first_imgDawson Creek RCMP are searching for a vehicle involved in a hit and run on Friday.Police say an older model burgundy four-door vehicle hit a pickup truck that was in front of it at a drive-thru off of 8 St. in the city.The incident occurred sometime between 11:45 a.m. and 12:10 p.m.- Advertisement -They say they have obtained a partial vehicle licence plate number, but have not released it at this time.Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to contact the Dawson Creek RCMP detachment at 250-784-3700 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.last_img read more


first_img20 November 2006On Friday, 350 volunteers left Ireland for the township of Mfuleni in Cape Town, to join with 30 volunteers from Germany, South Africa and the UK in replacing 50 tin shacks with quality, sustainable housing.The week-long building blitz is the latest outing of the Niall Mellon Township Initiative (NMTI), an Irish charity that builds brick houses for shack dwellers in South Africa.Founded by Irish property developer and philanthropist Niall Mellon in 2002, the charity began building houses in its first township, Imizamo Yethu in Hout Bay, in 2003.Since then, Mellon’s volunteers have built over 600 quality homes in Imizamo Yethu and a second township, Netreg off Cape Town’s N2, where the organisation started work in April.Every year the charity organises a building blitz where Irish volunteers are asked to raise €4 000 each and travel to Cape Town for a week-long intensive build.As the 350 men and women prepare for the 2006 volunteer blitz in Mfuleni, NMTI’s third township, the organisation has already started recruiting what it hopes will be a massive 1 000 volunteers for “the largest ever exodus of Irish people to a charity event overseas” in November 2007.SA government joins inThe charity’s move into Netreg in April represented a huge up-scaling of its work in South Africa – and was accompanied by a commitment from the Western Cape government to double the number of housing subsidies for the township.Speaking at the official opening of an NMTI “show house” at Netreg in April, Mellon said: “Soon we will begin a new housing scheme at Mfuleni, where we will build at least 250 quality brick houses.“Our expansion plans mean that we will spend around R40-million over the next 12 months building homes for the poor across Cape Town.”The NMTI is also exploring the possibility of expanding into other townships in the near future.“This charity is getting bigger and more ambitious,” Mellon said. “We want to play our part, alongside the South African government and its people, in wiping shacks off the face of this country forever.”Builders for AfricaIn September – with 150 homes in Netreg already completed – Mellon went a step further, launching Builders for Africa, an ambitious fund-raising scheme which aims to raise €20-million to build a further 4 000 homes in SA.The new venture calls on property developers and land-owners to donate a site in Ireland to the charity, on tradesmen and women to volunteer their labour to build a house, and on suppliers to donate the materials needed.The house is then sold off, with the proceeds going directly to the NMTI.And for every 10 sites donated by others, Mellon will donate a site of his own.At the time of the launch of the scheme, the first Builders for Africa house, in Roscommon, had already been completed and four other sites had been donated in Dublin, Carlow and Galway.“With Builders for Africa we are aiming to have 100 sites donated across the country,” Mellon said. “This would enable the charity to build up to 4 000 houses in Africa, providing a proper home for 30 000 people currently living in shacks.”SouthAfrica.info reporter Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more


first_imgMike Nicol’s crime novel Killer Countryhas received positive reviews.(Image: Mike Nicol) Author Margie Orford on the cover ofthe special crime issue of WordsEtc.(Image: Margie Orford)MEDIA CONTACTS • Helen HolyoakeBookEx+27 11 462 2302Chris ThurmanSouth Africans like to talk about crime. It creeps into conversations at dinner parties, in shebeens, on radio talk shows and in parliament.Perhaps it was only a matter of time, then, until all that talking fostered creative writing and reading – not just in newspaper and magazine articles or online, but in books. South Africa’s publishers, booksellers and literary communities are all in a stir over “crime lit”.Literary websites like Book SA and LitNet are dedicating an increasing proportion of their content to so-called krimis. Earlier this year, literary journal WordsEtc brought out a special issue on the phenomenon, guest edited by Joanne Hichens, herself a crime writer. The publication featured interviews with, among others, the local queen of crime fiction, Margie Orford.Most recently, the inaugural BookEx book fair in Johannesburg hosted CrimeWrite, the first festival of its kind in the country. Organiser Mike Nicol expressed some disappointment at the turnout, but affirmed nonetheless that the writers participating showed “they can deliver the goods … there is a great marketing opportunity here.”