The 9pm Bad Nasi Goreng Makes the Merlion Sad with Snarky Platypus

Photo of a faded booklet page, "Rice cookery is space -age. Now this classic rice dish can be your speciality," and a photo of a Sunbeam electric frypan containing alleged nasa goring as discussed in the podcast. Also, a photo of the booklet cover and a platypus.
Alleged nasi goreng in a Sunbeam frypan, and (inset) the cover of “1966 Rice Recipes from the Rice Marketing Board Cookery Bureau. (Photo: Stilgherrian) Also, a profile pic of Snarky Platypus. (Photo: Supplied)

Stilgherrian is joined by Snarky Platypus, who’s recently returned to the socials after a two-year break, for a long conversation about everything from food to conspiracy theories to stupid names for Sydney suburbs. Quite a lot about food, actually.

Continue reading “The 9pm Bad Nasi Goreng Makes the Merlion Sad with Snarky Platypus”

Weekly Wrap 349: Real work begins, travel looms near

Indian-Pacific, stalledMy week of Monday 30 January to Sunday 5 February 2017 has just ended, with some pleasing results.

It seems that once we moved from January into February, and Australia returned from its traditional extended holiday season, that things started moving. I also managed to get rid of some of the pain that had been plaguing me over summer.


  • “The 9pm End of the World, Probably”, being The 9pm Edict episode 65, was recorded on Saturday night. It’s also available on SoundCloud and Spreaker. Needless to say, most of it is about President Donald Trump.


Media Appearances, Corporate Largesse

None. But wait until you see what happens over the coming few weeks.

The Week Ahead

I’m based up at Wentworth Falls this week, but on Monday I’m doing the long commute to Sydney for an appointment at the US Consulate, a couple of errands, and maybe a meeting or two. I’ll also finish off a column for ZDNet en route.

For the rest of the week, I’m working on that SEKRIT editorial project. I’ll tell you more about that mid-week. I’ll probably also write a thing or two for ZDNet, because the Australian Parliament starts a new session this week, and there’s some legislation being debated that’s relevant to my interests.

Assuming everything goes to plan, on Sunday I’m flying to San Francisco to cover the RSA Information Security Conference (RSAC), which runs 13 to 16 February.

Further Ahead

I see that I’ll be in San Francisco when the anti-Trump general strike has been planned, Friday 17 February. That should be interesting.

I’m covering the APRICOT 2017 / APNIC43 conference in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, from 26 February to 3 March; and the annual conference of the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) in Canberra from 14 to 16 March.

Further details are at

[Photo: Indian-Pacific, stalled. The Indian-Pacific is the longest rail journey in Australia, running between Sydney and Perth via Adelaide. For some reason, on 1 February 2017 is was waiting just outside Sydney Central Station. That must be frustrating at the end of a four-day journey.]

Weekly Wrap 127: Singapore, past and future

Monday 5 to Sunday 11 November 2012 was nearly all about Singapore, and the bits that weren’t were about sore throats, diarrhoea and pain.

Since this is being posted late, I’ll spare you the details and cut to the chase. That means I don’t have to talk about the interesting encounter with someone from my past.


  • Patch Monday episode 162, “Mobile OS three-way cage fight”. A conversation about the strengths and weaknesses of the three key mobile operating systems, Apple’s iOS 6, Google’s Android and Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8. The panelists are Kate Carruthers, corporate IT consultant and founder of Social Innovation; Leslie Nassar, technology director at digital agency Amnesia Razorfish and founder of TweeVee TV; and Michael McKinnon, security advisor with AVG Australia and New Zealand.


Media Appearances

Corporate Largesse

  • On Wednesday I attended Verizon Business’ APAC Media Day in Singapore. They covered my flights from Sydney to Singapore and return with Singapore Airlines, airport transfers, three nights accommodation at the Conrad Centennial Hotel, and plenty of food and drink. They also gave me a Verizon-branded pen by Cerruti.
  • On Thursday I visited Verizon’s hospitality suite at the Barclays Singapore Open golf tournament as their guest. There was food and drink and, since it started raining and I had to get back to the hotel, they gave me a rather nice Verizon-branded umbrella.

The Week Ahead

It’s another busy week this week. I arrived in Sydney around lunchtime today, Monday, and will be focusing on logistics for the rest of the day. I think.

On Tuesday I’ll be writing my presentation for the local government IT conference, attending the VMWare lunch to launch their Cloud Index, and later meeting with Martin Roesch from Sourcefire.

On Wednesday I’m flying to Coffs Harbour for said local government IT conference. I’m staying in Coffs until Saturday, covering the conference and going for a walk on Saturday morning. I fly back to Sydney on Saturday afternoon.

I’m not sure what the weekend holds.

[Photo: Approaching storm, Singapore, a view from my room at the Parkroyal on Beach Road. The green tinge is caused by the coating on the window.]

Weekly Wrap 126: Wattle, sniffle and SCADAgeddon

Monday 29 October to Sunday 4 November 2012 was a busy week, made slightly less busy by the need to recover from the throat infection identified last week and then, because I was run down, fatigue that was probably a mix of a cold and hay fever.

Hence the photograph of the wattle I’ve posted here. It is to blame.

Dear Plant Kingdom, if I spread my genetic material all over you the way you do over me, I’d be arrested! Please behave yourself.

[Update 1545 AEDT: I am reliably informed that the hay fever is unlikely to be caused by wattle pollen.]



Media Appearances

Also, the Sydney Opera House has posted the video of my Festival of Dangerous Ideas panel, I Share Therefore I Am. I’ll write more about that in due course.

Corporate Largesse

  • On Monday evening I had a few beers with Michael McKinnon from AVG Australia and New Zealand, which they paid for.
  • On Tuesday morning I attended the breakfast launch of Windows Phone 8 at the Blue Bar,level 36 of the Shangri-La Hotel, overlooking Sydney Harbour. Microsoft paid for that, obviously.

The Week Ahead

Next week is pretty much all about Singapore. On Monday I’ll head down to Sydney and get some writing out of the way. Then on Tuesday it’s Singapore Airlines flight SQ212 departing Sydney at 0905 AEDT and arriving in Singapore mid-afternoon local time.

Wednesday is Verizon Business’ APAC Media Day, a five-hour meeting followed by cocktails. On Thursday I’m visiting the hospitality tent at the Barclays Singapore Open golf tournament as Verizon’s guest. Friday through Sunday has yet to be finalised, but there’ll be at least two articles to write and a podcast to produce.

Oh, and a social life.

My flight back to Sydney SQ231 leaves Singapore at 45 minutes past midnight Sunday night — so technically that’s Monday morning.

[Photo: Wattle near Railway Parade, near Wentworth Falls, one of the causes of my hay fever this week.]

Visiting Singapore for Verizon media briefing

Verizon has noticed that most Australians know them only for their US mobile phone business — if they know them at all. So as part of their process of fixing that, they’re sending me to Singapore.

The main focus of the trip is a media briefing day on Wednesday 7 November, where I’ll learn more about Verizon Enterprise Solutions and, of course, the information security work they do. So I daresay I’ll be writing about that sort of thing at some point.

I’m arriving in Singapore on the evening of Tuesday 6 November and, since it’s my first visit to Shopping Mall and Container Terminal Island, I’ll be staying through to Sunday night before returning to Sydney.

Verizon has also invited me to their hospitality tent at the Barclay Singapore Open. Golf. Yes, I know, I’m not the least bit interested in golf. But it’ll be a handy “networking opportunity”. Yes, I know.

So, what do I need to know about Singapore? Where must I go? And who must I meet?