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You have heard the joke about not leaving female friends carrying huge bags in your house unsupervised right? Or that those humongous bags ladies carry are called “What If” bags? Well; now here, we make it easier for you to understand that 1. You should never underestimate the carriage capacity of a woman’s bag because you might fit in there yourself and 2. There’s a good lesson to learn from women’s bags regarding preparedness or may be disaster preparedness. Whereas men hardly carry bags and if they do, it probably contains mainly gadgets or books in the worst case scenario, Women’s bags carry everything and by everything we mean EVERYTHING. Some of you have little faith and you only believe when you see so one of our dear friends we spontaneously met gave us a demo on the capacity of a woman’s bag

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This bag, small as it looks, contained a laptop, adapter, mouse, notebook, 2 phones, a modem , earphones, business card Holder,  umbrella, lint remover, scarf, comb, perfume, sunglasses, handkerchief, tissue, wipes, lotion, toilet bag/make up kit,  chocolate, an apple, a wallet among others. So literally speaking, in one bag, there was a work station/business, a saloon and lunch topped up with an ever ready kit for whatever situation or opportunity presents its self.

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It’s also good to note that the contents of each bag vary depending on a couple of things like Location, Class, Profession, and Trade. For example some of them even have an extra piece of everything like an extra pair of sandals, high heels, extra cloths, under wear, jewelry, toothbrush, toothpaste, novels and Lately Pepper spray. Do I need to elaborate which class, profession or trade that is? you are smart you got it

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Depending on the class, you will find either one of these items. For Snacks, its Chocolate and apples, or ground nuts, corn (Emberenge) and  sim sim balls.  For drinks you will find Water, Soda, Juice or “Bushera” (A local millet drink that sometimes has a little alcoholic content)  For Phones, Its either iPhone, BlackBerry or a Samsung phone. Now just because its Samsung doesn’t mean it’s a Galaxy S III it might as well be Samsung “Kabiriti” but once again it’s all in a Woman’s Bag. What are your experiences with the contents of women’s bags? Share below.

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The Case of Patents

Close to their backyard, Apple apparently won the battle on Friday in a lawsuit against Samsung. Why “apparently”?  Because, a high profile court case such as this one that hasn’t even reached the court of appeal let alone the Supreme Court is far from over. Samsung and Apple have also been battling in Germany, Australia, South Korea and elsewhere and it’s clear that even if Apple has won this battle, the war is far from over.

It is evident that Samsung infringed on a couple of Apple patents in aspects of design and utility. So if you are a Samsung fan enjoying the “Pinch to zoom” gesture or the “Bounce back” effect when you over scroll, guess what? They aren’t Samsung’s. Utility patents are about usability; the features a phone or tablet can have and operate, and design patents are those which cover how they look and feel.

It holds water to argue that Samsung’s win would set a precedent that would hamper innovations as people would have less protection for their technology and designs. But this in reverse may stifle competition, which is an incentive for innovation like in Bill Gate’s war of retaining rights to Microsoft Office and not allowing anyone replicate it. So, the secret would be getting an intersection between the two rather than a stalemate.

Pierre Yanney, a patent litigation partner with Stroock & Stroock & Lavan in New York, says. “If Samsung wins, then in the long run IP (intellectual property) will have less value, and more companies at all different price and quality points along the spectrum will be more confident to offer alternative products, leading to more consumer choices and lower prices all around.”

Although Samsung’s accusations didn’t sway the court, Apple wasn’t able to prove that three utility patents i.e.  Sending email, multitasking and aspects concerning two 3G standards essentials were invalid either.

Photo by Jo Yong Hak/Reuters

Impact on Samsung

To one of the world’s largest electronics companies who’s April – June sales alone were around 50 million phones almost twice the number of iPhones and this is just 1.5 percent of annual revenues from Samsung’s telecoms business, $1billion is like a mosquito bite. The group had net profit of $4.5 billion in April-June alone. Without downplaying the legal precedent the Apple win has set, Samsung wont feel the pinch as much as the possible implications that the battle will produce. The case has however sent out a clear message to the Smartphone industry that innovation is an investment so start adjusting those budgets other than copying or risk being sued by the fruit company.

