Episode 139

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Pipe dream coming true for net users | Australian IT
Pipe dream coming true for net users

 The voyage is widely viewed by the country’s second-tier internet providers as the final leg of a journey that began two years ago when Pipe International’s holding company, Pipe Networks, set out to break a stranglehold on Australia’s international bandwidth market.

That journey has been an arduous one for Pipe Networks chief executive Bevan Slattery. He led an eleventh-hour rescue when the global financial crisis threatened to sink the project late last year and he has personally borne the brunt of threats and abuse from within the ranks of a major carrier for what it viewed as an attempt to rock what has, for the incumbents, been a comfortable boat.

The personal abuse was delivered in a drunken phone call late last year. He attributed the vitriol in part to frustration that the project was still rolling ahead, and in part to alcohol.

Optus starts filtering trials | Australian IT
Optus starts filtering trials

 The trial will conclude in early July after some six weeks of testing.

An Optus spokeswoman declined to reveal how many customers had agreed to participate; residential customers in Sydney and Newcastle have been selected for the pilot but they could opt-out of the exercise at any point, Optus said.

Optus is the eighth internet service provider to participate in the scheme, joining Primus, Highway 1, Nelson Bay Online, Netforce, OMNIconnect, TECH 2U and Webshield.

The country’s largest ISP, Telstra BigPond, had earlier declined to participate in the trials.

Fifth dimension boosts DVD space | Australian IT
Fifth dimension boosts DVD space

 SCIENTISTS have unveiled new DVD technology that stores data in five dimensions, making it possible to pack more than 2000 movies on a single disc.

Discs currently have three spatial dimensions. Using gold nanorods the Swinburne team added add two more dimensions, one based on the colour spectrum, and the other on polarisation.

The researchers are still working out the speed at which the discs can be written on, and say commercial production is at least five years off. They have signed an agreement with Korea-based Samsung, one of the world’s largest electronics manufacturers.

Last month, US technology giant General Electric said its researchers had developed a holographic disc that stores the equivalent of 100 standard DVDs. Dual-layer Blu-ray discs hold the equivalent of 10 standard DVDs.

Crackdown on SMS vultures | Australian IT
Crackdown on SMS vultures


The Australian Communications and Media Authority yesterday approved a package of measures to address consumer concerns on premium SMS services.

The measures will provide the watchdog with a comprehensive framework to monitor alleged offenders and the power to issue service provider determinations.

The determinations will require mobile carriers to provide an option to bar premium SMS services on all mobile phone plans by July 1 next year.

The measures will also grant ACMA the power to ban repeat premium SMS offenders from operating in the market.

Premium SMS suppliers who failed to comply with the new rules would also run the risk of penalties of up to $250,000, ACMA said.

What’s the name of your lover?

What famous person do you look like?


Spanish granny dubbed ‘world’s oldest blogger’ dies – CNN.com
Spanish granny dubbed ‘world’s oldest blogger’ dies

 has died at 97.

She was introduced to the Internet when her grandson set up the blog as a gift to mark her 95th birthday.

She wrote and video blogged about her experiences opposing Franco’s regime, modern politics — covering topics ranging from the Basque separatist threat to Iran’s nuclear ambitions — and poignantly discussed what it was like to grow old.

Her fame even saw Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero drop in for a chat. Visit Maria Amelia Lopez’s blog

Asian-American merchants being targeted by extortionists – CNN.com
Asian-American merchants being targeted by extortionists

 Hundreds of Asian-American business owners have been threatened with death if they don’t send money to extortionists phoning from China.

The calls have been made from an Internet calling service called Skype, which lets users make free calls using computers.

The phone bandits may have received as much as $100,000 from across the United States

“We don’t know which Western Union branch in China is being used. If you have the manpower for fixed surveillance in China, you could likely catch the culprit,” Pon said.

Aussie prisoners escape lock-in with Ubuntu PCs – Hardware – iTnews Australia
Aussie prisoners escape lock-in with Ubuntu PCs

 The Alexander Maconochie jail in Canberra will this week deploy 30 more Ubuntu Linux-based computers for prisoner use after a successful first phase.

A computer will be assigned to each cell block wing for use by prisoners.

They will provide limited email and internet access to prisoners filtered using a centrally maintained white and blacklist, an Australian first, Cybersource said.

Euro domain registrar gains .au approval – Internet – iTnews Australia
Euro domain registrar gains .au approval

 Safenames has become the first European domain registrar to be accredited in Australia after the regulator auDA upgraded it from provisional to full accreditation.

But the announcement drew immediate questions from local registrars and resellers as to how Safenames had been admitted, despite the accreditation process being closed since October 2007.

auDA chief Chris Disspain told iTnews that Safenames had achieved provisional accreditation before the process was closed.

British Airways to launch on-board web access – Internet – iTnews Australia
British Airways to launch on-board web access


British Airways will launch later this year an on-board internet service for business class passengers travelling from London to New York.

Customers will be able to send texts, emails and access the internet in-flight.

BA claimed this is the first time such technology will be offered on transatlantic flights.

Pirate Party on course for election triumph – Software – iTnews Australia
Pirate Party on course for election triumph



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