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  • Google Realtime Search (kind of) makes a comeback with Google+

    Google's Realtime Search function is set to make a comeback, but with no tweets or Facebook status updates. It will, instead, be limited to updates from Google+, Mashable reports. Realtime Search was an additional feature of Google's traditional search until it was given the boot in July. Realtime allowed a user to see updates from various social networks and freshly updates from websites as they were posted live. Though there were some 17 sources for Realtime, however, it was primarily powered by featuring tweets as they were posted. When Google decided against extending the deal which gave it access to...

  • 8 Reasons small businesses should use Facebook ads

    With websites continuing to proliferate unabated, small businesses find themselves grappling with the question of how to reach an increasingly fragmented audience in the most cost effective way. In an emerging market like South Africa, for instance, Facebook delivers some 60 percent of the online population on a single platform. Small wonder then that, for many businesses, it has become the logical choice when it comes to online advertising. A number of small business owners, however, still mistakenly perceive Facebook as a platform that requires large budgets and significant social media resources in order to make it work...

  • Google lawyer slams Apple, Microsoft, and other competitors

    Google's top lawyer accused Apple, Oracle, Microsoft and other companies of using "bogus patents" to wage a campaign against the internet giant's Android mobile platform. In a blog post titled, "When patents attack Android", Google senior vice president and chief legal officer David Drummond said Google's rivals were seeking to "make it harder for manufacturers to sell Android devices". "Instead of competing by building new features or devices, they are fighting through litigation", Drummond said. He said 550 000 Android devices were being activated every day and its success has resulted in a "hostile, organised campaign against Android by Microsoft, Oracle, Apple,...

  • US police crack open ‘nightmare’ online child pornography network

    US officials have unveiled charges against 72 people in their largest global probe into internet child pornography which smashed a "nightmare" online bulletin board catering to paedophiles. The investigation, launched in 2009, has led to arrests in the US and 13 other countries of participants in Dreamboard, which had a "VIP" ranking system for members trading in graphic images and videos of adults molesting children age 12 and under, often violently, the Justice Department said. "Dreamboard's creators and members lived all over the world -- but they allegedly were united by a disturbing belief that the sexual abuse of children is...

  • South Korean police bust online scam which used ‘elite’ North Korean hackers

    South Korean police claim to have busted a criminal gang which used elite North Korean computer hackers to break into online game sites and steal prize points worth millions of dollars. The North has been accused of several cyber attacks on the South in recent years, but this was the first reported case of hacking for profit. Police said some of the proceeds apparently went to the regime in Pyongyang. They said 17 South Koreans had stolen 6.4-billion won (US$6.02-million) since June 2009 through the scam after hiring 30 North Korean hackers based in northeast China. After a joint probe with intelligence...

  • Google Voice: Now available in 38 new languages

    Google Voice, the Skype-like component within Gmail, has opened itself up to 38 more languages as well as many more countries outside the US. Previously, only US users could access Google Voice for landline and mobile calls. Now, however, users in South Africa, Turkey, Russia, Portugal, Vietnam, Serbia and many others can logon to their Gmail accounts and start making phone calls at greatly reduced rates. Gmail's US rates, as outlined in the table below, are substantially cheaper than Skype's (all prices are in US cents): These reduced pricing options will make Google Voice an attractive option in developing countries...

  • Microsoft offers massive prize in bid to turn tables on hackers

    Microsoft has kicked off a contest aimed at turning the tables on hackers by offering big money prizes for innovative tactics to foil cyber attacks. The US software titan launched the premier BlueHat Prize competition at a major Black Hat computer security conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Black Hat conference aims to "bring together thought leaders from all facets" of the information security world. According to the competition website, the BlueHat contest prize is "designed to generate new ideas for defensive approaches to support computer security". "As the risk of criminal attacks on private and government computer systems continues to...

