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  • Industry leaders to determine the forces shaping SA’s digital landscape

    Digital is in a constant flux. The breakneck pace of innovation alone is causing such dynamic change in this industry that sifting the core trends from the noise in order to ascertain which forces will shape the digital landscape, is no easy feat. That's why Digital Edge Live 2012's sitting of the National Assembly has called together a working committee to aid in this sifting process. Top digital innovators from a range of South Africa's digital marketing elite will deliberate and state their case with the following discussions: The first panel's question: "Are digital agencies 'blinding clients with science'?" will...

  • Your newest weekly Twitter mail: People you may know

    Twitter seems pretty damned determined to occupy space in your inbox. The latest weekly email from the social network will see it suggesting people you might know. That's it. The email is just a list of people you might like to follow. As The Next Web notes, the new feature appears to use technology from social summary tool Summify, which Twitter bought at the beginning of the year. According to the social network: Suggestions are based on signals like who your friends follow and the contact information imported by people you know. For example, if several people you...

  • Windows 8: Making Microsoft cool or a desperate throw of the dice?

    When Windows 8 goes live in October it'll represent the culmination of Microsoft's bid to completely change the way people perceive it. For years now, Microsoft has been the buggy, beige-ridden OS of the masses. But over the past few months, it's given itself something of a corporate makeover. It announced partnerships with the likes of Nokia and HTC, and launched its own Surface tablet. It also changed its logo for the first time in over two decades and effectively killed hotmail. Without Windows 8 though, none of that matters. If it doesn't work, it'll mean that the Redmond-based giant's...

  • Social Good Summit: Forest Whitaker on embracing technology to foster peace

    Oscar-winning actor Forest Whitaker wants peace to become a mechanism he builds into people, through his new initiative, PeaceEarth, which he officially launched on International Peace Day (21 September). Taking to the stage at the 2012 Social Good Summit, he elaborated on how he sees technology playing into this initiative, and how it’s going to help him create a model to build peace within individuals that will spread to world. “We're living in a time that’s never been before; where it's actually possible for change to come,” said an impassioned Whitaker. “There wasn't a time like this before where we...

  • Digital leads the way at the 2012 Loeries

    At last year’s Loerie Awards, Hello Computer took home a Grand Prix for its Flow Browser concept for Musica. Strictly speaking, a digital campaign didn’t score as highly at South Africa's premier advertising showcase this year, but in many ways, the impact of digital and social media was even more obvious. From Helen Zille reading out #loeries tweets during her speech, to the fact that some of the winners were viewed more on YouTube than they were on TV (it was hard to miss the irony of Nando’s Diversity ad being award gold in a category sponsored by the...

  • Freedom House: Government threats to web on the up, along with protests

    Internet freedom is under attack. Governments are becoming increasingly repressive, frequently acting against their own citizens. At the same time however, activists are fighting back harder than ever. Over the past couple of years brutal attacks against bloggers, politically motivated surveillance, proactive manipulation of web content, and restrictive laws regulating speech online have all become more common, says a new report from NGO Freedom House. On the opposite end of the scale however increased pushback by civil society, technology companies, and independent courts resulted in several notable victories. “The findings clearly show that threats to internet freedom are becoming more...

  • What trends will take African tech to the next level?

    Three years ago I decided to bring a major tech conference to Africa -- Tech4Africa. The incredible personal journey that I have been on since the conference’s inception has tested my resolve to the limits as there have been many obstacles to overcome and it would have been so easy to have compromised my ideals or given up altogether. In that time however, I have learnt about the market, what people want and have tried to adapt each conference to be in line with emerging trends as I see them. Technology in Africa is at an exciting juncture with...

