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All posts by Hadlee Simons

  • Black Friday: Takealot disabled mobile website due to load

    Between the photos of chaos at Checkers and websites going down, it's clear that retailers have been overwhelmed on Black Friday. In fact, Takealot announced earlier today that it disabled its mobile website to cope with the massive spike in visitors. "We planned for the expected increase in site visits over our Blue Dot Sale weekend, but the interest in the sale has far exceeded our expectations," the company wrote in a Facebook post. "In order to accommodate more visitors on our website and app we'll be deactivating the mobile site until further notice. We're sorry for any frustration caused, our engineering team...

  • Canada a step closer to cancelling F-35 fighter deal

    The F-35 fighter jet has been beset by problems over the past few years, from numerous delays to issues with target tracking and weapon firing. In fact, the Canadian government under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has repeatedly vowed to cancel the purchase of the controversial fighter jet. Now, the country has announced plans to purchase 18 older Super Hornet fighter jets as an "interim measure", CBC reports, putting the country closer to officially cancelling the order. The country's defence ministry has also called for an "open and transparent" competition to select a replacement for the CF-18 jets. According to Popular Mechanics, the...

  • 20 of South Africa’s biggest YouTube personalities by the numbers [Digital All-Stars]

    Digital All Stars is a series of articles which aims to celebrate the best of South African digital. The articles, which will appear on Memeburn and Ventureburn, recognise and celebrate South Africa’s best digital entrepreneurs, business people, advertisers, and media professionals among others. Sure, data might be expensive and smartphones haven't reached everyone just yet, but that hasn't stopped South Africans from taking to video in a massive way over the past several years. We aren't just a nation of YouTube viewers though, because we also play host to a fascinating variety of South African YouTubers. So who are the biggest players in South...

  • Trump offers Apple ‘large’ tax cuts for US manufacturing return

    US president-elect Donald Trump held a phone call with Apple CEO Tim Cook, offering the tech firm "very large" tax cuts to return manufacturing to the USA. In an interview with the New York Times, Trump said that he received calls from Bill Gates and Tim Cook. "I was honoured yesterday, I got a call from Bill Gates, great call, we had a great conversation, I got a call from Tim Cook at Apple, and I said, 'Tim, you know one of the things that will be a real achievement for me is when I get Apple to build a big...

  • Axl Rose sends legal letter to Memeburn over ‘fat’ pics [Update]

    Update 2: Legal representatives for Memeburn have called on the site's hosting provider, Hetzner, to back down. "Use of the images of Axl Rose in the news article at URL http://memeburn.com/2016/06/axl-rose- tries-remove-unflattering-photo-web/ is considered fair dealing as contemplated in section 12(1)(c) read with section 15(4) of the Copyright Act 98 of 1978 in that the images were reproduced '...for the purpose of reporting current events in a newspaper, magazine or similar periodical...'" read an excerpt of the email to Hetzner. "The article in question examined the actions of Axl Rose in attempting to prevent publication of the images in question, with particular...

  • Netflix 4K streams are now exclusive to Windows 10, Edge

    Netflix has had a 4K streaming option for a while now, being part of its highest pricing tier. In fact, the company was one of the first major services to roll out 4K support. But in a rather surprising move, the streaming colossus and Microsoft have announced that 4K content will be exclusive to Windows 10 machines. "4K content from Netflix is now available exclusively for compatible PCs and 2-in-1 devices with Windows 10, including the new Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life, premiering November 25th," the Redmond company announced on its blog. Have a Windows 10 device and want to...

  • Instagram gets live videos, disappearing photos

    Facebook-owned Instagram continues its quest to take on Snapchat with two new features this week. The first new feature is live video for Instagram Stories, which is pretty self-explanatory. "Live video on Instagram Stories helps you connect with your friends and followers right now. When you’re done, your live story disappears from the app so you can feel more comfortable sharing anything, anytime," Instagram says on its blog. The two features are a big addition to Instagram, although they're definitely inspired by Snapchat "It's easy to go live — just swipe right from feed to open the camera, tap the 'Start Live Video'...

