LAURIE PATTON | 21 November 2018
As Christopher Pyne has pointed out, “We don’t need to put a handbrake on population growth, we need to manage our population growth sensibly in a country which quite frankly can take a lot more than 25 million people”. Pyne comes from Adelaide, of course, where the state government says it would like to see a lot more people living.
We do need to think carefully about how we make our cities more liveable and more sustainable however, and we need to question whether so many people should be crammed into already congested capital cities like Melbourne and Sydney.
Continue reading “It’s poor long term planning, not the size of the population, that’s the problem”
By LAURIE PATTON | 23 January 2019
Many of my friends and colleagues have asked me “what happened at ASCA?” but until now I have not been in a position to reply.
Around the world the latest buzz in the tech sector is about something called ‘smart cities’. This essentially involves using existing and emerging technologies, many of these communications based, in order to make our cities and communities more liveable and more sustainable. Along with a national decentralisation plan I believe we could use smart cities initiatives to dramatically improve life for millions of Australians.
Continue reading “A tale of two smart cities – life in the NFP sector”
By LAURIE PATTON | 6 November 2018
The boss of the ACCC, Rod Sims, has told The Australian “its recent dealings with the retail telcos has highlighted a weakness with the fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) access technology”.
For numerous broadband experts, not to mention millions of hapless NBN customers, this might be seen as a classic ‘no shit Sherlock’ moment. However, it is probably the most significant recent development in the long running saga that began with Labor’s 21st Century fibre-based national broadband network, only to end in tears for so many when former prime minister Tony Abbott ordered his heavily-wedged communications minister, Malcolm Turnbull, to “destroy” the NBN.
Continue reading “ACCC begins search for light at the end of the NBN technology tunnel”
By LAURIE PATTON | 24 October 2018
In my opinion, the National Broadband Network will not be completed until everyone has access to fast, reliable and affordable broadband. On that basis the rollout will take us well beyond the current official deadline of 2020. It looks like a lot of NBN Co customers are in for a long hard ride unless the Government allows it to abandon FTTN (the trouble-plagued technology using Telstra’s ageing copper wires) sooner rather than later.
New NBN Co boss Steven Rue has told Senate Estimates they are still projecting that FTTN will be used until 2040. Experts, including Internet Australia chair Dr Paul Brooks, say FTTN will have to be replaced within 5-10 years of completion, preferably before then.
It’s not Mr Rue’s fault of course. He has been left ‘holding the baby’ – stuck with the flawed multi-technology mix (MTM) strategy introduced by his predecessor.
Surveys regularly show that people increasingly regard access to broadband as an ‘essential service’. Which is why it is essential that we fix the mess that NBN Co has managed to get itself into.
Continue reading “NBN: Won’t be finished on time. Simple as that!”
By LAURIE PATTON | 23 September 2018
Australia is a country in transition. Although we don’t hear as much about the ‘innovation nation’ these days as we did a few years back, the reality is our future prosperity still lies in embracing a digitally enabled world. As the problems plaguing the National Broadband Network remain unresolved, another critical debate is now reaching a climax. At stake is the management of Internet domain names. These days, nearly every business has a website, so a meeting later this week is shaping up as a watershed moment.
Here are ten things you need to know about what’s happening to the management of our domain names.
Continue reading “Ten things you need to know about changes to Australia’s Internet domain names system”
By LAURIE PATTON | 14 September 2018
Walking, riding or catching public transport to and from school has long been a rite-of-passage for Australian children. However, a range of factors have increasingly seen parents choosing to drive their offspring.
How old children should be before they no longer require parental supervision, and how far they should be permitted to travel alone or even in groups, is often the subject of hot debate around the barbecue and in the media. Sadly, it’s one of those ‘back in my day’ age indicators – and a symbol of a more cautious and guarded society.
Continue reading “Active travel – Why children should walk or ride to school”
By LAURIE PATTON | 6 August 2018
By LAURIE PATTON | 30 July 2018
Telstra boss Andy Penn “took an axe to his management team” today. Those of us who’ve worked there but left in despair at its dysfunctional senior management will be watching to see if Andy succeeds where others have tried but failed to drag the organisation into the 21st Century. Continue reading “Is Telstra simply unmanageable right now?”
By LAURIE PATTON | 28 Jul 2018
The proposition that there’s widespread member concern at the state of auDA – the company managing our Internet domain names – has been dealt a definitive blow.
Firstly, the vote at a Special General Meeting to decide the fate of three directors, including independent chair Chris Leptos, saw them retain their positions. Secondly, voter turnout was extremely low, suggesting most members are at least satisfied that long needed reform is progressing. Thirdly, the disruptive behaviour of a dissident group, appropriately known as the Grumpies, reinforced the view that they and their cause have no merit. Continue reading “Sticks and stones – Attempted coup at auDA flounders on disinterest”