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  • Q&A with Pria Chetty: Tech law, bright young minds and Geneva

    Pria Chetty is a rising star in the world of technology law. Memeburn recently spoke to her about the legal challenges which abound in delivering the benefits of IT to all South Africans, the future of internet regulation on the African continent and her goal of adding "a credible African voice to global tech law conversations". Andrew Rens: How did you get into tech law? Pria Chetty: In 2000 I saw a presentation, one slide showed internet connectivity in North America and then another slide showed how little Internet connectivity there was in Africa. AR: Wait, you saw how...

  • UK accused of hypocrisy at global internet talks

    The first day of a global summit aimed at addressing cyber-security threats and setting up the "rules of the road" for the internet saw Western nations, particularly the UK, facing charges of hypocrisy. The conference is being attended by global leaders from the internet and business worlds and delegates from 60 nations. Guests at The London Conference on Cyberspace include UK Foreign Secretary William Hague and Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had been scheduled to attend but cancelled due to the passing of her mother. At the Queen Elizabeth II centre in London where...

  • Making the iPad keyboard relevant with the TouchFire keyboard

    Typing on the iPad is not without its faults. An onscreen keyboard minus the tactical feedback of each keystroke has never been ideal, but is workable after a few days of trial and error. Why bother with the hassles of Apple's virtual keyboard when a hardware solution works so well? Options are sparse though, and costly. Why bother with a complicated, foldout nightmare when the TouchFire can ease your pains with its hassle-free, lightweight solution. The design is simplicity itself. TouchFire slips over the iPad (any version), magnetically connects itself to the sides of the device and claims to deliver a...

  • Uncharted 3 drops for eager PS3 players

    Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception is the third and final chapter in the Playstation 3's Uncharted series, ending the trilogy off on a high note. For US$60, a globetrotting adventure awaits the PS3 console owner and reviews are already exceptionally positive. Sony Computer Entertainment VP of marketing Scott Steinberg noted the leaps Uncharted 3 takes. "Naughty Dog once again takes a leap forward in cinematic gaming. Not only does Uncharted 3 deliver an impressive blend of interactive game play and stunning graphics, Naughty Dog has weaved an inspiring and personal story with genuinely relatable characters".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");

  • iPhone 4S to land in more countries come 11 November

    Apple says that the latest iteration of its smash-hit smartphone, the iPhone 4S, will go on sale in more countries later in Asia, Europe and Central America later in November. The Cupertiono-based tech giant says the phone will be available in Albania, Armenia, Bulgaria, El Salvador, Greece, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Malta, Montenegro, New Zealand, Panama, Poland, Portugal, Romania and South Korea from 11 November. The 4S will be available for pre-order a week before then in these same countries with the exceptions of Albania, El Salvador, Guatemala, Malta, Montenegro and Panama. 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");

  • Google announces Umbono winners

    Google’s startup incubator, Umbono, has officially launched with the announcement of its first set of winning teams. The pilot programme based in Cape Town, South Africa presented the teams in their new office space at an event on 1 November. The programme, a Google first worldwide, is being tested in Cape Town, South Africa which was chosen because Google believes the city is in “the process of positioning itself as a hub for innovation and technology”. Google's vice president of engineering, Nelson Mattos said that the Umbono project is part of Google's effort to grow its ecosystem in Africa. "We...

  • Is HTML 5 the olive branch for the Open Web?

    The web is in a state of transition where the experience and more so, the language of the web is receiving a makeover. This update, however, does not just improve the functionality, but promotes everybody to speak the same language. The open web, or a standardised architecture, is very promising and this doesn't necessarily need to happen in one extreme and daunting overhaul. That's according to Robert Nyman, Technical Evangelist for Mozilla. The experience of the Web is evolving along with our expectations and the capabilities of the current level of technology. So as our computers and phones become faster...