  • Fake news in South Africa: 5 websites you should definitely avoid

    Whether it's to simply hoodwink people or to generate ad revenue, fake news websites have received mainstream attention in recent months. Now, we've already written a guide to spotting fake news, but what about the websites themselves? Here are five websites you should be avoiding. T1mesLive "Before you read our disclaimer, we wish to state that, we are not connected to or  linked to 'TIMES LIVE' in any way. Take note of the number '1' in our 'T1MESLIVE'. Please do not be deceived! Leave the website immediately if you have found yourself in the wrong place," reads the disclaimer. The website hides behind...

  • EMDrive: NASA paper says ‘impossible drive’ seems to work

    Several years ago, a controversial propulsion method was devised by Roger Shawyer, dubbed EMDrive. This "impossible" form of propulsion claimed to bounce microwaves to generate a small amount of thrust. Now, NASA's paper on the matter has been peer-reviewed and published - so what did the space agency make of the technology? Well, it seems like the EMDrive is the real deal to them. "Thrust data from forward, reverse, and null suggested that the system was consistently performing at 1.2±0.1  mN/kW1.2±0.1  mN/kW, which was very close to the average impulsive performance measured in air," the paper noted. The EMDrive has been the subject of...

  • Uber by the numbers in South Africa, Kenya & Nigeria

    Uber tracks you all the time, so it knows a lot about you. It knows when you're sleeping, it knows when you're awake. It knows when you've been bad or good... You get the picture. That means it must sit on a treasure trove of data and related insights, then. Fortunately, Uber South Africa's Timothy Willis delivered some rather interesting numbers. Uber had a number of intriguing stats to share at AfricaCom - now if only we could get our hands on all their data... Willis also confirmed that UberPool didn't have a launch date in South Africa yet. "You have to reach a...

  • Google launches PhotoScan to save your old photo albums

    Google Photos has become an indispensable tool for scores of people, allowing them to seamlessly back up their smartphone snaps. But what about physical photo albums? You could take a picture of it, or you could use PhotoScan, Google's latest app. Available for Android and iOS, PhotoScan allows you to simply scan your old photos with your smartphone. But the app also offers a number of tweaks, fixes and features to go with the basic scanning functionality. "PhotoScan gets you great looking digital copies in seconds -- it detects edges, straightens the image, rotates it to the correct orientation, and removes...

  • AfricaCom: 10 takeaways from Facebook, SA govt & more

    Day one of AfricaCom closed with a rather informative session, as Telecommunications Minister Siyabonga Cwele, Facebook Internet.org vice-president Chris Daniels and Akon Lighting Africa co-founder Thione Niang took to the stage. Cwele said that the spectrum issue is being tackled, Daniels touted Facebook's innovative internet connectivity devices and Niang called on people to look at electrification before internet access. Here are some of the standout quotes and takeaways from the session. Are people using free WiFi to be productive? Cwele gave an update on government-backed free WiFi projects (ostensibly talking about Project Isizwe), with some insight into what people were using it for. "...we...

  • WhatsApp video calls: yes, it’s finally official

    Facetime and Skype still rule the roost when it comes to video calling, but if any company could take them on, it's WhatsApp. And the Facebook-owned service has done just that, allowing users to seamlessly call its contacts. "Today we're excited to announce the next step in our efforts to connect people -- WhatsApp video calling. In the coming days, WhatsApp's more than one billion users can make video calls across Android, iPhone, and Windows Phone devices," the company wrote in a blog post. WhatsApp could take the fight to Skype and Facetime with video calling The company explained the move, saying that sometimes voice...

  • Closest supermoon set for today – watch for spring tide

    The closest supermoon in almost 70 years is set to occur today (Monday), being the second of three supermoons in a row. A supermoon this close to Earth won't occur again until 2034, NASA said. However, if you do miss this one, the next supermoon takes place on 14 December. In a news alert on Thursday, the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) warned of a spring tide as a result, urging "extreme caution" in the process. The NSRI has warned of rip currents and a stronger than normal spring tide as a result of the supermoon "The monthly Full Moon Spring Tide peaks on the Full Moon on...

  • Did fake news on Facebook contribute to US election?

    Some have questioned whether fake news and hoax articles have contributed to Donald Trump emerging victorious in the US elections last week. After all, the social network has seemingly seen a rise in fake news trending after it fired human editors. However, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has denied that these stories influenced results, taking to (surprise!) Facebook over the weekend to share his thoughts. "After the election, many people are asking whether fake news contributed to the result, and what our responsibility is to prevent fake news from spreading. These are very important questions and I care deeply about getting them right. I...