Facebook buys Whatsapp

Woke up this morning reading that Whatsapp is being bought by Facebook for a massive massive US$16bn dollars.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/101408460

To me this move makes total sense and plugs a gap in its users communication needs. Facebook already has some kind of mobile messaging presence with its Messenger app. I do use it often to keep it touch with Facebook friends. However, for day to day chats with friends, colleagues, family and contacts, I use Whatsapp in addition with my other messaging apps. Most of these folks are not on my Facebook, especially the bosses…

World’s largest annual migration

Every Lunar New Year, ethnic Chinese around the world travel long distances to visit friends and relatives during the 15 days of the festival. No where is this more apparent than in China where the bustling cities are home to many migrant workers from the countryside. A large number of these workers endure the long train rides over thousand of miles to visit their loved ones back home, often bringing gifts from the city.

Over the Lunar New Year weekend which just passed, my car’s odometer told me I clocked 500+ kilometers over 3 days. Puny by Chinese standards but massive if you consider that Singapore is only about 50KM from the east to west.

For this Lunar New Year, Baidu has released an awesome Chinese New Year migration map where for the first time, you can visually observe where most people leaving the big cities are heading to amongst other interesting info.

Baidu created this map based on its LBS Open Platform which is built into apps such as Baidu Maps. The map is updated hourly for 8 hours a day.

How to get 10TB of cloud storage free

A couple of weeks back I posted on how you could get 50GB of FREE cloud storage space from BOX.net If you enjoyed getting that 50GB, imagine 10TB totally FREE!!!

Here’s what you need to do to get that MASSIVE amount of free cloud storage for yourself. Simply follow the steps listed on this page.

The 10TB of space is being provided for by WeiYun, from TenCent the makers of the popular WeChat social mobile messaging app.

 

 

SkyDrive changes name to OneDrive

Last Monday, Microsoft announced that SkyDrive will be renamed OneDrive going forward.

The decision to rename it came about after a U.K. court case between Sky Broadcasting Group (BSkyB) and Microsoft. Microsoft came out with a nice video showcasing some of the possibilities you could do with OneDrive when it is re-launched.

I don’t know about you, but I am eagerly awaiting the launch! Sign up to be notified for their launch here 

Build your own Nest-like Thermostat

I am sure you must have heard about Google’s 3.2 billion-dollar acquisition of Nest by now. Nest as you know builds home devices such as thermostats, smoke alarms, etc. The only difference between them and the thousands of other such devices is that they make them cool. Really really cool. Their mission as they stated on their site is “We take the unloved products in your home and make simple, beautiful, thoughtful things.”

True that.

 

Following Google’s announcement of the acquisition, I came across this interesting article where someone built a nest-like thermostat within a day using open-source software. Read more about it on FastCompany

I have not tried it but if it’s true, then perhaps it’s possible to build a multi-billion dollar company in a day…

How to get 50GB of cloud space for your mobile device

If you haven’t heard already, Box.net has upped the ante against rival cloud storage providers dropbox by offering users a whopping 50GB of cloud storage!

All you have to do is download the box.net app from the iTunes App Store or Google Play and signup for the box.net service through the mobile app. And you’re done!

I love Dropbox.com and have been using it for the past few years, however between ~5GB (Dropbox gives 2GB free as a start, but you can earn free space by referring friends) and Box’s 50GB, the choice is clear!

More info here

 

The rise of the Internet of Things

By Oxford’s definition – The internet of things is a proposed development of the Internet in which everyday objects have network connectivity, allowing them to send and receive data.

Simply, it’s a future where everything that use on a daily basis will have network connectivity. Think washing machines, fridges, etc.

Gartner, the technology research firm has identified the Internet of Things as being one of the Top 10 Strategic Technologies in their yearly reports since 2012. In addition, the Internet of Things had been added to their Hype Cycle research in 2011.

Some new products have been announced recently:

  1. Internet-connected toothbrushes – http://sg.news.yahoo.com/internet-connected-toothbrush-makes-ces-debut-002900976.html
  2. Internet-connected washing machine – http://www.techinasia.com/youll-chat-refrigerator-line/

By many reports, the Internet of Things will be more than just a next step in the evolution of the internet. It is seen as a major transformation in the way we utilise the Internet. Imagine a world where every device we use is connected to the internet and is accessible via our smart-devices such as smartphones, tablets, etc.

Cisco Systems has a neat counter which ‘counts’ in real-time the number of internet-connected devices here. By their estimates, in 2020 there could be 50 billion Their page also has a write-up on the Internet of Things.

We’re definitely living in very exciting times ladies and gentlemen.

 

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