  • ‘IE users are dumb as a bag of hammers’ story revealed to be a hoax

    The BBC is reporting that a story which claimed that Internet Explorer users have a lower average IQ than users of other browsers is a hoax. A number of news organisations ran the story on the basis of a report posted what was on what was believed to be the Canadian website of a research firm called AptiQuant. It has since emerged, however, that AptiQuant's website had only recently been set up and that the images of its staff were copied from the site of French research company, Central Test. The BBC reports that Central Test had been made aware...

  • Four tips to choosing your digital partner

    There is no doubt that digital continues to be a growing part of every marketing budget. Choosing the right partner to assist your digital efforts is a critical decision. As critical, I'd argue, as the choice of agency in any marketing discipline to date. The reason for this lies in the nature of digital itself -- uncontrovertibly, digital has technology at its heart. For a marketer, what does this mean? When I talk technology, I mean hardware and software -- always behind the scenes, but as essential as the engine in your car. Like your car's engine, you leave the...

  • Governments, high profile organisations targets of ‘cyber spying campaign’

    The governments of the United States and other countries, major US defence contractors, the United Nations and the International Olympic Committee have been targets of a global cyber spying campaign, security firm McAfee has announced. McAfee did not identify the country believed to be behind the sophisticated hacking campaign dubbed "Operation Shady RAT," which it traced back to at least 2006, but computer security analysts pointed the finger at China. The McAfee report identified 72 "compromised" parties including the governments of the United States, Canada, India, South Korea, Taiwan and Vietnam. Other targets included computer networks of the United Nations, Association of...

  • 3 reasons NOT to start a group buying site

    The group buying industry sprang to life with very little warning. Groupon began a trend and soon everyone wanted a piece of the action. This phenomenon has been popular in emerging market countries such as South Africa where it began with Wicount in 2010. By January 2011, big names like Groupon and Bidorbuy had bought out smaller South African sites like UbuntuDeal and with a very low barrier to entry, the market exploded. It would seem that it is an industry to have a look at, especially for an entrepreneur; perhaps you can start your own group buying site?...

  • Sony buys videogame maker Sucker Punch

    Sony Computer Entertainment has bought the studio behind hit videogames "inFamous" and "Sly Cooper." Sucker Punch Productions will be part of game development operations of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios and make games exclusively for PlayStation 3 videogame consoles, according to SCE. "We've enjoyed an incredible relationship with Sony that has allowed us to combine our creative design capabilities with their guidance to make some of the best franchises to hit the PlayStation platforms," said Sucker Punch managing partner Brian Fleming. 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");

  • Google+ the fastest-growing social network ever

    Google is a latecomer to social networking but according to technology experts its new site, Google+, is growing much more rapidly than Facebook, Myspace and Twitter did in their early days. While Google+ may be the fastest-growing social network ever, it remains to be seen, however, whether it can pose a serious threat to social networking titan Facebook, which has more than 750-million members. Andrew Lipsman, vice president for industry analysis at tracking firm comScore, said Google+, which was launched by the Internet search and advertising giant on 28 June, had 25-million unique visitors as of 24 July. During a panel...

  • Startup Weekends hit South Africa

    In what could be a potential boon for tech entrepreneurs in the region, Startup Weekends have arrived in South Africa. Startup Weekends are established in Silicon Valley, but until recently, South Africa had missed out on the benefits of this exciting 54-hour weekend phenomenon. The initiative involves teams gathering from Friday evening to Sunday night to set up a business, ultimately vying for the top position as judges assess the best business ideas at the end of the weekend. The first weekend took place in Cape Town, with Johannesburg having its own Startup Weekend soon after. ...

  • Apple & Samsung’s legal wrangles land in Australia

    Computer giant Apple has launched legal proceedings in Australia against Samsung Electronics, accusing the South Korean firm of infringing its patents with its Galaxy Tab 10.1, papers show. Samsung is already embroiled in a patent dispute over smartphones and tablet computers with Apple in the United States, in which both sides have filed infringement claims against the other. Documents presented to the Federal Court of Australia show Apple is seeking to permanently ban the sale or promotion of the latest Galaxy Tab 10.1, which would compete with Apple's iPad, in Australia. Apple says Samsung's tablet infringes 10 of its Australian patents, according...