09.01.20

AI and virtual reality brings new age fashion to life

BY Farah Khalfe 4 MINUTE READ

The fashion industry thrives on physical touch and tangibility – the ability to touch, feel and try on the clothing. Seeing what it looks like in motion and on different body types is a vital component to the shopping experience and way in which the garment is showcased.

Of course, social distancing has put a stop to all of this, and forced designers, brands, retailers and marketers to engage their consumers through purely digital means. 

Moreover, the ban on mass gatherings has thrown the fashion calendar into disarray, with some shows, such as New York Fashion Week, which was scheduled for this June, postponed indefinitely, while others are cancelled completely. Then there are those brands that are embracing a new age – and finding creative ways to keep fashion alive in a new-found virtual sphere. 

For the Menswear and Couture Fashion Weeks this past June and July, high-end labels including Chanel, Valentino, Dolce & Gabbana and Dior entered the digital arena with creative virtual shows and short films to present their latest collections. 

Other labels took it a step further by utilising various technological advances such as virtual reality and artificial intelligence. One such brand is Hanifa. The US-based, Congolese-inspired label creates ready-to-wear looks in bold designs and vibrant colours. Designer Anifa Mvuemba was looking forward to showcasing her latest collection as New York Fashion Week but instead conceptualised an innovative virtual show on Instagram Live when this opportunity fell through. 

The high-tech show displayed the garments in 3D, moving against a black backdrop – as if worn by invisible models who were strutting across the runway. With the clothes hugging every curve of the “model”, and without the distraction of human bodies and a large runway production, it was easier to absorb every detail of the garments. The  show created a buzz on social media – and with good reason. It was the first of its kind, and the first time virtual reality has been used in fashion in such an impactful way. 

However, Anifa has always had a fascination with realistic 3D animation and during the pandemic, had more time to experiment with technology herself. She hired a developer who works with CAD and animation software, and together they brought her vision of a 3D fashion show to life. 

But the process was not that simple. Each garment designed for her Pink Label Congo collection had to be transformed to fit onto the body of an avatar. As it turns out, you have to be just as precise about the fit of the garments when an avatar is wearing them as you would be with a real model. According to Mvuemba, if the garment isn’t perfectly tailored, it will slide off in motion. “It was incredibly painstaking,” she says.

The painstaking work made for a show that was not only memorable but boundary breaking. Over the last eight years, Mvuemba has built a direct-to-consumer brand entirely through social media – and with more creative digital projects in the pipeline, Hanifa is leading the way in embracing a new age of virtual fashion. 

When it comes to the retail side of the industry, the methods for turning social media buzz into actual sales and profit is also undergoing a transformation. Online stores are becoming more immersive, blurring the lines between e-commerce and a brick-and-mortar shopping experience. While Covid-19 social distancing was not the catalyst for this change, it certainly is accelerating the movement. 

A case in point is Kanye West’s new Yeezy online store. Said to re-emerge later this year, the new website, which sells the rapper’s line clothing, footwear and apparel products, seeks to make the internet “a more humane place,” says Nick Knight, West’s creative partner for the site. 

Instead of using flat photographs of models, Yeezy Supply will have 3D images of models that look like video game avatars. There will be a selection of models of different body types. 

Customers will be able to choose an outfit or garment, then put it on the model who will walk across the screen. If  you want to know more about that model, you can click to get a few background details, like her favorite food, or a significant life experience she has had.

West attributed the models with compelling life stories, who have done important things for their communities. There are nurses, firefighters, and public school teachers. Snippets of these narratives are available for the customer to explore.

Then, customers will be able to put garments from the Yeezy collection on the model of their choice. West picked models that have compelling stories and have done important things for their communities. There are nurses, firefighters, and public school teachers. Snippets of these narratives are available for the customer to explore.

“We’ve gotten used to the internet being a flat, two-dimensional place. But the internet is also this amazing tool that connects everybody in the world: what if we could use it to get to know the people we are looking at on the screen?” says Knight. 