Ironically, with all that is going on, Samsung remains a major supplier of components for Apple products. Despite, the publicity from the U.S. case and more than a dozen pending cases elsewhere around the world, the Samsung brand has gained recognition – as an equal to Apple rather than merely a supplier and in a recent Campaign Asia-Pacific brand ranking, Samsung came top ahead of second-placed Apple and as a matter of fact, for every iPhone sold worldwide, more than three smart phones running Android are sold, reflecting the meteoric rise of Google’s software. Further more, with China set to become the world’s biggest Smartphone market this year, Samsung has almost twice Apple’s market share. And, the iPhone has slipped to fourth in the market in April-June, overtaken by both Lenovo Group Ltd and ZTE Corp, according to latest data from industry research firm IDC.

It’s also believed that apple’s suit could be a direct attack on Google’s Android which the late Steve Jobs called a “Stolen Product”. It is hard to tell what the exact impact of the Jury’s decision on Google/ Android or the various companies that use android OS will be but we’ll have to wait and see.

As luck would have it, Nokia and Research in Motion (RIM) come forth as Friday’s biggest winners as the two companies own large and longstanding portfolios of mobile device patents which seem to be the ones keeping them afloat. Unfortunately, this may not help them get into the lead once more.

Impact on Consumers

The biggest losers here are consumers. If the verdict stands, then the costs of the judgment will be reflected in the cost of mobile devices. This battle would be reducing competition in the market with top contenders like Samsung, HTC and Motorola which would mean fewer copycat devices hitting the market and less price competition. And that would almost inevitably mean Apple — or any other innovator — would be able to maintain the monopoly and charge whatever it thinks it can get away with.

Charles Golvin, an analyst at Forrester Research said, “Consumers could experience some discomfort in their use of smart phones if Samsung and other manufacturers are forced to design around certain basic functions to avoid violating Apple’s patents. Consumers could end up with some welcome diversity in phone and tablet design — or they may be stuck with devices that manufacturers have clumsily revamped to avoid crossing Apple”

“And it’s possible that the next great phone, the one that shames the iPhone the same way that the iPhone buried the Blackberry, will never make it to market. Designing and selling an advanced Smartphone just became a dangerous business”, as one could get sued for a billion dollars.

Conclusions

Even though Friday’s verdict is justice, it doesn’t feel like a win. It feels like the day when Apple is acknowledging competition exists and probably that they miss Steve jobs (RIP). A few years back Apple’s market share was motivated by excellence and freedom, and people bought Apple products because they were the best not because they won a court case. What Apple doesn’t realize is that litigation has made Samsung’s brand more recognizable and truth be told Samsung is a more versatile brand than Apple, which has largely stood by its original form and design, but is now bowing to pressure as speculation that the next iPhone will have a bigger screen and new iPads may be smaller and probably cheaper is all over the place.

My take is that gaining $1billion and losing the actual battle of strategizing to stay as a top smart phone maker is a loss for Apple and a win for Samsung. Lastly I will leave you with the Coca-Cola example.  Whoever tries to copy Coke will always stay a Coke copy cat/wannabe and Coke will always be in the lead. What Apple should have done in this case would have been to pursue an out of court settlement in regard to its patents and stay the ingenious apple not the scared apple so their PR strategists should have thought of the adverse effects on the brand rather than taking on a suit they knew they would win. What I think Steve Jobs would have done, would be to challenge Samsung to a Smartphone battle. Now that would have been interesting but yet again… rest in peace Steve Jobs.

Sources:

New York Times

Cult of Mac

Mashable

LA Times

Chicago Sun Times

Reuters

If you havent heard about Ruyonga, you need to look closely. Formerly Known as Krukid, Ruyonga is an agile rapper who has chosen to return home after over 10 years in the United States. At a time when rap has really gained ground, Ruyonga was a breath of fresh air in the Ugandan Rap scene.

The Ugandan born US based hiphop artist has been in the industry for a while  dating as far back as 2000 as one of the pioneering hip hop acts in Uganda. With 3 albums to his name, he  has shared the stage with Lupe Fiasco, K’naan, Roots among other world renown rappers. What grounds Ruyonga’s flow is the Poetic back ground enabling him to script gripping content and packaging it in a way that anyone can relate to

He’s the Kind of rapper you would listen to with your Mother and Grandfather and you wouldn’t need to worry about cussing or dirty language. On the contrary, they just might start nodding their heads or tapping their feet.

At Colored Zebra, we are so eager for what Ruyonga has got to offer to the UG HipHop scene
Ratings *** Most fresh flow in UG

Some of Ruyonga’s Works

Latest single “Pesa” Click HERE to Listen

A remix of Maurice Kirya‘s Hit Song “Don’t Wanna Fight”  check it out

This City  Video

Follow Ruyonga on Facebook & On Twitter

Saving Africa is something many people are trying to do and in many different ways. From mobilizing Donor Aid to fund particular projects that never benefit the intended beneficiaries or to massively donating Aid in various forms which basically saves the day but doesn’t build the future or worse still prioritizing non issues.

