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NSW TrainLink V-SetMy week of Monday 25 June to Sunday 1 July 2018 was less productive than hoped, thanks to being a computer down. It looks even less productive than it actually was, because the main work products haven’t been published yet.

Winter has finally arrived in the Blue Mountains too, so the colder weather has reduced my productivity. Yes, I am whinging and having a big sook. But on with the show…

Articles

I wrote three more stories for the Crikey project. The total is now four, and the first is scheduled to appear on Monday, as I understand it. Watch my Twitter stream for the details.

Podcasts

None, but there will definitely be at least one episode of The 9pm Edict in the coming week. Whether it’s the interview I recorded recently with John Birmingham, or a magazine-style series of rants, remains to be seen.

Media Appearances

  • On Monday, I spoke about Facebook’s new Subscription Groups on ABC Darwin. As you may have surmised by now, I’ve pretty much given up posting the audio here.

Corporate Largesse

None.

The Week Ahead

Monday and Tuesday are writing days, primarily, producing a fifth story for the Crikey series.

Wednesday is full of travelling. I’ll take the train down to Sydney to return a loaner computer and deal with a couple of medical appointments, a bus to Castle Hill to collect my repaired computer, a bus to Parramatta for an early dinner, probably, and a train back to Wentworth Falls.

There’s no clear plans yet for Thursday onwards, but it’s likely to include an afternoon off in Katoomba, and some preparation for the weeks ahead. I’ll also knock off some podcast editing.

Further Ahead

For a few weeks in July and August, I’ll be writing more than usual for ZDNet, covering for staff who will be taking leave. That’ll keep me busy.

Things I’ve pencilled in, none of which have been confirmed yet:

Update 2 July 2018: Edited to reflect schedule changes.

[Photo: A NSW TrainLink V-Set train at Sydney Central station, photographed on 27 June 2018.]

Nested bridges on the Brisbane RiverMy week of Monday 28 May to Sunday 3 June 2018 began in the Blue Mountains, passed through the Gold Coast, and ended up in Brisbane. But I told you that last week.

Articles

Podcasts

None. But there will be two episodes quite soon. Trust me on this.

Media Appearances

  • On Monday morning, I spoke about the EU’s new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) on ABC Darwin.
  • On Monday evening, I spoke about the risks of leaving data un-wiped on things like printers and photocopiers on ABC Melbourne.
  • On Tuesday morning, I spoke about the EU’s new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) on ABC Alice Springs.
  • On Thursday, the inimitable wine writer Philip White cited one of my tweets, kinda, in his InDaily column, The art of ranking alcohol.

Corporate Largesse

  • Wednesday through Friday, there was plenty of food and drink to be had at the AusCERT Cyber Security Conference. I also scored an AusCERT backpack and polo shirt, and from Enex Carbon a couple of branded pens. I didn’t really run amok in the vendors’ stalls this year.

The Week Ahead

I’m staying on in Brisbane for a couple more days. On Monday, after a morning of writing, I’m having lunch with an infosec person, then recording an episode of The 9pm Probe with author and columnist John Birmingham. Tuesday includes more writing, as well as my afternoon flight back to Sydney.

Wednesday is a Sydney day, with a couple of medical appointments interrupting my scheduled writing. I’ll also be recording a review of a chicken and avocado pie — don’t ask — and eventually getting the train back up to Wentworth Falls.

The rest of the week is full of writing for Crikey and ZDNet, arranged as the mood takes me. Then there’s the Queen’s Birthday long weekend, but so far I haven’t planned anything for that.

Further Ahead

Things I’ve pencilled in:

[Photo: Nested bridges on the Brisbane River. SA view from a CityCat ferry as it makes its way down the Brisbane River towards the CBD, photographed on 3 June 2018.]

Cricket!This is about Monday 2 to Sunday 8 April 2018, but let’s get on with the details.

Podcasts

  • “The 9pm Probe: Dr Alice Gorman, space archaeologist”, being The 9pm Edict episode 76. You can also listen to it on SoundCloud and Spreaker. This is the pilot episode of what I hope will become a regular addition to The 9pm Edict cycle, a series of long-form interviews with interesting people. Please let me know what you think.

Articles

Media Appearances

Corporate Largesse

None.

The Week Ahead

It’s going to be a big one. On Monday morning I’m heading down to Sydney, where I’ll do some important preparations, like getting a haircut. I’ll also be continuing with the research on that SEKRIT editorial project. I’ll be able to tell you about that eventually, but not just yet.

On Tuesday I’m taking the 1201 train to Canberra, doing a bunch of stuff en route. That evening, I’m covering a panel discussion at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI), Stopping a Cyber Threat on Our Election: US and Australian Experiences. Should be interesting.

On Wednesday and Thursday, I’m covering the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) Conference, so on Friday I reckon I’ll still be writing about that. There’s usually a bunch of stories.

I’ll stay in Canberra until late Saturday afternoon, and have a lazy day in Sydney on Sunday.

