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All posts by Andy Walker: Editor

  • Shiba Inus borking at fidget spinners is YouTube’s next viral craze

    Although we've seen some pretty incredible things done with fidget spinners, some people still believe they're a waste of time, and potentially deadly. It seems that Banana, a lovable but derpy Shiba Inu has just joined the latter camp. A clip of the fluff ball and his human went viral this week after YouTube channel ShibeNation republished it. That version of the clip has over 730 000 views, and 21 000 likes. And it's easy to see why. Not sure whether to bork at it loudly or destroy it with his bare teeth, Banana has a mild internal conflict between his natural...

  • Katy Perry’s ‘Backpack Kid’ swishes his way into SNL history

    Sit down, Katy Perry. Clearly the people came to see the Backpack Kid. Performing at SNL this past weekend, the pop star whipped out her latest and catchiest single of 2017 dubbed Swish Swish. And while her vocal performance was solid, there's one particular area in which she was upstaged. Ladies and gentlemen, @katyperry performing #SwishSwish live in Studio 8H! 🎶 https://t.co/opaqgz9jaF #SNLFinale pic.twitter.com/pyztFyOxka — Saturday Night Live (@nbcsnl) May 21, 2017 First spotted by Rihanna late last year, 15-year-old Russell Horning took to the stage at the end of the performance and "flossed" his way into SNL folklore. Now, it's not exactly unusual...

  • BBM CEO: we can be ‘one of the two’ top chat apps in South Africa

    Remember BBM? That once iconic acronym stood for BlackBerry Messenger, one of the world's most used chat apps. But that legacy has long since come and gone. During BlackBerry's torrid few years in the early 2010s, the company sold the app's development rights to Indonesian-based company Creative Media Works (owned by Emtek). It's a complicated situation for the non-informed consumer still plodding away on older BlackBerry devices, but essentially, the new Android and iOS app is not the BBM you once knew. That doesn't mean much has changed though. It's still a chat app, and BBM CEO Matthew Talbot is adamant that the...

  • Twitter knows an awful lot about you, it reveals in new privacy policy

    Tweet often? If so, there's a fat chance that Twitter knows an awful lot about you, your interests and even your lofty aspirations. This revelation comes after the company announced an upcoming revision to its privacy policy, which allows it to siphon more data about you from the web, and gives users more agency in their privacy options. If you're a mobile app user, you would've seen a pop up notifying you about this change. Heading to Twitter's blog though, the company outlined a more granular point-form summary of the changes heading to the platform in the coming weeks. In case you didn't...

  • Zomato hacked, 17m users’ personal data leaked to the dark web

    If you frequent the India-based restaurant and food review app Zomato, you should probably change your password immediately. That's the message conveyed in a blog post by the company on Thursday, after it announced that more than 10% of the company's user records were stolen by a hacker. "The reason you're reading this blog post is because of a recent discovery by our security team - about 17 million user records from our database were stolen. The stolen information has user email addresses and hashed passwords," it noted, adding over 120-million people visit Zomato monthly. For those who had their user information stolen,...

  • Microsoft Azure, data centres coming to Cape Town and Johannesburg in 2018

    Microsoft South Africa today announced its Azure Cloud servers and services are finally heading to the country. Previously, African companies relied on data centres beyond the continent's landmass to use the cloud, but the new servers -- which will be located in Cape Town and Johannesburg -- will be a much shorter digital trip for cloud traffic. "Microsoft will deliver cloud services, including Microsoft Azure, Office 365, and Dynamics 365," the company states in a blog post. While the company's marketing towards businesses and economic growth are clear, the company didn't mention gaming in its announcement. Sorry Crackdown fans. Microsoft instead explains that...

  • Internet Solutions buys MWEB, teases ‘new consumer products and experiences’

    African telecoms company Internet Solutions has today announced it has concluded its purchase of MWEB. Internet Solutions, owned by telecoms giant Dimension Data, initially announced an interest in purchasing the ISP in December 2016 but was granted approval by the SA Competition Commission earlier this month. With the acquisition of MWEB, Internet Solutions now bolsters its presence in the consumer sector of South Africa, adding to its notable presence in business and wholesale spheres. "The acquisition presents IS with exciting opportunities for growth through MWEB’s established customer base, respected brand, and experience as a consumer-facing ISP," the company adds in a press...

  • McDonald’s ‘Dad’ ad trends on YouTube again after global backlash

    When Pepsi suggested that its product could solve the world's problems with the help of Kendall Jenner, you might've thought it would be the most ridiculed brand of the year. But nope. McDonald's just joined that competition. The global fast food company this week pulled an advertisement it first aired on 12 May, featuring a boy and his mother chatting about the former's dead father. Although the ad is well filmed, adequately paced and genuinely touching, McDonald's too makes the mistake Pepsi made, suggesting that a Happy Meal (or in this case, a filet-o-fish) can help you forget about dead loved...

