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News

  • This new online tool helps you find your local ward counciller

    With local elections coming up in August, it's become even more important for voters to know who their local counciller is. But how do you actually find that out, and how do you go about contacting them once you have? Well one solution is to take a look at the new features on the People’s Assembly website. The site, which is also accessible via mobile, allows you to find out who your MP or Ward Councillor is, where your nearest constituency office is located, and provide feedback on whether your constituency office is actually working well. This means that...

  • Naspers Ventures unit opens new offices in San Francisco

    Naspers wants to become a Silicon Valley stalwart, and has subsequently set up new offices in San Francisco. The Cape Town-based media giant announced the move today, suggesting that it wishes to sink its roots into the area's deep startup culture. The new unit, dubbed Naspers Ventures, is what the company's CEO Bob van Dijk believes will begin its "next phase of growth." Naspers definitely isn't afraid of splashing spare change, with the company investing over US$1.5-billion in other companies in 2015, with investments as far reaching as Russia. "We believe we can utilize our deep knowledge of consumer internet and international markets to...

  • Mercury is currently photo-bombing the Sun (watch the livestream here)

    Mercury, the Solar System's smallest planet, is currently making its rare and seriously cool journey across the face of the Sun, dubbed the Mercury Transition by astronomers. It's an event that only happens 13 times each century, and allows astronomers to better study the tiny, swelteringly hot planet. Mercury is the closest planet to the Sun at just over 35-million miles from the star, and takes just 88 days to lap the huge flaming ball of gas. However, it's quite rare for Earth to be facing the Sun while Mercury is visible. To put this into perspective, this phenomenon last happened...

  • Joburgers can now order electric Ubers

    If you're in Johannesburg, your next Uber ride could be in an electric car. That's thanks to a partnership between the private ride-hailing service, BMW, and Nissan aimed at reducing carbon emissions. Called UberGREEN, the pilot project will take place between 9 May and 3 June. During the pilot, riders will be able to request a BMW i3 or Nissan LEAF electric vehicle, operated by Uber driver-partners in Johannesburg at uberX prices, helping provide a more sustainable trip at an affordable price. Woolworths WRewards members also stand to gain from the partnership as they'll be among the first to...

  • UJ students use tech to strike a blow against tender corruption

    A group of four University of Johannesburg (UJ) students have struck a blow against corruption in the tender space with an app developed as part of the South African leg of global student software development challenge, the 2016 Microsoft Imagine Cup. The four, all Honours students at the UJ Academy of Computer Science and Software Engineering (ACSSE), hail from South Africa, Zimbabwe and Nigeria. According to team leader Chukwudi Obodoekwe, from Anambra State in Nigeria, the drive to design this system initially came from his uncle (who is also his guardian): "When he heard we are entering for the challenge,...

  • Watch the first trailer for Oliver Stone’s ‘Snowden’

    NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden's story is just begging for a biopic of sorts. A former intelligence operative on the run from a vengeful government and hiding in Russia? What's not to like? Anyway, the first official trailer for Oliver Stone's 'Snowden' has been released, and it definitely has a healthy dose of Hollywood. From big bad government types and sex scenes to drone footage, it's all accounted for here. There's even an appearance by Nicholas Cage, imploring Snowden to "find the terrorist in the internet haystack". The whistleblower is played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who manages to convincingly nail Snowden's voice for the most part. The trailer charts...

  • Twitter continues harassment fight with new tool

    Twitter has already gone a long way to helping users battle cyber-bullying and harassment. Now, the company is continuing this trend with a much-needed update. Making a report for each offending tweet can be a tedious process, but users now have the ability to file multiple dodgy tweets in one report. In other words, you don't have to submit a report for each of the 500 threats you might receive. Seriously, this sort of thing is kind of a problem. "This update makes it easier for you to provide us with more information about the extent of abuse and reduces the time it takes to do so....

  • SA rounds out top ten for Game of Thrones piracy

    The season premiere of Game of Thrones has finally aired, and predictably there's been huge demand for illegal streaming and downloading the episode. In fact, Torrent Freak reported that the most popular torrent had over 200 000 users and counting sharing the file. After inspecting the locations of users downloading the file over 12 hours, the website found some interesting results. For one, South Africa was in the top ten when it came to illegally getting in on the action. "The show is particularly popular in Australia (12.5%), India (9.7%), United States (8.5%) and the United Kingdom (6.9%)," Torrent Freak noted. "The top 10 is completed...

