Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Snapchat Loses $1.3bn After Kylie Jenner’s Tweet

Reality TV Star, Kylie Jenner. Photo Credit: Kylie Jenner’s Instagram.
Snapchat’s parent company lost some $1.3 billion in market value on Thursday after reality star Kylie Jenner’s tweeted that she was no longer using the messaging service.
“sooo does anyone else not open Snapchat anymore? Or is it just me… ugh this is so sad,” Jenner tweeted.
She later followed up with “still love you tho snap … my first love,” but the damage may already have been done.
Snap Inc.’s shares fell by over six percent in Thursday trading, a loss of about $1.3 billion in market capitalization.
Jenner has huge followings on various social media platforms, including Twitter and Instagram.
She gave birth to a daughter this month, and her Instagram post announcing the pregnancy quickly became one of the most liked posts of all time on the social media platform.
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Tech: This behind the scenes will make you watch ‘Avengers: Infinity War’

Avengers: Infinity War,” remains one of the most anticipated movies in the second quarter of 2018 after the success of Black Panther and this clip will convince you.  “Avengers: Infinity War,” remains one of the most anticipated movies in the second quarter of 2018 after the success of Black Panther and this clip will convince you.The clip shows how the members of the Avengers met Black Panther in Wakanda as well as introducing the villain, Thanos, who wants to destroy half of the universe. Marvel’s “Avengers: Infinity War,” remains one of the most anticipated movies in the second quarter of 2018 after the success of Black Panther and the clips from behind the scenes attests to that.The clip shows how the members of the Avengers met Black Panther in Wakanda as well as introducing the villain, Thanos, who wants to destroy half of the universe.In case you are not too familiar with the theme of “Avengers: Infinity War,” the villain Thanos wants to destroy half the universe yet he is sympathetic about his moves. When the movie hits theaters on Friday, April 27, 2018, you will not only be glued to your seats at the cinema but will get your best look yet at Thanos, played by Josh Brolin, whose battle against the Avengers has been teased and built up for the past 10 years of Marvel Cinematic Universe movies.For the movie makers, the most frightening thing about Thanos in the “Avengers: Infinity War,” is that he might actually have good reasons for his evil deeds. If carefully seen, you might find yourself empathizing with him despite the obvious fact that you might not root for him, there’s something very charismatic about him.Avengers: InfinityWar premiered in HollywoodOn Monday night, April 23, 2018, Marvel Studios’ Avengers: InfinityWar was premiered in Hollywood. The red carpet premiere  had in attendance cast and crew of the movie, which cost the company a yet to be disclosed hundreds of millions of Dollars.In attendance were Letitia Wright, Elizabeth Olsen, Clark Gregg, Josh Brolin, Mark Ruffalo, Sebastian Stan, Paul Rudd, Karen Gillian, Jon Favraeu, Scarlett Johansson, Benedict Cumberbatch, Olivia Holt, Miles Mussenden,  Emma Lahana, Bradley Cooper, Samuel L Jackson, Zoe Saldana, Vin Diesel, Chris Pratt, Chris Hemsworth, Gwyneth Paltrow, Robert Downey Jr, Tom Holland and Chadwick Boseman.

Sjoerd Nikkelen: OLX confirms Nigeria and Kenya exit in new strategy

The South African owned company says it will keep its marketplace online in the affected countries OLX has confirmed its exit from the Nigerian market after Business Insider Sub Saharan Africa broke news of the decision.According to Sjoerd Nikkelen, CEO of OLX AMEA, the decision was a difficult but necessary one.”We made a difficult but important decision in Nigeria to consolidate our operations between some of our offices internationally.”OLX moved into Kenya and Nigeria in 2012 and the decision to close its physical infrastructure in those two countries is bound to have a ripple effect on e-commerce in those market.Mr.Nikkelen however revealed that the company would maintain its marketplace.”Our marketplace will continue to operate here – uninterrupted – as it has since 2010, and we remain committed to the many people here who use our platform to buy and sell every month. We continue to be focused on constantly innovating to make sure that OLX remains the top classified platform in the country.”As revealed in an earlier report, hundreds of jobs will be affected by the decision with a complete pull  out of staff expected to be completed by April.”Of course, we are committed to helping our affected colleagues during this transition and have already offered them meaningful financial and other support. As we’ve expressed to them directly, we are extremely grateful for their many significant contributions to OLX’s success.

Tech: Watch SpaceX launch a Tesla Roadster to Mars on the Falcon Heavy rocket...

