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Online media

  • SA election simulator game: you ANC’n nothing yet

    We've seen quite a few politically orientated games come out over the years, such as Democracy and Realpolitiks, but what about a local take on the theme? A group of university students are indeed working on an SA election simulator of sorts, due for release next month. The web-based game (actually called ECivix Election Simulator) is part of a youth empowerment project to "enhance and develop civic engagement and constitutional literacy", says Daniel Eloff, one of the people behind the project. The idea was conceived by a group of law, actuarial and economics students at the University of Pretoria, according to...

  • Track Cape Town’s storm in realtime with these 3 free resources

    You might've heard passing reports about Cape Town's inclement weather forecast today. These reports suggest that the oncoming cold front will be one of the fiercest the city has seen in quite some time. While you'll likely need an umbrella before leaving the house tomorrow, you can also track the progress of the front as it sweeps across the peninsula. Cape Town’s winter storm coverage: Cape Town storm: what’s running, delayed or cancelled in the city #StormHelen: Twitter names Cape Town’s storm after Helen Zille Alerts ring across Twitter as Cape Town’s Wednesday storm bears closer Much like hurricanes and other weather systems, cold fronts...

  • 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...

  • WordPress debuts new TV ads in limited trial run

    Content publishing platform WordPress has this week debuted its first television advertisements. This is the first push in the company's larger marketing budget for 2017. WordPress co-founder and CEO of Automattic Matt Mullenweg noted that the company will be increasing its public advertising, presumably to compete against the likes of Wix and Squarespace. On his personal blog, he also explained that the company still has "lots to learn" in the television advertising space. "There is lots to learn and much to follow, but we have our first TV ads up in six markets to test. Each shares a story of a business...

  • 15 classic Star Wars GIFs to use this #MayTheFourth

    We know the pressure you're under today. While mashing away at your keyboard trying to get those reports and submissions prepared, you're also trying to find that perfect Star Wars GIF to use on Twitter or Facebook for #MayTheFourth. But no need to worry. We've got you covered. Trawling the length and breadth of GIF repository Giphy, we've listed some of the most iconic moments in the Star Wars saga captured in pure rolling-image format magic. These's are some of the classic GIFs you should probably think about using today. It's a trap via GIPHY Sensual Yoda via GIPHY Angrykin Skywalker via GIPHY Toodles, Lando via GIPHY Deal with it,...

  • SoundCloud now features Spotify-like personal, curated playlists

    SoundCloud has long been known as a portal for recording artists to upload their tracks, and listeners to indulge in them gratis. But it's also becoming a key player in the content discovery race. The company's new feature, dubbed The Upload, takes a leaf out of Spotify's personal playlist curation handbook. SoundCloud will now provide listeners with a "regularly updated, bespoke playlist of new music relevant to you". "With a constantly expanding mix of music uploaded to SoundCloud every day, we've now made it easier to filter through it all," the company writes in its blog. SoundCloud now features a Spotify-like curated, regularly...

  • Why PewDiePie doesn’t care about free speech [Opinion]

    Felix Kjellberg, better known as PewDiePie, has made it his mission to fight The Wall Street Journal (WSJ). The Swedish YouTuber is consistently posting videos for his 54.6-million subscribers attacking WSJ for reporting news. But nothing Kjellberg argues ever holds up, and it's a damning representation of where his priorities lie. For those blissfully unaware, back in January PewDiePie posted a video in which he paid Indian men to hold up a sign promoting Jewish genocide. WSJ wrote an article on it, and contacted Disney for a statement. Disney was producing Kjellberg's YouTube Red show Scare Pewdiepie at the time, and...

  • This website live streams animal shelters, helps you donate too

    When you're caught up in your daily life, it can be hard to find time to give back to your community. Things like grocery shopping will always feel more pressing than walking dogs at a faraway animal shelter. Animals Life NET is a website that understands this, and wants to make helping homeless animals easier so that you can give back quickly and simply. The site offers users free live streams from shelters all around the world, with links on the side to feed the animals, volunteer at the shelter, help a crowdfunding campaign or even adopt a pet. If...

