Closing Bell: Toronto stock market loses ground in volatile session as loonie inches lower

The Toronto stock market closed lower Monday, but well off earlier losses, in a volatile session weighed down by concerns about a global recession and the impact it would have on Canadian commodities

Skywatchers prepare for rare Venus fly-by

CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida (Reuters) – One of the rarest astronomical events occurs on Tuesday and Wednesday when the planet Venus passes directly between the sun and Earth, a transit that won’t occur again until 2117.

G7 to hold emergency euro zone talks, Spain top concern

TORONTO/BERLIN (Reuters) – Finance chiefs of the Group of Seven leading industrialized powers will hold emergency talks on the euro zone debt crisis on Tuesday in a sign of heightened global alarm about strains in the 17-nation European currency area.

GTar Update: The Guitar Now Works As A MIDI Controller

The GTar, everyone’s favorite Disrupt near-winner, has just announced full MIDI compatibility for their guitar, allowing musicians to connect to popular software and “play” various sounds and triggers right on the guitar fretboard.

MIDI is still quite popular and is the standard for keyboard interfaces with most major music programs. By proving MIDI compatibility is in the cards, the company has further proven that the GTar is more than just a toy and more like the melding of 1980s Keytar with something more akin to a real guitar.

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Senate panel chief to detail tax code vision

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The chairman of the Senate tax-writing committee promised to spell out ideas for revamping the tortuous tax code next Monday, providing a glimpse of the influential lawmaker’s plan for major fiscal decisions looming at the end of the year.

Joseph A. Palermo: Welcome to the New Normal

The measly 69,000 private-sector jobs added last month and the shrinking job count over the past few months illustrate our “new normal.” At this snail’s pace it will take a couple of decades before we get back to the “good old days” of the 2005 unemployment rate. Combine this with the bipartisan denuding of the public sector in the form of cutbacks and layoffs, and it’s no surprise that we’re in store for a long period of economic insecurity and malaise. Like Bill Clinton, who normalized Ronald Reagan’s trade, deregulation, antitrust, and welfare policies, giving them the bipartisan sheen of Washington orthodoxy, Barack Obama has normalized George W. Bush’s Wall Street, education, and “anti-terrorism” policies. So, welcome to the new normal, where Wall Street criminals go free, whistleblowers are prosecuted, and tens of millions are unemployed.

Read more: Bill Clinton, Anti-Terrorism, Wall Street, Economy, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, President Barack Obama, Election 2010, Bradley Manning, Election 2012, Executive Powers, Politics News

Google Analytics Now Lets You Conduct Browser-Size Analysis


Google just added a small but interesting new feature to its Google Analytics product. You can now see how much of your site your visitors are really seeing based on the new browser-size analysis the company just added to Google Analytics. With Analytics, Google already knows what screen sizes your site’s visitors are using, so it is now combining this information with its previously released browser size tool from Google Labs. Google is rolling this new tool out slowly, so chances are it will be a week or two before you see it in your Google Analytics account (it’s already live in my personal accounts, but your mileage may vary).

Once it is live in your account, just head to the Content section of Google Analytics and look for In-Page Analytics. There, Browser Size is now among the existing options to see click-through percentages on your site.

As Google notes, thanks to the plethora of mobile devices with different screen sizes, the days where your visitors just used a few standard screen sizes are long over. Given the size of modern desktop screens, you can’t even draw any real conclusions from your users’ screen sizes anymore either because “for many people, the visible portion of the web page is much smaller than the screen resolution, because of excessive toolbars and other clutter.” Conversion rates, however, are greatly affected by what your visitors see on your pages without having to scroll.