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From Mxit to Dr Math

Adele Botha and Laurie Butgereit

In 2007, Laurie Butgereit, a researcher at the CSIR Meraka Institute, started to use Mxit as a communication channel to tutor her son in mathematics. Her son and a number of his friends logged in, and Dr Math was born. At the inception of Dr Math, Mxit freely communicated with numerous Jabber servers around the world. Butgereit (2011a) simply created a chat account (http://jabber.org) using an open-source chat client, such as Gaim or Pidgin, and, within minutes, the author was chatting to the handful of high-school friends about their mathematics homework.

Mxit is one of South Africa’s largest social-networking platforms and currently has over 50 million users registered (Mxit, 2012). The ...

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