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  • Personalised marketing: Minority Report might not be so farfetched after all

    Steven Spielberg’s 2002 science-fiction film Minority Report imagines a world in 2054 where every aspect of life is monitored by personalised digital information, including shopping fueled by personalised marketing. The movie’s protagonist, played by Tom Cruise, walks into a mall and is immediately engaged by screens and audio offering him clothing in his size and tailored to his established fashion preferences. Though movies aren’t a reliable source of future trends, integrated real-world and digital experiences are becoming increasingly possible. With the development of devices that can send personalised information, and constantly improving data collection that lets companies aim their product messages accurately, the...

  • Christopher Nolan labels Netflix ‘mindless’, the internet responds

    Christopher Nolan has come out in defense of theatrical distributions ahead of his latest film Dunkirk's release. In an interview with IndieWire, the director called Netflix's distribution policy "mindless" in that it requires content to be simultaneously released on digital and in theatres. "I think they're missing a huge opportunity," he said. "You can see that Amazon is very clearly happy to not make that same mistake. The theaters have a 90-day window. It’s a perfectly usable model. It’s terrific." Christopher Nolan had a few choice words about streaming service Netflix this week, calling it 'mindless' Nolan is famous for his determination to shoot on film, and works to optimise...

  • South Africa’s Box Office: Despicable Me 3 climbs over Spider-Man to first

    In the summer of blockbusters, you win or you die. And Spider-Man: Homecoming did not win. It was the move that shocked the nation: after allowing the Marvel film a week of glory, Despicable Me 3 rose from second to take back its rightful seat on the throne. Not only did the animation topple its biggest competition, but it also pulled in R10-million in its third weekend, furthering its lead as highest life-to-date grosser with just over R30.5-million in total sales. The move was likely aided by school holidays, but to say Spider-Man wouldn't benefit from that would be a lie -- so we offer nothing but...

  • New Google Feed will delve even deeper into your data

    Google has taken control of its knowledge of you to personalise its mobile app even further with the launch of the new Google Feed. Replacing what was once Google Now, Google Feed will use even more complicated algorithms to present users with news it thinks they will enjoy. These algorithms know which of your interests you've cultivated for years, and which are passing phases. "For example, if you’re a photography enthusiast but just casually interested in fitness, your feed will show that," engineering VP Shashi Thakur writes. The interface will remain much the same -- the few changes include articles being headed by their...

  • Viral video: British Airways recruits celebs for its latest in-flight safety clip

    The safety demonstration video on flights is usually the most boring element of air travel, but what if said safety video included some of the world's most articulate celebrities? That's what British Airways believes will encourage people to strap in, and actually take heed during these important announcements. "We hope you enjoy our new safety video, which we’ve created in collaboration with Comic Relief and some famous faces you’ll probably recognise," British writes on the video's description. "Celebrities are seen auditioning in humorous sketches in front of comedian Asim Chaudhry, as Chabuddy G, for a coveted part in British Airways’ new safety...

  • MiniMeme Podcast #4: Internet privacy & what our phones reveal about us

    Julia Breakey welcomes Daniel Mpala to the MiniMeme podcast by inviting him to talk on what he is most passionate about: internet privacy. Daniel talks through the necessity of protecting your private information in the digital space -- and just how at risk we all are from losing it. Then, to get better acquainted, the two take part in a segment called Friendship APPtitude in which they go through their phones that reveal who they are as people. Finally, in their broke people form of a Rant Wheel, Daniel and Julia vent about everything from dumb tweets to WhatsApp broadcasts to Game...

  • Why don’t South Africans create their own GIFs for memes?

    Citizens of South Africa are no strangers to creating their own memes -- from cheeky hashtags to images that ire Police Minister Fikile Mbalula, they know how to start a trend. But despite the amount of original content, there is one thing South Africans do not have control over: the GIFs they use. Sure, GIFs are still a big part of South African Twitter, but they aren't locally made and often make use of American content. Hlaudi - "I don't want to respond to the wind." 😂😂💩#CountryDutypic.twitter.com/3CLTMqKstx — SnoopyBez (@SnoopyBez) July 18, 2017 There are few reasons why South Africa may still rely on internationally...

