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  • Netflix movies, series are now available as offline downloads

    Netflix users can now download films and movies to their mobile devices via the app, the streaming service announced. Eddy Wu, the company's director of product innovation, explains that it was numerous user suggestions that prompted the feature's inclusion. "While many members enjoy watching Netflix at home, we’ve often heard they also want to continue their Stranger Things binge while on airplanes and other places where internet is expensive or limited," he explains. Netflix users in the States can now download series and movies for offline viewing As for the feature itself, it's reminiscent of ShowMax's offline downloading service. Simply head to your favourite series or...

  • After Trump win, internet to get Canadian mirror (kind of)

    The US election has forced tech companies and other entities to look closely at their operations, owing to the imminent Trump administration coming into power. At least one pivotal entity, the non-profit Internet Archive, has taken to creating an insurance policy in Canada, in the form of a mirror. The Internet Archive is behind the landmark Wayback Machine, a service which charts the internet's history and has already saved billions of URLs. The Wayback Machine sees between 300 million and 750 million webpages being saved every week, capturing old articles and forgotten websites. In other words, creating a mirror won't be a trivial task...

  • Google Trips: how does it fare against its competition?

    When Google Trips launched in September to little fanfare we covered it here at Memeburn, noting that it arrives as a big upgrade to their previous app, Google Now. But things have been oddly silent in the media since the launch. If you missed our original article, then, it’s entirely possible that Google Trips has slipped beneath your radar, leaving you wondering what this whole thing even is. You certainly wouldn’t be alone in your confusion. Compared to the fanfare that accompanied the launch of Google+, Google Trips, which culls information from your emails to help assemble trip itineraries, didn’t receive...

  • Digital publishing and the world’s largest education company

    As an arm of a 172-year- old publishing company, Pearson Education has experienced the digital revolution first-hand. Many saw the seismic shift toward digital as a klaxon sounding the imminent death of the publishing industry, but Pearson has managed to adapt and has remoulded itself into as much a digital publisher as a print publisher. Subsequently, it is the largest education company in the world. Stacy Treco is VP and director of digital strategy at Pearson Education, as the latest role in a three-decade career at the company. Her focus has been on the pursuit of innovative excellence. This characteristic helped...

  • Forget Trump: your cat can now own an eco-friendly White House

    Although we do love technology here at Memeburn, we can't turn our heads when a clever piece of simple design walks by. Especially if said design is a range of eco-friendly cardboard houses for cats. Poopy Cat, a pet accessory company based in Amsterdam, began life 2013 and crafts sustainable play houses for our furry friends. And the company's latest line takes inspiration from a few of the political happenings the world has endured in 2016. The White House is now available in sustainable cardboard form for your cats The company first began retailing biodegradable litter boxes, but took to Kickstarter a...

  • Zuckerberg’s posts mistakenly stripped from Facebook

    What is it with companies taking down their CEO's social media messages this month? First Twitter's Jack Dorsey, and now Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg The latter reportedly removed several posts published by the Facebook CEO in what it's calling a "mistake". Eagle-eyed reporters at The Verge noticed that Zuckerberg's posts about fake news on the social media site, as well as commentary on the US elections, were stripped from his timeline Tuesday, only to later be restored just before 8pm SAST. Facebook's fake news problem One of these posts included a statement made by Zuckerberg on 18 November, regarding misinformation on Facebook. "The bottom line...

  • Vodacom reportedly down in north Johannesburg [Update]

    Update #2, 30 November, 12pm: Vodacom has confirmed that the issue "has been resolved". Update #1, 29 November, 5.30pm: Lexi Ball, Vodacom media relations specialist, in an email to Memeburn explains that the company is currently "aware of the outage". "Vodacom is aware of the outage that some of our customers are experiencing in the northern parts of Johannesburg. Our technicians are working on resolving the matter as quickly as possible. We apologise for any inconveinence that this may have caused," she adds. Vodacom has yet to provide an approximate time of repair, or when the network will be fully functional. Original article:...

