Monday, 29 June 2009

Mean Mr Mustard's Fred Hayward dies

South Africa's music industry has been dealt a blow with the death of Fred Hayward, bassist for Mean Mr Mustard. He apparently died of a heart attack. He was in his thirties.

Hayward was an integral part of a band that has become synonymous with the growth and international acceptance of the South African music industry. He will be sorely missed.

You can leave your tribute to Freddy here.

Saturday, 27 June 2009

Another Social Network - Can it work?

It seems that the internet has really come into its own over the past year - almost everyone now has a Facebook profile, a MySpace page or a Twitter stream. People are using the web more and more to connect with one another and are harnessing its power both in business and in their personal lives.

Breaking into the social networking arena with a view to make a significant impact is a tough assignment! A new kid on the block however aims to make its mark!

Welcome Vyoom - a social networking site with a difference!

What makes this different is their promise to reward users with prizes for activity. I do hope that their financial modelling allows for substantial growth - if not, I am not sure they will be able to sustain their giving of prizes to their users.

Let's see what happens!

Thursday, 25 June 2009

Reporter on Cape Town's stormy weather has not looked hard enough

A News24 report on the cold weather being experienced by the Western Cape indicates that it was difficult to say whether there was snow on the Ceres mountains. The report quotes Didi Greef of the Matroosberg Nature Reserve as saying that it was difficult to confirm whether there was snow on the mountains.

I don't buy this! I could see snow from my house in Worcester and a 10 minute drive yesterday afternoon confirmed that there was plenty of snow in the mountains! How difficult would it have been for Didi Greef to actually check? How difficult would it have been for the reporter to contact someone else for confirmation?

Believe me, there is snow on the mountains and I expect more to fall today.

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

The Australians finally beat us...

Their cricket team may be slipping down the ICC rankings, the Socceroos continue to disappoint and even their schools are losing momentum - but hang on, there is one area in which the good folks of Australia continue to lead the way .... consumption of alcohol!

This is according to a report published by the Menzies School of Health Research. Clearly there is a problem here which needs serious intervention.

We cannot however become complacent - teen drinking in South Africa is endemic and we are going to have to work hard to change this pattern of behaviour before we overtake Australia not only in alcohol consumption but in alcohol-related deaths.

Saturday, 13 June 2009

Facebook Usernames - Interview video

I've got mine! Have you got yours? You'd better hurry - 500 000 usernames taken in 15 minutes! I wonder who will take ?

Two of the Facebook team explain usernames and the thinking behind the move :

Friday, 12 June 2009

Tomorrow Is Another Country - The inside story of the end of apartheid

While at home struggling to shake a nasty flu virus I have taken the opportunity to read a book which has been on my shelf for some time. That book is Tomorrow Is Another Country: The Inside Story of South Africa's Road to Change by Allister Sparks.

It tells the inside story of a country teetering on the brink of civil war, of secret meetings and clandestine talks in hotel basements, of political maneouvering and the cut and thrust of political parties all eager to have their way in a new-look South Africa. This book reveals the background to the talks that paved the way for our first democratic election and gives insight into the minds of those in positions of power across the political spectrum.

The book is clearly well-researched and is well-balanced although it is clear that Mr Sparks leans towards the left. I have thoroughly enjoyed the book and recommend it to all who have the slightest interest in South African politics. In fact, every South African should read this book as it allows us to reflect on what is and what could have been.

It would not suprise me if a movie is not made based on this book as it certainly rivals any John le Carré thriller!

I am a proud South African - perhaps now a more well-informed South African as well. I highly recommend this book.