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All posts by Stuart Thomas: Senior Reporter

Stuart Thomas: Senior Reporter
Stuart Thomas joined the Burn Media team in 2011 while finishing off an MA in South African Literature. Eager to prove his geek credentials, he allowed himself to be thrown in the deep and did his best to stay afloat. When not fused with his keyboard, you can find him running the streets and off road trails in and around Cape Town. He is yet to go viral.
  • Jonathan Margolis: the harsh truth about tech predictions [EMEA Atmosphere]

    Nothing makes people quite as uppity about the future as technology. And few things get as much attention as a high-profile tech personality making a wild prediction about the future. Take The Singularity -- the point at which progress is so rapid it outstrips humans' ability to comprehend it -- for instance. In 2006, Ray Kurzweil predicted that it would occur by 2045 and that the outcome would be less than favourable for human beings. Similarly, Stephen Hawking has warned that Artificial Intelligence (AI) could end humanity. Thing is, those kinds of predictions are a complete crock and should almost always...

  • The network of the future is all about context [EMEA Atmosphere]

    Technology is changing everything. As a reader of this site, you know that all too well. But what you might not know is that some of the biggest changes are occurring thanks to changes in the networking space brought about by the consumerisation of enterprise tech. While some of those changes have been scary for network administrators, the ones who've adapted have actually found that they suddenly have eyes on some incredible contextual data that is immensely useful to other aspects of the business. That was the message from HPE Aruba CTO Partha Narasimhan during the day two keynote at the...

  • We’re in the era of the intelligent workspace [EMEA Atmosphere]

    By now, pretty much everyone in the business world understands that people want their device experiences at work to match their device experiences at home. Everybody gets it, but there are still plenty of businesses which are still suspicious of this state of affairs. Thing is, they don't have to be. In fact, the workspace revolution that started with people wanting to use their personal mobile devices for work purposes, could fundamentally change the workplace as we know it. And if the right structures are put in place, leading with a mobile first approach could actually result in happier, more...

  • Ford Focus ST: feel the power!

    “Be careful, it’s fast”. That was the warning given to me by a Ford representative when he dropped off the Focus ST at Burn Media HQ. I nodded my assent, but was quietly confident I could handle this muscular-looking beast. A week later, I’m still not really sure who handled who. You see, the ST is perfectly capable of handling everyday driving tasks with relative comfort and ease, but it doesn’t take long before you find you realise that nothing about this car says “everyday”.

  • 30 of the most influential women in SA digital marketing [Digital All Stars]

    Digital All Stars is a series of 24 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. The All Stars listed in the articles are compiled using a combination of our editorial team’s own knowledge and that of experts in the fields covered by each article*. While there hasn't been any recent research on the matter, you only have to go to a few industry events to see that digital marketing in South Africa...

  • How can South Africa drive youth innovation and entrepreneurship?

    Nearly a third of South Africa’s population is under the age of 14. As things stand, their future is uncertain. The economy is stagnant, the political landscape is shifting, and unemployment is at a record high. It’s possible to turn all that around, but doing so means equipping young people with skills beyond those found in the schooling system creating an environment which doesn’t just see entrepreneurship and innovation as viable options, but as necessities. There was the consensus of a panel on driving innovation among South Africa’s young people at a Road to the Global Entrepreneurship Summit held at Cape...

  • 10 things we just learned about the Berlin startup scene

    Berlin is one of Europe’s startup hot-spots and is often held up as an example of the cool and at-ease-with-itself contemporary Germany likes to project. That’s all well and good. Being home to large number of startups can give you serious kudos as a city. After all, entrepreneurship is key to building a country’s future. But what about the people who work at those startups? What kind of salaries are they earning? How do they feel about the positions they’re in? And do they face similar problems to people in other startup hubs around the globe?

