Is there an unsecured wireless network near you?
Turnbull says no need to future-proof NBN
Friday, 06 March 2015 09:07

Those who feel Australia should invest in a future-proof National Broadband Network (NBN), and that a fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) network offers the best long-term investment, have new reason to take umbrage with the nation's communications minister Malcolm Turnbull after he yesterday said a quick-and-cheap approach is the best way to deliver broadband.

Turnbull's remarks are recorded in Hansard ( PDF ) in response to a soft question from colleague and member for Bennelong John Alexander, who asked “Will the minister update the House on the steps the government is taking to ensure Australia has the strong and viable communications it needs

Broadband routers: SOHOpeless and vendors don't care
Thursday, 05 March 2015 19:28


"It is far more common to find routers with critical flaws than without" - Craig Young

"It's sad that end-user education about strong passwords, password safes, and phishing can be undone by something as innocuous as the blinking box in the corner of your room. - Peter Adkins


Home and small business router security is terrible. Exploits emerge with depressing regularity, exposing millions of users to criminal activities.

Many of the holes are so simple as to be embarrassing. Hard-coded credentials are so common in small home and office routers, comparatively to other tech kit, that only those

Nothing says 'Taliban' quite like net neutrality, eh, EU Digi Commish?
Tuesday, 10 March 2015 18:01

Comment Gaffe-prone Gunther is at it again. This time the EU Digi-Commissioner Gunther H-dot Oettinger has described the enforcement of "uniform" net neutrality as "Taliban-like".

Unsurprisingly digital rights activists have not been pleased at being compared with a fundamentalist organisation judged by the UN to be responsible for the massacre of thousands in Afghanistan.

Nevertheless, for a man who rarely smiles, Oettinger seemed pleased with his analogy while speaking at a German Ministry of Finance event last Thursday (video link in German) .

"Here we’ve got, particularly in Germany, Taliban-like developments. We have the Internet community, the Pirates on the

ACCC nixes Telstra wholesale gouge
Wednesday, 11 March 2015 15:28

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has driven its nope-mobile down to Collins Street and dropped a couple of tons of forget-it at the door of Australia's dominant carrier Telstra: rather than putting up prices for fixed voice and broadband services, the carrier's asked to cop a price cut.

The regulator says that since Australia's National Broadband Network (NBN) is “replacing Telstra's legacy network” * the carrier can't justify its request for a price increase of 7.2 per cent in access prices.

Instead, the ACCC is cutting all seven access services covered by the decision by a uniform 0.7

Ping-pong sueballs: Bankruptcy dogs LightSquared's chances
Wednesday, 11 March 2015 03:34

Stricken US mobe network LightSquared is wriggling for survival in Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

The idea of Chapter 11 is to provide protection for a company so that it can trade through difficulties and hopefully get back to trading normally.

The system was to use a combination of 4G (LTE) and satellite to deliver national high-speed broadband to the US, but frequencies allocated by the FCC were found to interfere with GPS and so the FCC pulled the allocation back. The company went titsup in 2012 .

Dish Network chairman Charles Ergen bought $1bn of debt from the network’s bank to

Control Anything with an Apple Remote
Friday, 13 March 2015 05:00

If you’re like us, you probably have more than one Apple Remote kicking around in a parts drawer, and if you’re even more like us, you’re probably really annoyed at Apple’s tendency to use proprietary hardware and software at every turn (lightning connector, anyone?). But there’s hope for the Apple Remote now: [Sourcery] has completed a project that allows an Apple Remote to control anything you wish.

The idea is fairly straightforward: A device interprets the IR signals from an Apple Remote, and then outputs another IR signal that can do something useful on a non-Apple product. [Sourcery] uses an …read more

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