The Falcon Heavy has 27 engines, can generate more power than 18 747 jumbo jets, and is the most powerful rocket to fly since NASA’s moon rocket, the Saturn V. SpaceX just launched a Tesla Roadster to Mars on this: SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy rocket.
This was the Falcon Heavy’s maiden flight. It’s the launch that everyone’s been waiting for. The Falcon Heavy is a monster.
It has 27 engines, can generate more power than 18 747 jumbo jets, and is the most powerful rocket to fly since NASA’s moon rocket, the Saturn V.
Making it the most powerful functioning rocket on Earth. This is one of SpaceX’s most difficult launches. Musk even said “Just bear in mind that there is a good chance this monster rocket blows up.”
But it didn’t!
Even though this was a test launch, Musk took the opportunity to send some payload to space. A Tesla Roadster, which will eventually reach Mars’ orbit.
Now, that’s a rocket test like we’ve never seen before. Afterward, SpaceX retrieved each of the 3 boosters for possible reuse. They landed one booster on a drone ship in the Atlantic Ocean and 2 at its landing base in Florida.
Musk has said the Falcon Heavy could usher people to Mars someday in the future. That day now looks closer than ever. And who knows?
Maybe a Roadster will be waiting when they get there.

JAMB: Sophisticated glasses, wristwatches and other gadgets not allowed in exam halls this February

The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has reportedly placed a ban on the use of 16 electronic devices at the UTME examination which is to hold on February 26, 2018, across different venues within the federation.
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Quick unboxing of the Infinix Note 5 with Andriod One

On the 24th of June, Infinix Mobility launched the Infinix Note 5 in partnership with Google at the Burj Khalifat building in Dubai and I was there. Here is a quick view of the device. Specification Android  8.1 Oreo 6.0 ”  HD Full Display 2.0 GHz Octa Core Processor 3GB RAM 32GB internal expandable memory Dual […]
Read more on Techpoint.

Tecno Camon X: Unboxing and First Impressions

On the 5th of April 2018. Tecno Mobile officially announced the Tecno Camon X and 4 other smartphones in a global launch held in Lagos Nigeria. Even though not a continuation of the Camon CX, the Tecno Camon X is still the latest addition into the Tecno Camon family. Let us look inside the box […]
Read more on Techpoint.

Open Banking Nigeria can democratise access to the Nigerian banking system, but there’s a...

Amidst ongoing debates about whether or not fintechs are a threat to the Nigerian banking industry, a non-for-profit organisation is working on the Open Banking initiative, in a move that will favour fintechs. It has met some hurdles, but not from sources you would expect.

Africa News Roundup: The ₦19 billion anti-IPO manoeuvre

Here are last weekend’s top headlines on startups, entrepreneurship, innovation and tech around Africa. Bottling up 7up. Majority shareholder in struggling Seven-Up bottling company, Affelka has made an offer to buy out minority shareholders for ₦19.33 billion ($60 million), in a takeover deal that will delist the company from the Nigerian Stock Exchange. Read more on […]
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Tech: ‘The Last Jedi’ crew set fire to a nearly 60-foot high model tree...