  • Avast buys CCleaner maker Piriform

    Online security company Avast has announced its acquisition of Piriform, the makers of PC maintenance software CCleaner. "We see many commonalities between CCleaner and Avast, allowing for great new products for our user bases," CEO of Avast Vince Steckler explains in a press release. "Avast and CCleaner are the top two downloaded products on popular download sites. They are both known by advanced users as focused on performance, so we believe there will be a great interest from our CCleaner customers in using Avast security products and vice versa." CCleaner alone boasts around 130-million users, with a suggested 15-million of those using...

  • YouTuber Jake Paul ires neighbours, uses two-year-old memes

    YouTuber Jake Paul has fallen under the scrutiny of his local community, who say he has made their street in West Hollywood a living hell. Local news outlet KTLA aired a piece on the social media star's antics, corroborating neighbours' claims that Paul is a nuisance to the public. In the clip, journalist Chris Wolfe describes how Paul has set furniture alight in an empty pool, attracts dozens of fans to his street daily, and obstructs traffic for the thrill of it. "It used to be a really nice, quiet street," a neighbour said. "Now we're just this, like, war zone. We're...

  • China’s Great Firewall now censors WhatsApp and Winnie The Pooh

    China has had a particularly interesting week in digital thus far. In the run up to the country's Communist party reshuffle taking place later this year, it seems that instant messaging service WhatsApp has been crippled within the country. While WhatsApp isn't the most widely used chat app in China -- that honour goes to WeChat with just under a billion users -- it is a notable target. It is the last bastion for Facebook in China and one of the last popular chat apps still functioning within the country. According to the New York Times, Chinese citizens are unable to send or...

  • Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets review: empty, colourful fun

    Details around Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets have been kept so secretive you'd be mistaken for thinking it was the next Star Wars flick. When questioned about the quiet that surrounds this film, actress Cara Delevingne said simply: "This is gonna be the best movie of all time." Unfortunately, it isn't. Valerian is a colourful and refreshing addition to the sci-fi genre, but the story lacks the substance and development that the first of a franchise needs to keep momentum. The film offers several minutes of exposition for the City of a Thousand planets, the space station that houses...

  • Lots of people stopped watching porn for Game of Thrones’ season premiere

    Game of Thrones aired its season premiere Sunday night to a record 10.1-million viewers, stealing PornHub visitors away from their usual Sunday night me-time. The company reported that traffic was down 4.5% in the US during the live showing as opposed to a regular Sunday -- but this isn't even the most significant dip during an episode of HBO's hit show. Back in 2016, the season six finale robbed 5.2% of US viewers away from the popular pornography site. Another notable shift happened during the fourth episode of season six, in which Sansa Stark and Jon Snow reunited. Turns out family sometimes is more important. This may...

  • Video of snowfall on Table Mountain goes viral on YouTube

    It hardly ever snows on Cape Town's fabled Table Mountain, but when it does in the internet era, it's definitely going to get caught on tape. The courtesy comes from YouTuber Justin Hawthorne, who this past weekend experienced the fluffy precipitation from near the summit of the mesa. Snowfall began around midday on Sunday 16 July, and lasted for around two minutes, Hawthorne notes in a comment. The weekend cold front brought rain to Cape Town, but also a flurry of snow to Table Mountain "There had been a few lighter flurries over 15min or so prior. There were only a few spots on...

  • How HTML5 Killed Adobe Flash [Partner Content]

    When it comes to interactive multimedia on websites, such as audio or video clips, animations, or even in browser-games, you have a couple of different options to build it in – the most common of which you’ll find across the web being (more recently) HTML5 and (now looking clunky and long in the tooth) Adobe Flash. While Flash seemed like it was going to stick around forever in the early 00s, it no longer is the most popular choice among developers building sites and apps. Both technologies have been used extensively throughout the web, popular with things such as video...

  • WhatsApp may soon let you watch YouTube videos in its app

    You might soon be able to view YouTube videos within WhatsApp. According to WhatsApp feature watcher WaBetaInfo, the new feature is currently being tested in the latest build on iOS, numbered 2.17.40. The build also addresses a number of other issues on iOS, including numerous UI improvements and tweaks to the calls list and media management tools. But most interesting of all its the mention of YouTube. Users can view videos in a picture-in-picture mode, with added controls such as pinch-to-zoom and the ability to continue reading messages while video playback continues in the background. This means that users needn't leave the chat app...