It is clear that in the era of enforced isolation and social barriers,  technology is the thread still holding up the crucial human element in the world of fashion. While nothing can replace an in-real-life brand experience, digital innovation is adding a whole new layer of engagement and personalisation between brand and consumer. Thus, we are no longer on the brink of a new age of fashion – instead we are right in the midst of it.

05.12.20

South African student pioneers bluetooth-connected face mask at Dubai Global Grad Show

BY Farah Khalfe 5 MINUTE READ

The Dubai Global Grad Show is an annual social impact innovation programme that calls for graduates across the world to submit projects and proposals in the fields of art, design, science, engineering and technology, that provide innovative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing issues. 

Held in partnership  with Investment Corporation of Dubai (ICD), and supported by A.R.M. Holding and Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, this year marks the 5th iteration of the event, and naturally, is centered on the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Created as a response to the Coronavirus outbreak, the Global Grad Show open call invited over 260 universities to to put forward solutions to the escalating challenges faced  by people, communities and governments across the world.The initiative received approximately 390 applications between March 16 and April 2, 2020, and applications were evaluated by a jury of senior representatives from four leading private and public organisations.  

For the next phase, Global Grad Show will engage with the students and professors behind these applications to analyse their development requirements, and to identify proposals that can be supported towards testing and implementation.

The creators of any selected projects will be awarded the tuition fee of their current studies, or equivalent scholarship for the department of selected professor(s), as well as support for the development of their concept and building their business. 

There were many exemplary submissions, including  Foresight –  an AI system to monitor patient recovery from Covid-19; Project Social Space, which focuses on repurposing public areas across Dubai to balance the need for outdoor activities in times of social distancing; and Fresh Tracker – which optimises the use of food supplies by helping people organise the storage of fresh and pantry items in a convenient and hygienic way. 

Then there is one innovation that truly stood out, from South African student Denzill Bothma from Tshwane University of Technology: A micro-mask. Essentially a smart mask that provides uninterrupted protection via bluetooth, the mask reduced the risk of contamination from mobile phones.

Fast Company SA chatted exclusively to Denzill about the concept, how he came up with it and how it works: 

1. How did you come up with the concept of the micro-mask?
I was inspired by COVID-19 and came to hear of the Global Grad Show in Dubai.

My thoughts when designing the micro mask was to go for a more modernized look to fit into today’s times. Something that looks appealing and fits comfortability while serving the purpose.

Most people have not worn masks in their daily routines before Covid-19 happened and to get people to wear masks was the main aim – to ensure the necessary protection against the spreading of the virus.

2. Can you explain a bit more about the design of the mask? How do you assemble it and how does it work when being worn?
The idea of the design is that the mask will already be fully assembled when purchased. Research indicated that most people don’t like products that they themselves have to assemble.

Consisting of two parts already connected with one another, is the shield which covers the nose and mouth area and two headphones covering the ears. The headphones purpose includes holding the mask in place.

A Bluetooth system is part of the mask which allows the user to speak and listen, the music playing will automatically be muted when an incoming call is received.

3. Aside from pillowcases, what other repurposed materials can be used to produce the masks?
Except for cotton, that seems to be an honest choice.  It is important to look at a suitable material that will ensure a balance between breathability and filtration.

The following other repurposed materials can also be used to produce the micro-mask:

Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) is highly recyclable plastic, inexpensive, lightweight, resealable and shatter-resistant.

Polycarbonate (PC) excellent material that is highly-performing, 100% recyclable and produced in an eco-friendly manner.

Creator Denzill Bothma

4. Is there a particular demographic for whom these masks are aimed? i.e business people, social media-savvy teens, a specific country etc.?
My aim is that the micro masks will be suitable for use by all and anywhere throughout the world subject to the applicable treaties (legislation) applicable in each respective country. It is also our objective to make it tailor-made for the need of each country. 

Being a student myself, I most definitely think that the younger generations would like wearing it, because of their liking for tech and a modernised-look.

It will also most definitely be suitable for business people, as they won’t have to bring their cell phones to their face to communicate keeping them safe and preventing the spread of the virus. The use of the mask whilst commuting will fit the purpose.

