SA boxing legend ‘Baby Jake’ passes away

first_img9 December 2013 Jacob “Baby Jake” Matlala, watched by former President Nelson Mandela and top Hollywood actor Will Smith, brought the curtain down on his 22-year professional boxing career on 3 March 2002 with a seventh-round stoppage win over Juan Herrera to retain his WBU junior flyweight title. It was a fitting end to an illustrious career that earned Matlala legendary status in South African boxing. His record, falling at one stage to 22 wins, one draw and seven losses, finished up at 52 victories, two draws and 12 losses. Along the way he collected the WBO flyweight, WBO junior flyweight, IBA junior flyweight and WBU junior flyweight titles, becoming the only South African boxer to win four world titles. Matlala passed away at the Charlotte Maxeke Academic Hospital in Johannesburg on Saturday, 7 December 2013, at the age of 51. Shortest ever world champion The shortest ever world champion, Matlala began his career on February 2, 1980 with a fourth-round victory over Fraser Plaatjie in Port Elizabeth. A year later, Matlala had his second professional fight, which he lost. However, five fights later – four wins and a draw – Matlala landed the Transvaal junior flyweight title with a fifth-round technical knockout win over Simon Moema. It took him three more contests to become the South African junior flyweight champion. He successfully defended the title twice before suffering a 12th-round loss to Mveleli Luzipho in October 1983, dropping his record to 10 wins, one draw and two losses. The little man with the all-action style then claimed eight wins in succession, including his first victory over an overseas opponent. He next challenged Luzipho in a return match for the South African title, which ended in failure with another 12- round loss in November 1985.Not much taller than a Hobbit At 1.47 metres or 4 feet and 10 inches in height, “Baby Jake” is not much taller than the average Lord of the Rings hobbit. This, he once told Lucille Davie, writing for the City of Johannesburg, in an interview, was part of the reason why he quit boxing. He had run out of small people to fight. Matlala’s record was blotted when he suffered successive defeats to one fighter. In early 1996, he faced Vuyani Nene in Port Elizabeth and lost. After beating Pillay Duiker to retain the Transvaal junior flyweight title, Baby Jake again fought Nene, exactly one year after his loss to the Eastern Cape fighter, but this time for the South African title. Nene once more had the challenger’s number, stopping Matlala in the 11th round.Lost to Nene After a points victory over Kirk Morris, the diminutive Matlala took on Nene on 1 November, 1987, seven months after his unsuccessful challenge for the national title. He lasted the distance, but for the third time Nene outboxed him. Matlala subsequently racked up another three victories, including one over Daniel Ward, who later became the Commonwealth flyweight champion. These wins raised his record to 22 wins, one draw and six losses. Nene once again proved to be Matlala’s nemesis, though, defeating him on points for the South African title. At this stage of his career, in 1988, Matlala had lost seven fights, four of those to Nene. If Matlala was discouraged, he did not show it. The following year, in 1989, he again challenged for a South African title, this time as a flyweight. He came up short, however, losing on points to Jaji Sibali. He then registered a run of eight victories, including wins over two Mexican fighters and a successful outing against Wele Maqolo to lift the vacant South African junior flyweight title.World title crack After retaining his title against Ndoda Mayende, Matlala had his first crack at a world title in September 1991 when he took on Dave McCauley for the IBF flyweight title in Belfast. He failed in his attempt, suffering a 10th-round knockout at the hands of the Irishman. Three wins later, including a successful defence of his South African crown and a victory over Mexico’s Raul Acosta, Matlala challenged Pat Clinton for the WBO flyweight title in May 1993. In front of Clinton’s home town supporters in Glasgow, the South African boxer overwhelmed his opponent to capture his first world title on an eighth-round technical knockout. He added another four wins to his record, including three in title defences, before suffering his 10th career loss to Alberto Jiminez, who stopped him in the eighth round at Hammanskraal in February 1995. His next bout, three months later, ended in a draw against Liberia’s Sam Stewart.Two-time world champion Two fights later, Matlala was a world champion for the second time. In November 1995, he defeated Paul Weir on a technical decision in five rounds to secure the WBO junior flyweight title as Glasgow again proved to be his happy hunting ground. In early 1996, Matlala again took on Weir in Liverpool and retained his WBO crown. After a 12-round victory over Mickey Cantwell, he challenged Michael Carbajal for the IBA junior flyweight title. The experts argued that this would be the toughest fight of Baby Jake’s career, against a fighter regarded by many as the best pound- for-pound boxer in the world. Fighting in Las Vegas on 18 July 1997, before a large American television audience, Matlala delivered the best performance of his career, battering Carbajal for nine rounds before the referee stopped the fight, with the Mexican clearly a beaten man. That victory raised Matlala’s profile and stock considerably and, of course, earned him another world title.SA vs SA After a further four wins, including two title defences, Matlala relinquished the IBA title to face another South African, Hawk Makepula, in February 2000 for the vacant WBO junior flyweight title. It was a bout the South African boxing public had been clamouring for, but it ended in disappointment for Matlala, who lost on a controversial points decision. For the second time in his career he suffered two defeats in succession when his former sparring partner, Peter Culshaw, beat him on points for the WBU flyweight title in May of the same year. In February 2001, Matlala once more tasted world championship success, easily defeating Australia’s Todd Makelin in four rounds to claim the vacant WBU junior flyweight crown. In September, he retained the crown with a win in five rounds over Mickey Cantwell.Last fight Finally, Matlala drew the curtain on his career with the victory over Herrera, 11 years his junior. “Baby Jake” Matlala will be remembered as an all-action fighter who overcame his height and reach disadvantage by crowding his opponents and throwing a relentless barrage of punches. He will also be remembered for the fantastic condition that he kept himself in for his fights, right up to the age of 40. Above all, however, it was the little man’s big heart that captured the imagination of the South African public. Matlala always gave his best, earning the respect of opponents and spectators alike. Unsuccessful in so many attempts at winning South African titles, Baby Jake simply trained even harder, kept coming back – and suddenly started collecting world titles.last_img read more

