Information systems education in Kenya: Students’ specialization choice trends

online-masters-and-phds.com - Technical University of Kenya (formerly Kenya Polytechnic University College) Article by: Atieno A Ndede-Amadi, Technical University of Kenya, Nairobi, Kenya The objective of this study was to determine the time and level of Information Systems (IS) awareness among Kenyan university students and the choice of IS as a field of specialization. The study posited that the choice of a field of specialization is dependent upon a student’s awareness of its existence, its utilization in the real world, its career opportunities, and its strategic importance to the country’s economic development agenda.


Apple files new patent that could enable voice-based photo search in Siri

digitaltrends.com - According to a new application the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office published this week , Apple may be working on bringing voice-based photo search to Siri. The patent, “Voice-Based Image Tagging and Searching,” describes the ability of searching photographs on a device via text strings associated, such as tags, said AppleInsider , which discovered the filing this week (the patent was submitted back in March, but only just published by the USPTO).


Best African fiction of 2013

theguardian.com - It's been a great year for African writing in 2013, with a clutch of new faces as well as some not-so-new ones. Here's our breakdown of the best in African literature this year:Happiness like Water by Chinelo Okparanta (Granta Books)Chinelo Okparanta's first work, Runs Girls, was published in the Exit Strategies issue of Granta magazine. Happiness like Water is her debut collection of short stories, centred on the challenges facing Nigerians at home and abroad.


My Dream Courses

insidehighered.com - With another semester over, I like to dream of courses that, in a perfect world, I’d get to teach someday. As the world is not perfect, and my position requires me to spend at least 2/3 of my time in the first-year writing trenches (Not a complaint!), these dreams will likely never come to fruition.But I find thinking about these “dream” courses makes me reconsider my approaches to the courses I do teach, how I can bring the dream closer to reality, if you will.


Africa: Weather Info Project Aims to Help African Farmers Adapt

allafrica.com - Photo: FAO/Giulio Napolitano

Farmers facing long periods of dry weather and floods have expressed hope that a new climate change adaptation initiative being rolled out in Tanzania and Malawi will spell an end to dismal crop yields.The Climate Services Adaptation Programme launched in November 2013 by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) presents a window of opportunity for African farmers to use scientific knowledge to battle weather challenges.


Tobacco Firms’ Tactics Limit Poorer Nations’ Smoking Laws

nytimes.com - Tobacco companies are pushing back against a worldwide rise in antismoking laws, using a little-noticed legal strategy to delay or block regulation. The industry is warning countries that their tobacco laws violate an expanding web of trade and investment treaties, raising the prospect of costly, prolonged legal battles, health advocates and officials said.The strategy has gained momentum in recent years as smoking rates in rich countries have fallen and tobacco companies have sought to maintain access to fast-growing markets in developing countries.

ODI: data literacy will help solve world's biggest challenges

zunia.org - Africa , energy efficiency research using open data , energy-efficient way , Health policy & management , Health services , healthcare , internet mystery , travel industry leaders , United States , East Asia and Pacific , Europe and Central Asia , Open Data , South AsiaOpen data is one of the most valuable assets that we have, and could be used to tackle some of the world's biggest challenges including social scaling, population growth, healthcare, environmental challenges, supply chain risk, climate change and water scarcity, according to the Open Data Institute (ODI).


WWII Story Shows How Badly NSA May Have Hurt US Tech Brands

businessinsider.com - Since June, fugitive NSA analyst Edward Snowden has been leaking Top Secret documents about the tactics, techniques, and procedures of America's top surveillance wing — some of which include details of help, coerced or otherwise, from the leading U.S. tech companies.It's hard to put a finger on the total monetary damage American technology companies have suffered overseas as a result of the NSA revelations, but some say as much as $35 billion over three years.


