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Wits marks 25 years of SA Internet

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Next week is Wits Internet Week, and during that week various speakers will look back on what key events helped shape the history of the Internet in South Africa, how its progress has been and what the future holds.

We are rapidly approaching the next milestone for the Internet in South Africa, a mere 16 months away now, 25-years of the Internet on 12 November 2016. What are our memories of the early days, what are the key events that shaped the history of the Internet in South Africa, has progress in connecting South Africans been fast or slow, what are the successes and failures, what can we learn from the past and how can we build the future Internet? These questions will be considered by a number of speakers and debated by participants. Speakers include William Stucke (ICASA Councillor 2009 – 2014), Mike Lawrie (Internet pioneer), Nkateko Nyoka (Head of Regulatory Division, Vodacom), Pria Chetty (EndCode), Ant Brooks (ISPA), Ntsibane Ntlatlapa (CSIR Meraka), Duncan Martin (ZA Central Registry), Peter Knight (Fernand Braudel Institute, Brazil), Adrian Shofield (JCSE) and Luci Abrahams (LINK Centre).

This public seminar is part of Wits Internet Week 2015 and has been developed as part of the research project on the history of the Internet in South Africa commissioned by the ZA Central Registry. All are welcome including practitioners from the electronic communications sector; practitioners, advocates and innovators from the main user sectors such as policymakers, the sector regulator, media, banking and finance, travel and tourism, education and health, government departments, researchers and postgraduate students.

The Internet is the most important medium promoting digital transformation of society and the economy, reshaping trade, commerce and social services. As more and more South Africans join the mobile Internet, access online content at public Wi-Fi spots and communicate across the country, the continent and the globe, new questions, challenges and public debates arise relating to costs and benefits, access and the digital divide, Gigabit Internet in fibrehoods, cybersecurity and harmful content. Come and participate in the discussions towards 25 years of the Internet in South Africa.

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CES: So long, and thanks for all the beer!

Last week, the Las Vegas expo showed off its fun side with state-of-the-art technologies for enjoying beer, writes BRYAN TURNER

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From craft beer-making machines to robots that pour beer, CES had more beer than usual in Las Vegas last week. And even free beer if you found the right stand. Stampede’s saloon-style booth offered beer to visitors who tried out its latest drones, virtual reality, and other gaming products. No beer tech, though.

Here are some of the beer technologies that stood out:

LG HomeBrew – Craft beer made at home

LG’s HomeBrew craft beer-making machine,  debuted at CES 2019, brings the brewing process home thanks to single-use capsules,  a self-cleaning feature, and an algorithm optimised for fermentation. 

Like a Nespresso coffee machine, the beer maker uses capsules, which contain malt, yeast, hop oil and flavouring. At the press of a button, LG HomeBrew automates the whole procedure from fermentation and carbonation to ageing. A companion app lets users check HomeBrew’s status at any time during the process, from their handsets.

The beer machine not only offers a simple way to make craft beer, but also enhances the quality of beer it makes. The fermentation algorithm intelligently controls the fermenting process with precise temperature and pressure control. It automatically sanitises itself, using nothing more than hot water, ensuring everything is hygienically clean for the next batch.

Designed with discerning beer lovers in mind, HomeBrew allows for in-home production of batches of more than 4 litres of beer in a variety of styles. The following five distinctive, flavoured beers are available now: 

  • Hoppy American IPA
  • Golden American Pale Ale
  • Full-bodied English Stout
  • Zesty Belgian-style Witbier
  • Dry Czech Pilsner

The only catch? It takes about two weeks to make, depending on the beer type.

“LG HomeBrew is the culmination of years of home appliance and water purification technologies that we’ve developed over the decades,” said Dan Song, president of LG Electronics Home Appliance & Air Solutions Company. “Homebrewing has grown at an explosive pace, but there are still many beer lovers who haven’t taken the jump because of the barriers to entry, like complexity, and these are the consumers we think will be attracted to LG HomeBrew.”

Click here to read about the party speaker that holds beer and robots that pour beer.

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CES: Alienware gets Legend-ary

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At CES in Las Vegas last week, Dell’s Alienware released a family of high-end, thin, light, and affordable machines for both amateur and professional gamers – and a new identity.

Alienware marked CES 2019 as a brand milestone with the debut of a new design identity, Alienware Legend. It aims to set a new bar of excellence for what gamers want most – performance and function. Alienware says it evaluated multiple concepts and chose one that was the biggest and boldest departure from its current look.

Alienware Legend, says the company, stays true to the brand’s core design tenets, taking cues from its deep roots in sci-fi culture and its early industrial designs, to distinguish the brand from the rest of the industry. The new Legend design is optimised with cutting-edge thermal cooling technology to achieve and sustain overclocking power, improved AlienFX lighting, and ultra-thin screen borders. It also unveiled a new “three-knuckle hinge” design that reduces the overall dimension while creating a stronger assembly, all combining to yield a better gaming experience.

“We’re excited to come to this year’s CES with some truly groundbreaking products, next-gen software and strategic partnerships that will bring more people to experience PC gaming and advance the industry,” said Frank Azor, vice president and general manager of Alienware. “The legend design answers the call for more and better from our gaming community, and the new G Series laptops will make PC gaming even more accessible to those looking for high-performance gaming at a cost they can appreciate.”

Click here to read about Alienware Legend in action with the Area-51m and m-series laptops

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