5. Why do you think these micro-masks are a necessity for the pandemic? In what ways will it help society move forward?
There is an immense necessity for the micro-mask not only for the pandemic but also for use in the future, few that are mentioned below.

Firstly, and most importantly the micro-masks are seen as part of protective gear to save people from contracting the virus.

Secondly, it will ensure that individuals can optimize their communication without touching their cellphones therefore minimize the physical handling of the cellphone.

Thirdly, the modernization of the mask ensures that various professions such as the medical profession can use it, for example: whilst executing an operation in the theatre. The current state is that it is difficult to properly hear what a person says with the current mask, specifically with soft-spoken individuals. The latter could cause losing a life during an operation.

Furthermore, the interaction between individuals can be taped for future purposes.

The micro-mask will also have an emotional impact in that it will serve to take our minds of the pandemic, listening to music/radio while wearing can sooth minds.

We have to look at ideas to encourage the wearing of masks, the Coronavirus is not going to be over soon.  Why not design and manufacture something that will encourage people and make them want to wear it? A highly effective mask with a modern look and modern technology.

If people use protective masks, get more comfortable with them it will ensure a safer environment for all and in this process the lockdowns will allow more people to return to workplaces, getting the economy rolling.

The modern look and use of micro-mask will certainly encourage people to continue to wear it even after the lockdown period of the Covid-19. It is seen as a ”must have” for the future generation of the world.

6. Where/how will these masks be made accessible to people should be become successful in the competition?
I look forward to getting business associates, cell phone companies or manufacturers on board to take this design further to the manufacturing phase and to make it available to as many people and countries as possible.


04.20.20

Music is saving us during lockdown but is it hurting artists?

BY Farah Khalfe 4 MINUTE READ

The Recording Industry of SA (Risa) has issued a statement to warn people that pirating music and supporting unscrupulous sources is a theft that hurts artists. The message comes as piracy has been on the rise during this period of lockdown in South Africa. 

The organisation is raising awareness about piracy and has made the call to music lovers to access music from legitimate platforms such as Vodacom My Muze, MTN’s MusicTime!, Apple Music, Spotify, Google Play Music, Tidal, Joox, Simfy Africa, Deezer and YouTube Music.

“Our records show the most popular infringements are on some of the biggest hits in South Africa right now; leading the pack are “eMcimbini” by Kabza de Small; “Love Letter” by Blaq Diamond; “Tender Love” by Sha Sha featuring DJ Maphorisa; “Umlilo” by DJ Zinhle; and “Love You Tonight” by MFR Souls. Also targeted are “You’re The One” by Elaine; “SAD” by Jethro Tait; “Jerusalem” by Master KG and Nomcebo; and “The Box” by Roddy Ricch,” Risa said.

Gospel ensemble Joyous Celebrations have been feeling the setbacks of the coronavirus, having already had to postpone their Easter shows. “It’s terrible. The company we are working with, Sony, is looking into dealing with piracy. On our side, the only income we make is through the shows. So if there is piracy with the music that we sell, then it means that stream of income is also affected in a big way.

“I can’t even talk about the effects of the postponement of shows. It means business is shut down. So we are hoping that the lockdown will be lifted,” Joyous Celebrations’ co-founder Jabu Hlongwane said. The award-winning ensemble’s latest offering, Joyous 24, has been heavily pirated and songs were being shared on a WhatsApp line that publicly asked music lovers to text so they could receive the music.

“Musicians make a living from sales of their music, and keeping piracy alive will only result in an impoverished music scene. We understand that the current lockdown in the country has left many in need of entertainment, but let’s support our artists the right way and not commit a criminal offence,” said Nhlanhla Sibisi, Risa’s chief executive. 

For now, the group is making sure their presence is felt on social media platforms and the internet. “One of the challenges is that a lot of South Africans believe in the physical album, but they can’t access that because everything is shut down. We are depending on the little we can make through the internet and social media, and that space is being pirated, so this is a double blow for us,” Hlongwane said.