Latest Air New Zealand safety video raises Erebus crash concerns

first_imgOn location in Antarctica. Source: Air New Zealand video. Air New Zealand has awakened some dark memories with the location choice for a new inflight video about Antarctica.The frozen continent has special poignancy for New Zealanders because it was the site of the nation’s worst ever air disaster in 1979 when an AirNZ  DC-10 crashed into Mt Erebus killing all 257 passengers and crew.The new safety video aims to highlight New Zealand research in Antarctica and continent’s importance in understanding climate change. It will be rolled out across the carrier’s fleet in March.But some families of people killed in the crashed are not happy.“The very nature of a safety video where there was such an incredible disaster that affected the entire country is just weird,’’ Jayne Holtham, who lost her father in the crash, told Newshub.“This sort of feels like it’s regressing a little bit, taking away some of the respect of the area.”Air New Zealand wrote to the families about the video.“While we’re proud of the work we’re doing together to contribute to this research, we are very aware of the sensitivities of choosing Antarctica as a location,’’ it said in a letter.“The Erebus tragedy weighs heavily on Air New Zealand and our country, and we would like to assure you we have approached filming in a very respectful way.”The safety video was made in partnership with Antarctica New Zealand and the airline’s global brand and marketing general manager, Jodi Williams, said it offered a glimpse into a part of the world “few experience, but which has the greatest potential impact on the planet’s future”.“Air New Zealand’s safety videos have a phenomenal worldwide following,  and have collectively attracted more than 110 million views online, as well as coverage across the world’s top news outlets,’’ Williams said.“We hope this video, together with the educational content we’ve filmed, will draw attention to the important research underway to better understand and prepare for a warming world.”The video is directed by Kevin Denholm, who was responsible for AirNZ’s 2009 debut feature safety video involving body-painted staff, including then CEO Rob Fyfe, and a 2013 effort starring British adventurer Bear Grylls.Denholm said the film crew took all possible steps to minimise the environmental impact of filming was careful to take the minimum of equipment.“Where usually a crew of around 40 would be involved, we restricted our team to just six people, including celebrity talent,’’ he said.“The amazing staff from Scott Base provided the logistical support we needed to pull this off, and many of them stepped outside their comfort zone into roles as supporting talent.”last_img read more