“Pulp fiction with hardboiled prose”Nicol, a self-confessed krimihead, is the doyen of the South African crime writing scene and its most ardent promoter. This is quite something for a man who used to feel only disdain for the genre.He describes his crime novels as “pulp fiction with hardboiled prose”, and is unashamed about the formulaic requirements of much popular writing – in particular, he is critical of “academics who haven’t yet got their heads around the idea that commercial fiction has a completely legitimate place in any society’s literary life”.In penning these words, Nicol no doubt had in mind a review of his book Killer Country by literary scholar Leon de Kock of Stellenbosch University. The debate amongst members of the Book SA community following this review demonstrated the false perception that professional academics look down from their ivory towers on popular books, their readers and their writers.De Kock’s review in fact praises Nicol’s writing, but poses some important questions nonetheless: what does it mean for a former writer of serious literary works to turn his hand to genre fiction? Is this a process of dumbing-down in order to gain as wide a readership as possible? And if so, what assumptions are being made about readers? More specifically, why is it that so many writers have, like Nicol, chosen to focus their careers on crime writing?These are important questions, particularly in a country such as South Africa. There are ethical implications to representing the phenomenon of crime in the pages of a book – not least because writing for entertainment and writing for edification are by no means mutually inclusive.This dilemma is linked to the problem of definition. What is crime writing? After all, you would be hard pressed to identify any South African book (including those by our Nobel Prize-winners) in which transgression of the law is not a central theme. As such, crime has always been pervasive in South African literature.A useful distinction can, however, be made between fiction and non-fiction crime writing. One of the panel discussions at the CrimeWrite festival included well-known non-fiction authors Peter Harris, Antony Altbeker, Martin Welz and Chris Marnewick – all of whom have written about true crime in earnest engagements with South Africa’s crime epidemic. For the most part, however, when people refer to crime writing they mean what Nicol himself calls “schlock fiction”. This is, more or less, writing according to a set of conventions already established by authors from countries where crime is not as serious a social problem as it is here.Vicarious gratificationThose who defend crime fiction in South Africa could present a moral case if they wished to: in a country where, all too often, justice does not take its course, krimis offer a kind of vicarious gratification. As Nicol admits, crime novels tend to conclude with the triumph of moral justice, if not of the justice system: they appeal to a reader’s “innate desire to have good stomp all over evil”.But it’s not that simple. Many crime novels, in true realist form, reject neat endings in which the goodies beat the baddies; moreover, it’s not always that easy to tell the good guys from the bad guys.“One of the things that attracted me to crime fiction,” adds Nicol, “is the moral ambiguity it creates. There are no angels.”Likewise, crime writers do not claim any moral high ground for themselves. That WordsEtc cover image of Margie Orford is suitably ambiguous: looking sombre as she pulls on a white glove, Orford could either be a detective about to get to work or a murderer about to commit a heinous crime.Quoting Raymond Chandler’s observation that “crime fiction is a parody of itself, as tongue-in-cheek as it gets”, Nicol suggests that krimis mock “the author, the novel and the reader. It’s a game. Crime fiction confronts serious social issues but simultaneously says, don’t take me seriously.”An entertaining reading experienceIndeed, there seems to be consensus among South Africa’s crime writers that their vocation is fun – just as they want the reading experience to be entertaining. Yet the awkward question remains: what happens when writing and reading pleasure involves voyeuristic violence? There are no clear answers.A glance at the promotion tables in local book retailers provides evidence enough that South African readers are not reluctant to buy crime fiction from international authors such as Stieg Larsson and Ruth Rendell. This would suggest that most consumers see krimis as a form of escapism, which may be one reason why they avoid locally-produced crime lit: it is simply too