My week of Monday 16 to Sunday 22 February 2015 has been busy, productive and exhausting. And it’s still going. If only my life lately were about more than just trying to be busy and productive. Sigh.
- “The 9pm Malcolm and the Cnuts”, being The 9pm Edict episode 37. I hadn’t planned to do an episode of the Edict this week, but on Friday I had an encounter with Malcolm Turnbull, and one thing led to another… But I am getting more efficient. This episode only took six hours to produce, although it did omit a couple of regular segments.
- Corrupted Nerds Extra: Malcolm Turnbull opens NICTA Techfest 2015, being the full audio of Turnbull’s speech and subsequent doorstop press conference.
There were four editions of 5at5 this week, on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and an off-schedule 7at7 on Sunday morning. You might want to subscribe so you receive them all as they’re released. Subscribe. Just subscribe.
- On Friday, I went to NICTA’s Techfest at Australian Technology Park, where I was fed and watered.
- Sunday is the first day of the Tech Leaders Forum, formerly known as Kickstart, at the Fairmont Resort. The event continues on Monday, so I’ll post the full list of largesse next week.
The Week Ahead
Monday is the second and final day of the Tech Leaders Forum, after which I shall collapse and have an early night.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, I’m writing a feature for ZDNet Australia.
On Thursday, I’m heading to Sydney for the next step in my treatment program for sleep apnoea — which I have yet to blog about in any detail — as well as some errands and then, at 1615 AEDT, a television spot on ABC News24.
On Friday, I’ll probably be writing my usual column for ZDNet Australia.
Saturday is unplanned. Place your bids now.
On Sunday, I’ll be producing an episode of The 9pm Edict podcast. Because I am an idiot.
[Photo: Log. Termites had eaten out the core of this tree at Bunjaree Cottages, and it had filled with water — much to the surprise of the chain-saw wielding chap who felled it. A shame I wasn’t there to see it. Photographed on 20 February 2015.]
A double-headed Patch Monday podcast this week. Are multitudes of video surveillance cameras value for money? And do teenagers with free Rudd government laptops represent a security risk?
Security consultant Crispin Harris is co-author of the
soon-to-be-published paper Information overload: CCTV, your networks, communities and crime [PDF], and he’s been digging into the numbers.
Meanwhile, a 15-year-old Sydney lad reckons he’s broken out of the security restrictions on the Lenovo netbook he got as part of the Digital Education Revolution and could install games and browse the school’s file server.
You can listen below. But it’s probably better for my stats if you listen at ZDNet Australia or subscribe to the RSS feed or subscribe in iTunes.
Please, let me know what you think. We now accept audio comments too. Either Skype to “stilgherrian” or phone Sydney 02 8011 3733.
[Update 11 February 2010: The paper Information overload: CCTV, your networks, communities and crime [PDF] is now online.]
As you may remember, while travelling in Tanzania for Project TOTO I used a Lenovo IdeaPad S10e netbook running Windows XP rather than my usual MacBook Pro. My review is over at Neerav Bhatt’s Rambling Thoughts Blog.
In brief, it seemed just a little too much of a step down for working on the road. Like most netbooks, it’d be fine for a traveller needing occasional access to their data. As the publicity says, “Enjoy videos, check email, connect to the internet, video message family and friends and even get a little work done.” If you need to get serious work done, though, bring a full-sized laptop.
There’s nothing really wrong with the IdeaPad S10e. Indeed, I daresay it’s a more solid option than most netbooks. But even given Lenovo’s quality brand, I’d have expected just a little more grunt for the price. Find it on special, and maybe it’s your next travelling companion.
This is the hardware I’m taking to Africa for Project TOTO for ActionAid Australia, courtesy of our supporters. While I’ve said before that social media is about the people not the tools, this kind of support is great. So, what’s in the picture?
In the back row there’s a pair of laptops to leave in Tanzania, thanks to Lenovo Australia: a refurbished ThinkPad R61 (left) and a brand new ThinkPad X200 (right). I’ll review the X200 at the end of our mission. Both are running Windows Vista Business.
In the front row, from left to right:
- My own Nokia N96, to which we can compare the size of everything else. (It’s about the same size as an iPhone, Mark.)
- A Thuraya SO-2150 satellite phone from Optus, thanks to Internode who are paying the bills. Yes, that tiny little thing is a satellite phone!
- A Motorola MotoRazr V3xx multimedia phone, and
- An LG KF700Q multimedia phone, both thanks to Telstra, and both of which stay in Tanzania.
- A Lenovo IdeaPad S10e netbook running Windows XP, again thanks to Lenovo Australia, which is what I’ll be using instead of my usual MacBook Pro while I’m on the road. I’ll write about that experience as I go. However I’m very nervous about not having my usual computer with all its software loaded, and I still have to transfer my workflows to that system tonight.
So, some questions…
We’ll be able to pair the two phones to the two ThinkPads for ActionAid International Tanzania. Our blogs are running on WordPress. So they can quickly catalog their photos and videos and upload them, what tools would you recommend for the job? Remember, this is running Vista, and while I personally would consider switching to Ubuntu Linux, there isn’t time and Vista is what they already support in their office.
And as for me, running Windows XP and wanting to throw something together quickly tonight, what would you recommend?
Thank you, Lenovo, for sponsoring ActionAid Australia and Project TOTO. A few days ago I received evaluation units of the IdeaPad S10e netbook (pictured) and the ThinkPad X200 ultra-portable.
Apparently there’s more to come. Cool.
I’ve been too busy to do anything with them beyond a basic set-up, so a more detailed review will come later. However it did feel a bit weird flipping between a Windows XP Home netbook with a trackpad, a Windows Vista Business notebook with a trackpoint but no trackpad, and my usual MacBook Pro with OS X and a multi-touch trackpad and a mouse.
Interestingly, even though the X200 is more powerful and physically larger, it feels lighter than the S10e. Mind you, it’s four times the price. 😉
[Update: This problem has since been resolved. Please also read How Dell fixed my monitor order for the full story.]
Dell, I’m not happy with you. I’m not happy with you at all. Your incompetent customer service has screwed up the timelines for an important project for a new client, yet your blind, stupid corporate machine blunders on like a brain-damaged slug.
If you read my Twitter stream yesterday you can probably skip this post. However I will document this little disaster because I’m still waiting for Dell to provide the promised explanation and I’ll point their people in this direction. I have specific questions at the end.
In brief, though, it was a customer “service” disaster. I’ll continue to recommend Hewlett Packard’s well-engineered computers and excellent service to my clients.
Continue reading “Dell’s useless customer “service””