Drinking water harvesting

Now that all is said and done and the water bio-sand filter is filtering away successfully, I thought it would be a good thing to share the things I would do differently next time – a real bonus for any of you starting out, as it means you can get it right first time!

making bio-sand filter

I used a 44 gallon drum, dark blue, which originally housed glucose syrup for a sweet factory. The darker the container the better, it helps slow down the growth of fungi.

Sand sieves of various sizes

This part of making the bio-sand filter is a labourious task, but must be done correctly to ensure good quality water at the end of the day.

water filter before and after

With the current water shortage situation in South Africa it is critically important to harvest as much water from the roof and use it in the house. We are going to share how you can filter this water to make it safe for drinking.

Telefunken 32" not FullHD

It says Full HD on the box, on the back of the TV, and the salesman confirms the display puts out 1080p. There’s just one problem: the panel is not Full HD. MyBroadband was recently contacted by Abu-Huraira Oman Abdalla, a member of ISACA, who shared the results of tests he conducted on a “Full HD” Telefunken TV.
Read more at MyBroadband...

commandments of social media

Social media is fair game, right? Wrong. Over-use and abuse it and you’ll end up unliked, unfollowed and maybe blocked. We asked the teens and young adults from HDI Youth Marketeers’ Junior Board of Directors for the top ten rules when it comes to social media.

drivers license

A meeting of the national Aarto task team will take place in Bloemfontein before the end of February in preparation for the planned country-wide roll-out of the demerit points system. The demerit points system was introduced in a pilot program across Gauteng in 2008, in order to penalise drivers and operators who are habitual offenders.
Read more at Business Tech...


Lucozade SA partnered with Pulse Media Technologies to implement the first formal African launch of the groundbreaking technological digital refrigerator which was installed into a number of retail outlets across South Africa.
Read more at MyBroadband...

VW Polo Compact Electric for Uber type service

VW is setting up a ride-hailing service in Rwanda and a production facility in Kenya. According to Engadget, the launch of the ride-hailing service follows VW investing $300 million in Gett – a company similar to Uber which does not use surge pricing.
Read more at My Broadband...

Cell phone tower causing poor sleep and bad temper

Residents of the Durban neighbourhood Glenmore are suffering from short tempers, aggressive pets, and sleepless nights – which they have attributed to the erection of a cellphone tower in the area. According to a report by The Independent on Saturday, residents have also been suffering from extreme exhaustion and swollen joints.
Read more at MyBroadband...

New ZA electrical plugs

During 2016, the Electrical Contractors’ Association of South Africa, the ECA(SA), told MyBroadband South Africa’s new plug standard would become semi-mandatory. A proposed amendment to the wiring code requires that from March 2018, all outlets in new installations must include at least one socket that complies with SANS 164–2. SANS 164–2 (or ZA Plug) has the same hexagonal profile as the Europlug seen on cellphone chargers – but allows for an earth pin.
Read more at MyBroadband...

sock to track diabetic health

Diabetic health tracking startup Siren Care has created smart socks that use temperature sensors to detect inflammation — and therefore injury — in realtime for diabetics. Co-founder Ran Ma was working on growing biomass to grow back skin that had been damaged while at Northwestern University when she started learning how to treat diabetic feet and thought of making a wearable that could track and prevent injuries.
Read more at TechCrunch...

There is a South African app for that

The amount of apps created to meet South Africa’s unique market needs is on the rise. Apple’s famous ‘there’s an app for that’ slogan is becoming reality, as more apps are created to cover a wider variety of options. South Africa’s mixed culture and diverse society can benefit from this growing variety of apps.

Here’s a list of homemade South African apps for our unique, one-of-a-kind market. By Nicole Crampton
Read more at Entrepreneur Magazine...

