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  • Egyptian man jailed for ‘insulting’ Facebook posts

    An Egyptian man landed in jail after his inflammatory postings on Facebook. A court in Cairo sentenced the man to three years with hard labour after finding that "he intentionally insulted the dignity of the Islamic religion and attacked it with insults and ridicule on Facebook". The documents of the court described the attack in further detail: "His insults were aimed at the Noble Koran, the true Islamic religion, the Prophet of Islam and his family and Muslims, in a scurrilous manner." The court declined to comment on Ayman Yusef Mansur's offensive statements. Mansur was arrested in August after police tracked...

  • How Twitter’s changed the world in your pocket [infographic]

    It's unlikely that when co-founder Jack Dorsey first came up with the idea for Twitter at the age of eight, he envisaged that it would grow to be all that it is today. Dorsey, who is also known as "the James Franco of the internet," could not be more correct when he says "Twitter has the potential to take the entire world and fit it in your pocket, and not just the global world -- your world". That world you are now able to put in your pocket has also, however, been changed by Twitter. Twitter has come a long way...

  • Golden Joystick award winners crowned

    The superlative game of 2011 was awarded to Portal 2 at the Golden Joystick awards. The London Park Plaza was the venue for the glitzy event which saw hundreds of the year's best games competing for the coveted prizes. Portal 2, the mind-bending action-adventure from the creators of Half Life won "Ultimate Game". Creating portals, navigating a dying production plant and combating the hateful AI called "GlaDOS" turned out to be an experience that every gamer could sink their teeth into. While Portal 2 was crowned best game, there were no titles which managed to completely dominate the award show. Other notable...

  • A decade of iPod

    Ten years ago, Apple released the first iPod to an unsuspecting public. It only took a decade for the iPod to become the world’s number one media player and this week, the iPod celebrates ten years on top. Despite mixed reactions for Apple products, it is hard to deny the cold hard facts. Over 300-million iPods have been sold worldwide, with rivals such as the Zune, Sony Walkman and the multiple SanDisk players unable to knock the champion off the charts. Proof of its success shows in its design. To this day, the current 160GB iPod remains largely unchanged from...

  • 11 African tech innovators to keep your eye on

    Prominent technology conference Tech4Africa has announced 11 finalists for its inaugural Innovation Award. The award aims to recognise the important role technological innovation will have in solving a number of the problems which are unique to Africa. The 11 finalists chosen by the conference organisers are variously attempting to tackle everything from road deaths and real-time video streaming in rural areas to tender corruption. "The Tech4Africa Innovation Award is another mechanism for us to realise our goal to engage, inspire, enable and innovate," says Gareth Knight, MD of Tech4Africa. "Africa has produced some incredible innovations to address problems...

  • Google’s Umbono set to announce first winners

    Google's recently launched startup incubator, Umbono, is set to announce the first winners in its pilot programme on the 1st of November in an event in Cape Town. Umbono is aimed at bringing technology startups together with seed capital, Google mentorship, angel investors, local tech stars, entrepreneurs and business leaders. 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". The search giant says the incubator is "in keeping with its ongoing commitment to foster...

  • Google is changing, for better or worse

    Google's large scale actions within the industry might be grabbing all the headlines, but it's the seemingly small changes that might have an even greater impact. Over the years, and certainly during my tenure at Google, industry pundits questioned its "Don't be Evil" mantra. Google's Philosophy has come under some severe scrutiny especially since it no longer "does one thing really well" as its mission of "organising the world's information & making it universally accessible and useful" encourages Google to broaden its scope. You've got to wonder what a self-driving car has to do with that. The backlash...

  • ‘I need you to make me a viral video’ – the 3Rs

    It is a common request from clients wanting to embrace the whole online thing. There's a fantastic chance that your MD, CEO, CFO, has been receiving increasing pressure, from peers/competitors, to throw some money at the production of a viral video. The problem with buzzwords is that they set unrealistic expectations. It is impossible to "make a viral video". It is however possible to produce a remarkable video and seed it to a relevant online network, in order to produce results that are beneficial to both the brand and the business. It is very important...

