Mother and Infant Bonding

A few years ago I discovered the work of Joseph Chilton Pearce in Biophile magazine, now out of print. Here’s an import video for mothers and

“This brief nine minute program may be the most important you, as a mother, father or caregiver, will ever see. Bonding is much more than what we ‘think.’ It is a coherent harmonic resonance of one heart to another. The nature and quality of the mother’s emotional state broadcast via her heart-energy has a profound influence on every stage of her unborn and newborn babies’ development, physical, emotional and intellectual.”


Avoid Fake Registry Mechanic Security Scans

PC Tools Registry MechanicSymantec was sued by a Washington resident for running fake scans to get people to pay for subscriptions to PC Tools’s Registry Mechanic, Performance Toolkit, and Norton Utilities. The lawsuit claims the company intentionally ran the fake scans and the results were not real.

Norton Anti-Virus is a dog, so it behaves like one. We stopped using this bloatware almost 10 years ago and “not” using it immediately improved computer performance. We pulled our company and all friends and relatives off of it and they are eternally grateful. We’ve been aware of this for at least a few years and welcome this man standing up. These fake security upgrades have terrified inexperienced computer users who contact our offices to set them straight.

Source: Forbes magazine


Women Turned Off by Smartphone Apps

This story got our attention because it presents significant risk to single women. After researching online dating since 2004 we have confirmed that using technology for dating is biased towards men and this increases significantly in big cities.

Anyway decide for yourself after reading this:

Smartphone dating apps
A growing number of smartphone apps use internal GPS to help singles locate potential mates nearby. While men are enthusiastic about the apps, women have been slower to adopt them.

People have long looked to computers to meet potential dates. Some are now using their smartphones, too. A growing number of phone apps are using internal GPS to locate other potentially compatible singles nearby. But to date, far more men than women are signing up for the services.

Pretty much every smartphone on the market today offers GPS. Apps of all kinds use that geo-locating ability to offer you the local weather forecast or help you find nearby restaurants.

There are also apps designed to help singles look for love, and the concept has been a hit — with men. The app Grindr, for gay men, has more than 4 million users worldwide. And straight guys are signing up for a bunch of dating apps, as well.

But thus far, women haven’t demonstrated quite as much enthusiasm about broadcasting their availability — and their location — to potential dates.

A New Trend With A Long History

People have been looking for electronic help with love connections almost as long as computers have been around. The computer first played matchmaker in the late 1950s, says cyber dating consultant Julie Spira.

“They had to feed the data into a computer and then the computer would spit out a possible match,” Spira says.

And computer dating has stayed pretty much the same for decades since. Put in your personal information, and the program matches you with someone with whom you have something in common. But with the advent of handheld devices with GPS, apps can now tell you who’s single — and on the lookout — right around you. All you have to do is log on.

“Then, other singles who are logged on at exactly the same time can say, ‘OK, there’s 15 women within the two-mile radius. And two out of 15 I’m attracted to, and one says she’d like to meet tonight — let me write to her,'” Spira explains.

To find singles searching for romance in their natural environment, it’s always worth visiting a bar. On a recent night in Washington, D.C., Kevin Smith, 23, is sitting with a group of friends. He says he likes the idea of mobile dating apps.

“If some girl walked up to me and was, like, ‘Hey, I saw you were on OKCupid,’ in a bar, I’d be like, ‘What’s up!,’ Smith says. “I don’t think that would necessarily be a bad thing.”

The Gender Gap

For guys like Kevin, there are dozens of GPS dating apps to choose from: SinglesAroundMe, MeetMoi, Badoo, Assisted Serendipity and Skout, just to name a few.

Right now, the vast majority of users are men. Naturally, when it comes to matching straight couples, that knocks the whole system out of whack. For matching to work, you have to have enough women.

But a lot of women say they’re afraid of being harassed if they use these apps.

“It is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard of,” says Sarah Smith. “You’re just going to see a total increase in sexual assault and raping happening, because people can find out exactly where you are and exactly how many drinks you’ve had.”

Safety concerns aren’t the only reason for the gender imbalance in mobile dating. Women just tend to date differently than men, Spira says.

Most women like the idea of getting a notification when mystery date is at a club down the street, she says. But they don’t want to be bombarded with messages like, ‘I’m here, let’s hook up now!’

