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  • Google’s Olympic doodle is kind of disappointing

    Google's done some pretty epic doodles in the past. The one it's done for the 2012 Olympic Games is not one of them. We were really hopeful when we saw the picture on the Google home page. A load of cutesy looking Olympians with the Google letters arranged them, what would happen when the mouse hovered over them. Would they start enacting their perspective sports? Nope. All you get is a line of alt-text saying "London 2012 Opening Ceremony". Bear in mind that this is the company that gave us the Freddie Mercury doodle and the Moog Synthesiser one....

  • Facebook’s first earnings report exactly as expected, stock price falls anyway

    Well there's one for the books. The analysts were pretty much dead on the money when it came to Facebook's first earnings call as a publicly listed company. The social network pulled in US$1.18-billion with a profit of US$0.12 per share. Analysts were predicting US$1.15- billion, also at US$0.12 profit per share. If you were looking for any spectacular revelations from CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg, sorry no luck. The message from the hoodied one was more or less the same as it's always been: Our goal is to help every person stay connected and every product they use...

  • Which global leaders are winning when it comes to Twitter?

    Twitter's important. Most of us get it, and it seems the vast majority of politicians do to. At least, they get that being on Twitter's important -- some of them just aren't sure what do once they're there. In fact, according to a study released today by PR company Burson-Marsteller, nearly two-thirds of the world's leaders are now on the 140 character-or-less social network. Bizarrely though, less than half follow their peers from around the globe. The company claims that the study, called Twiplomacy is the "first research of its kind, aimed at identifying to what extent world leaders...

  • It’s not just you — Google Talk is down

    No, it's not just your computer or your phone or your tablet -- it's everyone. Google has confirmed that its messaging service is offline, and that it's working on the problem. Visitors to its app status dashboard will be greeted by a comforting red dot, and the following message: We're aware of a problem with Google Talk affecting a majority of users. The affected users are able to access Google Talk, but are seeing error messages and/or other unexpected behavior. We will provide an update by 7/26/12 1:50 PM detailing when we expect to resolve the problem. Please note that...

  • Google now lets you search with handwriting

    This is very cool. Google search now recognises search queries via handwriting. The new service, officially announced today, allows you to hand write your searches on tablets and mobile phones. Here's how to get started: Go to Google.com in your mobile browser, tap on “Settings” at the bottom of the screen and enable “Handwrite.” Note that after you've saved the setting, you may need to refresh the homepage to see the feature. On tablets, the Search settings are available as an option behind the gear icon. Once that's done, tap the Handwrite icon on the bottom right corner of your...

  • Facebook rolls out Recommendations Bar, claims tripled click-through rates

    Looks like Facebook's taken a leaf out of Twitter's "search and discovery's where it's at" book. The world's largest social network today announced that it was rolling out a recommendations bar. The new social plug-in is aimed at helping people find articles based on what their friends like and share from your site. As a person reads an article, a small pop-up surfaces at the bottom of the screen highlighting recommended articles and prompting them to like the page. Recommendations are based on content that friends have explicitly liked and shared in your app or website. Facebook says the plug-in...

  • Why Google display advertising is like dating

    Ever wonder what makes display advertising work? Ever wonder what makes for the perfect date? Well you're in luck! Here are some of my tips and tricks to keep in mind when looking to win those moments that matter! Context/ Environment -- Even if your personality doesn't sparkle with rays of sunshine, with the right environment even you stand a chance at romance! Category -- Do you go for quaint dinner? Do you go for a playful day out? Your category will send out certain signals of affiliation and intent. Interest -- Sharing common interests is always a great...

  • 10 things you need to know about the way we use mobile phones

    The mobile phone is the future. It’s prosperity, hope, development and empowerment all rolled into one handy device with a camera and an FM radio. What we do with our cellphones matters, wherever you are. Given all of this, it was hardly surprising that the meeting room tech media were gathered to hear the latest results from the Mobility 2012 survey conducted by research company World Wide Worx and sponsored by financial giant First National Bank (FNB) was so crowded. Based on interviews with a nationally representative sample, the Mobility 2012 project consists of two reports, The Mobile Consumer...

