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A 19-year-old Ghanaian University student Gabriel Opare has built a new search engine to rival Google and Youtube.

According to Opare, his new search engine, Mudclo, will challenge the dominance of YouTube.

Opare who is currently a full time-time sociology student of the University of Ghana, taught himself how to code by taking online courses during his free time.

Google on Wednesday announced an overhaul of its search app on mobile phones to include a personalized feed of links about hobbies, travel, sports and other topics, a move that puts the search company into more direct competition with social networks such as Facebook. Google, the world’s largest search engine and a unit of Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O), said the changes would begin rolling out in the United States on Wednesday and other countries in the coming weeks.

The new offering is called “Google Feed,” a name that may conjure comparisons to Facebook’s “News Feed,” a feature on Facebook used to browse updates from friends, family and other sources. Google said, however, that it was not trying to duplicate Facebook Inc (FB.O), the world’s largest social network.

Instead, the company said it wanted to create another place to see a stream of relevant search results. “This feed is really about your interests ... It’s not really about what your friends are interested in,” Ben Gomes, a Google vice president for engineering, said in a briefing with reporters.

Typical updates might include a link to a website with tips about an upcoming vacation spot, or a link to a page about cycling or another hobby, the company said.

Facebook and Google are jockeying for attention online and by extension, for advertising revenue based on those eyeballs. The two Silicon Valley companies are expected to take in some 50 percent of overall online ad spending in 2018, according to research firm eMarketer.

There were no immediate plans to include advertising in Google Feed, Gomes said. Google Feed will suggest links based on a user’s Google search history as well as data from other Google services, such as YouTube, Gmail and Google Calendar, the company said.

In addition to putting Google Feed on mobile apps, the company is looking at attaching it to web browsers in some form, Shashi Thakur, a second Google vice president for engineering, said during the briefing.

Source: vanguardngr.com

US tech giant Apple has previewed forthcoming emojis, including one that depicts a woman wearing a hijab.

More than 12 animated symbols were unveiled on Monday to celebrate World Emoji Day and will be released on Apple devices later this year, the company said.

"The new emoji make it easier for users to express themselves with greater diversity, additional animals and creatures, new smiley faces and more," Apple said in a statement.

The headscarf-wearing character was approved by Unicode, a non-profit international consortium, in November last year after a Saudi teen living in Germany campaigned for its inclusion.

Gangnam Style had been YouTube's most-watched video for five years

Technology

Psy's Gangnam Style is no longer the most-watched video on YouTube. The South Korean megahit had been the site's most-played clip for the last five years.

The surreal video became so popular that it "broke" YouTube's play counter, exceeding the maximum possible number of views (2,147,483,647), and forcing the company to rewrite its code.

More than three decades after the first domain name was registered, and over 25 years after the World Wide Web launched, Africa finally has its own internet domain fully owned by Africa named ‘DotAfrica’, APA reports on Wednesday.

This milestone was announced in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, at the 29th ordinary session of the African Union Assembly. The objective of the launch was to mark the commencement of the DotAfrica operational phase by setting up a road show starting at the AU headquarters.

Andrew Abbeyquaye is a senior at Ashesi University

Technology

A student at Ashesi University has developed a transit application to streamline travel on Ghana’s chaotic minibus transportation services, referred to locally as trotrto.

Andrew Abbeyquaye’s Capstone Project will enable users obtain and plan their travel itinerary within Accra while minimising travel distance and time.

According to information on the renowned private university’s website, Andrew used data on popular routes travelled by trotros to build the app.

Many reports suggest that screens around the world are getting this message, indicating a ransomware attack is to blame.

Technology

Companies across the globe are reporting that they have been struck by a major ransomware cyber-attack. British advertising agency WPP is among those to say its IT systems have been disrupted as a consequence.

The virus, the source of which is not yet known, freezes the user's computer until an untraceable ransom is paid in the digital Bitcoin currency.

Ukrainian firms, including the state power company and Kiev's main airport, were among the first to report issues.

Google Shopping ads appear at the top of many search result pages

Technology

Google has been fined 2.42bn euros ($2.7bn; £2.1bn) by the European Commission after it ruled the company had abused its power by promoting its own shopping comparison service at the top of search results.

The amount is the regulator's largest penalty to date against a company accused of distorting the market. The ruling also orders Google to end its anti-competitive practices within 90 days or face a further penalty. The US firm said it may appeal.

However, if it fails to change the way it operates the Shopping service within the three-month deadline, it could be forced to make payments of 5% of its parent company Alphabet's average daily worldwide earnings.

WhatsApp is becoming one of the prevailing ways people discover and discuss news, according to a study. But use of the messaging app appears to vary widely between countries.

In Malaysia, more than 50% of those surveyed said they used WhatsApp for news at least once a week. But in the US, the figure was only 3%, and in the UK it was 5%.

The Digital News Report also indicates the Brexit debate has led to growing mistrust of the UK's media.

Ghanaian entrepreneur Miss Ivy Barley

Technology

A Ghanaian entrepreneur Miss Ivy Barley, 26, has created a new mode of training females in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The approach is aimed at narrowing the gender inequality gap in the study of STEM.

Miss Barley, who is the founder of Developers in Vogue (DIV), a non-governmental organisation made the front pages of some German newspapers with her initiative some months ago, having won the prestigious ‘E skills for Girls competition’ award in Berlin, Germany.

In an interview with the Daily Graphic in Accra last Friday, she said “as a woman in technology, I have always been passionate about empowering women to venture into science, technology, engineering and Mathematics as this led me to volunteer to enter into an all-girls Science Academy last year.”

NASA on Monday announced the discovery of 219 potential planets located outside our solar system, 10 of which are like Earth.

They located not too close to their star, therefore not too hot, and not too far from their stars, therefore able to support liquid water.

According to a statement released by NASA, this discovery brings the total number of identified planets to 4,034, 2,335 of which have been verified as exoplanets – planets outside our solar system. 50 of these are in habitable zones, and more than 30 have been verified.

Mark Zuckerberg

Technology

Facebook has announced details of steps it is taking to remove terrorist-related content.

The move comes after growing pressure from governments for technology companies to do more to take down material such as terrorist propaganda.

In a series of blog posts by senior figures and an interview with the BBC, Facebook says it wants to be more open about the work it is doing.