“Most women are a little uncomfortable with meeting somebody right away,” Spira says.

“Let’s just say they are leaving their yoga class and their hair is in a ponytail and they don’t have any makeup on,” she says. “And that cute guy they’ve been flirting with happens to be three tables away from them. They don’t want to be seen unless they have their lipstick on or are wearing something a little bit cuter.”

Tapping Social Networks

Some men do understand that many women are creeped out by the shift from old-school online dating to this new GPS model. Nick Soman, founder and CEO of a new dating app called LikeBright, says he understands the creep factor.

“The only thing scarier than a random grab bag full of dudes who are just aggressively messaging you, is a random grab bag full of dudes who are literally around you,” Soman says.

Soman wants women to feel more comfortable meeting strangers via location-based technology. His solution is to tap into people’s existing social networks.

“We make it super, super easy to meet your friends’ friends,” Soman says.

More specifically, LikeBright connects you to the friends of your Facebook friends who are nearby. Soman says women feel safer that way, because it makes potential dates less anonymous.

Ideally, he says, dating will become less like hooking up at a dive bar, and more like meeting at a house party.

“There’s a reason everybody’s there. You have a sense of who you all know, and that you have some contacts and some interests in common,” Soman says.

LikeBright is just getting started, but thus far, Soman is achieving the impossible — or at least the very difficult: an even balance between men and women users.

That’s no small feat. If you look at some popular mobile apps, men outnumber women by a ratio of 4-to-1. That means a lot of those guys aren’t going to get dates.

“It’s sort of a dirty little secret of the industry, that if you can get something that works for women, then the guys will often sort of follow,” Soman says.

Which means the future of mobile dating depends on getting women to sign up — and convincing the girl next door to admit she actually is right next door.

source: Cap Radio / NPR


SATweetups Wants Event Host and Ambassadors

Top 10 South African motivational speakers on TwitterEarlier this year Joburg Tweetups died and #SATweetups was born. We’ve hosted numerous events over the last few years attracting over 428 people to join the group.

Our Tweetups was always simple and social events for people who  follow each other on Twitter to meet in-person. There was no speakers or speeches. This is the most popular way social media spills over into the real world. Tweet about an event long enough and reach influencers, and people show up no matter what the actual occasion.

Since I took over I’ve introduced guest speakers like Melanie Minnaar, Haroun Kola, Bruce Mabuyiwe, Xavier Saer and Marc Rees. My aim is to provide an alternative to 27Dinner. After years of hosting and speaking at their events, I no longer participate.

For some time now I’ve worked diligently to recruit Ambassadors. WIFFM you may ask? What’s In It For Me? Search marketing guru Tony Roocroft always reminded me of the importance of asking this question when doing any form of marketing whether online or not. Here’s what Ambassadors gain from hosting events in your area:

  1. A cool badge designed by our graphic designer Rekha Kalan for your blog
  2. Access to the platform to build a cohesive local community with the full RSVP process integrated Twitter & Facebook marketing.
  3. Branded Posters & Nametags for use before & during events
  4. Support from the most well connected networking people in South Africa
  5. Gaining experience in hosting events
  6. Practising your MC skills
  7. Increasing your Social media profile
  8. Interacting with people passionate about their causes

To continue to host these events we must increase achieve the following goals:

  • Grow membership to > 1,000 people
  • Appoint Ambassadors in each province, so we need 9 people to volunteer for the training to host these events by July 2013, before International Social Media
  •  PR Co-ordinator to contact local media and set-up interviews for guest speakers

What can you do to assist?

Please help grow the #SATweetups community by joining the group. So help me by posting a comment with your suggestion and sharing this on your Twitter network. I’m very excited that we’ve been growing steadily from 2009 to date. In November we’ll be celebrating our 3 year anniversary.

To cover some costs like the dues, please donate $10 or more using Paypal. To assist with any of the above, simply contact our office between 8am-8pm daily.


Siyavula Open Source textbooks information evenings

Siyavula open source maths science text booksToday we had two conversations with Edu-board in East London who referred us to the Team at Siyavula in Cape Town. Following our telephone conversation, I must share the information below on their information evenings in Durban and Cape Town. We’re looking for a way to bring them to Port Elizabeth and East London, to major metropolitan areas in Eastern Cape. This will ensure the Eastern Cape refugees get text books depending on government or political assistance.

