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by Leon Bertrand
Dear Sandpit readers,
I have a new blog, which focuses on the law and related issues. It is intended to appeal to lawyers and non-lawyers alike.
The blog will comment on practical issues which will inform people of what to expect and how to deal with lawyers, the courts etc. Already I have a post about how you can help your own legal case. I will post about topics such as why legal fees are so high and how you can reduce your legal fees in the coming weeks.
The blog will also comment about various legal issues. Already it has posted about the law of negligence, disciplinary proceedings against lawyers and criminal law. Having practiced in a number of areas, I have a reasonably broad knowledge of the various areas of law.
So please check it out and feel free to comment. Any feedback, positive or negative, would be appreciated.
I would also like to thank Ray for some advice on the technical aspects of wordpress.
Usually it takes me a while to find a story to write about but this morning it was right there as the lead news item in the Age (my first port of call in the morning) :
Well who is surprised that Labor’s scheme is falling in a heap now? when this wild idea was first mooted I had my doubts and It is now clear that I was right to be cynical that Labor was incapable of both delivering on their promise and that promise being properly maintained. of course this will come as something of a body blow to Gillard’s very long campaign. However I just can’t help thinking that at this rate of revelations and bad news Labor will be out of puff entirely by about a week after next Tuesday. As the annoying demtel ads would ask “how low can they go?” frankly I can’t believe that any government could be so stupid/incompetent to devise a program that leaves parents in the lurch and obliged to buy or lease the laptops that Labor was insisting would be “free” to every high-school student way back in 2007.
As is often the case technology has moved on as well and now the device that would be more useful to high-school students would be a tablet computer that has all of the heavy and cumbersome text books available in the form of Ebooks these devices have no moving parts to fail (and need for maintenance ) and a more intuitive user interface heck they are even cheaper than laptops…
So what are we as parents and voters to take from this very expensive policy failure? Probably that it is folly for a government to make ostentatious promises when it comes to technological devices used in education because you can bet that the hardware will cost more than expected do less than the geeks claim and become obsolete in a political heart beat. For the Labor true believer it is just another reason to despair as there is no doubt that the opposition will make much of this failure in the long campaign we face between now and September 14.
- Gillard promised the world and delivered a handful of nothing (iainhall.wordpress.com)
- Government not in chaos: Gillard (news.theage.com.au)
- Gillard to outline spending cuts promise (abc.net.au)
- A body blow (theage.com.au)
- Coalition will axe school kids bonus (news.smh.com.au)
- Government set to dump school laptops scheme (abc.net.au)
With the election announced and Julia Gillard really keen to show just what can be achieved with her much
questioned praised NBN in a Sandpit exclusive I can share with you all a test operation using the new Tele-medicine , like a lot of Labor big ideas this one obviously has a few bugs to be sorted out, but I hope that we can be assured that things will be much more successful than the beta testing.
Its understood that The party’s first choice of test subject was their dear leader’s fashion consultant, however its understood that Gillard vetoed that because it would have meant that Tim would be unavailable for , err ” domestic duties” while he recovered from the process. This turned out to be a sound choice because the first demonstration was to say the least, underwhelming .
In my post the other day I was postulating a new normal where every internet user was at least known to the service provider that they used so that they could be held accountable for the things that they said and did online. Reading the opinion piece in today’s age makes me think that my predictions/expectations may be closer to fruition than I thought:
A LITTLE over a decade ago, just before the masses discovered the digital universe, the internet was a borderless new frontier: a terra nullius to be populated by individuals, groups and programmers as they saw fit. There were few rules and no boundaries. Freedom and open standards, sharing information for the greater good was the ethos.
Today, the open internet we once knew is fracturing into a series of gated communities or fiefdoms controlled by giants like Apple, Google, Facebook, Amazon and to a lesser extent Microsoft. A billion-dollar battle conducted in walled cities where companies try to lock our consumption into their vision of the internet. It has left some lamenting the ”web we lost”.
The same firm in some cases now provides not just the content we consume but the devices we consume it on and a plethora of other services to help manage our digital lives, be it email, online storage or e-commerce.
Increasingly, the web kings are expanding into each other’s turf and butting heads with smaller pretenders to the throne, such as Twitter, locking competitors out of their ecosystems but, more importantly, locking us, the consumers, in.
”There’s no question that we are witnessing a clash of the titans over ‘our’ data”, says Jennifer Zanich, serial Australian entrepreneur and now co-founder of start-up Paloma Mobile.
Data is the oil of the digital age, handed over willingly by consumers seduced by the latest flashy new web service. Big data is where the big money is made on the web today, and famous US venture capitalist Mary Meeker describes it as the ”Wild West” of the internet.