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Nigerian Invents Computer Chip that Smells Explosives

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Oshiorenoya Agabi, a Silicon Valley-based inventor,

Oshiorenoya Agabi, a Silicon Valley-based inventor, has developed a computer that can recognise the smell of explosives and aid in bomb detection.

He unveiled modem-sized technology at the TEDGlobal conference in Tanzania.

Named Koniku Kore, the system is made from a mixture of living neurons and silicon, with sensors that can detect and recognise smells.

Agabi said it could be used to replace traditional airport security and could provide the brain for future robots.

“You can give the neurons instructions about what to do – in our case we tell it to provide a receptor that can detect explosives”, he told BBC.

The device could also be used to detect illness by sensing markers of a disease in the air molecules that a patient gives off.

The prototype was shown off at TED in a video of it being taken out of the laboratory.

“This device can live on a desk and we can keep them alive for a couple of months,” he said.

“We think that the processing power that is going to run the robots of the future will be synthetic biology-based and we are laying the foundations for that today.”

Agabi’s start-up company- Koniku- was launched over a year ago and has raised $1m (£800,000) in funding.

He says the company is already making profits of $10m upwards and has customers in the aviation and pharmaceuticals industries.

Nigeria CommunicationsWeek believes that technology makes life more exciting and helps improve the lives of people around Nigeria and indeed the world. So since 2007, we have devoted our energy to independent reportage of technology and how they affect lives.

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NITDA to Blacklist MDAs not Running Website on .gov.ng

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National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) has said any government agency or ministry not running its website on Nigerian domain name, .gov.ng, will be blacklisted.

 

Dr Ali Isa Ibrahim Pantami, NITDA director general in a statement made available in Abuja, added that most of the agencies still run their websites on generic top level domain (gTLD).

 

According to Dr Pantami, NITDA has observed the disregard to the use of .gov.ng domain in transaction of government business despite previous warning.

 

The DG said the agency would henceforth ensure strict compliance stressing that government business transactions should be carried out in the country’s code top level domain of the Nigerian government (ccTLD.ng)

 

However, for easy compliance, he said NITDA would henceforth approve request for .gov.ng within 24 hours, with the provision of special purpose phone numbers coupled with regular evaluation of agencies sites.

 

He said: “Furthermore, .gov.ng domain names are free with no rental or renewal cost attached. We therefore call on all MDAs and service providers to support government on the scale on the scale of ease of doing business.” (Daily Trust)

 

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Swift Networks Launches Customised ICT Solutions for SMEs

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Swift Networks Limited, Nigeria’s leading broadband services provider has launched a suite of information and communications technology products customized to support Nigerian SMEs.

 

These bundled solutions will reduce cost and give small businesses better control of their operations to drive efficiencies and growth.

 

To operate under the sub-brand of SWIFT SMARTBusiness Kit,these all-in-one service bundles will consist of all the office and home connectivity, hosting and bespoke business software solutions available to small businesses in the market today.

 

“SWIFT SMARTBusiness Kit continues in SWIFT’s tradition of demystifying and simplifying technology to help unlock Nigeria’s abundant potentials so that people can achieve more in their daily undertakings”, enthused Mr. Charles Anudu, managing director of SWIFT.

 

“SWIFT SMARTBusiness Kit is user friendly and will resolve the problem of small businesses dealing with multiple vendors who often present them with conflicting solutions that are not future-proof. With our solution, SMEs will obtain all their ICT solutions from a single trusted service provider with probably the industry’s best of customer care team on one monthly bill”, according to Mr. Chukwuma Okoye, chief operating officer of SWIFT.

 

“And because we are sure that our target small businesses will like this solution, SWIFT SMARTBusiness kit will come with a 30-day money back guarantee with no questions asked if the customer is not satisfied with the solution.”

 

He further added that “for the early birds, we shall throw in a free home internet access for the business for as long as the subscription is current.”

 

A sample SWIFT Business Kit solution will consist of office (and free home) internet, web and e-mail hosting, attractive business and international travel voice call rates, a la carte business software modules for sales, accounting, customer relationship management, inventory management and human resource management.

 

A customer can start with a basic plan and either add or drop modules as the business evolves. This is because our solutions basket are well aligned and future-proof.

 

SWIFT SMART Business Kit is specially targeted at businesses in the professional services, eCommerce, traditional retail, educational, healthcare, hospitality and cottage industries.

 

The services will be distributed directly through SWIFT’s customer centres as well as those of its online and off-line channel partners. It will also be supported by a professional field sales team from SWIFT.

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Gates Foundation Open-source Tool Enables Digital Payment Interoperability

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The new Mojaloop software, sponsored by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, is available, free-of-cost, for software developers to adapt and banks, financial service providers and companies to implement.

Mojaloop is said to be the first model that can help extend interoperability from mobile money providers to any bank, merchant or government institution in a way that specifically meets the needs of the poor. It reduces the complexity and cost of building all-inclusive payment platforms.

Kosta Peric, deputy director, Financial Services for the Poor at the Gates Foundation, says just as the Internet revolutionised digital communication, open source solutions like Mojaloop can spark innovation, democratise access to digital payments, empower billions of new customers, and drive massive economic growth in developing markets.

“Interoperability of digital payments has been the toughest hurdle for the financial services industry to overcome. With Mojaloop, our technology partners have finally achieved a solution that can apply to any service, and we invite banks and the payment industry to explore and test this tool,” Peric adds.

Mojaloop (from the Swahili word ‘moja’ which means ‘one’) was created by the Gates Foundation’s Level One Project, which aims to build inclusive payment models to benefit the world’s poor.

It was created in partnership with fintech developers Ripple, Dwolla, ModusBox, Crosslake Technologies and Software Group, using technology such as the Interledger Protocol, a solution for settling funds among multiple providers across their individual systems.

The Mojaloop development project also brought together four mobile systems companies – Ericsson, Huawei, Telepin, and Mahindra Comviva – to develop an Open API for mobile money interoperability. These APIs will allow mobile money providers to integrate seamlessly with Mojaloop and products built from it.

It was designed to ultimately serve as a model for national payment switching systems that, for example, enable an individual’s digital wallet to connect with an employer’s bank account and her children’s school account to complete monthly transactions.

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