News

Apple looks to completely change textbooks with iBooks 2

illuminated apple Throughout his tenure at Apple, one of Steve Jobs' abiding passions was education. It should hardly be surprising then that the tech giant announced two brand new initiatives aimed at completely updating education during a special event held in New York City. The first initiative looks to completely reinvent the textbook with the launch of iBooks 2. Apple Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller demonstrated the new iteration of iBooks using a biology textbook. The book included a ...

Video

Volkswagen follow up to 2011 viral success involves Star Wars, dogs [Video]

Car manufacturing giant Volkswagen has released a teaser for its 2012 Superbowl commercial. The ad will reprise the Star Wars theme of its wildly successful 2011 ad, but with a twist. The teaser features a chorus of dogs, some dressed in Star Wars regalia, barking out the Imperial March. Less than a day after being uploaded, the teaser had attracted nearly 60 000 hits. Volkswagen promises that the canine chorus will make proper sense come 5 February when the ...

News

Google launches Woza Online: Free websites for SA businesses

Google has launched a service that will allow small and medium-sized South African businesses to build their own websites for free. The internet giant claims that the initiative, called Woza Online, will give businesses "the opportunity to create their own websites... and develop an online presence -- for free, and in under an hour". Google says that having a website means more success for small businesses -- so it's driving home the point by offering them for free. The search giant ...

News

Wikipedia says it’s not done protesting SOPA

Wikipedia may be back to full working order, but the massive online encyclopaedia says it isn’t done fighting the Stop Online Piracy Act(SOPA) and Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA). The Wikimedia foundation, which is the organisation behind Wikipedia and a variety of other Wiki projects, thanked the 162-million or so people who saw its message asking them “imagine a world without free knowledge”. The free online encyclopaedia went on to catalogue some of the achievements of those who felt called to ...

Emerging Markets, Social media

India on track to censor social media, curb freedom of expression

Spurred on by a lower court ruling, the Indian government has urged 21 companies, including technology behemoths Facebook and Google, to censor objectionable material hosted on their respective services. Many see the move by the Indian government to censor social media as a threat to freedom of expression. Instead of bowing to pressure, the companies in question are fighting back. Unlike classic authoritarian governments in emerging markets such as China and Russia, India has been relatively free. It therefore appears out ...

Social media

8+ ways social media is influencing the ANC

anc-logo South Africa's oldest political party, the African National Congress (ANC), is embracing the social media revolution like never before. The party is increasingly using Twitter, Facebook and other internet tools to promote itself and communicate with voters. The hashtag #ANC100, marking the party's recent centenary celebrations, moved through Twitter like wildfire, trending globally. But social media has, at times, also proved to be ill-fitted, with public slanging matches involving high-profile members becoming commonplace on Facebook and Twitter, from a former president ...

Android

Will a split Android market doom the OS?

android-broken Antonio Rodriguez, a successful serial entrepreneur and now a VC, is very pessimistic about the future of Android. In this post titled: Android as we know it will die in the next two years and what it means for you, he argues that the splintering of the Android market into many different versions will create an unsupportable multitude of operating systems and mobile hardware that will doom the operating system. I used to think that, as with Linux and web services in ...

Video

Clay Shirky explains why SOPA/PIPA is bad [TED Video]

Following the 18 January blackout protest of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act), TED has released a video of renowned New York University (NYU) professor Clay Shirky explaining why the bill passing before congress is bad. The talk, called "Defend Our Freedom To Share (Or Why SOPA is a Bad Idea)", took place at TED's New York offices. The video wasn't part of the company's traditional conference video lecture series about "ideas worth spreading". The 14 minute ...

Gearburn

DStv Walka — Plastic fantastic

It feels cheap, the sound quality is dire, and the signal is rarely clear. But hell, I love the DSTV Walka. It’s compact, low-res and filled with charm. But is it worth dropping R600 plus the R36 per month subscription? The DStv Walka is a handheld TV with a dubious name, but oodles of personality. The screen is tiny -- a mere 320p by 240p resolution which can by no means compete with the full HD capability of DStv's PVR offering. ...

News

China cracking down on microblogs with real name registration

The Chinese government is cracking down on users of the country's widely popular microblogs, known as weibos, to register using their real names -- making it easier for authorities to track them. Real name registrations began with just five cities in 2011 and internet regulator, Wang Chen, said the scheme would eventually be extended. "This started at the end of last year. At first it applies to new users only, and it will then be expanded to existing users," said Wang Chen, ...

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