Must have tech for lawyers@home

Even if your budget is tight, there is no excuse not to have the right gadgets and tech accessories. Just like a handyman who needs the right tools for the job, you need the right tech accessories to make your life easy. Here are some must-have tech accessories and gadgets for under R1,000.
Read more at MyBroadband.co.za

The trackr device for cell phones

Lost your car and can’t remember where you parked? It happens to the best of us: wandering aimlessly through parking lots, clicking the panic button on your key chain to get your headlights to illuminate. You don’t need some spendy radio transponder to keep tabs on your car. Uplinking your wheels to the great eye in the sky without breaking the bank is easier than you think.
Read more at TechieFans...

ATM card skimmer

Whoda thunk it? Tourist/cybersecurity expert Benjamin Tedesco was hanging out in Vienna when he walked up to an ATM. Because he trusts no one he decided to give the reader a little tug and came away with a working skimmer designed to look exactly like the card slot on the original machine. “It pays to be paranoid,” he said — and he’s right.
Read more at TechCrunch...

alloGoogle has unveiled a new messaging app which is set to compete against the likes of WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. The app is called Allo, and will be available in the coming months for free on Android and iOS. What sets Allo apart is that it will feature a built-in Google assistant. This will let users get information from Google by sending messages to it using the handle @google.
Read more at MyBroadband...

Samsung smart fridgeToday’s retail economy is focused on acquisition and retention costs. Getting into people’s homes and turning them into long-term brand buyers is the goal, and appliance makers control an untapped resource — the Internet of Things (IoT) — that can effectively extend a brand or retailer’s supply chain visibility into the home. How will the IoT manifest itself in the home? For many consumer brands and retailers, there’s always been one door that holds the key to the $65 billion a month American households spend on food: the refrigerator door.
Read more at TechCrunch...

cell phone etiquetteChances are, you’ve experienced the following situation: You’re with a small group of friends at a nice restaurant. Everyone is enjoying the food and conversation when someone decides to take out his phone — not for an urgent call, but to check email, Instagram and Facebook. Maybe you’ve witnessed this behavior and found it unsettling. What do you do? Do you sit idly by, thinking disparaging thoughts? Or do you call out the offender?
Read more at TechCrunch...

netflix vs showmax vs othersI have been using Netflix for some time now, adding a DNS server that allows my media PC to think it is in the United States – and I have been very happy – something that I thought was really impressive was the wide variety of content that I could choose from. Lots of hype and fanfare about being released in South Africa, and they offer 730 of the 7000 odd titles! And at the same price you pay in the USA – Aaag Nee Man!  Jan Vermeulen provides some good comparisons in his My Broadband article.
Read more at My Broadband...

driverless car relaxation between destinationsFuture Dateline: 1 March 2028 - Driverless cars were supposed to disrupt only the automotive sector and the insurance industry, right? Wrong. The latest victims are airlines and hotel chains - and they never even saw it coming. With green car technology sorted, it's no longer necessary to get vehicles off the road. In fact, the good old road trip is back - but this time with a twist. Travellers are now renting self-driving, customized cars and vans to chauffeur them from point A to point B in luxury.
Read more at FutureWorld.Org...

SABC-Pay Your TV LicenseThe SABC tells you to pay your TV licence because “it’s the right thing to do” – but thanks to the onerous cancellation process, it’s basically the only option you have. Thousands of South Africans continue to pay the annual fee of R265, simply because trying to cancel it is a nightmare process.
Read more at BusinessTech...

SA Speed camera typesThere are several types of hidden speed cameras in SA, which fall into one of three categories: fixed speed cameras, portable Lidar, and portable Radar. The images below show some of the hidden camera technology used in the country.
Read more at MyBroadband...

3 photovoltaic panels on tilesAfter a long break, with lots of valid excuses, we tackled the solar panel (photovoltaic panels) mounting, cabling and connection to the RCT hybrid inverter power unit.

car crash scamsCar crash scams are becoming more prevalent in South Africa, and whilst professional insurance detectives can spot a scam, often a regular driver can’t which leads to unfortunate consequences. This is according to car market information site, Carinfo.co.za which has warned drivers to always keep to the rules of the road.
Read more at BusinessTech...

cell phones are bad for youBack in 1996, the Federal Communications Commission set a legal maximum on cellphone radiation, those 16-year-old FCC rules still stand. Are they protecting the public from radiation coming out of those multi-tasking marvels and the networks that enable them? We doubt it.
Read more at Mind Body Green...

live rugby world cup 2015Rugby Fans, the greatest event of the year is happening in the United Kingdom, for those without DSTV or those who want to catch a game on their computers - there is a solution.