But local music artists are not the only ones looking for other avenues of income during this global period of quarantine. The coronavirus pandemic has led to the cancellation of tours, festivals, promotional trips and studio sessions, and in the midst of this, musicians have taken to their Instagram Live and other social media platforms to virtually entertain their fans.  

English crooner James Blake has twice taken to his piano to play fan favourites and unexpected covers; Christine and the Queens are performing every night in the luxurious Ferber Studios where she is working and living during France’s lockdown; and in March, John Legend played live as part of Chris Martin’s “Together at Home” series, featuring a guest appearance by his wife, Chrissy Teigen. Just this weekend, the Global Citizen movement broadcast their Together At Home virtual concert, where some of the biggest names in music including Jennifer Lopez, Michael Buble, as well as some South African talent – Black Coffee, Sho Madjozi and Cassper Nyovest – performed for fans on a global livestream from their homes. 

For these particularly successful musicians, it hasn’t been necessary to ask for donations, but smaller, independent artists have gone to the extent of asking fans for a small donation for what is now deemed as their music “services” through their social media. Another way artists have been earning money is by broadcasting their performances on platforms that allows hosts to charge viewers to tune in to the livestream, such as Crowdcast. Indie-pop singer Dent May was successful in this endeavor. He charged a minimum of a $5 donation for the livestream but most people chose to donate more. Approximately 170 people tuned in and the session earned around $1350, which then had to be split with other artists with whom he performed. However, May points out: “That sort of amount is on par for a local show where there’s three or four bands on the bill, and each is splitting the door money with every member.” 

In addition, other artists are teaching fans how to play instruments such as the guitar through one-on-one virtual sessions. Imagine learning the chords to one of your favourite songs from the artist themself? At any other time, this venture would have had the potential to create big earnings, but band leader Jules Jackson from UK band Big Moon, is cognizant of the financial strain most people are suffering from right now, and instead has chosen to keep the fee as reasonable as possible whilst making a profit. 

While music is a healing and unifying force during this time of difficulty and uncertainty, Dent May also believes that artists freely “giving away” their work devalues their work across the board. Instead, he believes in artists charging for their labour, just as everyone in other industries expect to be paid while working in whatever capacity they can at this time. 

One can’t argue that this is a fair approach and perhaps is something to think about the next time we tune into a live session or request a song from an artist we love. While their music and art are uplifting the world while we’re locked up indoors, dealing with job losses and other tragedies, perhaps it’s our responsibility to help make artists’ lives easier too, and be attentive of where – and how – we obtain the entertainment we consume. 

03.31.20

South Africans are not a happy nation right now. Here’s why:

BY Farah Khalfe 2 MINUTE READ

South Africans are not a happy nation right now – and for good reason.

This is according to the national Happiness Index, launched by Professor Talita Greyling (University of Johannesburg) and Doctor Stephanie Rossouw (Auckland University of Technology) in April 2019.

Over the last month, the Covid-19 outbreak has jeopardised South Africa’s emotional state from being joyful, trusting and having a positive outlook, to doing a complete 180. Our collective emotional state is now one of anger (up by almost 10%), followed by disgust (up by 8%), and fear. In addition, the majority of the population is anticipating the worst, as we move further into uncertain and unsettling times. In contrast, the biggest emotional losses were trust (-13%) and joy (-6).

There are many things South Africans are unhappy with right now, from the violent way police and military personnel are enforcing the Covid-19 lockdown regulations – bordering on “terrorizing the communities” in some areas, according to one Twitter user, to Moody’s downgrading of the South African economy to junk status and growing concerns for the increase in domestic violence during the lockdown period.

However, there is a silver lining, as South Africans are ringing in this period as a “time for self-reflection” and a “time to turn to God”. They are also looking forward to spending quality time around their family and loved ones, according to Greyling.

Mental health struggles is another contributing factor to South Africa’s sombre emotional outlook. This period of isolation can trigger feelings of loneliness and depression, while the sudden forced change in routine and behaviour can cause anxiety and sadness.

It’s important to check in on friends and family during this time. Those who are concerned about their loved ones being overwhelmed with sadness, depression or anxiety can call 0800 456 789 or visit South African Depression and Anxiety Group website.