  • NASA Cassini probe to ‘graze’ Saturn’s rings

    NASA's long-running Cassini space probe is set for a major manoeuvre on Wednesday when it comes within spitting distance of Saturn's rings. The probe will receive gravitational assistance from one of Saturn's moons, Titan, thereafter making multiple close orbits of the planet. "Between 30 November and 22 April, Cassini will circle high over and under the poles of Saturn, diving every seven days -- a total of 20 times -- through the unexplored region at the outer edge of the main rings," NASA wrote in a blog post. Cassini will use instruments to sample gases and particles emanating from the rings. "On many of...

  • Ransomware: 9 best security practices your company should apply

    Ransomware. Today, one of the most wide-spread and damaging threats that internet users and organisations face. In short, it is a type of malware (malicious software) designed by cyber criminals to block access to a computer or system until a sum of money is paid. In true cyber war talk, it keeps the computer ransom. How does it happen? There are two main ways that a ransomware attack starts: it either happens via an email with a malicious attachment, or by visiting a compromised (often a legitimate, mainstream) website. Malicious email: Today’s cyber criminals are crafting emails that are indistinguishable from genuine...

  • Here’s how Raru, Wootware handled South Africa’s Black Friday rush

    This year's Black Friday was a massive occasion. Besides the number of deals that were spread across a range of SA's ecommerce stores and retailers, there were some interesting stats as well. Memeburn had the chance to speak to both Raru and Wootware about their Black Friday experiences. While neither online retailer gave customer or sales numbers, they were able to provide some interesting technical information. The preparation In preparation for the increase in traffic Raru techie Renier Crause said the site's "mid-range" server was updated to the latest version of Ubuntu, which gave the system 130% increase in performance under load. This was...

  • What will Orion astronauts eat for breakfast?

    Astronauts aboard the International Space Station have over 200 food items choose from, thanks to constant resupply missions and ample storage. Those travelling on future Orion missions will have limited space though, resulting in different food requirements. To that end, NASA has been working on the most important meal of the day, in the form of breakfast bars for future crews. "Because flights to deep space will not rely on resupply spacecraft to deliver what astronauts need and dispose of trash, the Orion crew will have to take everything they need with them and bring it all back home," the space agency explained. "Given...

  • US consumers blow $3.34bn on Black Friday, break mobile shopping record

    It was an extremely healthy Black Friday for US retailers according to new data released by Adobe. The company this week published its 2016 online shopping report covering Black Friday and Thanksgiving, and the numbers represent a positive trend over 2015. Adobe's report is based on "aggregated and anonymous data from 22.6-billion visits to retail websites" and covers approximately 80% of the US's top 100 retailers. Adobe notes that buyers in the US blew more than US$5.2-billion at the end of Friday. This marks a 17.7% increase over 2015. "Black Friday set a new record by surpassing the three-billion-dollar mark for the...

  • Reddit’s Joel Meek on challenges facing digital publishing

    Joel Meek has been VP of Operations at Reddit for over a year. In his role, Joel oversees Reddit’s Community, Trust and Safety, Finance, Media Partnerships, and Business Development teams. Previously, he managed the Community and Partnership teams at Pinterest, supporting and growing the company's communities and helping small- to mid-sized businesses advertise on the platform. Joel also worked on building the Sales and Support teams for Google Apps. Ahead of his presentation at the Digital Publishing Innovation Summit this December 5-6 in San Francisco, we sat down with Joel to talk all things digital publishing. What are the key challenges posed by having user-generated...

  • VLC preview offers 360 photo/video support

    360 videos and photos are becoming one of the more popular formats out there, but there are still significant challenges to be had. Playback is one of these obstacles, but a new app from the VLC crew (VideoLAN) shows a lot of promise. VideoLAN has released the VLC 360 tech preview, allowing you to play 360 photos/videos on Windows 7 and later or MacOS 10.10 and later. As for capabilities, the 360 tech preview supports 360 video playback using the "Spatial Video spec", as well as 360 photo/panorama support via the "spherical spec". Either way, you can swipe through content using...

  • 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...