  • Location-based convenience is cool but don’t forget security

    Mobile adoption rates are going through the roof and the sheer ease of use of the devices is driving this adoption even harder. Devices are now able to allow coupon redemption with location tracking and even credit card purchases. The danger is in becoming too enthusiastic with the use of mobile devices for their convenience and cool factor and allowing the security of information to be a little lax. Where is the security issue? People using their mobile devices to complete transactions or redeem coupons are generally considered to be sophisticated users. These self-same sophisticated users have their emails, contacts and...

  • Journalists, get yourself a geek

    "Get a geek, or geekify yourself." That was the message to journalists from storyful's Gavin Sheridan. He was conducting a workshop on crowdsourcing news content at the 2011 FoME symposium. FoME is a German network of institutions and individuals who promote media development cooperation. The subject of the symposium was "Hype or Hope: The impact of digital media on journalism and development", and I was there to speak about everything from the iconic image of a defeated Gaddafi filmed on a cellphone, to the role that Twitter can play in nation-building. The Open Society Foundation was there at the...

  • ‘Apple is a digital vampire,’ says rock legend Pete Townshend

    Legendary lead guitarist for rock icons The Who, Pete Townshend, has attacked Apple’s iTunes music store accusing it of bleeding musicians like a "digital vampire". "Is there really any good reason why, just because iTunes exists in the wild west internet land of Facebook and Twitter, it can't provide some aspect of these services to the artists whose work it bleeds like a digital vampire... for its enormous commission?" The 66-year old rocker made the startling statements at the inaugural John Peel lecture in Manchester, England. Townshend berated iTunes, which he also recognised as a "fantastic piece of software," saying that...

  • Google Street View invites you inside businesses

    From the air, to the ground and now to the inside of our businesses, Google is inching ever closer to its dream of giving people a chance to view each and every part of the world. Google Maps, the free online mapping engine, is now giving small businesses the capability to let users view the inside of their establishments. The panoramic images were tested last year April as volunteers within each business, be it a fast-food chain, a gym or a restaurant took images and stitched them together for the Google Street View experiment. As with Street View, Google will...

  • News Transparency looks to hold journos accountable

    A brand new website has launched with the aim of providing people with information about the journalists behind the bylines. News Transparency operates off a Wikipedia-type model and is the brainchild of Ira Stoll. Stoll is the founder of another website called FutureOfCapitalism.com and a former managing editor of the now defunct New York Sun. In a statement on the site's front page, News Transparency said that its aim is to help "you find out more about the people who produce the news," and allow "you to hold them accountable, the same way that journalists hold other institutions accountable,...

  • Politicians, tech leaders to meet in London for cyberspace conference

    Politicians and high-profile tech leaders from over 60 countries are heading to London to discuss the benefits and security risks of cyber-space. Among those attending the two-day conference are US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton, Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales and the heads of Chinese tech firms. The event has attracted around 900 delegates, although few commentators expect unity from participants who frequently disagree about the exact opportunities and challenges presented by cyber-space. The conference has a broad agenda and covers everything from access to the internet, the economic impact of cyber-space, its social benefits -- including fuelling democracy...

  • Sister’s touching eulogy for Steve Jobs reveals final words

    "OH WOW. OH WOW. OH WOW," the last words uttered by the iconic Steve Jobs have been revealed in an incredibly moving eulogy by his sister Mona Simpson, in the form of an op-ed published in the New York Times. In the piece, Simpson -- who is Jobs' biological sister -- tells the story of how she first met him after a lawyer contacted her with a cryptic message saying that "his client was rich and famous and was my long-lost brother" and was looking to meet her. Jobs was put up for and adopted at birth. Simpson and Jobs...

  • When piracy goes mainstream

    I was quite taken aback to discover a very interesting article posted on the ABC news network's Technology Blog, called The Case For Piracy. What I found surprising about this, was that a mainstream media company had actually published an article that presents an argument defending piracy. What is also quite interesting is the sheer number of positive comments about this article. After taking some time to read through the article, I felt quite split in my opinion on the matter. I want to question whether this really is a legitimate case for illegally copying and sharing digital content....