We went to Soweto and made a little video

Last weekend, three mates and I had an amazing weekend in Soweto. We went with the great Ilan Ossendryver, an experienced photojournalist who took us around some garden/football projects he was involved in.

We drank with the locals, ate meat with the locals, took pictures of the locals (with respect and their permission), watched the night Orlando Pirates football live at the stadium with the locals and even jumped 70 metres inside an abandoned cooling tower into a net (NEVER AGAIN) with the locals.

This is a one-minute video that ends abruptly, but is still a little bit of fun about a magical day.

The Rwandan Tech Incubator’s Top 10 startups

rwandaRwandan tech incubator think has announced their top 10 finalists for the initial intake of the newest incubator in Africa. The top 10 companies were selected from more than 150 applications from across 20 countries, of which 14 were from Africa.

These companies are some of the best new innovators providing digital and technology solutions that have the potential to scale across Africa.

These companies were chosen after submitting an application to think, and those applications were reviewed by the four-member Selection Committee, representing Tigo Rwanda, African Entrepreneur Collective, Millicom Digital Ventures, and leading Rwandan technology experts and entrepreneurs. Continue reading

Great Fridays shores up board with ex-Pearson hire

elephant indoorInnovative product and service design company Great Fridays has appointed Genevieve Shore to its influential advisory board with immediate effect.

Great Fridays advisory board is made up of an illustrious and eclectic mix of experienced Design and Business Leaders including Peter Gabriel (musician, technologist, inventor), Nancy Dickenson (independent design strategy consultant and ex-VP Design at eBay, PayPal, Apple), Peter Skillman from HERE and Josh Ulm (VP of Design at Adobe). Continue reading

The end of maps as Sat Nav users lose brains

sat_navThe scourge of Sat Nav appears to have rendered drivers clueless and dependent on the technology to arrive at their destination.

According to research by GPS technology specialists Garmin, almost 40% of drivers don’t know how to navigate using a traditional map and a further 16% admit that they are so reliant on a Sat Nav that they use it for regular journeys.

As a driver who loves getting lost and likes to ask for directions because it means I meet PEOPLE in unusual situations and do not reply on a mobile ivory tower to insulate myself from real life, this comes as no surprise.

One thing that remains the same, however. Be it digital or analogue, the report says that arguing over directions remains one of driving’s biggest hazards, with a third of respondents saying that it creates arguments with their partners.

The press release tries to put a spin on this depressing result… ‘Rather than seeing technology as consuming traditional skills like map reading, it should be celebrated for delivering speed, accuracy and safety’.

This is not something I’ve ever seen when Sat Nav drivers pull away, then stop instantly while they fiddle with its controls. It is the devil’s work and is sucking away our brains. Maps are like books, they keep us intelligent, not driverless Google car guinea pigs.

US company acquires African startup Saya

Robert-LampteyOne of the smartest people I’ve met as I’ve built up my African network over the past two years is the charismatic and smart Robert Lamptey.

As CEO and founder of Ghana-based mobile messaging company Saya Mobile, Robert has been an inspiration for many Ghanaians, and Africans for that matter. He is a better coder than anybody who has attempted MIT’s coding challenges and he has built up an excellent company in the last three years.

So it is of great pleasure to announce (somewhat belatedly, been on holiday), Saya’s acquisition by New Jersey company Kirusa, which has acquired the technology, IP and workforce of Saya that will now be working on Kirusa’s mobile applications. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Continue reading