  • WorldStarHipHop founder Lee O’Denat dies at 43

    The WorldStarHipHop website grew from a place for music to a viral video phenomenon in the mid 2000s. In fact, its influence is still keenly being felt, as the website successfully transitioned to the social media era, covering African American and pop culture in general. Unfortunately, the website is left a little poorer this week with the news that founder Lee O'Denat died on Monday as a result of a heart attack. The news was first reported by TMZ overnight and confirmed by the hip-hop website in a statement across its social media accounts. "With profound sadness, WorldStarHipHop and its employees, state that Lee...

  • CIA goes public with huge online declassified database

    Everyone's favourite intelligence agency, the CIA, has today made 50 years' worth of its research archive available online. This includes the late batch of data from the past 25 years. The agency is required to release declassified files every quarter century, thanks to the Federal Records Act. Previously only accessible via a public terminal system in Maryland, the CIA has migrated the entire archive to the web, allowing practically everyone with a browser and internet connection to access them. Even you, Mr. Snowden. Dubbed CREST, the CIA's archive totals close to 12-million pages of declassified files including around 930 000 documents. And...

  • After Trump win, internet to get Canadian mirror (kind of)

    The US election has forced tech companies and other entities to look closely at their operations, owing to the imminent Trump administration coming into power. At least one pivotal entity, the non-profit Internet Archive, has taken to creating an insurance policy in Canada, in the form of a mirror. The Internet Archive is behind the landmark Wayback Machine, a service which charts the internet's history and has already saved billions of URLs. The Wayback Machine sees between 300 million and 750 million webpages being saved every week, capturing old articles and forgotten websites. In other words, creating a mirror won't be a trivial task...

  • Digital publishing and the world’s largest education company

    As an arm of a 172-year- old publishing company, Pearson Education has experienced the digital revolution first-hand. Many saw the seismic shift toward digital as a klaxon sounding the imminent death of the publishing industry, but Pearson has managed to adapt and has remoulded itself into as much a digital publisher as a print publisher. Subsequently, it is the largest education company in the world. Stacy Treco is VP and director of digital strategy at Pearson Education, as the latest role in a three-decade career at the company. Her focus has been on the pursuit of innovative excellence. This characteristic helped...

  • Reddit’s Joel Meek on challenges facing digital publishing

    Joel Meek has been VP of Operations at Reddit for over a year. In his role, Joel oversees Reddit’s Community, Trust and Safety, Finance, Media Partnerships, and Business Development teams. Previously, he managed the Community and Partnership teams at Pinterest, supporting and growing the company's communities and helping small- to mid-sized businesses advertise on the platform. Joel also worked on building the Sales and Support teams for Google Apps. Ahead of his presentation at the Digital Publishing Innovation Summit this December 5-6 in San Francisco, we sat down with Joel to talk all things digital publishing. What are the key challenges posed by having user-generated...

  • Publishing power: blasting the tech barrier to innovative ideas and content

    Enterprise organisations still caught in the dark ages of taking days, even weeks to publish simple content changes need to look hard at their digital publishing tools. In today’s fast-moving digital environment, it’s no longer acceptable for quick fixes, content updates and even major additions to be stuck in development or release bottlenecks. Instead, publishing power is being placed right in the hands of its non-technical creators with an innovative accelerated approach. Real-time responsiveness, in seconds The right publishing tools make real-time responsiveness a reality, rather than a catchphrase. Non-technical content creators, like in-house teams and creative agencies, are empowered to design...

  • TasteMonster uses AI to recommend movies and series you’ll like

    Often, the biggest issue with binge-watching series or movie sequels is finding content you'll actually enjoy. That's the problem local service TasteMonster is trying to solve. Developed in Cape Town by FuzzyLogic founder Rick De Villiers, TasteMonster is a "unique intuitive system for streaming sites enables users to access tailored predictions and match shows and movies in real time for you and your friends". Although the service launched back in October 2015, it has only recently come of age, with the addition of more TV shows. According to the press release, the service processes more than 25-million ratings and generates 16 000...