Status.net Could Point to the Future of Business Intelligence

first_imgFew companies have captured the world’s attention online in recent years as much as Twitter has. Rapid, structured, public communication between groups of people is not only a personal paradigm changer for many who have seriously explored the service – it’s also an incredible opportunity to analyze a rich and dynamic set of data about interpersonal conversation. First the Web, then email, then instant messaging and SMS all helped speed up the world we live in. Twitter made that rapid communication public and easier than ever for machines to mine for connections. Just as Facebook will never be Twitter because of the lack of clear access it offers outsiders to social data, so too does Twitter have its own limitations. A service called Status.net will launch in May that could overcome some of Twitter’s limitations and make a significant impact on the world we work in.Laconica, the Canadian company offering the most popular Open Source alternative to Twitter, announced plans today to begin selling subscriptions to hosted microblogging installations for businesses. The default address of these new sites will be yourname.status.net. We suspect that this could be a very big deal. (We found out about it from coverage on Microblink on Techmeme.)Step One, People Will Want It Laconica already allows anyone to install its software on their own servers, for free (see Leo Laporte’s Twit Army for example), but the easy paid offering from Status.net could catch on much faster. The service provider will be responsible for maintenance, upgrades will come automatically, the URL is clear and dignified and the fact that the software is open source could enable a plug-in and extension community to grow around the architecture as soon as it gets large enough for that to be viable.Companies will pay to have either public or private microblogging installations hosted and branded for them. They will do so because if they do not – their employees will have no group of allied professionals to securely cry out to for help with work problems. Their departments will remain out of touch and unfamiliar with the people and work being done around their own company. Companies without a microblogging system will seem as silly and disadvantaged in the future as companies do today that say “we don’t need Instant Messaging, we have email,” or “we don’t need email, we have a fax machine.”Step Two, People Will Build on ItSome companies will use the hosted Status.net platform, others will decide to put Laconica on their own servers and others still will decide to use some other provider’s business oriented but developer friendly microblogging service.Once that fundamentally structured layer of social conversation has spread throughout a substantial portion of the business world, hopefully as interoperable Open Source software, here’s what will happen.We discussed one of the most potent applications analyzing Twitter social connection data in a recent post titled The Inner Circles of 10 Geek Heroes on Twitter.These are the kinds of birds eye views through data parsing that an Open Source microblogging platform for businesses will enable. All of the following is based on nothing more than cross referencing user profiles, friend connections and public replies between users. Any parts of this vision that aren’t simple will be simpler for someone to build once there’s adoption and Open Source code.In private networks, a company will be able to receive automatic notification when one of its employees has begun conversing with another particular employee more than they had before. Perhaps they’ll consider putting them in the same work group. If one sales person doesn’t converse with the technical team as often as other sales people do, a company might wonder whether that salesperson is less comfortable explaining technical matters to customers. It will be trivial to determine which technical staff are friendliest and most appropriate to introduce a sales person to, because those kinds of connections will be fully graphable.In public business networks, community managers will be able to identify the customers most engaged in conversation with diverse groups of other customers with the snap of the fingers. Those are the kinds of community members that companies hire. Companies will be able to see if groups of people with similar traits in their profiles are asking for customer service more often than other groups, and when they seek to engage with those communities in order to improve product usability for them – the contours of that community will be easier than ever to understand.People say that the phrase Social Graph is too vague, but when it comes to structured, open microblogging – social connections through conversation and content are literally graphable. Here are the users, here are their friends, here are their public messages and here are their replies to one another – just drawn a line from one column to one row and a narrative will be formed by the data. Repeat that process and you’ll be able to build stories around trends.Is this creepy? It doesn’t have to be. There’s a whole lot of exciting potential here and if an increasingly open technology world can help the business world understand the value of open over control (as it is) then this kind of analysis could be democratized and used for good. Let’s look at this from the perspective of Twitter right now. When I’m away from my computer and think of a question I need answered, I can send that question out to my Twitter network by SMS. Three people might post a public reply answering my question. When I get back to Twitter, I see those three replies and I publicly thank one of those people in particular for providing such a good answer.Now repeat. Again and again, throughout an organization, across multiple organizations. Knowledge sharing paths get worn in the virtual grass of the public field of microblogging. Smart companies want their people creating those paths and only a fool would neglect an opportunity to illuminate these connections in the eyes of management.It won’t happen on Twitter alone, though. It’s too public, the company is too bound by its own limitations on how much data it really wants anyone else to pull out of the river of Tweets and relatively small groups are a very important part of the future of microblogging.We expect that hosted or free company-specific microblogging installations will become huge sources of Business Intelligence data and we hope that happens through interoperable, Open Source software. We’re excited to see what Laconica can do with Status.net. Tags:#Analysis#NYT#web Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… marshall kirkpatrickcenter_img Related Posts 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostinglast_img read more