The burning tree in that scene in “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” where Yoda and Luke Skywalker talk was not CGI.
The burning tree scene in “The Last Jedi” was a practical effect — they really lit a fake tree on fire.
It took months to build the tree, and close to 25 separate gas lines were rigged to it to have the tree burn to director Rian Johnson’s liking.
Special effects supervisor Chris Corbould explained to Business Insider how the scene was pulled off.
In an era when you assume anything amazing that happens in a movie is courtesy of computer-generated imagery, it’s always exciting to learn when a memorable scene was pulled off by practical effects.
Since the “Star Wars” prequels, in which George Lucas was heavily criticized for using too much CGI to create the worlds and characters, many big-budget movies have tried to find that happy medium of practical and visual effects to give the action on screen a more grounded feel. And the now Disney-owned “Star Wars” saga is leading the way.
A perfect example is in “The Last Jedi” (available on digital release Tuesday, on Blu-ray/DVD March 27) when Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) attempts to burn down the giant tree that holds the sacred Jedi texts. It’s a scene that also features a Force ghost of Yoda.
When Skywalker tells the legendary Jedi master what he’s about to do, Yoda doesn’t talk him out of it. But when Skywalker gets to the giant tree, with flame in hand, he can’t go through with it. This leads to Yoda summoning a giant lightening bolt that strikes the tree and engulfs it in flames. He then delivers his famous giddy laugh as Skywalker looks on in complete shock.
Almost all of that scene is done with practical effects. From the puppet of Yoda, voiced by Frank Oz, that Hamill traded lines with, to the enormous tree and giant flames shooting from it.
It was the handiwork of the movie’s special effects supervisor Chris Corbould, and one of the reasons why he recently received a visual effects Oscar nomination for “The Last Jedi.”
Responsible for some of the greatest visual effects pulled off on screen in the last 40 years, he’s done everything from James Bond movies like “Moonraker” and “GoldenEye,” to Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy and “Inception” (which he won an Oscar for). He’s now hit the effects industry mountain top with getting the “Star Wars” gig (he was also the effects supervisor on “The Force Awakens”) and the Yoda/Skywalker scene for him is one of his favorites.
There’s the nostalgia of seeing Luke and Yoda on screen again, but also the pride of pulling off a practical effect of this size.
“It was a tricky one,” Corbould admitted to Business Insider.
First, there was building the tree and rigging it to burn. Corbould said it took a couple of months for the construction crew on the movie to build the fireproof tree that was almost 60 feet high and close to 50 feet wide. It was so big that the tree could not be built on the set.
“They had to assemble it in various parts,” Corbould said.
So the tree was basically a very large Lego set. A piece of a trunk would be built on set, then another piece of the trunk would be brought in and attached to that. Then the multiple branches were attached one at a time.
After all that, close to 25 separate gas lines were put into the tree, each one with its own valve so Corbould and his team could adjust the flame to his and director Rian Johnson’s liking.
“It’s very easy to have it just burst into flames,” Corbould said. “Rian really wanted it to catch the light a little bit slower. So we had to spent quite a lot of testing time to bring the gas lines to a point where it looked like the flames were slowly creeping up and then totally enveloping the whole tree.”
The tree burning scene was shot over two nights with a crew of 20 people just responsible for the tree catching on fire. Most of the shots pre-fire were completed on the first night. The second night was for the shots after the tree was on fire, which included Hamill, the Yoda puppet, and Oz voicing the character in front of the giant burning tree. And it got hot — to the joy of everyone on set.
“When we shot the scene the nights were incredibly cold,” Corbould said. “I think the whole crew was happy when we lit that up.”
The tree was lit on fire close to 30 times by the time they wrapped on the scene, according to Corbould.
The special effects veteran laughed when he was told that many people probably think the tree fire scene is just another dazzling VFX feat by the wizards at Industrial Light and Magic.
“I think when you do something for real you get a much more convincing performance from the actors,” he said. “I think that’s why a lot of the directors — Chris [Nolan], Rian [Johnson], J.J. [Abrams] — they value those moments where you’ve got a real look of terror, anxiety, excitement on the faces of the actors.”
Corbould added that some of the excitement for him is seeing if a practical effect could even be pulled off.
He said he wasn’t completely confident he could pull off the 18-wheeler truck flip he did in “The Dark Knight.”
“There was a bit of banter between me and Chris Nolan,” he said. “Eventually we pulled it off.”
But in today’s moviemaking landscape, it’s what’s done on the VFX side that has really upped everyone’s game in the special effects profession.
“When CGI was first invented we all thought we’re not going to have a job in five years,” Corbould said. “But what it actually did is it allowed films to do even bigger visual effects and we had to enhance what they did — whether it’s an asteroid hitting the ground or blowing 10 cars up in the air. It’s a great marriage these days. It’s a combination of practical and visual effects to make that great film — that’s what we’re striving to do.”
Corbould’s next task: Making our hearts melt for Winnie the Pooh in the upcoming Disney release, “Christopher Robin.