  • Social Good Summit: US Ambassador to UN Susan Rice on Twitter, foreign policy

    Ambassador Susan Rice joined the panel at this year's Social Good Summit to talk about how she's using social media in her role as the US's permanent representative to the United Nations. Rice, with over 190 000 followers, admits she may be comfortable using Twitter now, but she was initially wary of it, a self-confessed sceptic, and wondered how she would be able to "responsibly conduct foreign policy in something that looked like haiku". Rice has since found Twitter to be "fun, and a great way to connect with an audience around the world.” More importantly, she says, it’s...

  • 10 reasons why your next campaign absolutely has to include mobile video

    Like it or not, mobile is fast becoming the predominant way many consumers access the internet. It also goes without saying that visual content is a lot more engaging and has a much higher share rate than plain old text. So what happens when you combine the two? Well you get mobile video content. Here are 10 reasons why it’s so important to your digital strategy. 1. Booming audiences The saying “fish where the fish are” applies here, and mobile audiences have seen massive growth. People are spending more and more time consuming and interacting with content via mobile devices...

  • Black Mesa: Half-Life reborn

    Gabe Newell must be smiling. He is a man who has always placed community before commerce. Having made his millions at Microsoft he left to found Valve Software, a company that would make games without compromise. His Half-Life series prioritized quality over time constraints and financial concessions. The series protagonist, like Newell, truly was a free man. Indeed Newell is conceivably videogaming’s auteur -- a creative soul who has no patience for publishing houses that assume dogmatic rule. 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");

  • Meet the new, ‘cool’ Myspace

    The once wildly popular Myspace has released a teaser video showing the new direction its owners are looking to take it in. Best put a jersey on, because it's pretty damn cool. According to the company, which now includes pop superstar Justin Timberlake as one of its heads, the service has been rebuilt “entirely from scratch.” Gone are the messages from Tom, the insane backgrounds and, it seems, the music that starts blaring as soon as you enter a page. In its place is something much more minimal. Instead of the old clutter, imagery is emphasised, there's a static footer...

  • Eric Schmidt: no Google Maps for iOS… yet

    If you're an Apple user who's pissed off with the Cupertino-based giant's new maps offering don't hold your breath for an alternative from Google just yet. Speaking to a small batch of reporters in Tokyo, Japan Google chief Eric Schmidt said, "We have not done anything yet." "We've been talking with (Apple) for a long time. We talk to them every day," he added. The important part of that statement is the word "yet". It signals that the internet giant hasn't given up on iOS users. It's also more or less in line with Brian McClendon, vice president of engineering...

  • Iran’s government starts censoring Google search and Gmail

    In the wake of the anti-Islam YouTube video that has led to widespread protests in the Muslim world, Iran has announced that it intends to restrict access to Google products like search and Gmail indefinitely. Iranian citizens were informed of the government's decision via a message on state television and SMS over the weekend. According to the BBC, Abdul Samad Khoramabadi, an adviser to Iran's public prosecutor's office, said that "Google and Gmail will be filtered nationwide, and will remain filtered until further notice." Google-owned YouTube has been blocked in the country for some time. The country's Mehr news agency...

  • iPhone 5 opening weekend: 5m sold, factory workers riot

    Apple announced that it sold five-million iPhone 5s on its opening weekend in retail stores, signalling its most successful iPhone launch ever. The announcement was tainted however by news that workers in one of the Chinese factories building the device had rioted, leaving 40 injured. Demand for the thinner, slightly taller new device was so great that some orders have been pushed back a couple of weeks. “Demand for iPhone 5 has been incredible and we are working hard to get an iPhone 5 into the hands of every customer who wants one as quickly as possible,”...

  • Does wearable tech like Google Glass signal the age of ‘leaning in’?

    Tablet computers aren't the first piece of technology to disrupt the industry: since the 1980s we've seen considerable advancement from computers the size of rooms to the one I'm clutching and writing an article with, on the train home from work. Twenty years ago we could never have envisioned that mobile phones would shrink to the size they did, and then elongate to the size they’re currently at. Companies that have faced this disruption have either evolved or become extinct while whole industries have formed in the wake of new ones. Human beings should be more intelligent thanks to the...