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  • Curation does not mean broken search

    Much has been written about how search is broken and this is why curation -- in its many forms -- is on the rise (Pearltrees is a client). Paul Kedrosky writing on Infectious Greed: Curation is the New Search is the New Curation "What has happened is that Google's ranking algorithm, like any trading algorithm, has lost its alpha. It no longer has lists to draw and, on its own, it no longer generates the same outperformance -- in part because it is, for practical purposes, reverse-engineered, well-understood and operating in an adaptive content landscape. Search results in many categories are...

  • South African social network receives international recognition

    Obami, a locally developed social networking site and learning management system for schools, was one of 10 companies from around the world selected to attend the 2011 Netexplorateur Forum which took place this month. The company presented its business concept to an audience of 1 600 politicians and businessmen at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris. Obami was initially launched as a generic social networking site, but with the growth of Facebook, Obami founder Barbara Mallinson chose to change its focus to serve the education sector. "We are so proud of being selected as a top 10 Netexplorateur 2011 company....

  • China’s online anti-government campaigners refuse to back down

    Tough security measures clamping down an online campaign in China have led organisers of the effort to condemn the harsh response of the Chinese state. The so-called "Jasmine rallies” - a reference to the "Jasmine revolution" in Tunisia that sparked unrest across the Arab world - are organised by internet users who say they have support in dozens of Chinese cities. The new statement - posted on Facebook, Twitter and other foreign social networking sites officially blocked in China - came one day after security personnel turned out in force to thwart gatherings in Beijing and Shanghai. "According to the...

  • Optimism high ahead of world’s largest IT gathering

    The self-styled "Davos of high-tech" open on Tuesday with the IT industry in an optimistic mood and over 4,200 tech firms from 70 countries expected to attend this year’s CeBIT. Big names that stayed away from the event during the financial crisis will be returning to Germany. Google, IBM, SAP, Microsoft, HP and Dell are among the top companies setting up their stalls in Hanover, northern Germany, for the five-day event that is likely to attract around 350,000 punters and self-confessed technology geeks. "CeBIT 2011 is the heart of the digital world and will show how rapidly the pulse of...

  • TED: Gearing up for mind-boggling experience

    Intriguing science and extraordinary undertakings are in store at a TED conference to inspire the brilliant and accomplished to change the world for the better. Technology titans, artists, scientists, and celebrities will be among those taking part in the annual event that has transformed from an elite gathering into an internet platform for "ideas worth spreading." TED is renowned for a thought-sparking swirl of viewpoints, revelations, and creative presentations delivered by vaunted personalities asked to pack the talk of a lifetime in an 18-minute punch. Videos of "TED Talks" are made available free online at Ted.com. TED Talks have legions of followers and...

  • Google changes search formula to be more astute

    Google has decided to change its secret search formula in the United States to be more discerning when it comes to which websites are worth recommending and which should sink in the rankings. The move announced late last week was part of an ongoing duel between the search titan and low-quality websites that feature only content copied from elsewhere on the internet or use techniques to trick their way high in results. "Many of the changes we make are so subtle that very few people notice them," Google principal engineer Matt Cutts and Google fellow Amit Singhal said in a blog...

  • Oscars 2.0: The social media experience

    It's now common to watch a big event on TV with either a cellphone or laptop in hand. There is no getting away from the social media experience of such events -- be it among your Twitter following or Facebook friends. The Oscars tapped into the social media frenzy last year. Social media played a major role in generating buzz for the broadcast, according to a report from LA-based social marketing agency Fanscape. According to Fanscape there were more than 100 000 tweets per hour during the actual awards ceremony. That’s nearly 40% more than the 2010 Super Bowl...

  • Supersport fires rugby commentator for ‘improper tweeting’

    Respected rugby pundit and former Western Province prop Andrew "Tank" Lanning has been fired as a Supersport rugby commentator for a series of tweets he sent while attending a commentary workshop on Wednesday. In a statement Supersport explains that "Lanning chose to tweet regarding various confidential matters pertaining to both SuperSport and SA rugby". The tweets contained information about subscriber and viewer numbers of recent rugby games. But Lanning disagrees, claiming the offending tweets contained comments about rugby management and the way players are managed during a World Cup year. He believes that the broadcaster "completely over-reacted". Lanning claims the...