Tech: Nigerian girls, Team Save-A-Soul, win world’s largest tech competition

The Nigerian girls defeated teams from USA, Spain, Turkey, Uzbekistan and China to win the 2018 Technovation world pitch junior division in San Francisco. Nigerian teenage girls have won the top position at the 2018 Technovation World Pitch Summit, the world’s largest tech entrepreneurship program in the United States.Iridescent, a nonprofit empowering under-represented young people globally announced that the Nigerian girls won the Junior Division Finalists (App focus) category during the “Global Innovation Celebration” held in the San Jose Theatre, August 9, 2018.Save-A Soul app – FD-Detector, Onitsha, Anambra, NigeriaThe girls, from Regina Abachi secondary school, Onitsa, codenamed Team Save-A-Soul comprising of Promise Nnalue, Jessica Osita, Nwabuaku Ossai, Adaeze Onuigbo and Vivian Okoye, developed a mobile application called ‘FD-Detector’ to tackle the problem of fake pharmaceutical products in Nigeria with Mrs Uchenna Onwuamaegbu-Ugwu, as their mentor.The app leverages a drug’s barcode to verify its authenticity and expiration date. Save A Soul will also partner with NAFDAC (National Agency for Food & Drug Administration and Control), an agency responsible for regulating drugs in Nigeria.The Nigerian girls defeated teams from the United States of America (USA), Spain, Turkey, Uzbekistan and China to win the 2018 Technovation world pitch junior division in San Francisco, USA.”Leveraging technology to save lives is our utmost priority, that is why we have decided to maximize this opportunity to solve the incessant rate of death caused by fake drugs,” said Team Save-A-Soul.The 2018 World Pitch Summit is the final event following more than seven months of hard work, innovation, and problem solving by more than 19,000 girls in 115 countries supported by over 5,000 mentors.More than $50,000 USD was awarded across the teams.Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo on a Twitter post said, “These young ladies in Junior Secondary School developed a mobile application called FD Detector to tackle the problems of fake pharmaceutical products in Nigeria. Congratulations! We are very proud of you.”Willie Obiano, Governor of Anambra, also said the girls deserve some accolades.Also from Business Insider Sub-Sahara Africa:I visited the 6 Google Stations in Lagos and here’s what I found out about the free Wi-FiThese are the top 20 fastest-growing skills you need to learn right now6 Nigerians who hold leadership positions at top international organisationsNigerians are signing a petition against the high cost of internet subscriptionHere is the list of 60 houses reportedly traced to Nigeria’s Deputy Senate PresidentTwitter has started clamping down on fake followers, here’s what you will noticeYou will be surprised at the 19 people Nigeria’s Buhari follows on TwitterHere’s why Nigeria is not in a hurry to sign the continental free trade agreementThese 6 banks invested N155.

Infinix S3: Unboxing and First Impressions

Infinix Mobility has launched the Infinix  S3 as its first smartphone for the year 2018. The S3 is a continuation of the HOT S series which had the Infinix S2 and Infinix S2 Pro as its last additions. The Infinix S3 has a lot of features that are not necessarily new but surely exciting. Let’s […]
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Tech: Watch live video of Elon Musk’s Tesla Roadster and its dummy driver ‘Starman’...

You can watch Starman and the Roadster speed through space via a livestream.
SpaceX successfully launched its Falcon Heavy rocket into space on Tuesday.
As its test payload, the rocket carried Elon Musk’s 2008 Tesla Roadster, complete with a dummy driver named “Starman” wearing a SpaceX spacesuit.
The car is equipped with cameras, and you can watch the Roadster’s journey via a live feed.
For those concerned about the fate of Elon Musk’s Tesla Roadster — and the dummy named “Starman” that SpaceX sent into space on Tuesday — have no fear.
SpaceX equipped the Roadster with cameras that are livestreaming the payload’s journey as it travels toward Mars orbit — at least until the car’s battery dies, which Musk said is likely to happen 12 hours after launch.
Starman got some stunning views, including some of Earth.
“It looks so ridiculous and impossible,” Musk told reporters in a press conference after today’s launch. “You can tell it’s real because it looks so fake, honestly.”
He added that the suit is SpaceX’s actual product design, and can protect humans in a vacuum.
“That’s the real deal,” Musk said, “It’s a dangerous trip — you wanna look good.”
In addition to Starman, the Roadster is also carrying a few hidden items, including a model-sized version of the car and a model-sized Starman. In addition, the car holds a storage device with Isaac Asimov’s “Foundation” trilogy on it. And on the Roadster’s circuit board, Musk added a special note.
The payload’s attach fitting also has the names of more than 600 SpaceX employees engraved on it.
The car will now coast for roughly six hours through radiation fields near Earth’s Van Allen Belt. The intense radiation makes for a less pleasant ride.
“It’s going to get whacked pretty hard,” Musk told reporters on Monday.
By subjecting the upper-stage of the rocket to this treatment, SpaceX hopes to demonstrate that it can survive even in extremely dangerous, harsh conditions. Ideally, the move would win over customers eager to launch their payloads into space using the Falcon Heavy system. Such a launch is expected to cost about $90 million, a discount compared to other space endeavors.
From there, it’ll take about six months for the Roadster to actually get to Mars orbit, Musk said in a tweet Tuesday.