03.30.20

WATCH: Fast Company SA’s #MostInnovativeCompanies event

BY Farah Khalfe < 1 MINUTE READ

On the 5th March 2020, Fast Company SA took the annual Most Innovative Companies issue to the next level with the inaugural Most Innovative Companies Conference and Awards Ceremony, not only spotlighting prolific organisations and startups in the magazine, but also giving them a tangible accolade, resources and a platform to help propel their businesses to the next level. The event took place at the CTICC in Cape Town and started off with a jam-packed workshop by esteemed speakers including General Manager of WeWork, Stafford Masie, Rory Moore from Accenture, Phathizwe Malinga from SqwidNET and Reshaad Sha from Liquid Telecom.

There was also a crowdfunding challenge, where startups were invited to pitch their company to a panel of judges from Uprise Africa, who then chose a winner to gain access to their crowdfunding platform. Of course, the exhibition was a big hit too with displays from the likes of Accenture, Liquid Telecom, AYO Technology Solutions and more, who showcased their latest innovations in augmented and virtual reality. The interactive exhibit kept the crowd entertained in between speakers. 

The event didn’t end there though, as the much anticipated dinner and awards ceremony followed in the evening. Winner Cloudline went home with the ultimate Most Innovative Company title while the other Top 5 Most Innovative Comapnies, 3X4 Genetics, 1dentity, Iyeza Health and Kuba Technology Services were also awarded top honours. A highlight of the evening was a talk by the esteemed Dr Adriana Marais who gave exclusive insight into her Proudly Human Off-World project. Great food, exceptional entertainment and a room filled with some of the biggest and brightest minds in business and innovation, was what the night entailed, and the overall inaugural event was a roaring success.

Take a look at the video below for more: 

03.27.20

This app lets you leave a message for a loved one from beyond the grave

BY Farah Khalfe 3 MINUTE READ

The pain and longing after losing a loved one is an indescribable feeling – and one that cannot be compensated for with anything other than the person themselves. While being in their presence or hearing their voice for the last time is not a realistic solution, this innovative app may be the next best thing. 

ForKeeps is a world-first digital platform which allows you to securely, and easily, create and deliver messages, memories, wishes and celebrations – like a futuristic time capsule to be shared between family and friends. It acts as a digital archive, keeping record of all your most sentimental memories and moments. While you are here, and for long after you are gone, ForKeeps you can record it digitally. 

The nature of memories is that they change and sometimes become hazy or even fade altogether, and by saving them digitally, you ensure their longevity. The app enables you to record the voices of your loved ones so you can never forget how they sounded, share precious moments like the birth of a child ‒ even with themselves when they are long grown up, leave snapshots of your life for your great-grandchildren who haven’t even been thought of yet. 

The concept of the app was borne from the management team – Rob Inglis, Michelle van Niekerk, Pieter Meyer and Prakash Patel’s – desire to to give people the opportunity to capture and share everlasting moments. “We live in an era of digital technology, where the impossible is now possible through innovative new technology and thinking. We have the ability to do anything, even create everlasting memories.” says Patel, CEO of ForKeeps. 

Patel has an extensive background as a senior marketing, digital and branding executive. He believes that all things are possible using technology as the enabler, creative as the ideator, and data as the incubator of insight. And with the opportunities that technology offers us, he believes it is essential that we use it to keep important moments alive forever.   

The ForKeeps app has three core features, two of which are currently live. 


TIMELESS MESSAGE

Apart from leaving a will or a physical note for your loved ones after you die, there is currently nothing out there in the world that allows you to specifically capture and store a recorded message. The ForKeeps Timeless Message allows you to let your loved ones know how you feel in your own words, even after you pass away. This message can be delivered in the format of a video, audio or notes and you can choose when you’d like it to be delivered, for example upon your death, on a known future date like a sibling’s birthday, or even an unknown date like a future wedding day.The message will be delivered to them directly or indirectly via a Message Guardian on the  predefined date.


