Weekly Wrap

A weekly summary of what I’ve been doing elsewhere on the internets.

Salmon heads on special at $1.99 per kilogram: click to embiggenMy week of Monday 14 to Sunday 20 April 2014 was a solid performer in the first half, and suitably balanced in the second half — not a time-off Easter, but at least one that wasn’t about over-work.

My own media production moved away from covering the Heartbleed bug, producing just one item — an opinion piece looking back at the way the crisis was handled, as opposed to the straight news stories produced during the previous week. But the story had moved into the mainstream, and that provided the background for a couple of media appearances.

More importantly, at least from my point of view, was that on Easter Sunday I launched “The 9 O’Clock Resurrection”, a Pozible crowdfunding project to re-establish my podcast The 9pm Edict as a regular part of my media production schedule.

I’ve already posted two progress videos onto a YouTube playlist, and we’re already nearly halfway to the initial target. I’m posting plenty of updates elsewhere, so I won’t bang on about that here.

Articles

Media Appearances

5at5

There was one for every working day, so that went to plan. Why don’t you subscribe to 5at5, and then I don’t need to keep telling you about it.

Corporate Largesse

  • On Thursday I had a meeting with someone from Lewis PR to exchange notes on what we each had coming up. They paid for coffee and cake.

The Week Ahead

It’s a short working week here in Australia, which is partially why this Weekly Wrap is appearing on Tuesday. Monday was mostly an excursion with two friends to Dulwich Hill, Summer Hill and Ashfield. Dumplings were involved.

Today, Tuesday, is about email and planning and many minor tasks that need to be gotten out of the way, so that I can concentrate on promoting the Pozible project and plan out the next few weeks.

Wednesday and Thursday are writing days, with at least one thing to write for ZDNet Australia, plus some work to be done on sorting out my cashflows. Friday is Anzac Day. I will mark it in some way, personally, but I’m not sure how yet. The weekend is unplanned as yet.

I’m in Sydney all week, and currently plan to return to the Blue Mountains on Sunday.

[Photo: Salmon heads on special at $1.99 per kilogram, photographed at Cabramatta in Sydney's south-west on Saturday 19 April 2014.]

Sulphur-Crested Cockatoo: click to embiggenMy week of Monday 7 to Sunday 13 April 2014 was astoundingly busy and productive. Yes, Heartbleed is to blame. But so is completely ignoring medical advice — which is something I’ll write about next week.

While there’s a lot on my mind that I want to tell you about, I’ve been churning out so many blog posts today, and so many articles about Heartbleed in recent days, and drinking so much wine relaxing across the weekend, that I can’t be arsed saying anything more.

So here’s the list.

Articles

Every single thing that I wrote this week was about the Heartbleed security bug.

Media Appearances

5at5

I managed to pump out another five this week, although one of them was on the weekend. Why don’t you subscribe to 5at5, and then I don’t need to keep telling you about it.

Corporate Largesse

  • On Monday, some of the people at UTS bought me coffees and lunch. Does that count as largesse?

The Week Ahead

I have no idea. The only things that have been locked in are being in Sydney on Thursday morning so I can be a panellist on this week’s Download This Show for ABC Radio National, which is being recorded at 1100, and of course it’s Good Friday and then the Easter weekend, so in theory I shouldn’t be working.

The reality, however, is that Easter is a shitty time for freelancers, because public holidays mean a serious drop in revenue — and I’m already rather stressed about March having been a quieter month than planned.

But I’ll figure it out, just not tonight.

Oh, and there’s a lunar eclipse on Tuesday.

[Photo: Sulphur-Crested Cockatoo, photographed at dusk near Wentworth Falls on 8 April 2014.]

Banksia in the Mist: click to embiggenMy week of Monday 31 March to Sunday 6 April 2014 has definitely seen the beginnings of some sort of return to normality, despite the almost continuous dreary weather.

I won’t go on about that, however because I don’t want to jinx it. I’ll just list the stuff.

Articles

Media Appearances

5at5

I managed to pump one out every weekday this week, which hasn’t happened in a while. I think it’s about time for you to subscribe, if you haven’t already done so.

Corporate Largesse

  • On Wednesday I went to a briefing session by HP Enterprise Security Services at the Four Seasons Hotel in Sydney, where a lovely afternoon tea was served — although I’d had a big lunch, so didn’t really taste much of it.