We’ve all heard of NGO’s and charities in Africa and how many of them operate. Some of their approaches are the same that cripple development in the continent and in trying to do good, they do more harm. For example Aid and Charity organizations cultivating a culture where people expect things to be done for them or handed to them on a silver platter rather than working together to empower and liberate (mentally or economically) the people they seek to help. There’s a famous proverb they often attribute to the Chinese
 “Give a man a fish and you will feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and he will feed himself for a Life time”

Many organizations want to fix Africa. You cannot Fix Africa because it’s not broken. Many African problems are historical and before you get on saving the Continent, you may want to understand it first. If you really want to help Africa, partner with it. Partner with Africa in Trade, in Technology and Science, in infrastructure for Development, invest in the Human and intellectual Capital. Fund African solutions to African problems rather than imposing western solutions to African problems.

One vivid example of partnering with Africa is the Nakate Project. Founded by Shanley Knox in December of 2010, the project trains artisans in rural areas (through other local artisans) of Uganda to make goods, like jewelry and other crafts. They then purchase them, and introduce them to the fashion and design world in the United States through photo shoots, editorials, fashion shows, events and sales”

Based in Kakooge, Nakate at present operates in 2 districts in Uganda that is Nakasongola and Kampala. The project with a mission to empower women in underdeveloped or remote areas of the globe by providing a platform for their art in the high fashion and design community currently employs over 40 women trained in making jewelry inclusive of bags and shoes

The Women make jewelry to supplement their incomes and support their families. They decide their level of involvement in the project and are free to engage in their other projects. Some women teach their children to make beads and their entire family lives off the project while some do it part time. We buy from artisans, who are excellent in making their goods and emphasize quality and consistency in the products

“We are bent on helping artisans by working hand in hand to develop their careers within their own parts of the world and developing a fashion presence through their design. We seek to establish a place for these artisans within the fashion market, and at the same time, we’re helping develop the fashion and design market within them – giving them an understanding of the fact that they’re part of the global market” says Shanley

One distinctive thing about Nakate is their multi-dimensional approach to empowerment of women while involving them in the process.  The women obtain skills in making jewelry that competes globally; they supplement their incomes to better their standards of living with a chance to showcase their works globally. What makes this unique is how Nakate studied the lives of these women in Kakooge, Identified tasks in their daily lives that they could use to empower them. Train them to get better in the art and then pay them for doing what they Love to do.

“We believe that the creation of goods other people value does something for the producer of the product. We view our Ugandan artisans as talented artists. Artists take pride in their art. And, to know they are adding value in the global economy changes the way they view the world. By selling a product we empower them.  We believe generating sustainable income is far better than a quick fix. We are empowering women, and that is intentional. Women with businesses change the local political environment for the better, and we are also helping them start their own businesses in other areas by working with us.” says Mike the VP of Business Development at Nakate

In the US, Nakate is featured in stores in Portland, Sacramento, Los Angeles and Online as well. Nakate has so far been featured in fashion shows in Seattle and Portland and will be featured in New York, Chicago, Vegas and Los Angeles this year. They will be shifting base to New York as of April 2012.

I believe that Partnering with Africa is one of the many ways all those who really want to help can do other than all the patronage and politics involved in Aid. Aid has never been and will never be a solution to African issues. Its Trade and not Aid that can and will help Africa

Check out the Nakate Fall Line of jewelry made from recycled paper

Check out the Online Store and purchase Nakate Products HERE

Follow Nakate Online
Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/nakateproject
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NakateProject
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/nakate/
Website: http://www.nakateproject.com

Contact Shanley Knox: shanley@nakateproject.com

More Links on Nakate:

Transformed Magazine: http://transformedmagazine.com/justice/nakate-project-helping-africa-one-necklace-at-a-time/

CBS Sacramento: http://sacramento.cbslocal.com/guide/the-nakate-project-fashion-for-a-cause/

Fox 40: http://www.fox40.com/videobeta/1ff62a55-15dd-4232-aba3-6cf8e3293c71/News/The-Nakate-Project        CiaAfrique: http://www.ciaafrique.com/2011/10/nakate-project-helping-women-in-uganda.html

*All Pictures Used with permission from Nakate Project

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