  • Cell C launches super-fast LTE-Advanced in SA

    It's fair to say that Cell C had a reputation for years as the network with decent prices but terrible coverage, but things have been changing somewhat over the past few months. The company launched LTE connectivity late last year, delivering much better speeds and coverage for users - albeit several years after MTN and Vodacom. The carrier has wasted no time though, launching the much faster LTE-Advanced network in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Pretoria this week. "Cell C has become the leading innovator in the South African mobile telecommunications industry.  We were the first and only provider to embrace over-the-top services, like Facebook...

  • Don’t want to support Uber? Another cab service has (re)launched in SA

    Looking for an alternative to the likes of Uber and Unicab? Well, Taxify has become the latest smart cab service to launch in South Africa. Or is that "relaunch"? As the service already had a South African launch on February 1... Anyway, the Europe-based service, which relaunches on Friday 29 April, will be available in Johannesburg at first, the company announced in a press statement. As for platforms, Taxify is available on Android, iOS and Windows devices. How does the service differ from that of Uber's then? For starters, Taxify users can pay with cash (in addition to credit/debit cards), while users can also...

  • AlwaysOn Wi-Fi will be free on Freedom Day

    For anyone who has been caught at an airport or mall without data probably knows about AlwaysOn. The company that provides many Wi-Fi hotspots in the country has announced that it will allow users free access to said hotspots on 27 April, or Freedom Day. Usually only the first 30 minutes or 50MB of data is free while connected to its platform, but it's now opening up the service to all users for the entire day. "We believe that everyone should have access to fast, affordable WiFi. Why? Because, quite frankly, the Internet is awesome and everyone deserves a piece of...

  • CERN gives away 300TB of sweet research data

    Last week, the European Organization for nuclear Research (CERN) released 300TB worth of data to the public. The data includes over 100TB of proton collisions alone from 7 TeV (the Large Hadron Collider). This release is over half of the data collected during tests in 2011. The data has been released in two different variations: the 'primary datasets,' which is the same format used by CMS Collaboration (CERN researchers) to perform research, and the 'derived datasets,' which is available in a limited number, but is accessible to high school and university students for analysis. According to a CMS physicist at CERN, Kati Lassila-Perini,...

  • Microsoft Q3 results see Surface continue climb, WP fall

    Microsoft has revealed its financial results for the third quarter of its 2016 fiscal year. And it's more of the same for the Redmond company. The tech firm recorded revenue of US$20.5-billion for the quarter ending 31 March 2016, with operating income and net income standing at US$5.3-billion and US$3.8-billion respectively. While its cloud revenue grew three percent to US$6.1-billion, its personal computing segments saw more modest growth of 1%. "Windows OEM revenue declined two percent in constant currency, outperforming the PC market, driven by higher consumer premium device mix," the company revealed in its earnings report. Surface, mobile and Xbox? Its Surface lineup continues to perform well, seeing...

  • Need a free, unlimited VPN service? Download Opera browser

    Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox rule the roost when it comes to desktop browsing, but Opera's latest browser update might lead you to switch... The Norwegian company has pulled a fast one by integrating a free VPN service into its browser - albeit in the developer version of the browser for now. "All other VPNs for the major desktop browsers are extensions, with most of them based on a paid-subscription model or offering limited data usage," the company explained on its website. "Everyone deserves to be private online if they want to be. By adding a free, unlimited VPN directly into the browser, no...

  • Intel announces ‘restructuring’, 12 000 jobs to be cut

    Intel has announced a restructuring plan to "speed its transition to a company that powers the cloud and billions of smart, connected computing devices". Unfortunately, this plan will result in roughly 11% of the global workforce, or 12 000 employees, being laid off by the middle of 2017. "The majority of these actions will be communicated to affected employees over the next 60 days with some actions spanning in to 2017," the company said in a press release. "Intel expects the program to deliver US$750-million in savings this year and annual run rate savings of US$1.4-billion by mid-2017. The company will record a...