The Week Ahead

On Monday I’m presenting an updated version of my guest lecture at University of Technology Sydney (UTS) at 1000, and that means it’s an early start. I’m catching an 0636 train from Wentworth Falls, arriving at Sydney Central at 0817. I could catch a later train, but I want to grab a bite to eat before meeting the course coordinator for coffee at 0900. Plus I want to allow for the possibility of delays. My Twitter stream should be fun that morning, for some value of fun.

If you want to take me to lunch on Monday, or otherwise catch up, now is the time to stake your claim.

I have another morning gig in Sydney on Tuesday, a meeting at 1045, so it looks like I’ll be spending plenty of time on trains over the next couple of days.

Then on Wednesday it’s an 0845 start in Sydney for the Amazon Web Services Sydney Summit. Ideally I’d stay in Sydney overnight from Tuesday, but the early-month cashflows look like they won’t permit that. Stay tunes for updates, however.

[Update 12 April 2014: Those two trips to Sydney didn't happen -- and it's a good thing they got cancelled, because once the Heartbleed security bug was announced on Wednesday my time, I was flat out on work related to that, Expect plenty of updates over the next 72 hours.]

The rest of the week and the weekend, including what will be written when, has yet to be mapped out. That will depend very much on what I manage to get done in the next 48 hours.

[Photo: Banksia in the Mist, photographed at Bunjaree Cottages on 4 April 2014.]

Bunjaree Cottages track in the mist: click to embiggenMy week of Monday 25 to Sunday 30 March 2014 has been and gone. It wasn’t very productive, but I’m going to zoom forward quickly for reasons that may become obvious in the next day or two.

I should mention that pretty much everything that last week I said I’d do this week didn’t actually happen. Shoosh.

Articles

None.

Media Appearances

None

5at5

Two days, plus a correction. There’s nothing more that needs be said in this section but, because I think it looks ugly when I have so many short paragraphs in a row, I’m going to waffle on here for a few more words so that the right-hand margin is once more established visually. Because I care.

Corporate Largesse

None.

The Week Ahead

Monday has already happened, and was moderately productive. I did a thing for ZDNet Australia, Plibersek loses our privacy in a haystack of envelopes, amongst other things.

Tuesday is a day of writing and planning here in the misty, rainy Blue Mountains. The near-continual gloom, coming somewhat early this year it seems, hasn’t exactly helped my mood.

On Wednesday I’m heading into Sydney for a media briefing about HP Enterprise Services and their security work — and probably staying overnight. And the rest of the week is only tentatively planned.

I will say that tomorrow, 1 April, sees the start of a new quarter, and I’ve got a few things in mind. Stay tuned. There may be charts. There may even be announcements.

[Photo: Bunjaree Cottages track in the mist, 24 March 2014. Even though the rain screws with my mood, it does look beautiful here at Bunjaree Cottages.]

Sydney skyline, with frigate: click to embiggenMy week of Monday 17 to Sunday 23 March 2014 was a busy one, and moderately productive. I am happy with it.

Apart from the media objects listed here, I did quite a bit of background work on a SEKRIT project that I’ll announce on Tuesday. The only hint for now is that it’s something that quite a few people have been wanting for a while now.

Articles

Media Appearances

5at5

We’re back up to four out of five days being published. Excellent.

Corporate Largesse

  • On Monday I went to an event with a delightful name: Dell Australia’s Steak, Storage & Solutions Media & Analyst Lunch at Kingsley’s Steak & Crabhouse in Woolloomooloo. Obviously they paid for the food and wine.
  • On Tuesday I went to a media briefing by Imperva at Wolfies Restaurant, Circular Quay, where of course they paid for the food and wine. Imperva also gave us: A rather nice branded notebook; a branded pen; and a well-made carry bag to put them in. M.Tech, one of Imperva’s channel partners, gave us: A branded water bottle, carry bag, and business card holder.
  • On Tuesday I finally got around to checking my postbox, where I discovered that Sourcefire had sent me a six-pack of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale and a branded bottle opened / key ring to open them with. Thanks for that.

The Week Ahead

It’ll be a busy week. Indeed, it’s the first week of a challenging three months ahead. I’ll tell you more about that later, but one key issue is that I need to decide how I’ll ramp up my revenue in the coming quarter. I have plenty of ideas, I just have to choose — and choose wisely.

