Future Trends, Startups

Google’s Page and Schmidt backing asteroid mining startup

planetary_resources Wired is reporting that a group of intrepid billionaires will soon announce their new venture called Planetary Resources, Inc, “which plans to send swarms of robots to space to scout asteroids for precious metals and set up mines to bring resources back to Earth." Nope, this is not a movie, this is actually happening. “The resources of Earth pale in comparison to the wealth of the solar system," Eric Anderson who founded the commercial space tourism company Space Adventures, told Wired. Anderson ...

Advertising & Marketing, Social media

The sarcasm machine: Measuring sentiment in social media mentions

Social Media At the end of last year, I wrote a few posts on measuring social media, at the time when Google Analytics had recently launched Social Engagement Reporting (SER) in order for site owners to measure the impact of social media mentions in and outside of the website, as well as “real-time” which allowed users to see what was happening on their site at that exact moment. The real glitch, however, was how we expected computers to accurately report on social media metrics ...

Humour

Chicken? Santam hits back at Nando’s [Update]

About a week ago Nando's, in its usual cheeky way, ripped off a Santam ad, the one that features famed thespian Ben Kingsley. The fast-food outlet's ad satirised the tone and setting of Santam's original ad. But Santam is not upset. Quite the contrary -- the group is flattered. So in the spirit of fun Santam decided two could play that game. The financial services provider released its own ad that challenges the fast-food outlet to donate to a charity chosen ...

Social networking

Is BranchOut the new LinkedIn?

branchout social networking app for facebook To date, LinkedIn has been the social network of choice for business professionals. According to Socialbakers, there are 1 575 842 registered LinkedIn users in South Africa. If you compare this with the 4 745 920 registered Facebook users in South Africa, should LinkedIn take the new kid on the block, BranchOut, seriously? BranchOut is a Facebook app which enables users to present their résumé (current job, work history, summary, specialities and endorsements) and form connections with Facebook users, using name or company as search criteria. In addition, you may also request introductions through existing connections. Neal Schaffer of Windmill Networking wrote an article recently where he describes BranchOut as ...

Google

Google Drive: Official, launches with 5GB free storage

google_drive Google Drive. After six years of rumours, it’s finally here. The details that recently leaked out are true. The first 5GB is free. If you want more, you can upgrade to 25GB for US$2.49/month, 100GB for $4.99/month or even 1TB for $49.99/month -- your move Dropbox. When you upgrade to a paid account, your Gmail account storage will also expand to 25GB. Google Drive will permeate most of Google’s services and is "built to work seamlessly with your overall Google experience". ...

News

Al Gore, Vint Cerf, Tim Berners-Lee: Meet the internet hall of famers

The internet finally has its own hall of fame, and it's about time too seeing as playing in the online industry is every bit as tough and competitive as sport. The new hall of fame introduced a number of inductees who have made significant contributions to the development of the internet. The awards program was established by the Internet Society to "publicly recognise a distinguished and select group of visionaries". The aim of the hall of fame is to celebrate the ...

Online media

Is the digital industry shooting itself in the foot?

internet connection The titles that digital marketers are giving themselves these days are rather unbelievable. From “guru” to “specialist” to “strategist” and beyond (Buzz Light-Year would be proud). But are these titles that those who are using them, by and large, can actually live up to? In case you missed it; this is going to be more of an opinion piece about the digital industry as a whole, with a particular focus on how some individuals within it (both locally and internationally) are ...

Gearburn

I am Alive – tactics over action

With a turbulent history, I am Alive barely made it out at all. But with developer Ubisoft Shanghai using creative mechanics to overcome technical constraints, they’ve come out with an ambitious, gritty game that is well executed for the most part. Survive the Horror I am Alive was first announced way back in 2008 with a different publisher at the helm and the promise of a big title release. The survival horror game then lost its lead designer and disappeared off the map until mid last year. ...

Google

Google’s having a little fun with a zip

Google doodle Possibly the coolest doodle this year, Google put a zip on its home page that allows users to unzip the front page. The impressive Doodle is in honour of Gideon Sundback, the Swedish-American electrical engineer who invented the zip, as today is his 132nd birthday. His name is trending worldwide on Twitter. The unzipped page is a collection of links with information and news reports on Sundback. Users are able to learn more about the invention of the zip. Originally, Sundback intended ...

Africa, Google, Startup news

Umbono Alpha Beta: Beer, pizza and startups, the Google way

umbono Umbono Alpha Beta is a Google event at which you can have as much free beer and pizza as you want, as long as you love startups. Memeburn was invited to watch as six startups -- three teams at the end of their six month Umbono program (last year's winners) and three who are just beginning -- presented their products and businesses to a packed (and we do mean packed) room. Umbono launched last year as a trial startup incubation project exclusive to ...

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