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  • Kenya to start taxing mobile transactions

    The Kenyan government has announced plans to implement at 10% tax on mobile money payments, including those made via MPesa. According to The Next Web, the tax is part of a plan to cover the nearly US$300-million needed for pay rises after a recent strike by state-employed teachers, lecturers and doctors. There are around 17-million registered MPesa accounts, handling over two-million transactions a day. Although most of the amounts being moved are relatively small, sheer volume should mean that the government gets some decent revenue from the tax. As The Next Web notes however, it doesn't look like the...

  • Imaginaria: Finally, geeks can check into Hogwarts and Middle Earth

    Tell me that headline didn't just have you jumping for joy! It has finally happened -- some bright spark has decided that it's not right that Foursquare doesn't allow you to check into made up places. Solution? Imaginaria, an app that allows you to check into the imaginations of various writers. Alright, interestingly enough, this isn't just geeks being geeks but one bookstore's effort to make reading more social. According to the app its a "new and fun way to share your reading experience by checking in at the imaginary places from your favourite books." The app is plugged into...

  • Caspar Lee: A web star unknown in his own country

    Nearly nine-million YouTube views in less than a year, 168 000 subscribers, 118 000 Twitter followers. Those are fairly impressive figures, the kind of numbers that most brands would kill for. So how come nobody in South Africa seems to have heard of Caspar Lee? I was first alerted to the existence of this baby-faced 18-year-old by @MartinYoung -- a fellow resident of Lee's hometown of Knysna in the Western Cape. I asked the interns at digital agency Quirk if they’d heard of him. Nobody had a clue who he was. That’s when Lourie Campher and I started doing...

  • 22 pros and cons to consider before including social in your next campaign

    In today’s digital business landscape, the ability to be social across multiple digital platforms, country borders and language barriers has introduced a new method to marketing previously not known. Social media marketing is one of the fastest changing areas of marketing the world has ever seen. The methods used and developed within social media marketing have come a very long way since the birth of digital social media and the opportunities it has created for businesses around the world, but there are certain aspects of social media you have to be aware of when making use of social media marketing...

  • Could Google+ and Twitter upstage Facebook in Latin America?

    Latin American countries get social media. Brazil and Mexico lay claim to the world's second and fifth largest Facebook populations respectively. But it's not just Facebook that's making its mark in the region. The big blue social network alone wouldn't provide enough users to account for online research company eMarketer's prediction that the region's social media population will continue to grow by double digits through to 2014. Interestingly, the region seems a lot more taken with Google+ than the social network's US home base is. Data from Global Web Index suggests that Argentina, Brazil and Mexico each have Google+...

  • Interview with the dev: Crossbones’ custom Nexus OS

    I’ve used Crossbones ROMs on both my Nexus S and Galaxy Nexus and I have to admit, they’re as stable as you’re likely to find. They offer some very useful additions to Google’s stock offering, while also giving you a little more control over your device. If you’re looking for something that looks like stock, but feels and reacts quicker, then this is certainly worth a look. CPU controls and unique notification toggles are two of the most important features to look for in custom ROMs and with an advanced reboot menu, and a few other tweaks, it really is...

  • HeTexted: Are we really ready to crowdsource love online?

    I suppose it was inevitable that in a world of Google and Twoogle where we just cannot bear to figure anything out on our own we would end up asking the internet to decide the fate of our love lives. Really? I thought dating sites was as far as the internet's reach into romantic affairs went. Apparently not. Enter HeTexted, a site that helps you crowdsource advice about a potential significant other. No I am not making this up, TechCrunch even wrote about it. It's a real thing. The site describes itself as "the first Q&A service dedicated to...

  • Facebook starts testing want and collect buttons, gets more Pinterest-y

    Don't you love it when rumours come true? Stories have been circling for a while now that Facebook was working on a 'want' button and gearing up for entry into the world of social ecommerce. Now the social network is testing a new Collections feature which allows users to create wishlists of items they'd like to purchase from a brand's Facebook page. The billion-strong social network is piloting want and 'collect' buttons with selected users and brands in the US -- including Pottery Barn, Wayfair, Victoria's Secret, Michael Kors, Neiman Marcus, Smith Optics, and Fab.com. According to TechCrunch, the...