A Community-Based Framework to Evaluate Cloud Service Providers

first_imgA Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting When we wrote last week about “4 Tools for Assessing Cloud Performance,” we asked for suggestions about other resources that can help companies monitor and evaluate cloud services. And we asked for suggestions as to what factors, in addition to cost and performance, might be important to weigh when making business decisions.Jeffrey Abbott, Senior Product Marketing Manager in the Cloud Customer Solutions Unit at CA Technologies wrote a blog post in response: “Comparing the Relative Quality of Cloud Services – Is a single metric enough?” In it, he argues that not only are one or two variables insufficient, but that different parameters matter to different people. As such, a more robust index to evaluate cloud services needs to be developed.CA Technologies started work on such a project, which has now been handed over to Carnegie Mellon University so that it can be an independent tool built not by one vendor but by a broader online community.Cloud Commons and the Service Measurement Index The Service Measurement Index (SMI) is a method designed to measure the end-to-end customer experience for any number of cloud services. The SMI will allow organizations to evaluate any number of IT services available to them, regardless of whether those services are provide internally or sourced to outside companies. The index measures services on six metrics, including quality, agility, risk, cost, capability, and security. And it allows users to weight the importance of these different factors, depending on their definitions of what constitutes “good service.” After all, for some companies, cost is no option. For others, cost may be the key. The SMI, hopes Abbott, will allow businesses to compare “apples to apples” when making IT decisions.Launched in May of this year, the SMI and the Cloud Commons that supports it are fairly new projects. The index tracks over 100 services so far, including SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS providers. While some of the initial information comprising the SMI was compiled based on research with select businesses, Abbott says an API is in the works so that the index can be integrated into products and so that services can be monitored on a real-time basis. When appropriate, the information captured will be used to populate the database with more details about cloud companies’ performance. Tags:#cloud#cloud computing 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketcenter_img audrey watters Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts last_img read more

Weekly Wrap-up: Does the Android Brand Make You Think of Google?