  • Review: Living with the Motorola XOOM

    What is there left to say about the Motorola XOOM that you don’t already know? Released way back in February of this year in the US, it has finally found its way to African shores. There are literally hundreds of reviews of the Motorola XOOM by now, so instead of boring you with tedious minutiae, I’ll try to convey just what it’s like to welcome to XOOM into your home. A quick refresher course To recap, the XOOM was Motorola’s first tablet, and the world’s first tablet to run Google’s Honeycomb tablet-specific OS. read more on Gearburn.com 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");

  • This week in design: Floating orchestras, Mark Shuttleworth talks Ubuntu

    Looking to forms of functional design, we discover clocks that tell stories, orchestras that float, fashion that becomes food, bacteria that becomes fashion and a lamp that doubles up as a miniature greenhouse. Also see what maverick entrepreneur Mark Shuttleworth has to say about his open source Ubuntu software project. Story telling Story Time by Atelier NL with Laikingland is a time piece that doesn’t tell the time but tells a story as a sequence of events. By questioning our perceptions of time, Story Time encourages clock-watchers to look at time in a different way. Story Time is made...

  • New Gmail intro video leaked

    Google accidentally posted a video of a new version of Gmail that features a revamped look, redesigned conversation threads and improved search to its YouTube channel. The new version of Gmail has been in the works since June this year when Google began tinkering with its features. This unofficial video, which features Jason Cornwell, user experience designer for Gmail, highlights other upcoming features in the new revamped Gmail. Google has since made the video private but not before YouTube user crlsndrsjmnz uploaded it to his YouTube account. "Oops, you weren’t supposed to see that," says Gmail representative Andrea Freund...

  • Smartphone-driven, context-aware computing the next battle-ground

    There is little doubt that context will be the "defining principle" of mobile business for the next decade. That's according to Gartner's vice-president of research William Clark. Clark predicts that "context" will become a battle ground for powerful players in the tech industry such as Nokia, Microsoft, Baidu, Amazon, Google and Apple. "Context-aware computing is the method by which new experiences are constructed that blend information from mobile, social, digital and physical world sources," Clark explained. Complementary to location awareness, context may be applied more flexibly with mobile computing with any moving entities, especially with bearers of smart communicators. According...

  • Win a Kindle e-Reader with Gearburn and Wantitall!

    The Kindle is undoubtedly the world’s leading eBook reader. Slick, intuitive and lightweight, the Kindle feels like a real book in your hand. The e-ink technology creates the look of a paperback novel and as such, the Kindle can be read in even the most glaring of light. The Kindle with ads can be yours, thanks to Wantitall and Gearburn! WantItAll.co.za is an online shopping site that has been bringing over 14-million products to the South African market, since June 2006. Want to win the Kindle e-Reader, valued at ZAR1500? Follow the instructions below to claim this awesome gadget. read more...

  • Google remains confident in Google+

    Google is determined that its social offering Google+ will be able to go toe-to-toe with social networking titan Facebook. According to Google executives, the California-based internet giant’s products will be increasingly woven into the fast-growing Google+ social networking platform. This, the executives said, would make joining the network irresistible. "We are in an enviable position that we have people who come to Google," Vic Gundotra, vice president in charge of Google+, said at the Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco. "We are in this for the long haul... By Christmas you will see Google+ strategy coming together." Since opening up to...

  • NY Times adds 43 000 online subscribers

    The New York Times reportedly added more than 40 000 digital subscribers in the third financial quarter of 2011. Although advertising revenue continued to decline. The New York Times Co. reported a net profit of US$15.7-billion in the quarter which ended in September. This compared favourably with a loss of US$4.3-million in the same quarter last year. Revenue at the printing giant declined 3.1% to US$537.2-million. In addition to its New York Times flagship offering, Times Co. owns the Boston Globe, International Herald Tribune and About.com. Total advertising revenue was down 8.8% to US$262-million while circulation revenue increased 3.4%...