FOREVER ALBUM:
We all create albums, from paper-based traditional albums to those we store on our phones or social media sites. The problem is that these albums are not designed to be viewed by others in a digital space that is easily accessible, and where only those you have chosen to see them can have access. With the Forever Album, you can beautifully design an album in minutes, such as your wedding album on the morning of the big day which you send out to all your guests. And, as the day unfolds, they can capture the special day from their own perspective. You’ll also be able to share it with family and friends so they can add their tributes in the form of videos, photos and notes.


DIGITAL LEGACY (COMING SOON):

ForKeeps is currently working on a feature which will allow you to build a Digital Legacy that can be a glimpse for future generations to see. When your grandchildren have grandchildren, wouldn’t you like them to know who their great-great-grandparents were? Imagine leaving a digital legacy documenting how cool you were back in the day? So when your grandchildren have grandchildren, they’ll be able to get to know their great-frat grandparents. These moments could be in the form of a video, images and voice notes. Keep checking the ForKeeps app for updates. You never know, you might have first dibs on trying out this new feature.

ForKeeps app is available for free on the Google Play Store and iOS Apple Store with in-app purchases. There is also a desktop version available. 

03.26.20

Kudoti promotes a zero-waste agenda through cutting-edge data science and digital tools

BY Farah Khalfe < 1 MINUTE READ

With existing landfills almost at capacity and space for refuse disposal running short, South Africa’s waste crisis is a growing epidemic. This is where digital solutions company Kudoti steps in. The niche start up uses cutting-edge data science and digital tools to help waste management and recycling companies optimise their operations, making them more efficient and cost-effective.

In essence, Kudoti aims to improve the data-collection mechanisms in these organisations. They do this by deploying IoT sensors for companies to monitor their waste stream flows in real-time, as well as implementing cloud-based software for companies to better gather logistics and operations statistics, among other solutions. The software provides waste companies with real-time information on where the waste is located and from which area it needs to be collected, ensuring that companies only service the areas that need it most, driving down costs and logistics.

Through better waste management, Kudoti contributes to a more sustainable circular economy and society.

According to Kudoti founder Gift Lubele: “Today, a lot of recyclable waste is not recycled because waste management systems do not have the capacity to accurately plan the flow of waste and maximise the recycling potential. They can’t even begin to think about planning in advance for recyclable waste to be better sorted, treated and sold.

‘‘Data analysis, trends and detailed analysis can be used to identify bottlenecks in the supply chain while also allowing more accurate forecasts and a more proactive approach to waste management.”

In addition, Kudoti seeks to not only service urban areas but also informal regions. “The informal waste sector processes around 80% of all recyclable waste in South Africa and therefore serves a key role in improving waste and recycling
practices. Our focus is to help individual buyback centres operate more efficiently and have access to innovative digital tools. ‘

“Kudoti also leverages data from these buyback centres to improve the overall management of waste nationally.”

03.12.20

How Levi’s is pioneering new frontiers of wearable tech

BY Farah Khalfe 2 MINUTE READ

In 2017, Levi’s injected the Trucker jacket from its Commuter line with an intuitive interface called Jacquard, by Google, enabling it to perform digital tasks such as navigation, communication and playing music, with just a few swipes or taps on the sleeve.

Now, a new iteration of this “connected coat” has been brought to life, available in two styles. The way it works is simple: The jacket is fit with a Jacquard tag — an SD card-sized component that is inserted into the jacket’s left cuff and connects to the user’s smartphone via Bluetooth.

The functions are controlled via gestures  — either a tap or a swipe — and can be customised through the accompanying Jacquard app.

The philosophy behind this user experience is that Levi’s, along with Google, aimed to create a “garment not a gadget”. They developed a language of movement that felt familiar and human, and mimics the way people would naturally interact with an item of clothing.

Jacquard’s touch-sensitive fabric has also been improved. Previously only suitable for ten washes, the jacket can now be treated and washed like a regular coat once the tag is removed, while the company claims the Jacquard threads are “distinguishable from other textiles.”

