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Uber to help cities move

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Uber has unveiled Uber Movement, a new website to help urban planners, city leaders, third parties and the public better understand the transportation needs of their cities and how best to invest in new infrastructure.

All three major cities in Gauteng, Johannesburg, Ekurhuleni and Tshwane, are officially included in Uber Movement, with  data now available.

Uber Movement shows data from the billions of trips that riders have taken with Uber, aggregated into zones covering the standard boundaries used by urban planners, for example Census Tracts and Traffic Analysis Zones (TAZs). This will enable them to more effectively evaluate where investments in transportation infrastructure should be made in their cities.

“Uber Movement is the next step to connecting further with our cities and having the opportunity to recognise its great transportation needs,” says Yolisa Kani, head of public policy at Uber South Africa. “With Uber Movement, we are able to further our mission in creating reliable transportation everywhere, for everyone.”

Uber signed an agreement with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), South Africa’s central scientific research and development organisation, which has agreed to share information and experiences with Uber Movement.

“Transport planning is a data intensive undertaking, and the required datasets tend to be expensive to collect and process,” says Dr Mathetha Mokonyama of the CSIR. “Having a platform that serves as a full-day transport network sensor would certainly help with the monitoring of some of the pertinent network indicators.”

Over time Uber will be adding more information, like automatically detecting potholes and utilising telematicdata. Uber will protect the privacy of riders and drivers, so Uber Movement uses only aggregate, anonymous data and cannot be used to access any personally identifiable information.

“We look forward to reaching Uber Movement’s full potential, linking communities to their cities,” says Kani.

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Smash hits the Nintendo Switch

Super Smash Bros. delivers what the fans wanted in the latest “Ultimate” instalment, writes BRYAN TURNER.

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Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, the latest addition to the popular Nintendo Smash series, has landed on the Nintendo Switch with a bang, selling 5-million copies in the first week of its release. The game has been long-anticipated since the console’s release, as many fans consider iy to be a Nintendo staple. And the wait was well worth it.

It features 74 playable fighters, 108 stages, almost 1300 Spirit characters to collect while playing, and a single-player Adventure mode that took about three days (or 28 hours) of gameplay to complete. The game offers far more gameplay than its predecessors, making it the Smash game that gives its players the best bang for their buck.

For those new to the game, the goal is to fight opponents and build up their damage score (draining their health) to knock them off the stage eventually. This makes the game seem chaotic, as many players jump around the platforms as if they were on quicksand, in order to avoid being hit by the other players.

It also services two kinds of players: the competitive and the casual.

Competitive players can be matched on the online service by skill ranking to enjoy playing with similarly high-skilled opponents. This is especially important in e-sports training for the game, and for players wanting to master combos against other human players. The casual gamer is also catered for, with eight-player chaos and button-mashing to see who comes out luckiest. This segment is also important for those wanting to learn how to play.

Training mode is also a place to go for those learning to play. It offers “CPU” players that are graded by intensity to train as a single player to learn a character’s moves, combos and general fighting style. More challenging CPU players can also be used by competitive players to train when there isn’t a Wi-Fi connection available.

Direct Play features in this game, allowing two players with two Switch consoles to play against each other over a direct connection – no Wi-Fi needed. This is especially useful to those who want to have a social gaming element on the go, similar to that of the cable connector of the Gameboy.

Click here to read Bryan Turner review of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

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Win Funko Fortnite in Vinyl

Gadget and Gammatek have nine Funko Fortnite figurines to give away.

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A Funko Pop figurine based on a character set is indicative of reaching the heights of pop culture. It is no surprise, then, that the world’s biggest online game, Fortnite, has its own line of Funko Pop figurines. The Funkos are modeled on the characters in game, including Drift, Ragnarok, Dark Vanguard, Volar, Tracera Ops, and Sparkle Specialist.

Now, local Funko distributor Gammatek has released the Fortnite figurines in South Africa. To celebrate, Gadget and Gammatek are giving away a set of three Funko Fortnite figurines to each of three readers (9 figurines in total). To enter, first click on your favourite Funko Pop on the next page and post the Tweet that appears. Then, follow Gadget on Twitter.

You can put the tweet in your own words, but entries must have the competition’s hashtag (#FunkoFortnite) and mention @GadgetZA to be considered valid.

Click here to select the Funko Fortnite character you want to tweet.

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