  • Android O is killing Google’s blob emoji (and replacing that adorable kitty)

    Google might've announced a slew of updates to its products yesterday, but its most important development was mostly swept under the rug. The company's derpy emoji, which featured anthropomorphous blobs wearing emotionless faces, will finally be replaced by more expressive figures. This is all part of Android O's -- Google's upcoming mobile operating system -- support of Emoji 5.0, part of Unicode 10.0. According to Emojipedia, there are also a number of new emoji heading to the OS, including a mage, a face that's enjoying a good vomit, and of course a face with a hand over its mouth. If those...

  • Want to buy that dream home, Millennials? Stop buying avocado on toast

    Dear Millennial: if you want a house, stop buying avocados. That's the advice Australian multimillionaire property mogul Tim Gurner has for young professionals struggling to purchase their first house. Speaking on Australia's edition of 60 Minutes, Gurner explained that he spent much of his late teens and early twenties working, instead of purchasing teardrop-shaped fruit on toast. "When I had my first business when I was 19, I was in the gym at 6 a.m. in the morning, and I finished at 10.30 at night, and I did it seven days a week and I did it until I could afford my...

  • Edward Snowden reminds us all that he was right after WannaCry fallout

    It's hard being right all the time, especially if you're Edward Snowden. The infamous whistleblower who curently calls Russia home spoke on Monday via video link at a Washington DC security conference. And he just couldn't help reminding everyone that the NSA sucks. "They knew about this flaw in U.S. software, U.S. infrastructure, hospitals around the world, these auto plants and so on and so forth, but they did not report it to Microsoft until after the NSA learned that that flaw had been stolen by some outside group," the former CIA contractor noted, according to a Newsweek transcript. WannaCry infected over 300...

  • This gorgeous novel was illustrated using good ol’ Microsoft Paint

    My proficiency in Microsoft Paint is unquestionable, especially when I whip out those uncanny two-dimensional stick figures. But while most of us might not use Windows' default drawing application for any serious Banksy-esque creations, this man did. Pat Hines has a decade's worth of experience using Microsoft's drawing app and put that expertise to good use in his graphic novel, Camp Redblood And The Essential Revenge. The novel is illustrated exclusively using Microsoft Paint. And at this point you're probably thinking "uncanny two-dimensional stick figures" again, but nope. Hines' work is laced with gorgeous shading, vibrant colours and faces purveying tangible emotion. Illustrated...

  • Instagram copies Snapchat again, internet doesn’t let it go quietly

    Snapcha... sorry, I mean Instagram today announced a brand new feature coming to its Stories feature -- face filters. "Today, we’re introducing face filters in the camera, an easy way to turn an ordinary selfie into something fun and entertaining," the company announced on its blog. Users posting pics or videos of themselves to Instagram Stories can now adorn themselves with furry koala ears, nerd glasses, ice-queen crowns and other things deemed to be "dope af". Today, we’re introducing face filters, an easy way to turn an ordinary selfie into something fun and entertaining. Whether you’re sitting on the couch at home...

  • Could WannaCry ransomware be linked to North Korea?

    WannaCry, the ransomware package that wreaked havoc across the world's Windows machinery this past weekend, might have links to North Korea, security experts revealed. The ransomware swept across the world last Friday, infecting over a quarter-million Windows machines across 150 countries. It remains a threat, but infection rates have somewhat slowed. According to a report published by Reuters, South Korean security researchers found coding similarities in WannaCry's earlier versions, and a different malware used by the Lazarus Group -- a hacking collective with ties to North Korea. These findings have also been noted by Google security researcher Neel Mehta, Symantec and Kaspersky. Shared...

  • Watch live: astronauts repair the ISS during historic 200th spacewalk

    Two NASA astronauts are about to embark on the 200th spacewalk outside the International Space Station (ISS). Peggy Whitson and Jack Fisher are the two lucky Americans who will venture out into the vacuous void to repair a few problems on the ISS's exterior and swap out a few parts. LIVE NOW: @AstroPeggy and @Astro2Fish prepare to venture outside @Space_Station for 6.5 hour #spacewalk. Watch: https://t.co/mzKW5uDsTi pic.twitter.com/4jldGpDMNK — NASA (@NASA) May 12, 2017 For Fisher, it will be his first ever time walking through space, but for 57-year-old Whitson, it's just another day at the office. She broke the record for most days...