Law in Canada).

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Automobile Racing

The earliest automobile racing took the form of speed trials and tours. In 1900 F.S. Evans set a record of 3 hrs, 20 min, driving an automobile the 60 km between Toronto and Hamilton.

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Avian Influenza in Canada

Avian influenza, commonly known as “bird flu”, is a contagious viral disease that can affect several species of birds used in food production (e.g., chickens, turkeys), as well as pet birds, wild birds and some mammals (see Poultry Farming). The viruses responsible for the disease can be classified into two categories: high pathogenicity or low pathogenicity. The highly pathogenic H5N1 subtype of the avian influenza virus is transmissible to humans. In Canada, cases of avian influenza must be reported to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

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Aviation

   Aviation, the art and science of flying, has been a practical reality since the early 20th century. Canadians have participated in its development almost from its inception.

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Avro Arrow

The Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow (the Arrow) was a supersonic interceptor jet aircraft designed and built in the 1950s by A.V. Roe Canada (Avro). The Arrow was one of the most advanced aircraft of its era, helping to establish Canada as a world leader in scientific research and development.

Though the Arrow was widely praised for its power and beauty, the program was cancelled in February 1959 by the government of Prime Minister John Diefenbaker. This resulted in the loss of at least 25,000 direct and indirect jobs.

Many believe that the Arrow’s cancellation was a betrayal of Canada’s aerospace industry. Others assert that the jet was extravagant and had little chance of competing with impending innovations. At best, Avro and the Arrow were historic examples of Canadian ingenuity and intriguing case studies of unrealized potential.

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Avro Canada Jetliner

Avro Canada Jetliner (C-102), North America's first jet airliner, designed in Canada by James Floyd. It first flew on 10 August 1949, exceeding 800 km/h, the first flight of a jet transport in North America, second in the world.

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Avro CF-100 Canuck

The CF-100 Canuck, manufactured by A.V. Roe Canada (Avro), was the first jet fighter designed and built entirely in Canada. It flew in front-line air defence from 1953 until the early 1960s.

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Babiche

Babiche is a type of string traditionally made by Indigenous peoples from rawhide and had multiple uses, such as to lace snowshoes, fishing nets, drumheads and the like. Though typically considered a French Canadian term, babiche is an Algonquian word, loosely translating to “cord” (in Mi’kmaq, ababich) or “thread” (in Ojibwa, assabâbish).

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Bacteria

Bacteria are microscopic single-celled organisms capable of rapid growth and division.

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Balloon

 Balloon, vehicle that can rise within Earth's atmosphere because its total weight is less than that of the air it displaces. This principle was first enunciated by Greek mathematician and inventor Archimedes.