close to the bone.But the major reason is, unfortunately, that South Africans are generally still hesitant to spend their time and money on works by South African authors.As Nicol laments, “Often we need to be ratified by overseas publication before local readers will buy our books.”This trend is slowly being reversed, and more and more South African books are on the shelves. If South African crime writing does prove to be as popular as is hoped by local practitioners of the craft – from veterans such as Deon Meyer and Wessel Ebersohn to newcomers like Sara Lotz and Sifiso Mzobe – then it may well help to grow a reading culture across the country.The last word can be left to Nicol: “It’s not so much a matter of dumbing-down as a new kind of book being written. The high literature will remain but readers now have more choice when it comes to buying local fiction. The trick is to make them aware of that choice.”last_img read more


first_imgMatt Asay, former Novell executive, VP of Open Source vendor Alfresco, and champion of the Open Source movement has a summary of a research article by Jyh-An Lee called “Production: Policy Implications of Open Source Software”.The crux of the article is that governments worldwide are warming to the idea of Open Source Software (OSS). As of September 2006, 99 governments in 44 countries had enacted some form of administrative or legislative support for OSS, especially in Europe, Asia and Latin America.In the article, Lee says, “While governments considering supporting OSS are primarily concerned with significant switching costs and incompatibility problems. OSS is actually superior to proprietary software because it increases compatibility and consequently decreases switching costs in the long term.”Governments are increasingly considering OSS during the procurement cycle. Some governments, like France, have decided or at least seriously considered moving from Microsoft Windows to Open Source Linux systems. Germany and China are also examples of governments that are adopting OSS within various government agencies.Lee argues that “…the government should take into account the long-term interests of society and not merely its own interests as a consumer. OSS is better than proprietary software when it comes to increasing compatibility and network effects… Governments can also legitimately provide a critical mass in order to promote the availability of OSS products and subsequent competition in the software market.”last_img read more


first_imgTags:#Real-Time Web#web A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… frederic lardinois Related Posts Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostingcenter_img 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… We just spent a whole day talking about the real-time web a the RWW Real-Time Web Summit. While the general mood was obviously extremely upbeat, a few sessions at the conference also focused on some of the questions that still remain to be answered. Brizzly‘s Jason Shellen, for example, asked us what we hated about the real-time web, while Stinky Teddy’s David Hardtke focused on how we can make sure that information on the real-time web is credible.Questions That Still Need to be Answered?Here is a small selection of the issues that were raised about the current state of the real-time web:How do we know a user is credible? On the real-time web, we are obviously looking for speed, but that speed obviously comes at a cost. While traditional search engines can rely on PageRank-type algorithms that can give us an idea that a source is credibly and trusted, the real-time web’s focus on speed makes this highly impractical. Once we start filtering data, we automatically lose some of the real-time aspects.Are we trading in freshness for quality? Is quicker really always better and is less really more? After all, how often is the instant timeliness of the real-time web actually really useful? How can we filter the real-time web? How, for example, can we filter out the most boring people (even though there is social pressure to follow all your friends)? How can we find the most interesting stories? And how can we weed out spam? Even though many questions were asked about the real-time web and even though many questions remain to be answered, it doesn’t come as a surprise that the overall feeling was that the real-time web will soon be a normal part of everybody’s experience of the Internet. Now, all we need to figure out how we can extract the most value out of it without being completely overwhelmed by information overload, getting spammed by scammers, or bored to death by those of our friends who feel the need to tweet about what they had for breakfast.What Do You Hate About the Real-Time Web?What questions around the real-time web do you think still need to be answered? What is it that bothers you about the real-time web?last_img read more