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  • Opera 11.10 launches with Afrikaans language support

    Codenamed "Barracuda", Opera 11.10 is the newest update to the popular desktop browser and it includes support for over 50 languages including Afrikaans, Azerbaijani, Montenegrin, Malay, Tagalog, Thai and Uzbeck. The latest update also includes improvements to two of Opera's most used features: Speed Dial and Opera Turbo. Opera seems to be following the trend of customising browsers for added language support. Last month, Mozilla's successful integrated the Zulu language into its Firefox browser. The Opera Turbo feature in the 11.10 update reduces the size of webpages based on internet connection speeds, claiming that it can help boost browsing speeds by up to four...

  • YouTube premieres First Orbit, the story of man’s first journey into space

    To coincide with the 50th anniversary of man’s first journey into space, the film "First Orbit", a feature length film event that weaves historic audio recordings of the first Cosmonaut, Yuri Gagarin, with new footage of his orbital route, will premiere globally for free on YouTube at sunrise on 12 April and will be accessible from anywhere in the world. In collaboration with the European Space Agency and the astronauts onboard the International Space Station, filmmaker Chris Riley has captured the magnificence of Gagarin’s original orbit. Filmed by astronaut Paolo Nespoli, "First Orbit" delivers breath-taking digital, full high-definition views of...

  • Prince William and Kate’s wedding — The social media drive

    The Royal Wedding of Prince William to Kate Middleton, or Catherine Middleton as she is now referred to, suggests all things traditional. However, showing its internet-savvy, from the tweet which officially announced the engagement, the Royal Wedding has fully embraced the fact that it is the first of the digital age. The British Monarchy has taken to the digital and social media realm with much enthusiasm and with a popular Flickr account, over 300 000 “likes” on Facebook (41 000 on it's first day), over 100 000 followers on the Twitter account @bristishmonarchy and near on 37 000 subscribers to...

  • Sony makes deal to end litigation against PlayStation hacker

    Following an attack by hacktivist group Anonymous, and worldwide bad press, Japanese consumer electronics giant Sony has agreed to cut a deal and drop the lawsuit with a US hacker who in turn agreed to stop breaking into PlayStation 3 (PS3) videogame consoles. "It was never my intention to cause any users trouble or to make piracy easier," hacker George Hotz said in a joint statement released by Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA). "I'm happy to have the litigation behind me." Sony went to court early this year to stop hackers who figured out how to "jailbreak" PS3 consoles to operate...

  • Social media: What you really need is a strategy

    There’s a saying that goes like this… "If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there." Amen when applied to social media. An analogy came to me one day that I use when explaining social media in context to clients and at learnshops that I run, and it goes something like this… Imagine that your blog or your website is where you have your party. Social media are simply the channels you use to invite people to your party and to share news about your party. So if you spend all of your time on...

  • What digital tribes can learn from Native Americans

    For all our ability to change the world around us with new technology, humans have never been very good at naming our new inventions. Usually we resort to old words, old concepts to explain the very new. And so the word "tribe" has been adopted to describe groups of people, scattered around the globe, connected only by the internet and their passion for a particular topic. So what can these new digital tribes learn from one of the world's oldest surviving tribal societies, the Native Americans? Speaking at last month's South By Southwest Interactive festival, tribal members discussed this idea's...

  • Group-buying craze: Bidorbuy snaps up UbuntuDeal

    Group-buying has really taken hold of the South African consumer market in the last year with the number of Groupon-clones growing every day as companies hasten to get a foothold into this rapidly growing sphere. bidorbuy.co.za, an online auction based in South Africa, has acquired the Cape Town-based group-buying site UbuntuDeal.co.za, highlighting the group-buying craze in the e-commerce sector, worldwide. The acquisition follows hot-on-the-heels of the undisputed king of group buying, Groupon, acquiring local startup Twangoo at the beginning of 2011. Just last month media group, Avusa, announced Zappon. Bidorbuy CEO Jaco Jonker, explains how the UbuntuDeal complements bidorbuy's existing site: “While...