  • Hyperlinks are dying and Google’s to blame

    There is something extraordinary taking place. Google's war on spam sites is tipping the online world upside down and now threatens that most fundamental element of the world wide web: the hyperlink. There is a massive erasure underway of millions of links and it will only accelerate. The communication lines are the spider's silk but it's the links that make the structure of the web. But because of Google's battle with spammers, the hyperlink could disappear in its current form, and become a commercial product that's bought and sold, instead of earned fair and square. Let me explain: When I ran into...

  • How the cloud has changed the business world

    According to Eric Knorr and Galen Gruman at InfoWorld, cloud computing refers to “virtual servers available over the Internet.” Not really the nebulous definition one envisions, but as cloud computing is in its earliest stages, the actual application of the cloud can seem pretty vague. Some of the most common ways that we are seeing the cloud used in business today include increasing storage capacity, training new employees, and downloading new software. Cloud computing also allows businesses to extend their IT department capabilities by granted subscriptions or pay-per-use access to services, such as dataprotection.com cloud backup. Increase your storage power What...

  • Twitter is down…again [update]

    Here we again. Twitter is down, having been up a whole month after its last outage. This time though, things appear to have gone catastrophically wrong. When Memeburn tried to log onto the web version of the social network, we were met with the following error. According to Twitter's status page, its engineers are aware of the problem and are working on a fix. Update: The social network appears to be back up. If you're desperate for your 140 character fix, you could always try the mobile portal, which usually works. The last outage was Twitter's worst in eight months...

  • Philips Fidelio: an Android docking station to be proud of

    This a little difficult for me to admit, but I've always been jealous the docking stations available to anyone with an iDevice. So when the US$200 Phillips Fidelio Android docking station landed in the Gearburn offices my interest was very much piqued. Admittedly most of those docking speaker I was so jealous of were originally intended for iPods. Still, the fact that someone could just plug their iPhone (a top-of-the-line one is more than capable of handling all but the most insane music collections) into a docking station and rock away was a little frustrating. Read more on Gearburn.comvar...

  • Cloud Atlas trailer will leave you breathless [Video]

    Watch this. It's the trailer to what may well be the most ambitious film ever made. Cloud Atlas is based on David Mitchell's 2004 novel of the same name. It consists of six nested stories that take you from the remote South Pacific in the nineteenth century to a distant, post-apocalyptic future. The official synopsis for the film meanwhile calls it "an epic story of humankind in which the actions and consequences of our lives impact one another throughout the past, present and future as one soul is shaped from a murderer into a savior and a single act of...

  • Is it really game over for Zynga?

    Wow. This is kind of harsh. Social game maker Zynga's share price dropped 40% after reporting a dismal second quarter. The company, which had a roller coaster stock debut managed a net loss of US$22.8-million for the second quarter of 2012 compared to net income of US$1.4-million for the second quarter of 2011. While revenue was US$332.5 million for the second quarter of 2012, an increase of 19% compared to the second quarter of 2011, it was lower than analysts were expecting. Online game revenue was US$291.5-million, down US$1.2-million compared to the first quarter of 2012. One glimmer of hope...

  • Advertising to drive social’s $16.9bn in revenue for 2012

    Think General Motors', now reversed, decision to pull its Facebook advertising had the industry rattled? Think again. Social media is set to bring in US$16.9-billion in 2012, over half of which will come from advertising. According to tech research company Gartner social revenue is up 43.1% from 2011 and advertising projected to contribute US$8.8-billion worth of that. Social gaming is the other big winner. Revenue from the medium more than doubled between 2010 and 2011 and is expected to reach US$6.2-billion in 2012, while revenue from subscriptions is expected to total US$278-million this year. Social networks will...