The first edition of the 5at5 email letter, which I announced yesterday, was posted earlier this evening — slightly late thanks to some annoyances with TinyLetter, which I’ll tell you about another time. You can read it here, subscribe here, or even look at a local archive copy.
You are currently browsing the archive for the Personal category.
I’m claiming that January presented clear signs that I’m reversing the decline of revenue that I’d been suffering, thanks to depression and arsehattery — something that I’ve become very aware of in recent months.
If you don’t like these personal reflections that I write from time to time, then stop reading now. Read this instead.
I started this planning process at the end of 2012, because I’d noticed that until then I hadn’t actually been planning my media work, let alone taking the next step of having some kind of strategy.
I’d just plodded along doing much the same thing every week. If an income stream died, I did no real work to replace it. When new work was offered, I generally took it on unless the idea was clearly daft.
You can see what happened in my newly-updated “media objects” chart, which counts how many things I did for each masthead, regardless of complexity or income.
It’ll take a few more days to catch up on the blog posts here, so if you want the latest dose of my wisdom you should of course be following my Twitter stream. Or not. You get to decide.
I’ve just posted the first full-length podcast of material recorded on my Melbourne trip, this one being a chat with Dr Vanessa Teague about electronic voting.
Now I’ve always thought that the whole idea of electronic voting is a bit dodgy. You get a little bit of convenience, sure, but you get a whole lot more attack surface for the bad guys to hit — especially if you open up that whole can of worms of internet voting — and you make it almost impossible for anyone but a specialist digital forensics team to confirm that everything was legitimate.
I was willing to have my mind changed, but in fact the opposite happened. I now think more than ever that electronic voting opens up all manner of avenues for attack that would never have been possible before, with little benefit for most people. And it’d cost a squillion.
“There isn’t a secure solution for voting over the internet. There isn’t a good way of authenticating voters, that is, making sure that the person at the other end of the connection is the eligible voter they say they are. There isn’t an easy, usable way of helping voters to make sure that the vote they send is the vote they wanted, even if their PC is infected with malware or administered by somebody who wants to vote differently,” Teague said.
“And although there are some techniques for providing evidence that encrypted votes have been properly decrypted and tallied, it’s hard to scale those techniques to large Australian elections.”
As I said in September, give me my trusty pencil of democracy.
This was also my first podcast with a specific commercial sponsor.
Today I posted the first of three podcasts that will emerge from my coverage of the Breakpoint and Ruxcon conferences in Melbourne recently.
I managed to catch Greens Senator Scott Ludlam for a few minutes in between his session on the Ruxcon panel and whatever his next function was, and we spoke about the new attorney-general Senator George Brandis’ appointment of a former ASIO director-general as his chief of staff.
By the time I added the introduction and theme music and the like, all of those format elements ended up being longer than the interview itself, so I decided to add my own opinion. That means it’s a bit different from how Corrupted Nerds: Conversations normally works, but I’m hoping it’s interesting nonetheless.
In the next few days there’ll be two further, full-length podcasts. One is about electronic voting and why voting on the internet is a bad idea. The other covers how people have been discovering all sorts of things about North Korea using free and commercially-available satellite imagery to do their own intelligence work. Stay tuned.
I’m headed to Canberra this week to hear Eugene Kaspersky, chief executive officer and chairman of Kaspersky Lab, speak at the National Press Club on Thursday 7 November.
It’ll be an interesting event.
When I last spoke with Kaspersky in May — you can listen to that conversation now, because it became the first episode of the Corrupted Nerds: Conversations podcast — it was before Edward Snowden’s revelations began. Before “all of the cybers” changed from being something of interest only to a few specialist technology and national security writers into front page news around the world.
Actually, I’ll embed it here so you don’t even have to click through.
I suspect that the kinds of questions asked by the insular and largely Canberra-bound press gallery journalists will be as revealing of the state of play as the words of the Russian information security star himself — and he knows how to work the media.
Kaspersky is speaking at the NPC at lunchtime on Thursday, immediately after which I’ll be reporting on it for ZDNet Australia. But I’ll be in Canberra from early Wednesday afternoon through until Friday afternoon, so if you want or need to catch up, do let me know.
Disclosure: I am travelling to Canberra as the guest of Kaspersky Lab.
[Photo: Eugene Kaspersky speaking at CeBIT Australia 2012. Original photo by CeBIT Australia, used under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC-BY) license. Digital manipulation by Stilgherrian.]
When I first decided to try Pozible, the crowdfunding site, to fund last week’s trip to Melbourne, I didn’t think it was particularly special, but other did — including ABC Radio National’s Media Report.
On Wednesday last week, presenter Richard Aedy recorded an interview with me, and almost all of it made its way into Thursday evening’s program.
When Stilgherrian wanted to head interstate to cover two hacking conference but didn’t have the budget, he made his first foray into crowdfunding his journalism. So how did he go and what has he learnt? And can this be applied to other less high profile freelancers in Australia?
The audio is ©2013 Australian Broadcasting Corporation, and this is just a copy of the audio that’s posted on the program website.
The material being produced as a result of this crowdfunding is gradually being published at Corrupted Nerds.
I’ve kicked off coverage over at Corrupted Nerds with a post entitled How will we cover Breakpoint and Ruxcon? I’ll leave you to struggle with the concept of what that might be about in your own time.
If you’ve been watching my Twitter stream recently, you’ll know that I’ve been complaining about the cicadas. Here’s why.
I recorded the ambient sound here at Bunjaree Cottages about half an hour ago. Please put on your headphones, turn it up full, and press the play button.
Now imagine that going continuously for about ten hours. All day. Every day. You’re welcome.