Siyavula Information Evening: Everything Maths and Science Textbooks

I think our website outlines most of what we do, but just to fill you in a bit further:

Siyavula is an education technology company, spun out of the Shuttleworth Foundation. We are a social enterprise that believes in sharing, community, collaboration and openness, and through the use of technology we strive to produce the best quality free educational resources out there. We write openly licensed textbooks, and this year our Grade 10-12 Maths and Physical Science textbooks were printed by the Department of Basic Education (DBE) for free distribution across South Africa. Every single learner in a government school that is taking Maths and / or Physical Science in Grades 10-12 should have received a copy of our textbooks, paid for by DBE. This is hugely exciting for Siyavula, but also for the world of open educational resources – as far as we know, this is a world first. The maths books and science books have their own websites. Mobile versions can be viewed on your cell phone at and

Additional Information:
Our textbooks are freely available for all educators and learners across the country to use, and are available in hard copy,  freely accessible online, in PDF for printing, EPUB format, via mobile phone and Mxit. Filled with relevant rich-media (YouTube videos, PowerPoint presentations and simulations), our digital textbooks are completely interactive and a dream to teach from. Educators can contextualise these digital textbooks by making their own versions of them.  Use our textbooks in conjunction with our online practice service, which compliments and supports the textbooks.  It shows learners where their weaknesses in the curriculum lie, and lets them practise exam style questions. Should you wish to own a hard copy, it will cost you R95 for the printing and postage, and the subscription to the Intelligent Practice Service costs R150 for a full year of practise, or R200 if bought with a textbook.

Please let me know should you need anything further.


#edchat Join Weekly Twitter Chat on Education

Twitter workshops Ramon Thomas South AfricaA twitter chat for the South African education community takes place from 20h30 to 21h30 each Monday evening GMT+2. Private school teachers and public schools teachers have an open conversation about children, teaching, learning and technology.

To vote for your choice of topic for the coming week, please head over to #edchatsa website and add your voice!

General Information

  • Who? Any person with an interest in education in South Africa.
  • When can you participate? The community will gather for specific chats on a Monday evening from 20h30 until 21h30. However, the conversation can continue at any time by simply adding the #edchatsa hashtag to a tweet.
  • What should you contribute? Anything of value to the conversation – ideas, thoughts, arguments, links, resources.
  • What should you avoid? Please do not spam the stream! Do not add your own website unless it is related to the conversation and would be of value to the participants.

How do I keep up with the chat?

There are several ways to do this, but it is important to note that as the chat becomes more popular it will become almost impossible to see all the tweets and be involved in every conversation thread. This must not put you off being involved! With a bit of practice it becomes easier to filter out the ‘noise’ and focus on a few threads which interest you.

Contact our office to get assistance with Twitter. We conduct Twitter workshops for Teachers or Parents at schools across South Africa.


Online gambling promises new revenues for Facebook

Comment: This seems a latest attempt to ensure revenue and cash flow grows after listing for Facebook.

UFacebook gambling UK BingoK-based online gambling holding Gamesys has launched a new Facebook app called ‘Bingo Friendzy’, the first to hit the social network’s App Center that lets UK users aged 18 and over to play an online game for real cash prizes. The Bingo games will be offered to UK users from Tuesday.

Gamesys, which operates the UK’s leading Bingo and Slots website, says the new Friendzy App comes with a series of 90 Ball Bingo and Slots games that enable adult Facebook users in the UK to play for real cash.

Julien Codorniou, Facebook’s Head of EMEA Gaming Partnerships speaks on the launch:

“People love playing new types of games with their friends on Facebook and real money gaming is a popular leisure activity in the UK.

We’re delighted to be working with Gamesys to enable them to offer their games on Facebook so that people can enjoy playing more games with their friends.”

Facebook has effectively partnered with Gamesys to fuel the distribution of the new game on the social networking service, and plans to team up with more gambling companies in the future.

Gamesys says a series of controls should protect users under 18 years of age, as well as “vulnerable people”. Also, in line with gambling legislation, all users will have access to a number of self-help tools to limit their spending and exclude themselves from playing at anytime.