Mandela saw education as a powerful weapon for freedom

timeshighereducation.co.uk - Martin Hall considers the legacy of academic values left by South Africa’s first black presidentMandela saw equality of opportunity through education as the key to emancipation, a principle yet to be realised in South Africa, or elsewhereWhat more can be written about Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, world icon? His political longevity embraced the entire span of formal apartheid, from before the election of the National Party in 1948 and to the end of the first term of South Africa’s democratically elected parliament in 1999.


Nobel winner declares boycott of top science journals

theguardian.com - Leading academic journals are distorting the scientific process and represent a "tyranny" that must be broken, according to a Nobel prize winner who has declared a boycott on the publications.Randy Schekman, a US biologist who won the Nobel prize in physiology or medicine this year and receives his prize in Stockholm on Tuesday, said his lab would no longer send research papers to the top-tier journals, Nature, Cell and Science.

Electronic voice aid interprets for people with impaired speech

m.bbc.co.uk - 11 December 2013 Last updated at 01:00 GMT
Researchers at the University of Sheffield have developed a prototype electronic aid for those with impaired speech.Called Vivoca , the device is intended to help people who have difficulty controlling and co-ordinating the muscles used in speech to communicate more clearly.The machine produces a range of phrases and words which users can select using a colour-coded menu.


How an Underwater Bomb in Australia Was Heard Around the World

gizmodo.com - In 1960, scientists did one of those experiments that just aren't allowed anymore. For the sake of science, they blew up three 3oo-lb anti-submarine bombs off the coast of Australia. A listening station 10,000 miles away in Bermuda—on the exact other side of the planet—waited. And waited. And, about three and a half hours later, they saw the blip that confirmed their hypothesis: Yes, sound in the ocean really can travel across the world.


10 iOS-Friendly Toys for Kids

mashable.com - Your children love your iPad , but if they're spending too much time glued to the screen, it might not be the kind of play that will benefit them the most.As children use digital devices more and more, they miss out on opportunities to work on fine motor skills, spatial reasoning and other skills that require tactile play, instead of the rather 2D experience of tapping on a screen.But just when you're thinking about taking that screen away from your media-saturated children, a new crop of toys pops up that utilizes the iPad by taking it out of their hands, allowing them to practice other physical skills as well as playing on your device.


Will e-publishing help Africa discover the joy of reading?

m.bbc.co.uk - Publishers have long bemoaned Africa's lack of a "book culture" but some hope that the advent of smartphones and the internet could help change this, writes journalist Chris Matthews.
The 566% increase in worldwide internet usage since the start of the millennium might appear staggering but not when compared with Africa, where online activity has grown by an astonishing 3,606%. More than 160 million people are now connected throughout the continent, mostly on mobile phones.
With internet access surging and connectivity increasing, the doors are being thrown open to digital publishing. All of which suggests a new chapter has been started since Kenyan publisher Henry Chakava's withering attack on Africa's book culture back in 1997.


Educating Adolescents About SRHR through Mobile

iicd.org - InfoNewsNov 28 2013 , Ghana
On December 1 the world will mark World AIDS Day with a series of events and initiatives to raise HIV/AIDS awareness. Based in Ghana, last year’s World of Difference team has developed a mobile communication strategy to mark the day and to “inform adolescents in a fun and interactive way about their sexuality” and encourage openness in discussing sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR).

How might open data in agriculture help achieve food security?

zunia.org - The launch of Godan is the latest sign of momentum in the idea of open data in agriculture. Last year, the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition agreed upon at the G8 summit included a commitment to share agricultural data with African partners, and to hold an international conference on Open Data for Agriculture, which happened in April this year. The policy support is there, but how might open data actually help achieve food security?
The idea of providing agricultural information freely is not entirely new. Data has been made available in the past by various agencies and research organisations, but the amount of data being generated now is increasing, as is our ability to share it effectively. This is leading to a growing interest in making good use of it.
There's a global refocusing on agriculture, which is positive and necessary," says Johannes Keizer, the information systems officer at FAO. "And we are producing enormous amounts of data. But what are we doing with it? How can it be used to produce useful services? These streams are coming together. Open access to data in agriculture is one of the key issues that we consider important if you want to combat hunger and poverty."