  • Social media in China: The same, but different

    Much has been written of late about the Chinese government’s efforts to control and censor the internet. The government’s censorship of websites is an important issue, but it is not the top priority of the country’s 420-million internet users (netizens). Their top priority? Connecting with other Chinese online. The internet has opened access to information for ordinary Chinese citizens in ways that were unimaginable just a few years ago. Coming from a world where information was pre-filtered by editors at state-run media, China’s internet is freewheeling by comparison. Quick Glance Chinese internet users are actively engaging in social media—especially home-grown social...

  • The 9 most engaging Facebook Pages

    What do the game of poker, a dead pop icon, a woman who travels in a large egg, and a little boy with a large head and English accent have in common? They all top the Facebook Page leader board in terms of "Likes". It takes less than a second to like a Page, but do you go back to read, comment, share and participate? I took a look at the engagement and content scores of these Pages using SocialBakers.com and personally visited the Pages to see how the top Facebook pages engage with their users. ...

  • Google Zeitgeist reveals where Oscar interest really lies

    It's the moment we've all been waiting for - glitz, glam, tears and gold statues. Get your box of popcorn ready and read on as Google reveals what internet users worldwide have been searching for ahead of the prestigious Academy Awards ceremony this Sunday. Darren Aronofsy's psychological drama Black Swan comes out tops as the most popular search amongst 'Best Picture' nominees, according to Google Zeitgeist, a tool that provides insights into web search trends. The thriller is followed by the Coen brothers' True Grit, The Fighter, The Social Network and The Kings Speech. Natalie Portman, who won the Golden...

  • Internet on your TV: What’s all the fuss about?

    South African mobile operators Vodacom and MTN have just launched competing products that allow you to surf the internet from your TV. Vodacom’s Webbox costs R749 and allows users to browse the web, SMS and send emails using the simple keyboard and interface. MTN’s InternetOnTV costs R999 but includes more features, like a built-in phone, a high-speed modem and a computer mouse. Both services let you connect by inserting a prepaid SIM card into your device – you browse the web by buying "airtime" that converts to internet data. So, why are these products so revolutionary? Quite simply, connecting to...

  • Slicing and dicing with Google’s ‘Recipe View’

    Google recently added 'Recipe View' to its search menu as a way for people to easily find instructions for whipping up dishes in the kitchen. "My parents follow the art of cooking by intuition, where the right amount of each spice is measured out by gut feel, but that's never worked very well for me," Google product manager Kavi Goel said while introducing Recipe View, on Thursday. "As a math geek and computer engineer, I prefer to work with concrete numbers and instructions, including when cooking." Recipe View allows you to narrow your search results to show only recipes. This new view...

  • 2011 Budget Speech: Tracking the online conversation

    South African Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan delivered his 2011 Budget Speech on Wednesday afternoon. BrandsEye, an Online Reputation Management service tracked the online conversation surrounding the speech to come up with a balanced appraisal of volumes and trending topics. It found that 97% of the conversation came from consumers – showing significant engagement by ordinary people in their personal capacity. Considering that there was no celebrity-inspired stunt driving online conversation as was the case with President Jacob Zuma’s 2011 State of the Nation Address, this is a considerable amount of unadulterated online conversation for a single event measured over two...

  • Google’s US$2.7-million fund is open for the taking

    Internet search giant Google has awarded US$2.7-million to media watchdog, the International Press Institute (IPI) as part of a new project to support digital news in Africa, the Middle East and Europe. The cash injection will back the IPI News Innovation Contest, which is set to provide grants to non-profit and for-profit organisations "working on digital, including mobile, open-source technology created by journalists and/or for journalists and distributed in the public interest.” Ahead of the announcement Luke Mckend, a Google executive for Africa, spoke to memeburn in an exclusive interview. He affirmed the creation of local content will be...