Zynga, Facebook’s largest gaming partner by a margin, is also planning to venture into the real-money online gambling space in the near future.

source: The Wires / Business Day


Cyber bullying among Children in Gauteng

Cyberbullying cellphones statistics gautengIn 2012 Cyberbullying is no longer a joke.  UNISA released a study questioning children’s increasing use o cell phones as a learning tools. Research by Prof Deon Tustin, head of the Bureau of Market Research (BMR) indicates that 24.2 % of children in high schools use phones to improve mathematics and 23% use them to research homework.

According to this study, mobile phones can be used to educate children, access to the Internet and provides a foundation for bullying. In the survey among high school children in Gauteng, 34% of the learners reported that they have been bullied in the past two years. The highest number (42 %) was grade 8 children. They also reported being bullied more by their peers than any other group, with 60.4 % saying they by other young people. Another 23.3 % of respondents admitted to bullying someone. Cyberbullying takes place mostly through SMS and social media, the researchers found.

Some 37 % of South African teenagers were victims of online abuse, of these, 40.3 % did not report it, while almost 52 % did and 8.9 % were uncertain. Factors include retaliation, peer pressure, anger, recognition or entertainment. These factors could actually drive a victim to being physically ill or even suicidal.

Almost 80 % of high school children admitted having consumed alcohol, while 66.6 % admitted to having been drunk and 44.8 % to binge drinking. The research by Antoinette Basson of the Youth Research Unit was done among 4346 learners in randomly selected schools in Gauteng. Almost 60 % said they did it to fit in, 45.6 % said they wanted to get away from their worries and another 34 % said it builds their self-confidence.

Parents are the primary role models and play a significant role in the lives of children. My seminars help reduce the gap between children and parents and their understanding of the issues, both positive and negative. Online abuse is more widespread because  smartphone usage has increased exponentially with BlackBerry and iPhone usage. Children and adults easily develop a dependency to the always-on lifestyle, the constant connection that must be satisfied no matter what the cost to personal relationships. This is destroying their ability to feel or express empathy, which is not easy through a screen.


  1. What is cyber bullying? The use of online and mobile technologies to support deliberate, repeated, and hostile behaviour towards another person. You can be both the perpetrator and the victim of cyberbullying attacks using sms or social media. Among adults it’s referred to as cyber harassment.
  2. How prevalent is it amongst in South Africa? A UNISA study found > 60% of teens interviewed have been bullied, > 20% admitted to bullying someone else. As people continue to upgrade to Smartphones there will be a correlating increasing in Smartphone abuse both by children and adults.
  3. What are the reasons – is it a variation on school bullying?Yes, it is a variation on bullying, which in itself is a variation on harassment, which in turn is derived from low self image and lack of empathy.
  4. One answer may be to ban cell phones – but they are used as an educational tool? Although the argument is made for cellphones in school, especially higher families and neighbourhoods, the downside is worse. So when the disadvantages of a technology outweighs the advantages, serious consideration must be paid to clear boundaries or limitations.
  5. What is the psychological impact of such bullying?Because of the victims tend to be grade 8 children from the UNISA study, the impact is severe. This is bound to cause a strongly negative association with the group experience of compulsory schooling.
  6. How should we be educating our children about this? Children must learn from their parents and teachers how to manage conflict. Conflict resolution must become a core part of Life Orientation subjects. The Centre for Teaching Peace in Washington DC provides a curriculum for 9 steps to conflict resolution, which have been successfully taught to primary school children. The increase in cyber-bullying is simply a reaction or a defence to the attacks. This fosters a cycle of abuse which spirals out of control in isolated cases.
  7. What signs do parents/teachers need to be looking out for regarding cyber bullying? Signs of Awareness is the key as always. So cultivating the sharing of stories of bullying through essay writing or group discussions. Children, whether victims or perpetrators of online bullying, must feel safe before they can completely open up about experiences or motivations.
  8. What should parents teachers do if children are being subject to cyber bullying? Step one is to remove their access, and limit the damage already caused. Help them diagnose the situation by showing them how to take proactive steps to protect themselves. When children try to defend themselves, online, the abuse increases. After you “unplug” from the situation it becomes easier to go to the next step, blocking or banning the person from your mobile phone or social network. Third and final step is to report them to the service provider i.e. Facebook, BlackBerry or your ISP (MWeb, Telkom Internet, etc).