On Monday I’ll be doing the final planning for the SEKRIT thing to be announced on Tuesday, as well as speaking with my editors about their needs for the next month or so.

On Wednesday I’m heading into Sydney for a few things, including the SANS Australia Community Night presentation Why Do Organisations Get Compromised? I’ll then stay in Sydney overnight, and on Thursday I’ll write my ZDNet Australia column before heading back up the hill.

Friday has been kept clear for work on my legacy business Prussia.Net, although that may change. The weekend is currently unplanned.

[Photo: Sydney skyline, with frigate, 17 March 2014, being a photograph taken from the steps leading from Potts Point down to Woolloomoloo. In the background is the Sydney CBD. In the foreground, mostly hidden behind trees, is a Royal Australian Navy frigate docked at Fleet Base East.]

Study in purple and grey, Leura: click to embiggenMy week of Monday 10 to Sunday 16 March 2014 has been a vast improvement, with plenty of signs of productivity returning.

The difficulties hinted at last week were more about continuing gastro-intestinal problems rather than stress and depression — though obviously such things interact — and I’m fairly sure that the third anti-depressant I’ve been trying has very much not been helping in this regard. But I won’t tangle that thread of thought into this Wrap.

While there might not seem to be that much more this week, that’s because I don’t include the various geek-for-hire things I still do from time to time for some legacy clients. A couple hours of relatively straightforward systems administration pays more than writing a typical column, which can reduce the stress remarkably. Such a thing happened this week.

Articles

By the time today (Sunday) ends, I should also have finished a piece for Crikey that’ll probably be published on Monday — though given the fascinating political news following the state elections in Tasmania and South Australia yesterday, I wouldn’t be surprised if it were held over until later in the week.

Media Appearances

None.

5at5

We seem to have gotten back on track from Wednesday, and the coming week is looking good.

Corporate Largesse

None.

The Week Ahead

On Monday and Tuesday I’ve got lunchtime briefings in Sydney, with Dell Australia and infosec company Imperva respectively, so that means I’ll almost certainly be in Sydney overnight too.

I haven’t locked in the exact order of play after that. It’ll depend on when payments arrive and when I feel in the mood for work, but obviously you can follow my Twitter stream to stay up to date.

[Photo: Study in purple and grey, Leura,14 March 2014, being a picture of the typical pre-storm cloudscapes we see up here in the Blue Mountains.]

My week of Monday 3 to Sunday 9 March 2014 has been and gone and has delivered little of note. The plan did not go to plan. I shall return to this theme another time.

Articles

I completed my 1500-word piece for the Walkley Foundation magazine’s special issue on press freedom that’ll be published in May.

Media Appearances

None. However the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) has asked me to guest lecture their first year students again with an updated version of Algorithms and the Filter Bubble in April, and ABC News24 has booked me for a chat way off in the distant future somewhen.

5at5

Well, there was one. Why did I start this again?

Corporate Largesse

None.

The Week Ahead

There is no plan. Let’s see. I have cancelled a planned visit to Melbourne, should you have seen mention of that somewhere.
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Melbourne skyline: click to embiggenMy week of Monday 24 February to Sunday 2 March 2014 was largely spent in Melbourne and Sydney. Both cities proved more or less enjoyable. And then I spent the weekend in a rainy Wentworth Falls.

While the Melbourne trip was primarily for the Intel event detailed below, I also caught up with various geekfolk and managed to combine work-related conversations with excellent food and drink. May I draw your attention to the Cookie Beer Hall, Whiskey & Alement, the Shark Fin Inn in Chinatown, and the Red Emperor Chinese Restaurant at Southbank.

I paid for all those things. It was more expensive than I’d planned. I don’t know how the lesser people can afford it, but there seemed to be so many of them in these venues.

Articles

I’ve also been working on a 1500-word piece for the Walkley Foundation magazine that’ll be published in May.

Media Appearances

5at5

Uhoh. The whole thing collapsed. Sorry. I’ll revive the poor little thing in the coming week. Promise.

