Archive for 'South Africa'

Memeburn Goes Live

by on April 5, 2010 at 6:45 am
MemburnMemeburn goes live, a news and opinion platform tracking tech culture, innovation and business. The new site, founded by Cape-Town based Matthew Buckland, plays particular attention to the web, mobile, social media, online media and social networking fields.

I am a contributing blogger to the new site, which is particularly focused on telling the world startup news and tech entrepreneurs’ stories from the emerging market sector. Although Memeburn has a particular focus on emerging markets, it tracks innovation worldwide.

(From an original article by Renee Blodgett)

Cape Town: The Silicon Valley of Africa?

by on October 2, 2009 at 11:42 pm

Silicon cape logo Silicon Cape is a new event in South Africa started by investors and entrepreneurs who have spent time in Silicon Valley.

More than an event, it’s a brand, an idea that everyone could ‘rally around’ in the Cape. My blogger pal Matthew Buckland, who has been asked to MC the kick-off event, writes about the launch on his blog.

The goal is to attract the best entrepreneurs, technical brains and foreign investment to South Africa. (more…)

Four Thumbs Up for District 9

by on August 29, 2009 at 2:39 am

Having lived in South Africa twice, both times before Apartheid was officially abolished, seeing District 9 — the movie, was incredible, no unbelieveable, no so damn authentic, that you find yourself wanting to see it again to catch all the parallels.

District95Brilliantly captured, the personalities bring you back twenty years, no ten years, no two years……it sends shivers through your bones. To top it off, Neill Blomkamp and Peter Jackson make sure you experience the category its in: Sci-Fi. (more…)

Make Poverty History

by on July 27, 2009 at 1:00 pm

Intel’s Tristan Wilkinson introduced me to Chris Ward from Comic Relief while I was in the UK.

He’s working on a campaign called 1GOAL that goes live on August 20th. 1GOAL’s mission is essentially to make poverty history.

As an official partner of the FIFA 2010 World Cup in South Africa, 1GOAL is an initiative from the Global Campaign for Education based out of Johannesburg.

Their aim is to secure 30 million people to engage in this campaign globally (by signing a digital petition) so that by the end of the World Cup, the noise around the issue of getting every child into education by 2015 (as Governments promised in 2000) is so loud that countries who have to act now to keep their promise feel compelled to do so.

The campaign is being backed by many Governments, faith groups, the private sector, celebrities and footballers and it is very much felt from within the sector that this is the one MDG that could be really achieved.

They have already received support from major names such as Gordon Brown, Nelson Mandela, Bono, Richard Curtis, and Kevin Rudd (Australia PM).

Over 200 countries will be involved in this initiative; Africa is obviously a key target for generating interest and signatures for the campaign – along with USA, Brazil, Japan, Australia and countless others.

Keep your eyes open for more information as the campaign goes live in August and if you have an opportunity to support them, please do. Doesn’t every child deserve an education?

On Nancy Pelosi and Michael Jackson

by on July 10, 2009 at 2:34 pm

Introducing Mahala

by on May 25, 2009 at 2:01 pm

South Africa introduces Mahala, a new creative culture and reality magazine. August will be the first issue.

Freshly squeezed last week “My Black President” by Sean O’Toole.

A vision of 2019: Interface eye candy

by on May 21, 2009 at 3:11 pm

It’s a vision of the future from Microsoft Office Labs. If you’re into interfaces and devices — and how they may look in the future, you’ll love the video below:

(You can watch a crisper version too)

tags: future interfaces, interfaces, Microsoft, Microsoft Office Labs

Potentially related posts

Will Facebook eventually replace the Windows & Mac desktop?…

Click on headline link to visit for full article

Joburg’s Moyos

by on May 3, 2009 at 3:47 pm

Moyos in Johannesburg, shot by Zadi Diaz during our tour in November.

South Africans Vote

by on April 23, 2009 at 9:04 am

South Africans voted for party and president yesterday, and though the ANC is going to maintain its 15-year hold on power in SA post-apartheid, it is unclear whether the party will gain a 2/3 majority necessary to change the constitution.  It will also take at least a few days to determine whether the results indicate shifts that may lead to significant change in the 2014 elections and beyond.

There was hope among the many unhappy with the ANC that a breakaway party, Congress of the People (COPE), would offer a strong alternative.  Infighting and poor leadership extinguished that, but there is reason to believe that demographic changes are substantive and point to the future.

More when results are in, but in the meantime there may be stories that report the continuation of one-party rule and highlight the compromised nature of Jacob Zuma, corruption and rape charges and tribalism.  There is truth to this, but the country is only 15 years removed from totalitarian rule, and alternatives are slow to emerge to the ANC, which is still rightfully seen as the deliverer from the wilderness.

On Blogging: A Word From the South Africans

by on April 7, 2009 at 1:12 pm

Winners of the South African blog contest have been unveiled across multiple categories. The “best blog across all categories” this year is 2 Oceans Vibe.

My buddy Nic, who was on the South African blogging expedition with us last December is listed as the first runner-up although they did win for best group blog. Matthew Buckland who also joined us for part of the tour is included in the runner-up list as well.

Interestingly enough, there have been a few debates raging since the ceremony on Friday night. including disappointment from one of the judges.

2oceansvibe won in 6 categories and although she was a judge, votes were weighted in favor of public votes. According to the rules, that means that ‘in the voting phase the vote weighting will be 30% judges and 70% public’ whereas in the nomination phase it is ‘50% judges 50% public.’

It sounds like she is disappointed with the voice of South Africans, in other words, where they spend their time and what they think about. She says, “I realise that there is a pretty large audience for tits, ass, cars, rugby and surfing, but the fact that this is the blog that we hold up to the world as our national pride and joy makes me want to hurl.”

She encourages the need to distinguish between popular voted blogs and then get the judges together to discuss their choice of winners that best reflects where South Africa is right now and where it is heading. Of course, that model is the old media model where two men decide which movie gets a two thumbs up or three book reviewers can influence whether a book makes it to the NY Times Bestseller List or not.

She talks about brand and the power of brand, in this case, something that stands for quality in the way that perhaps the Oscars do here. Her take: if the blog awards brand doesn’t have any meaning, any vision, any unique take on the world of blogging, then – ‘it becomes just another popularity contest.’

“The masses decide” is where its heading though – no more judges, very few editors (who can afford them now in the new Google economy where everything is expected for free), and less calling for experts, although we’ll return to experts soon enough as quality goes down. We now live in a Digg and Yelp society where hopefully over time, quality will rise to the top and the unauthentic voices and players will drop to the bottom.

The upside: more feedback and discovery than anytime in history. The downside: too much clutter and noise until the next genius brings out advanced filters that make that online discovery process even more efficient, more compelling and more fun.

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