Tech: Mark Zuckerberg’s personal notes hint that Facebook isn’t ready for GDPR (FB)

Facebook could be fined 4% of annual turnover if it doesn’t obey the new law.
A photograph showing Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s private notes show how thoroughly he was briefed ahead of his grilling by Congress in Washington, DC, on Tuesday.
One section that stood out was a clear instruction: “Don’t say we already do what GDPR requires.”
This refers to a new European privacy law that will force Facebook to give users much more control over what data they share.
The notes suggest Facebook isn’t fully ready for GDPR, which comes into effect on May 25.
Mark Zuckerberg had an awful lot to remember during his grilling by Congress on Tuesday, judging by pages of private briefing notes captured by a quick-witted AP photographer.
The pages give us an insight into how Zuckerberg was thoroughly coached not only on predictable topics like Russian election interference, but wider areas such as the lack of diversity in Silicon Valley.
There’s one section right at the bottom of notes which will stand out to anyone interested in online privacy.
The note reads: “Don’t say we already do what GDPR requires.”
GDPR is the upcoming General Data Protection Regulation, a new European law designed specifically to bring web giants like Facebook to heel over the way they suck up vast amounts of user data. The regulation comes into effect on May 25.
One of the most important changes under the regulation is that Facebook will have to proactively ask for your explicit consent to process data on your ethnicity, race, sexual orientation, political views, and religion.
The note suggests that Facebook hasn’t quite worked out how it will do this. According to Fox Rothschilds lawyer Mark McCreary, this won’t be some small pop-up box but something “disruptive” to your day-to-day browsing experience. To that end, Zuckerberg’s notes read: “GDPR does a few things … Requires consent — done a little bit, now doing more in Europe and around the world.”
The note also reads: “Provides control over data use — what we’ve done for a few years.”
That’s only true to an extent. You can determine what data you share with Facebook, but you can’t then control or really understand how Facebook uses that data unless you go digging around in your privacy settings. Under GDPR, Facebook and advertisers will need to be much clearer with you about what data they are using and why.
Facebook will soon need to let people download their data then take it to a rival service
Zuckerberg’s briefing notes makes absolutely no mention of data portability, another big, important requirement under GDPR. This essentially means that European users will be able to download their data from Facebook, then take it to a competing service.
As consultancy firm PwC puts it: “[Users] should be able to move between service providers without any loss of data and, therefore, enjoy a seamless transition that avoids the data subject having to re-input any information.”
It’s possible that Facebook hasn’t really worked out how it will do this — how exactly are you meant to transfer all your wall posts to another service? What would that look like and what format would the data take?
Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
GDPR could cost Facebook and Google a lot of money
Not only will GDPR potentially rewrite how users actually use Facebook, Google, and other big tech services, it could cost those companies an awful lot of money if they don’t comply with the rules and if users decide to revoke access to their data.
Companies face fines of up to 4% of their annual turnover if they break the rules.
And users opt out of sharing their data, that could wipe 2% of Google’s revenue, and cost Facebook $2.8 billion.
You can read more on Mark Zuckerberg’s Tuesday grilling here.

Tech: You might soon be able to post hour-long videos on Instagram

The new feature “will focus on vertical video” and open new creative flexibility for users.  The new feature will open new creative flexibility for users and bring Instagram closer in line with YouTube and its own parent company, Facebook.The new feature will help business owners, brand and comedian to have more time to various video skits in Nigeria.Instagram is considering doing away with video length constraints with a new feature that would let users post long-form clips of up to an hour.According to the Wall Street Journal, the new feature “will focus on vertical video” and open new creative flexibility for users and bring Instagram closer in line with YouTube and its own parent company, Facebook.The new feature plan is described as tentative, so Instagram could ultimately decide against radically extending the maximum running time of videos on its platform, the report says.Instagram Stories are already designed around that tall, vertical video format, and the report does not clarify whether longer videos would be allowed only in that section of the app or also permitted in the main feed.Presently, Instagram stories are limited to a length of 15 seconds while videos in the main feed can run a little longer at 60 seconds.If implemented, the new feature will help business owners, brand and comedian to have more time to various video skits in Nigeria.How this new proposed feature can help brands and businesses in Nigeria1. An hour-long video on Instagram will allow businesses to tell their story and showcase their products through compelling videos2. It will be good for tell news stories for media outlets3. It will help celebrity to say more than write more.Instagram and the Stories featureInstagram has over 800 million users, and about 300 million are active daily users of the Stories feature. Stories are time-limited posts that expire after 24 hours.Recall that the company has held discussions with potential partners (content creators and publishers) about the possibility of producing a longer-form video.