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  • 5 customer service obstacles every startup has to overcome

    Have you ever noticed how some companies seem to go out of their way to place obstacles between their customers and great service? I sometimes imagine that there is a special director in charge of creating as much difficulty as possible for customers. Please allow me to share some examples of just a few of the customer service barriers I've bumped into during the past few weeks and how to overcome these obstacles. Read more on Ventureburn.var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • Caitlyn Jenner breaks internet, is fastest to 1m Twitter followers

    Caitlyn Jenner has broken the record for the fastest person to reach one-million Twitter followers, cementing her status as a trans-gender icon in the process. It took Jenner, already renowned for her sporting feats and involvement in reality TV's most famous family, just four hours to reach the one-million follower mark. In the process, she beat out US president Barack Obama, who took five hours to reach the mark when he joined Twitter just a couple of weeks ago. Jenner made her public debut yesterday both on social media and on the cover of Vanity Fair, photographed by the...

  • Google refreshes, reinforces its user privacy and security settings

    Google has rolled out two improvements to its privacy and security tools in a bid to give users more flexible options. There's now a new hub for managing Google settings called My Account and a new site that answers important questions about privacy and security on Google. My Account also works for those who may not have a Google account. The company says that people feel that they are not in charge of the privacy settings. “Everyday, we make choices that affect our privacy and security online. Most people, however, don’t feel they have the right level of control to make these...

  • Google explains the design philosophy behind Material Design [video]

    It's been a few days since Google I/O 2015 ended but just hours after the annual shindig, Google gave its website a Material Design overhaul and now, it has released a video explaining the Material Design concept. The video features Google designers of all disciplines talking about Material Design, from its inception to what it has become, which involved cutting out icons on paper, exposing them to light to create shadows, to finally completing a guide of material design to third party Android apps. There is no doubt that material design is pretty to look at with its bold colours, typography...

  • Is automation turning the proposal into a dying art?

    In my line of work, we often explain how easy technology makes the process of creating great-looking, accurate and compliant proposals and RFP responses. But maybe our solutions, and others like it, should come with a warning. While the benefits of document automation may be clear, the best way to use it is often not. Automation can be a dangerous thing Increased collaboration, efficiency and productivity are some of the biggest reasons businesses deploy proposal automation software. But when these things become more important than the quality of each proposal created, each story told, you risk generating proposals that were worse than...

  • Forget the buzzwords: mind your (IT consulting) Language

    What I mean to say is: Mind your buzzwordlittered jargoninfested language. Yikes. Too much? Well, let me tone it down a little. Among the many things that irk me about dealing with consultants, the one that tops the list would probably be their penchant for buzzwords. Every industry has its own collection of buzzwords. They are carefully inserted into research papers and proposals, if only to lengthen sentences that could have been understood in half the word count and quarter the time. They are skillfully included in conversation and are so overused or misused that eventually, a carefully constructed...

  • Uber updates app for deaf drivers

    Uber is at it again - behaving like a company which got way too big way too fast and now needs to cover too many bases. Uber is now working with the National association for the Deaf, once again pushing the boundaries of transportation and now going further for drivers with impaired hearing. If this doesn't make your heart swell, then I am sure the private driver service can add something to its app for that too, otherwise this has got to be one of the best Corporate Social Responsibility products I have seen all year. Limitless should be Uber's...

  • Wootware’s Rory Magee on growing ecommerce success in oversaturated market

    Starting an ecommerce store in South Africa is a difficult undertaking; making it a success is a far more daunting challenge. Wootware is an online PC store that, despite a difficult and saturated market, has continued to thrive. Since its launch in 2009, the store has continued to grow during a recession and unstable market, which is no short feat. We sat down with Rory Magee, the founder of Wootware, to find out a bit about the store's success and his take on the South African ecommerce market. Read more on Ventureburn. var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • OnePlus, Xiaomi and Lenovo: the 5 best camera smartphones for under $300

    Everyone wants to capture the important moments of their lives, and they want to capture it well. That’s where smartphones are making strides in this digital world, putting digital cameras within everyone’s reach. One would think that all-in-one devices are like jack-of-trades and master-of-none, but that’s enough for most people out there. These are the best smartphone cameras out there within a reachable budget of US$300, and this has shown us that the smartphone industry is moving at a brisk pace, rivalling dedicated point-and-shoot digital cameras. Read more on Gearburn. var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • Don’t be blinded by the buzzwords… why choosing the right cloud provider requires a critical approach

    Earlier this year, Goldman Sachs released a study which projected that spending on cloud computing infrastructure and platforms will grow at a 30% compound annual growth rate from 2013 through 2018, compared with five percent growth for the overall enterprise IT market. This is a staggering number, and reflects the growing importance of cloud computing in the enterprise IT equation. Along with such growth, however, come a host of service providers with varying quality and credibility. As a result, in a landscape that is becoming increasingly crowded and competitive, choosing the right supplier is critical. For business leaders taking...

  • Is proprietary software a necessary evil?

    Richard Stallman is, in essence, one of the most influential founders of Linux. In 1983, he developed the GNU operating system, now commonly referred to as Linux. This development spawned numerous free operating systems, such as Mark Shuttleworth's uBuntu, but has never quite matched the general popularity of Microsoft's Windows or Apple's Mac OS operating systems. Stallman is far from impressed with how software is handled in this day and age. In a piece written on The Guardian, Stallman slams modern day operating systems, companies and software in general. He mentions Digital Rights Management (DRM), software backdoors and End User License...

  • Online publication Quartz Africa launches in mission to cover the ‘next billion’

    Renowned US publisher Quartz launches its second international chapter in Africa today, reiterating a ripple of international interest in the region which is said to be a hotbed of trade and investment. Launched two years ago by the America's Atlantic Media, Quartz is well-known for being natively digital, meaning that it's been built with the millennial reader first in mind. "Like Wired in the 1990s and The Economist in the 1840s, Quartz embodies the era in which it is being created," the company writes. Quartz is on curious a mission to tap into the world's fast-growing markets (or "the next billion", as...

  • Controversial Google, Oracle case could put future API usage in jeopardy

    Both Google and Oracle are tech giants and their technology is ingrained into our everyday lives. The latter company owns the Java platform, which is used in most pieces of technology. Even with all of Oracle's success, the company is looking to target other tech giants. Oracle has decided to sue Google over copyrighted API's, more specifically their usage within Google's Android operating system. Google claims the usage consisted of only a small portion of the Java Standard Library. However small the usage may be, the code had still been used. After Silicon Valley judge, U.S. District Judge William Alsup, sided...

  • The Data Cycle: data’s journey across the network and how hacking can change that

    It’s nice when everyone gets along, isn’t it? When websites play fair with each other and allow users to link up various accounts – LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and so on. Some online services even let you create an account with your Facebook profile, removing the need to memorise another password. This is no doubt a convenient way of spreading your online identity – having your Twitter feed or Flickr photos display on your blog, for example. But there is also a drawback to this openness (isn’t there always?!). The recent news story that Slack, the increasingly popular group...

  • YouTube turns ten, throws itself an epic birthday party [video]

    Any other 10-year-old would have their parents organise a birthday party, invite friends, and hire a jumping castle. Not YouTube. On its tenth birthday the Google-owned video platform threw itself a party and released The A-Z of YouTube: Celebrating 10 Years video. Of course it's a video. In May, 10 years ago, YouTube launched in beta. It is unimaginable what the response to it would have been like but nonetheless, today it is the biggest single volt for videos of everything one can think of. YouTube claims Three hundred hours of video are uploaded every minute and has one billion users. Since...