PCCWA new video-on-demand player backed by PCCW will take on Netflix, Showmax, FrontRow, and Vidi in South Africa. Bloomberg reported that the PCCW service, which is backed by Hong Kong billionaire Richard Li, will be unveiled to South Africa as early as next week.
Read more at MyBroadband...

solar deliveredA very wet week, where not much work was done. The wiring to the main electricity distribution board (Main DB) is still being finished as I prepare this article. Solar panels arrived and sheltered in the garage.

RCT5000 hybrid inverter instllationA continuation from last week's article on the basics and why I chose the hybrid alternative system. This past week I bought the cable and the connectors to connect the batteries, firstly to each other and then to the hybrid inverter.

RCT axpert 5KVAThe current load shedding situation got me thinking about alternative power and the solution I have decided on after many hours of research was to go for is a hybrid setup, where we use solar and when that fails, the power grid and when that fails the battery backup.

whatsappWhatsApp voice calling is set to launch in the first quarter of 2015, and South African network operators are ready to support the service. WhatsApp’s voice calling will be a mobile-only service, competing against the likes of WeChat, Viber, and Skype, and was originally set to launch in Q2 2014.
Read more at MyBroadband...

saving electricityWith the rising electricity costs and declining power reliability, most South Africans are looking at alternatives. Moneyweb asked electrical and electronic engineer Heino van Jaarsveldt, of DFR Engineers in Pretoria, what alternatives are available to smaller households and which are the most cost effective.
Read more at MyBroadband...

cellphone causes cancerA new study has found that intensive use of cellphones could triple the chances of getting certain types of brain cancer. The study, conducted by Swedish doctors and published online in the peer-reviewed journal, International Journal of Oncology, assessed the association between mobile phone use and brain cancer risk. Overall, the research found that people who used wireless phones for more than a year were at 70% greater risk of brain cancer as compared to those who used wireless phones for a year or less.
Read more at Business Tech...

whatclinicGlobal search engine WhatClinic.com a ‘Tripadvisor for private clinics’ opens its site to clinics in South Africa to meet the growing demand for information about cosmetic dental and plastic surgery treatments.

traffic circle signWe all seems to make it through traffic circles while driving - often with a couple of choice four letter words and the occasional waiving of certain fingers - but to be fair are we ever 100% sure that we are in the right and the other party in the wrong?

flysaaThe official South African Airways FlySAA app has landed in the Windows Phone Store. Complete with a neat and modern user interface, the South African Airways (SAA) app comes packed with a variety of features that include checking a specific timetable for all upcoming SAA flights and searching departure and destination cities.

glove teaches how to play musicWhat started as a wearable experiment for the Georgia Tech professor could possibly make anyone a master at guitar, piano, Braille or even dance steps at superhuman speed. All you have to do to play like Beethoven, Starner tells me, is slip on this glove he’s made called the Mobile Music Touch and it’s just bzzz, bzzz bzzz… bzzz bzzz…bzzz bzzz buh bzzz bzzz bzzz. Pretty soon you’re playing Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” like a pro.
Read more at Tech Central...

RST shower headThe RST Profilence range of water saving shower roses are specifically designed for fixed head showers that enable, by means of a patented turbo flow system, the greatest possible water and energy savings combined with sufficient water pressure.

3d printer building houseThe University of Southern California is testing a giant 3D printer that could be used to build a whole house in under 24 hours. Professor Behrokh Khoshnevis has designed the giant robot that replaces construction workers with a nozzle on a gantry, this squirts out concrete and can quickly build a home according to a computer pattern. It is “basically scaling up 3D printing to the scale of building,” says Khoshnevis. The technology, known as Contour Crafting, could revolutionise the construction industry.
Read more at MSN UK Innovation...

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