The fabric, which uses conductive yarn and industrial loom, makes it possible to integrate touch and gesture interactivity into the garment, allowing us to break free from hand-held devices — pioneering a new age of automated apparel.

Some of the jacket’s features include phone and messaging capability; music connection; an ‘Always Together’ alert that notifies you when your phone has been left behind; a ‘briefing’ station that provides the time, weather, calendar and daily traffic report, as well as camera functionality — where a single gesture takes a picture with your phone’s camera. There is also the option to enable a countdown timer before the shot is taken.

In addition, automatic software upgrades constantly equip the interface with new features and improvements, meaning the jacket never stops evolving over time, no matter how long you’ve had it.

The Levi’s Trucker with Jaquard by Google 2.0 is available — in the Classic Trucker and Sherpa Trucker styles for men and women — online and at select Levi’s stores worldwide.


02.21.20

Inventor of ‘Cut, Copy & Paste’ Larry Tesler dies at age 74

BY Farah Khalfe < 1 MINUTE READ

Your work day is a little easier because of him. You might not know his name but his revolutionary ideas have stuck around for decades – pardon the pun  – and don’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon, no matter how much technology advances. 

The “cut, copy and paste” command was developed by pioneering US computer scientist Larry Tesler, who died on Monday at the age of 74. Tesler was a graduate of Stanford University and specialised in human-computer interactivity and user-interface design. He employed his skills at blue chip companies such as Xerox, Yahoo, and Apple – where he worked for 17 years and rose through the ranks to become their head scientist. 

During the genesis stage of computers in the 1960’s, Tesler worked to make them more intuitive and accessible. His cut and paste feature was in fact inspired by old-fashioned print-editing, where portions of printed text were physically cut out and affixed elsewhere with adhesive. 

The command was made popular by Apple when it was incorporated into the software of their Lisa computer in 1983 and then the original Macintosh that same year. In addition, Tesler introduced the concept of a “mouse”, where instead of typing a command into a keyboard to direct a computer, he just clicked on one of the icons on the screen with one swift movement – much to the excitement of Steve Jobs. He also pioneered the scroll bar on the Macintosh computer. 

Tesler “combined computer science training with a counterculture vision that computers should be for everyone”, Tweeted Silicon Valley’s Computer History Museum on Monday. 

02.19.20

SA’s first mixed-income lifestyle and living complex redresses Apartheid spatial planning

BY Farah Khalfe 2 MINUTE READ

In an effort to reverse apartheid spatial planning, the Western Cape government, in collaboration with Concor property developers, has launched an initiative that is “an incubator for growth and evolution.”

The project is South Africa’s first fully-integrated, mixed-income, mixed-use development located near Cape Town’s CBD. The development is a revolutionary 22ha community comprised of over 3500 homes – some subsidised or grant-funded, while the remainder have been made for sale on the open market for approximately R950 000, including transfer costs.

The project aims to provide affordable housing that is close to jobs, and is located near main arterial routes and railway stations. It also encompasses a long-term transport plan including road upgrades and potential new MyCity bus routes.

Phase one, comprising 99 units and called Kirstenbosch, has been launched with the public keen to be part of a “connected, multi-cultural community, marked by affordability, sustainability and security,” says founder of Realtor of Excellence, Toni Enderli. Occupation is set for early 2021 while phase two will launch soon.

Additionally, the complex will stimulate the growth of small businesses by providing over 10 000 m² and 14 500 m² of retail and commercial space respectively – with a goal of creating over 2000 jobs in the construction phase.

It will also cater to community needs by providing amenities suitable for a modern, urban lifestyle. This will include two schools, various crèches, a business hotel, an urban gym and extensive pet-friendly parks. Foot and cycling paths are also part of an integrated non-motorised transport plan while green technology has been applied to energy, water and waste management solutions.

We are essentially building a new, affordable, sustainable, self-contained town for the future characterised by integration, connection and inspiration. It’s a first, and the public is embracing the vision and its potential to help address the country’s housing challenges,” says Concor project leader, Mark Schonrock.

This model is exemplifying how state-owned land can be utilised in a productive and innovative way to boost economic growth in the country.