  • Mortimer Harvey buys direct marketing agency Action Ambro’s

    Mortimer Harvey, the 24-year-old advertising and communications agency, on Thursday announced that it has acquired direct marketing outfit Action Ambro's. The Johannesburg-based Action Ambro's has been around for 11 years and counts BMW, Lexus, Bayer, and Vodacom among its clients. While the Andrew Ambrogioni-led company primarily works in the direct marketing and CRM spaces, it says it tries to adapt the solutions it provides to its clients needs. According to a press release sent to Memeburn, however, it was a combination of exceptional creative underpinned by robust direct and CRM strategies which made Action Ambro's an attractive target for Mortimenr...

  • South Africa is set for a mobile data explosion

    South Africa is set to experience an explosion in mobile data usage, with nine-fold growth predicted in the next four years. On the face of it, that shouldn't be all that surprising. Ever since the first cellphones arrived in the country in the mid 90s, South Africa has been mobile-obsessed. For some time now, the country has had more mobile phones in use than people. Smartphones have seen rapid uptake too. But even as smartphones have become increasingly affordable, the data that allows them to be smart has remained unaffordable for many. According to networking giant Cisco, that is...

  • #MatthewTheunissen apologises for racist Facebook post, Twitter doesn’t buy it

    In an interview with AM radio station Cape Talk, Cape Town native Matthew Theunissen has apologised for a recently published racist Facebook post. The post, which Theunissen wrote in response to Sports Minister Fikile Mbulula's announcement that three of South Africa's major sporting codes would be banned from hosting international sporting events until they met their transformation targets. In the now deleted post, Theunissen labels Mbalula and his government colleagues "kaffirs" -- a derogatory term used against black South African -- and "cunts". In the interview, the Noordhoek resident admits that he typed the words in a rage, but...

  • Media24 changes ad policies to kill agency commission

    Correction: This article originally stated that The SpaceStation is a media buying agency. It has been amended to reflect the fact that it is a media sales agency. Media 24 on Friday announced that, as of 1 May, its rate cards will no longer reflect the long-established 16.5% early settlement or agency discount fee. The fee, which has long been a bone of contention in the media buying space, essentially allows media buying agencies to take a portion of the fee for placing an ad with a publisher. Building system into their own offerings has allowed media to...

  • Ford Focus B Max EcoBoost: get your dad on

    I am, at the time of this article going live, 28-years-old and have no children. I do, however, listen to talk radio and tell incredibly lame jokes. And that means I'm reasonably qualified to review the Ford Focus B Max EcoBoost: a dad car with an impressive sting in the tail. Make no mistake, no one's going to think you're the coolest dad in the school-yard if you pull up in this mini-people carrier. Once you've explained to everyone why it's such a "sensible" choice though, Ford's clever 1.0l EcoBoost engine means you'll be able to burn them as...

  • Facebook beats a bad quarter for tech, boasts 1.6bn users

    It hasn't been the best week for the world's biggest tech players. But while almost everyone else has fallen short of market expectations, things could hardly be better for Facebook right now. The world's largest social network on Wednesday released its Q1 earnings report and, if you're a shareholder, it makes for very good reading indeed. Alongside continued user growth, the company revealed that it's gotten even better at making money and that there may soon be a new class of share for people to invest in. Making it rain Facebook's revenues for the quarter were US$5.38-billion, with its net...

  • MoveThisStuff: the startup helping you find the right mover for your budget

    Moving, whether it's down the road or to the other side of the country, can be pretty damn stressful. Quite aside from the pain of leaving somewhere you may have come to regard as your home, there's the hassle of finding movers who'll treat your stuff with respect. One company trying to make the second of those things a little easier is MoveThisStuff. Headquartered in Johannesburg, the startup helps people find movers based on factors including how far they're moving, what kind of stuff they're looking to move, and what kind of movers they're looking for. Once they've put...

  • #IAmMuslim: powerful social campaign aims a blow at Islamaphobia

    Every week seems to bring with it new incidences of Islamaphobia. Spurred by a growing migrant crisis and the recent terror attacks in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East, intolerance directed at the Muslim community is higher than ever. In response to this, Native VML and People Against Suffering Oppression and Poverty (PASSOP) have teamed up for a social media campaign that aims to address this situation by confronting people's prejudices. It does so by posting photos of Muslim women wearing a traditional Islamic hijab, fashioned after the flag of their home country. “Juxtaposing these two symbols...