Episode 573 – Aussie Tech Heads Shownotes

posted in: Show Notes




Hi guys,


In the last couple weeks we’ve noticed a lot of Windows 10 users are finding that their mouse and keyboard *have* stopped working. Other USB devices may also have stopped functioning.


The fault can be a bit of a challenge to fix, however the actual issue has been found to be caused by a faulty Windows update and this Microsoft Support article details the resolution for this problem. https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4091240/usb-devices-may-stop-working-after-installing-the-february-13-2018-upd


There are 2 methods shown, one for when the mouse and keyboard are still working, and one for when the mouse and keyboard aren’t working.


I hope this information is helpful and saves you some time throughout your day!


Kind regards,




Vodafone, Nokia building mobile network on the moon

The moon will get its first mobile phone network next year, enabling high-definition streaming from the lunar landscape back to earth, part of a project to back the first privately funded moon mission.

Vodafone Germany, network equipment maker Nokia and carmaker Audi said on Tuesday they were working together to support the mission, 50 years after the first NASA astronauts walked on the moon.


Vodafone said it had appointed Nokia as its technology partner to develop a space-grade network that would be a small piece of hardware weighing less than a bag of sugar.

One executive involved said the decision to build a 4G network rather a state-of-the-art 5G network was taken because the next generation networks remain in the testing and trial stage and are not stable enough to ensure they would work from the lunar surface





Amazon brings third-party delivery and fulfilment to Australia

Sellers that sign up to Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA) can send their products to Amazon’s Melbourne fulfilment centre for packing and shipping. Amazon will also handle returns and customer service.

Sellers are charged for storage space used and for each order Amazon fulfils, with the cost of shipping included in fees. There is no minimum number of units that need to be sent to sign up to FBA

Amazon is running a promotion that will give sellers access to free storage if they sign up to FBA until 31 August.





Apple admits using Google for iCloud

Apple has disclosed for the first time that it uses the Google Cloud Platform as part of the infrastructure for its iCloud storage service.


The iCloud service provides backups to data on devices including iPhones, iPads and Macs.

The online document, Apple’s iOS Security guide, discloses that Apple uses both Google Cloud Platform and AWS for iCloud.




Apps to help you keep stock of your pantry


Australians waste about eight billion dollars of food every year. That amounts to the average household throwing out over $1000 in uneaten groceries.


The most popular apps in the field are the free recipe apps, with Yummly and Big Oven


you can then create shopping lists based on recipes you’ve saved. Yummly wins here by collating the ingredients across all of your recipes, and by producing a much cleaner looking list, broken down into aisles for faster shopping.


One great feature of both apps is the ability to use up your leftovers. Yummly again has advantage, allowing you to pick as many ingredients you can find in your fridge or pantry, and matching recipes to them. Big Oven is limited to just three leftovers, and this feature is only available via a browser

Paprika costs $7.99 mobile versions, but unlike Yummly or Big Oven, you can import recipes from just about any website or blog, and the app will suck in the ingredients and cooking instructions, then catalogue them for you.

Paprika can even automatically convert the recipe to metric, or scale it up or down depending on the size of your family. From there you can create a weekly meal plan to view and share in-app, or export to the calendar app of your choice. Once you have your meal plan in place, you can create a collated shopping list so you’re only buying what you need.


Paprika allows you to catalogue the items in your fridge and pantry too, and while this is a pretty boring manual process, it’s worth doing. List 2 kilograms of rice in your pantry, and if you add a recipe that calls for rice Paprika is smart enough not to add that to your shopping list. Instead, it’ll remove that amount from your pantry stock. You can even set the use by dates of every item, so at a glance you’ll know what to use first.




ACT govt still running unsupported operating systems

Auditor-general Maxine Cooper today revealed 10 remaining instances of systems that use servers with unsupported operating systems in the 2016-17 audit [pdf] of the ACT’s systems.


Systems that remain on unsupported servers include the land titles business system, endoscopy reporting system, medical transcription system and e-development business system.


It also said it had implemented an “ICT security approved vulnerability mitigation solution” for systems on unsupported servers.

“Shared Services undertook a program to deploy Trend Deep Security agent to all servers with unsupported operating systems in mid-2016 to protect the servers against any threats,” it said.

“This software places a virtual ‘bubble’ around a vulnerable system, protecting it from attack until such time as the server can be decommissioned.”

The audit office has been warning the government of the need to upgrade end-of-life server software since 2011-12.


The audit is an improvement on 2015-16 when 34 instances of unsupported server operating systems were uncovered, spanning medical, personal details, land titles, territory revenue and assets, electronic documents and records systems.




Aussies report $1.3m in losses from Bitcoin, Ethereum scams

Australians reported almost $1.3 million in losses to Bitcoin and Ethereum-related scams to the consumer watchdog last year.


The most common complaints about Bitcoin related to investment scheme scams, ransomware and malware scams, and “other” buying and selling scams, the ACCC said.

The scams did not appear to relate to the normal buying and selling of cryptocurrencies via exchanges or transfer to wallet storage, but rather to scammers or hackers demanding payment using those virtual currencies.

Last year, it emerged that some businesses were stockpiling Bitcoins to use in the event of ransomware attacks. Major attacks last year including WannaCry and BadRabbit demanded payment in Bitcoin.


A further interrogation of the ACCC database over the past week shows other alleged scammers were pursuing payments in Ethereum, the second-highest cryptocurrency by market cap.


Ripple, which is the third highest virtual currency by market cap, according to Coinmarketcap, escaped mention in the Scamwatch database for 2017.



Turnbull signs up to 100Mbps NBN plan

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has signed up to the 100Mbps speed tier on the national broadband network despite previously arguing that most Australians need only 12Mbps.


He signed up to  one of the highest speed tiers available for the NBN – 100Mbps down and 40Mbps up. It was costing the prime minister around $120 per month.


Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet revealed the prime minister’s Point Piper home had been connected to the NBN’s hybrid-fibre coaxial (HFC) network on December 8 last year.

He escaped the 6-9 month delays that have hit most premises that are to be connected to the HFC portion of the network as the result of a sales freeze and network remediation drive announced by NBN Co last year.

PM&C first assistant secretary Paula Ganley told estimates the department had negotiated with NBN Co to make sure the connection “proceeded smoothly”.





NBN Co pushes back crucial HFC status update

NBN Co has delayed a planned update on the state of its HFC network by a few more weeks, denting hopes for the 700,000 users whose connections were pulled back for remediation late last year.

Since its decision in late November to freeze sales and remediate existing connections, NBN Co has promised a major update through its map that was timed “February 2018”.


“Network upgrades to improve your customer experience will add an average of 6-9 months to your HFC connection,” it said in a new message on its maps.

“We are currently finalising our new rollout schedule. New information will be available over the coming weeks.”







Silk Road


The Silk Road was an ancient network of trade routes that started in China in the 2nd century B.C. Via a combination of roads, and sea routes, goods like silk, paper and spices were transported from the producers in Asia to markets in Europe. Eventually, it wasn’t just goods that were traded – there were also ideas, customs, religions and even diseases.

The Silk Road expanded throughout different continents and civilizations for several centuries. It connected Asia, Europe, Africa and the Middle East. A marketplace across the world.