Bank of Canada gets nerdy to celebrate anniversary

  • TECH
  • Monday, 17 Apr 2017

Stephen Poloz, governor of the Bank of Canada, stands for a photograph with a copy of a commemorative $10 note at Bank of Canada headquarters in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, On Friday, April 7, 2017. The special bank note — showcasing Canada's history, land and culture — will enter into circulation on 1 June. Photographer: Chris Roussakis/ Bloomberg

OTTAWA: The Bank of Canada may not be known for its humour but it marked the nation's 150th anniversary with a bit of whimsy, embedding a computer code in its website that lets users unlock a digital celebration. 

Though Governor Stephen Poloz unveiled a commemorative C$10 banknote at a live ceremony last week, the central bank's Web team had a nerdier take on the event. 

The team programmed the Konami code, a sequence of keystrokes used by gamers, onto a bank webpage announcing the banknote. Enter the code on the page and your screen is showered with tiny C$10 bills as a tinny rendition of Canada's national anthem plays. 

"The response so far has been exceptional," the bank's spokewoman Josianne Menard said in an email. 

The webpage allows users to inspect the purple banknote front and back, but it is the entry of Konami code keystrokes – up up down down left right left right b a – that brings the announcement to life. 

The code was first used in early generation computer games to allow players to cheat and unlock special in-game features. — Reuters

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