  • Facebook has a ‘dislike’ button, but no one’s getting it

    So... about that 'dislike' button everyone's been clamouring for on Facebook. Turns out it exists, but you can't have it, or even experience it. Ever. Well unless you decide to become a developer at Facebook. Even then, it probably won't be the dislike button you imagine. It's called Push Karma and the only person with access to the button is Chuck Rossi, a release engineer at the social network. Speaking to Businessweek, Rossi explains how he uses the system to see what code a person has submitted and downvote them if he isn't happy with their performance: “Every developer...

  • Space X successfully blasts off enroute to the International Space Station

    Space X has successfully launched a Dragon capsule into space... again. After the company's historical test flight in May, it blasted another capsule into the skies today for the first of twelve scheduled trips to carry equipment and supplies to the International Space Station (ISS). The first commercial resupply mission (SpaceX CRS-1) craft took off from Cape Canaveral in Florida filled with everything from clothing and chocolate and vanilla swirl ice cream to materials required for upcoming micro-gravity experiments planned by the crew on board the ISS. Space X's Falcon 9 rocket jettisoned the capsule just under 10 minutes...

  • Spoof ad shows what Facebook is really like: Toilets

    So Facebook thinks it's like a chair. Well, as tech journos all over the world have pointed out, that's pretty much a crock of . Only one video maker however has had the guts to point out that the social network is like something else you sit on... a throne of sorts. If we're honest, the more cynical among us would probably say that comparing Facebook to a toilet makes a lot more sense than comparing it to a chair. Of course there's one flaw in that argument: the toilet's where you...

  • 5ounces: flash sale eCommerce for gourmet food and wine lovers

    There's a new time-sensitive, gourmet food and wine eCommerce site on the block, and it's called 5ounces -- the standard, one-fifth measurement of a bottle of wine. Launched in August of this year, 5ounces is inspired by the flash sale model of Gilt Taste and the artisanal wine offerings of Lot 18. Founder Trevor Gosling says that 5ounces aims to provide South African consumers with gourmet produce and premium wines at significantly reduced prices. A quick scan over the site reveals price reductions on Platter four and five star wine half-cases of close to 50%. Read more on Ventureburn....

  • Chinese tech giants ZTE, Huawei deemed security threat by US

    Products from Chinese tech giants ZTE and Huawei have been deemed a security threat with US lawmakers urging government departments and private companies alike not to use them. According to the Wall Street Journal, a year-long investigation concluded that people shouldn't buy devices from the two companies because they could be used for spying on them. It also recommends that a block be put on any mergers and acquisitions involving the two companies. Both companies maintain that they have been cooperative throughout the investigation and that any attempt by the US to block their products would be detrimental to...

  • Ralph Simon: Memeburn talks mobile’s future with the ‘Father of the Ringtone’

    Mobile is pretty big right now: it's where people are innovating and it's the common denominator device. Gartner predicts that by 2015 there will be more than two-billion smartphones in the world. That's a lot of smartphones. Tech analysis company Juniper Research says that by 2014 240-million people will be watching television on their smart devices. It's a space ripe for innovation and of course the entertainment industry is happy to find ways to meet its audiences on whatever device they have. Mobile entertainment is the next stage in entertainment and it is rapidly growing. Juniper Research also predicts...

  • Why everyone should learn to code… before it’s too late [Infographic]

    Ever think you should probably expand your skills and learn another language? While learning to speak Japanese, French or Spanish would be a great achievement, there could actually be a few other languages you should consider -- like JavaScript, Python or Ruby. And you should probably get started... right now. In a world where the number of developer jobs is growing fast and free online resources like Codeacademy are flourishing, it's hard to deny the value in knowing how to code. Shereef Bishay, founder of Developer Boot Camp, is teaching people how to program and running a startup that...