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All posts by Hadlee Simons

Hadlee Simons
Terrible puns make Hadlee Simons difficult to work with, but he brings over seven years of tech journalism experience to the table. When he's not at work or watching motorsport, he's in the foetal position on a jiu jitsu mat.
  • MWC 2018: 5 things we learnt from Fernando Alonso panel

    Mobile World Congress always plays host to a few big names every year, such as Will.i.am, Mark Zuckerberg and Lewis Hamilton. MWC 2018 saw double F1 champion Fernando Alonso make an appearance, as part of a panel discussion on technology and data usage in motorsport. We attended the session as part of our MWC coverage, and these are the key takeaways. McLaren runs 20 000 race simulations before a race McLaren's team runs numerous simulations before a race in order to figure out the best strategy. But just how many does "numerous" mean? "I think we do about 20 000 simulations of the...

  • Go go Google Go: all the Go apps in one convenient place

    The last year or so has seen Google release a variety of lightweight "Go" apps for emerging markets, using less data and requiring less storage space than the standard apps. It can be confusing to remember all the Google Go apps if you haven't been keeping track. Heck, I've been keeping tabs somewhat and even I find it confusing. In any case, here are all the major Go apps from Google. Many of these might just be glorified web apps but we'll list them anyway. Google Go The obvious one is a lightweight version of Google's bread and butter, the search engine. And...

  • ANC recalls Zuma: here’s how global news outlets reported it

    The ANC has finally taken the decision to recall President Jacob Zuma, following weeks of talks between the National Executive Committee, ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa and Zuma. Of course, it remains to be seen whether the president will resign, as he is not constitutionally required to accede to the party's demands. It suggests that a motion of no-confidence will be tabled if Zuma refuses to go. The press conference was also noteworthy as it was chaired by secretary general Ace Magashule and deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte, being two of Zuma's more notable supporters within the party. Here's how international publications reported on the news...

  • Manned missions, moon shots: what else can we expect from SpaceX for 2018?

    SpaceX has blasted to the history books with the successful launch of its Falcon Heavy rocket last night, but you might be wondering about its other plans for 2018. Falcon Heavy is expected to have a few more appearances, with its first commercial payload set for a vague "first half of 2018" timeline, according to Space Flight Now. The mission, to lift-off from Cape Canaveral, will see it launch the Arabsat 6A satellite into orbit. The Falcon Heavy will then see another appearance (tentatively set for June), launching the US Air Force's Space Test Program-2 (STP-2) mission. This consists of "a cluster of military and scientific research satellites". Falcon...

  • Replay: Watch the moment SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy launched

    After numerous delays, SpaceX has finally delivered the first test flight of its Falcon Heavy rocket. Billed as the most powerful operational rocket available right now, Falcon Heavy is expected to be the vehicle of choice for future Moon and Mars missions. The rocket lifted off at 10:45pm SAST (3.45pm local time), following a delay due to weather concerns. For the test flight, SpaceX and Tesla founder Elon Musk decided to use his own Tesla Roadster as a dummy payload. The result, as the above image shows, speaks for itself, as the rocket and payload successfully left Earth. The rocket's three first stage boosters separated...

  • Falcon Heavy: world’s most powerful rocket gets launch date

    The Falcon Heavy rocket launch has been long-awaited, but it's seen numerous delays. In fact, SpaceX initially planned for a first test flight as long ago as 2013. Now, the rocket, expected to be the most powerful since the Apollo programme's Saturn V, has received a firm launch date of 6 February. The date comes from SpaceX founder Elon Musk himself, via Twitter. Aiming for first flight of Falcon Heavy on Feb 6 from Apollo launchpad 39A at Cape Kennedy. Easy viewing from the public causeway. — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 27, 2018 According to Space Flight Insider, the launch is expected to...

  • Die With Me: a chat app for people with 5% battery life

    We've seen traditional messaging apps, ephemeral messaging tools (i.e. Snapchat) and even pointless messaging apps (Yo). Now, we can add another messaging app in the form of Die With Me. Spotted on r/Android, Die With Me requires users to have less than five percent battery life remaining on their smartphones. Try using it with 75% juice and you simple can't access the app. "Die together in a chatroom on your way to offline peace," reads the tagline on the Play Store listing. The app reception has been positive too, achieving a 4.5 star user average on Google's platform and 4.6 star average on the...