Corporate Largesse

  • On Tuesday I went to Intel’s mixed-bag event in Melbourne, which combined briefings on their new Xeon E7 v2 Server processors, their vision for the future of workplace collaboration and how they’re implementing it themselves — I’ll be writing about that at some point — a look at a new project at NAB, and a rather fine three-hour lunch at Bistro Vue. Intel paid for my flights to Melbourne, airport transfers, and one night’s accommodation at the Crowne Plaza Melbourne — that last item being their sensible alternative to me having to catch the 0513 train into Sydney to catch a 0830 flight.

The Week Ahead

Monday is mostly about planning my media work, writing something for ZDNet Australia, and finishing off the article for the Walkley Foundation.

Through the rest of the week week I’ll be writing another piece for ZDNet Australia, one for Technology Spectator, making sure 5at5 returns to schedule, and figuring out what to do about the loose ends from my Pozible project.

The last is particularly embarrassing, because I’ve simply failed to deliver some of the products. I’ll have to figure out some alternative plan to make good.

I’ll be in Sydney on Wednesday and Thursday, staying overnight. In Wednesday there’s a lunchtime briefing by WatchGuard Technologies, and on Thursday I’m meeting with people from the Slovak infosec firm ESET.

I’m supposed to be in Sydney again on Saturday for an important social event. I’m not quite sure how I’ll plan my movements around that.

[Photo: Melbourne skyline, 26 February 2014.]

Stilgherrian juggling the invisible things at Tech Leaders Forum: photo by Munin Kotadia: click to embiggenMy week of Monday 17 to Sunday 23 February 2014 began with a busy time on the Gold Coast at the Tech Leaders Forum, but when I returned to Wentworth Falls mid-week I descended into food poisoning and related depths. I shall not be drawing a diagram. You shall be grateful.

Nevertheless I got quite a bit done, and I shall now list some of it. But I won’t say much more, because this week ended almost a week ago and I’m moving on.

Articles

I deliberately cut back on the number of written pieces I produced this month, their place in the budget having been filled by the discussion on digital privacy for Hitachi Data Systems. But I’m happy with what I wrote, including this column.

Media Appearances

This was a ridiculous week for media spots. I did a total of seven radio interviews — and that’s after I’d turned down a couple of others, as well as a TV spot.

5at5

Oh dear. It seems that 5at5, the “email letter” that I started three weeks ago, has started to get a bit wobbly. I only managed three issues this week. Sorry.

Corporate Largesse

  • The Tech Leaders Forum 2014, formerly known as Kickstart Forum, on the Gold Coast ran from Sunday to Tuesday. The organisers, Media Connect, covered my flights from Sydney, airport transfers, and two nights accommodation at the InterContinental Sanctuary Cove. Then there were various freebies. Avaya: a 4GB USB key containing media assets. Emerson Network Power: a combination max-min thermometer-hygrometer; and an 8GB USB key containing media assets. NEC: an 8GB USB key; and a little battery-powered Bluetooth audio speaker. Riverbed: a Power Bank model A5 2600mAh external battery with all the connectors; and a 4GB USB key containing media assets, on a bright orange lanyard. Symantec: two bottles of orange juice.

[Photo: Stilgherrian juggling the invisible things at Tech Leaders Forum, 16 February 2014, with freelance journalist Claire Porter on the right. Photograph by Munir Kotadia. This is just crying out for some Photoshop work.]

My week of Monday 3 to Sunday 9 February 2014 was, as I predicted last week, a quiet one, thanks to what now appears to be a distinct monthly cycle. We shall have to do something about that.

I shan’t list all the empty sections to this post, revealing that there weren’t any final media outputs — except of course for the daily 5at5 email letter, as I’m calling it. Why I started doing a new thing that generates no revenue is beyond my understanding. I mean, I explained it last week, but the explanation doesn’t make any sense.

However I did do quite a bit of preparation for the coming week…

The Week Ahead

I’m likely to be in the Blue Mountains through until Friday or Saturday, but as always that might change at very short notice.

There’s two key structuring events this week. On Wednesday I’m moderating a panel discussion on Australia’s new privacy laws for Hitachi Data Systems. That’s at 1200 AEDT, and it’s a Google Hangout so you can watch from wherever you are. And on Sunday I’m heading to the Gold Coast for the annual Kickstart Forum, where my tech press co-conspirators and I will be propagandised for three days.

Somewhere in there I may construct some paragraphs for money.

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