first_img5 Apps for Working From the iPadLet’s be real about this. You can’t do everything on an iPad. As Shawn Blanc pointed out the other day, you can’t make iOS apps on it, for example. But you might be surprised by how much real work you can do on it with the right tools. If your work requires generally office-like capabilities, there are definitely iPad solutions. More 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Tags:#community#web#Weekly Wrap-ups Google Is Now a Graphing CalculatorGoogle has decided to make its simple search box into yet another thing. It’s now a WebGL-powered 3D graphing calculator. If you type in a two-variable function, Google’s search box on the desktop will graph an animated, interactive, 3D plot right in your browser. More A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… How to Jailbreak According to chpwnWhen you jailbreak an iOS device for the first time, you have a lot to learn. That’s just the first of many ways jailbreaking is unlike the out-of-the-box Apple experience. To get a better sense of the purpose and potential of jailbreaking, I talked to one of the best. MoreReadWriteWeb ChannelsEnterpriseTake My Facebook Password? Over My Dead BodyIs Microsoft Challenging Google on HTTP 2.0 with WebSocket?[Infographic] Social Media Security Basics MobileFor Google, to Play Is to Fight the Commoditization of AndroidFuzebox, the iPad and the Reality of Simple Unified CommunicationsSquashing Bugs: The Many Layered Approach to Mobile App TestingCloudFollow ReadWriteCloud on Twitter and join the ReadWriteCloud LinkedIn Group.Red Hat Sets a Date for OpenShift Source ReleaseBox Launches Its Own Enterprise Cloud Operating EcosystemGoogle’s Go Programming Language Grows Up: Now What?HackFollow ReadWriteHack on Twitter.Google Adds New Toys to OAuth PlaygroundTrello: Online Collaboration Software at Its FinestRevenge of the DevOps: Microsoft Targets Next Visual Studio for Admins TooReadWriteWeb CommunityYou can find ReadWriteWeb in many places on the web, a few of which are below.ReadWriteWeb on FacebookReadWriteWeb on TwitterReadWriteWeb on Google+ReadWriteWeb on LinkedInReadWriteWeb on PinterestReadWriteWeb on StorifySubscribe to the ReadWriteWeb Weekly Wrap-upWant to have this wrap up delivered to you automagically? You can subscribe to the Weekly Wrap-up by RSS or by email. 10 AirPlay-Ready iPad Apps That Make Apple TV Worth ItWhen I first unboxed the new 1080p Apple TV and plugged it in, I wasn’t blown away. Having used a Boxee Box for the last 16 months, I’ve come to expect flexibility and a broad selection of content sources from my streaming set-top boxes. In fact, after several minutes of playing around with it, I was tempted to box it back up and send it back. More The Unspoken Etiquette of Facebook Photo TaggingThat afternoon, the Facebook notifications just kept rolling in, one after the other. You’ve been tagged in a photo, the social giant eagerly announced via email, again and again. The subject of many of those photographs – we’ll call her Stacey, as she has requested anonymity – was not expecting these images to be published online, to say the least. 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More Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts More Top Posts: The End of RIM As We Know ItBlackBerry-maker Research In Motion shares are down tonight after reporting a terrible quarter: Sales are shrinking at a time when its main competitor, Apple, saw iPhone sales more than double. RIM is no longer profitable. And now it is looking for a new plan. More New Ways to Do Disaster Recovery Using VirtualizationRemember your father’s disaster recovery (DR) process? Chances are it involved using a bunch of data tapes and rotating them between home and work, or different offices. Tapes were cheap, but notoriously unreliable. And getting them restored on a server took a lot of work. There are better solutions for today’s DR, including using one of a number of newer virtualization technologies that makes it easier and a lot faster to bring up a server from a backup. Let’s look at some of the alternatives. More Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting For Google, to Play Is to Fight the Commoditization of AndroidWhen you think of Android, do you think of Google? No, probably not. Android as a brand conjures up associations with the little green robot, the sound of your phone’s Droid tone, Motorola, Samsung and even Verizon, but rarely Google. For that reason, Google has rebranded the Android Marketplace as Google Play. Is it too little too late or is it a smart move to lessen brand dilution? Dan Rowinski takes a look at the reasons for the rebrand and its hope for success in this week’s top story, For Google, to Play Is to Fight the Commoditization of Android.From our readers:Jay Godse – Android is not a strong enough brand to do what it needs to do for Google. It is valuable to developers as a technology brand. It is valuable to handset makers and carriers as a customer attraction brand. It is valuable to consumers as a place to buy apps for Android phones,i.e. a commerce brand. In the long run, Android cannot be all three things. The weakest brand facet of Android is the commerce brand, so it is a good decision to separate it from the technology and customer attraction brands in the form of Google Play.Personally, I don’t think that the name “Google Play” captures the right value proposition to customers of the Android marketplace. “Google Market” might have been a better choice. However, at least the brand is separate from the technology and customer-attraction brand facets of Android. robyn tippins The Android Marketplace is rebranded as Google Play. All of this and more in the ReadWriteWeb Weekly Wrap-up.After the jump you’ll find more of this week’s top news stories on some of the key topics that are shaping the Web – Location, App Stores and Real-Time Web – plus highlights from some of our six channels. Read on for more.last_img read more