  • Here’s how to upload photos to Instagram from your PC

    From multiple account support to Stories, Instagram's team has been hard at work over the years. In saying so, there is one big feature they haven't implemented yet -- and I'm not talking about the return of a chronological timeline. The platform still makes it nigh-on impossible to upload photos from your computer. The Windows 10 app supports uploads, but only if your machine has a touchscreen and a rear-facing camera. How bizarre. In any event, there is a way to upload photos to Instagram from a traditional PC and it simply requires some user-agent trickery in your web browser. You...

  • 5 heckin’ good subreddits for dog lovers

    I'm more of a cat person, but how can you not like dogs? Between their goofy antics and loyalty, there's plenty to like about most canines. So is there any wonder that we see a variety of dog-focused subreddits? We choose a few offbeat ones you should subscribe to. RarePuppers adventureboi from rarepuppers One of the more offbeat subs on the list, RarePuppers delivers a ton of cute (or even mischievous) dog photos, GIFs and videos. These are all usually accompanied by words like "BOYE" (e.g. "GOOD BOYE") and copious use of the word "heck". Go figure. Dogs are the main focus here, but we...

  • 2017’s best news bloopers in one compilation

    News bloopers are ideal fodder for YouTube, aren't they? Between the famous grape stomping lady and Nhlanhla Nene's dodgy chair, there have been plenty of memorable bloopers over the years. So what stood out in 2017? News Be Funny has the answer in the form of a 15-minute compilation, covering all the major flubs of the year. Check it out below.

  • Netflix now supports HDR on Windows 10, but not so fast…

    Netflix has supported HDR videos for a while, as long as you've got a compatible TV, streaming device or (lately) smartphone. But PC users have been left in the lurch up until now. Fortunately, the streaming firm has decided to bring HDR videos to Windows 10 this week, albeit with a few hardware and software requirements. Hardware specs In the hardware department, you'll need a seventh generation or higher Intel Core series CPU (i3, i5, or i7 7xxx or 7Yxx). Those using the integrated GPU will also need version 4708 of the graphics drivers or better. Got a dedicated graphics card? Then you...

  • Still using BBM? You can now request an Uber via platform

    BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) has seen far better days in emerging markets, as WhatsApp usurps it as the favoured instant messaging platform. That hasn't stopped a major announcement this week, as BBM operator Creative Media Works announces that you can now request an Uber via the IM service. The move will let BBM users on Android and iOS book Uber trips via the IM app's Discover tab, an emailed press statement reads. The partnership sees BBM harness the m.uber.com portal to book rides. "When launched from the Discover menu, the new Uber service asks riders to sign in with their mobile number or...

  • Google Maps Go is the latest lightweight Android app

    We've seen quite a few lightweight versions of popular apps this year and now, it's time for Google Maps to join the party, in the form of Google Maps Go. Spotted on r/android, Google Maps Go is meant to be a more data-efficient, resource-friendly take on the standard Google Maps experience. "Designed to run smoothly on devices with limited memory and on unreliable networks without compromising speed to provide your location, real-time traffic updates, directions, and train, bus, and city transit information," reads an excerpt from the Play Store listing. As for actual features, expect the usual real-time traffic information, point of...

  • RCS: introducing the successor to SMS

    It's been in the pipeline for a few years now, but RCS (Rich Communication Services) is slowly making its way around the world, being billed as the successor of sorts to SMS. But how exactly is the service better than traditional SMS? What do you need to take advantage of the service? We got some answers from David O'Byrne, RCS lead at the GSMA, the organisation at the helm of the standard. For starters, O'Byrne outlines the platform's capabilities. Effectively the draw card is that RCS hopes to be as seamless as placing a call or creating an SMS -- no extra apps needed....

  • Interstellar object seen in solar system for first time

    Astronomers around the world have rushed to observe the first confirmed interstellar object in our solar system, taking the form of a cigar-shaped asteroid. The object, dubbed 'Oumuamua (Hawaiian for "messenger from afar, arriving first"), measures up to 400 metres long and could be up to ten times longer than it is wide, NASA wrote on its website. "That aspect ratio is greater than that of any asteroid or comet observed in our solar system to date. While its elongated shape is quite surprising, and unlike asteroids seen in our solar system, it may provide new clues into how other solar systems...