  • Social distribution of mass media

    I recently pointed out how "social media" has changed from its original promise of challenging the established order of mass media. Where are the brigades of citizen journalists? What's become of the hope of the grass roots revolt against the gate keepers in our national and local media? When I left the Financial Times in mid-2004 to become the first journalist to leave a major newspaper and become an independent "journalist-blogger" there was a lot of hope in the air. I felt I was joining a small but very spirited band of media pioneers, a nascent "Homebrew Club" of sorts, which...

  • New celebrity spotting app launches on Android Market

    Startup Scoopler, a real-time search engine, was inviting owners of Android-powered smartphones to install an application that promises to alert them every time a celebrity is sighted nearby. The free JustSpotted software was available online at the Android Market. "There is no other application that gives you real-time alerts like this with thousands of spottings on our website every day," said Scoopler co-founder AJ Asver. "If you are in a metropolitan area, you are going to be pleasantly surprised by how close you are to the celebrity world." JustSpotted.com launched in October with an online map that pinpoints celebrity whereabouts in real time...

  • Will your digital footprint leave behind a legacy?

    I remember riding my bicycle to my friend’s house. In the summer after school, we'd jump off his house's roof into the pool. The sky was as blue as sapphire. For better or worse, with nary an LCD in sight, this moment began and ended with us. Mix-tapes. I miss mix-tapes. I miss making them, sharing them, and listening to them from start to finish. I bet that if I were to find a box of them them today, they’d convey a lot about what who I was at the time. I remember that love letters used to smell like...

  • Berlin is the hot new city for internet start-ups

    Already a magnet for tourists and young artists, Berlin is attracting a new generation of internet start-ups, changing the ways scientists interact or musicians store and share music. So much so that US internet giant Google is preparing to open a research centre in the German capital. Based in the top floors of an anonymous building in former communist East Berlin, for example, SoundCloud, launched in 2008, is one of the fastest growing companies in the music world. The online platform allows users to store and share music or sound without format restrictions. It jumped from two to three million users in...

  • Google’s $700 million ITA buy cleared with conditions

    Google's entry into the online travel sector was cleared for takeoff as the US Justice Department gave the green light to its US$700-million purchase of flight data company ITA Software. The Justice Department's anti-trust division, however, extracted a number of concessions from Google and imposed conditions on the internet search giant to allow the controversial acquisition to go ahead. The proposed legal settlement, which will need the approval of a US District Court, requires Google to notably develop and license ITA's travel software to other companies. Several online travel sites, including Expedia, Kayak and Travelocity, had sought to block the Google-ITA deal,...

  • Connect with Xbox LIVE and Kinect to set a Guiness World Record

    Xbox LIVE would like you to help us make history and become record breakers! On Saturday 23rd April we will be attempting to join hands across the world and break the Guinness World Record for the ‘largest online 100m sprint’ via Kinect Sports and Xbox LIVE. Brought to you by Xbox LIVE and Kinect Sports, the record attempt will challenge millions of our members across the world to create a new record for the 'largest online 100m sprint'. To be part of the Guinness World Record attempt, join us and thousands of Xbox LIVE members at 8pm local time on...

  • Google’s latest feature: Smartphone ‘check-in’ deals

    As far as location based networking is concerned, Google has been ahead of the game in several ways. Early last year the corporation secured a patent for location-based advertising and last month, Google took a shot at the popular location-based social network, Foursquare by offering users check in rewards at the SXSW conferences in Austin. Now, Google has taken it a step further and added a Latitude feature that allows iPhone or Android users to get rewarded for loyalty to shops or restaurants via their smartphones. The feature that Google rolled out across the United States late Thursday lets people unlock discounts by regularly using...

  • Your brand and mobile: How to make it all happen

    Advertising campaigns used to be every marketers logistic nightmare. From the initial executive pitch to allocating resources, time, banners and newspaper ads, logos, video and radio editing and more, within a significantly minuscule budget, had brand marketers at an often panicky edge. In an earlier time marketers were generally known as salesmen, the main driving force behind ensuring revenue. In today's technology-driven times, we coin the term "marketer" or "e-marketer" but the  salesperson title still holds. Revenue is still generated from sales and selling your brand to a specific target audience is essentially vital to the success of your company. But, what has...