My week of Monday 28 August to Sunday 3 September 2023 began in the Hunter Valley, passed through Sydney, and ended up with me having a relatively unproductive week back in the Blue Mountains. But there’s still some links to Interesting Things.
- Digital developments from Canberra 51. Website age verification dropped, business registers modernisation program dumped after spending billions, Centrelink bad, furore at the OAIC, fixes for the gig economy, and more.
You can read my previous writing at Authory, where you can also subscribe to an email compilation of any new stories each Sunday morning.
I know I’ve mentioned a couple of times that I plan to get back into some journalism-type writing soon, but that will be happening soon. The planning, that is.
Podcasts, Videos, Photos, Media Appearances, Corporate Largesse
As I write this
Elon Musk is reportedly at the Burning Man festival, which is currently sinking into the mud after 150 mm of rain. Elsewhere, his reputation continues to do the same. [Update 4 September 2023: Musk is not at Burning Man. That was just a rumour.]
- Elon Musk’s erosion of safety standards at X is helping Putin spread Russian propaganda, study finds.
- Elon Musk’s X to roll out audio, video calling feature.
- Designer Says The Only Way To Fix The Cybertruck Is To Scrap It And Start Over. Or, you know, don’t.
- Via Forbes, “Elon Musk Has Quietly Primed The Crypto Market For An Explosive Bombshell That Could Play Havoc With The Price Of Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP And Dogecoin.”
- “Elon Musk’s ‘ruthless’ plan to close his Twitter deal early let him fire the social media company’s top execs — and stop them collecting a ‘$200 million’ payout.”
- “Malaysia prime minister persuaded Elon Musk to invest in the country by freeing Tesla and SpaceX from ‘nitty-gritty’ bureaucracy.”
- Tesla investigated over funds ‘used to build secret Austin house for Elon Musk’, although he’s denied it.
In other news:
- Perun’s latest analysis is excellent, as always. The Death of Prigozhin — The crash & its implications for Wagner, Africa, Ukraine & Russia.
- This Voices from the Past episode Mediocre Samurai Describes Real Life in Historical Japan is quite a story
- And while we’re at YouTube, I found a well-crafted history channel. To begin with, try Between SLAVERY and FREEDOM: The Ambiguous Status of Medieval Peasants.
- Matt Bevan’s wonderful ABC podcast format If You’re Listening is now a weekly, with a new topic each week. Highly recommended. It’s also now available in video form.
- It turns out we don’t really know Who Really Invented the Alphabet?.
- Rental realities in NSW: New insights from the End of Tenancy Survey.
- ICYMI, Aussie woman found with parasitic roundworm in her brain caught from carpet python. The full paper has the catchy title Human Neural Larva Migrans Caused by Ophidascaris robertsi Ascarid.
- And finally, 20 years ago Weebl made a music video on Flash titled Badger Badger Badger. He’s just released 20 Years of Badgers and apparently he’s releasing all these individual versions over the coming days.
The Week Ahead
Monday is about scoping out a client project, something I’ve been a bit tardy in doing. Tuesday is about doing things for clients too, with the exact plan to be figured out on the day.
[Update 6 September 2023: The planned walk on Wednesday has been postponed due to reasons my end. We’ll probably slot it in next week some time.]
On Wednesday I’m heading to Sydney for a social day, and we’ll be going for a walk.
You see, back in 2010, Snarky Platypus and I would go wandering in Sydney suburbs we were unfamiliar with. Some of these walks were quite long, as this map shows.
If the map doesn’t show up, try here.
This week we’ll be meeting at Merrylands and walking to Bankstown, which is around 13 km. We’ll probably diverge from the most direct route, and take breaks at suitable watering holes along the way.
Thursday and Friday will be working days. On Thursday evening I’m scheduled to do ABC Radio’s RN Drive Big Tech spot at 4.50pm.
I definitely won’t be paying attention to all the conferences and seminars, but they’re certainly possibilities.
- NEW: Groundhog Day – A series of roundtables by IERLab, online, 11 September 2023 (TBC). “A one-day online-only open-access collection of roundtables on the cyclical nature of academic spotlights and hot topics, and some of the frustrations related to the ahistoricity of the discussions and moral panics. We will address the cycles, patterns, templates, etc., related fatigue on digital media discourse.”
- APNIC 56, Kyoto and online, 12–14 September 2023. I very much doubt that I’ll be going to Japan, but this is always such a good conference that I’ll be watching some of it online, probably.
- NEW: CyberOZ 2023: Engineering The Future of Cybersecurity, IPv6 and AI, University of NSW, 15 September 2023 (TBC).
- The 9pm Hobart Expedition, 22–25 October 2023. Snarky Platypus and I have planned a voyage. I may well be recording a podcast there. We’re definitely going to MONA on the Monday, though, and I’m amused by this review in The Irish Times back in 2014: Mona, the world’s most expensive joke?.
[Photo: Crossing the Hawkesbury Estuary on the M1 Pacific Motorway at dusk on 28 August 2023.]