[Photo: Cricket! A large and, I think, female cricket found at Bunjaree Cottages near Wentworth Falls on 2 April 2018.]

ABC logoIt’s almost 20 years since Google was founded, and it’s fair to say that at least some of the company’s services have become a part of almost every internet user’s life. But what did we do before Google?

There were other search engines, of course, but what about before the web was a thing?

On Friday I discussed this question with ABC Adelaide presenter Peter Goers, along with librarian Nikki White from the National Library of Australia.

Play

This audio is ©2018 Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

ABC logoThe demonstration launch of SpaceX’s Dragon Heavy launch vehicle was for me the highlight of the week. It got some attention elsewhere too, and not just from space geeks.

By complete coincidence, I’d been booked for ABC Melbourne’s regular Wednesday night “Please Explain” spot, with the task of explaining Elon Musk, the founder of SpaceX. Here’s the full conversation with Lindy Burns and Declan Fay.

Play

This audio is ©2018 Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

ABC logoABC Melbourne has a regular spot called “Explain This”. This week I was asked to join them to explain the Cloud.

In this edition of Explain This we delve into the cloud computing: what it is, and how it works.

Privacy and cyber-security journalist Stilgherrian gives you the lowdown on some of the stickier question involved with cloud computing such as can you erase things from it and do you actually even own your files once they are stored there.

Here’s the full 20-minute conversation with Lindy Burns as broadcast on Wednesday night.

Play

This audio is ©2017 Australian Broadcasting Corporation, and it’s being served directly from the ABC website.

ABC logoFriday’s news that Donald Trump’s Twitter account had been deactivated for 11 minutes swept the world. No wonder it caught the attention of Peter Goers at ABC Adelaide.

Here’s the resulting 14-minute radio spot. It begins with a chat with Rebecca Fraser from the Career Development Association of Australia, and I’m after that.

I shamelessly steal some material from an article at The Clever, 15 Times Fired Employees Got Revenge On Their Company, which I think I forgot to credit. Sorry.

Play

This audio is ©2017 Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

ABC logoIt’s been a while since I’ve posted the audio from any of my radio spots, but we’re back. Here’s my conversation with Lindy Burns on ABC Melbourne from the evening of 31 October.

Two stories took our fancy.

First was the Australian tour of a supposedly intelligent robot called Sophia. I’m sceptical about how intelligent it actually was, but it gave me an excuse to talk about the uncanny valley, and the early chatbot ELIZA.

Second was the news that Amazon is launching a new service called Amazon Key, which will let couriers open people’s front doors and put deliveries inside. Would you trust strangers to come into your house?

Play

This audio is ©2017 Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

Ulex europaeusAfter every up, there is a down. That’s how waves work. That’s how tides work. That’s how rollercoasters work. My week of Monday 16 to Sunday 22 October 2017 was less hectic than last week.

Some important background tasks were accomplished, but this is all that was visible to the world.

Media Appearances

Articles, Podcasts, Corporate Largesse

None, but coming up…

The Week Ahead

Monday will be a jumbled day of geekery, editorial planning, story pitches, administrivia, and maybe even errands.

The next episode of The 9pm Edict podcast will be recorded on Tuesday 24 October at 2100 AEST. As has become traditional, it will be streamed live via stilgherrian.com/edict/live/. You still have time to support this podcast with a one-off contribution.

I’ll also be announcing a new crowdfunding campaign on Pozible. It’s been more than a year since my last concentrated ask-for-money burst, and the gods know my budget needs it. Stay tuned for details.

On Wednesday, I’ll be recording an interview for the next episode of the Covert Contact podcast. If you haven’t done so, you can listen to my first appearance, the episode about Australian Cyber Policy.

As is so often the case, the rest of the week is unplanned, including the weekend.

Further Ahead

At this stage, I haven’t locked in anything specific for the rest of the calendar year. Please feel free to make some suggestions.

[Photo: Ulex europaeus. A pretty but invasive gorse species (Ulex europaeus) phototographed at Bunjaree Cottages in the Blue Mountains. It’s looking a little the worse for wear after the recent rains. Photographed on 22 October 2017.]

Taking off for new adventuresMy week of Monday 26 June to Sunday 2 July 2017 was strangely quiet, but also strangely productive. It’s a fine start for the new financial year.

I’m even fixing my broken time-management systems, and that’s just one of the reasons I finally feel like I’m climbing out of a low patch.

Articles

I wrote a second piece for ZDNet, which will be posted on Monday.

Media Appearances

On Tuesday night Australian time, the ransomware known variously as Petya or NotPetya amongst other things, spread across the planet. Inevitably, I ended up talking about it in the media on Wednesday. I did radio spots on 3AW Melbourne, ABC Brisbane (where I also spoke briefly about the €2.4 billion fine copped by Google), ABC Melbourne, and various ABC News reports. I also appeared on Channel TEN’s The Project.

And on Friday evening, I spoke about Australia’s new cyber warfare unit (briefly) and other matters with Peter Goers on ABC Adelaide.

Podcasts, Corporate Largesse

None. Read the rest of this entry »

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