Australia Technology
NSW government at serious cyber security risk: Auditor-General
Amazon boss Jeff Bezos is building a $50 million clock inside a mountain
Mandatory data breach reporting starts for small business
Don’t believe the hype of the iRobot Roomba 890 wi-fi connected vacuum robot
Amazon Echo Plus: built-in Zigbee hub ties a smart home together
Smart speakers: Amazon Alexa launches in Australia
Machine Learning Model Metrics
Australia privacy chief to probe Facebook over data breach
2018-04-05 21:16:04 Sydney, Australia. Australia is investigating Facebook over alleged privacy breaches, authorities said Thursday, after the firm admitted the personal data of thousands of local users was improperly shared with a British political consultancy. The social networking giant said Wednesday the data of up to 87 million people worldwide -- including more than 300,000 Australian users -- were shared with Cambridge Analytica   Read More ...
How Mikaela Jade built augmented reality startup Indigital from deep in Kakadu National Park
2018-03-12 12:15:20 If you were to pick a place to launch an augmented reality startup six years ago, there’s a good chance the remote Australian town of Jabiru — 50 hours out of Darwin — would not have been your first choice. But that didn’t deter Mikaela Jade from establishing her startup Indigitial in 2012. The goal was to bring augmented and mixed reality to Australia’s Indigenous communities, telling their stories on country through these new and emerging technologies   Read More ...
Robotic assistance at the cutting edge of knee replacement surgery
2018-03-11 08:09:42 Robots are entering the operating theatre to assist with full knee replacement surgeries. The robots are designed to help surgeons remove damaged knees with greater accuracy and insert new implants. Tasmanian orthopaedic surgeon Josh Petterwood is an early adopter of the technology which became available in Australia late last year. So far he has done more than 30 full knee replacements with the robot   Read More ...
Security alarm sounded over Chinese company Huawei's possible involvement in Australia's 5G network
2018-03-11 02:05:19 Chinese telecom giant Huawei faces the prospect of being barred from yet another major project in Australia because of national security concerns. Key points: Senior US security officials have raised concerns over Chinese telecom companies Huawei Australia denies its 5G technology poses a security risk The company was blocked from tendering for the NBN in 2012 This time the concern is around the building of 5G mobile networks   Read More ...
Your Google Home or Fitbit could be used against you in court
2018-03-09 00:12:10 That also means it's probably often recording, and sending information to the cloud. So what happens when a judge or prosecutor thinks some of those recordings might be pertinent to a case? Or perhaps they want to check information from your Fitbit to see if you were near a crime scene? It might sound dramatic, but experts believe data collected from our devices will increasingly find its way into Australian courts   Read More ...
'I thought a kid was laughing behind me': Amazon's Alexa has been caught randomly laughing at people
2018-03-08 04:08:05 Retail goliath Amazon has promised to fix its virtual assistant Alexa after reports the device was randomly laughing at people. Like Apple's Siri, Alexa is an digital assistant built into several Amazon devices. The program activates by saying the word "Alexa" then a command like "play music". But over the past month several people have reported strange occurrences of Alexa laughing at them for no reason   Read More ...
[$] Supporting virtual reality displays in Linux
2018-03-08 00:07:51 At linux.conf.au (LCA) 2017 in Hobart, Tasmania, Keith Packard talked with kernel graphics maintainer Dave Airlie about how virtual reality devices should be hooked up to Linux. They both thought it would be pretty straightforward to do, so it would "only take a few weeks", but Packard knew "in reality it would take a lot longer". In a talk at LCA 2018 in Sydney, Packard reported back on the progress he has made; most of it is now in the upstream kernel   Read More ...
NSW government at serious cyber security risk: Auditor-General
2018-03-03 10:08:01 The state government is ill-prepared for cyber attacks with four-in-10 government agencies having a low capability to detect data breaches, an investigation by the Auditor-General found on Friday. “The NSW public sector’s ability to detect and respond to incidents needs to improve significantly and quickly,” the Auditor-General, Margaret Crawford, found after an extensive review of the government’s preparedness. “There is a risk that incidents will go undetected longer than they should, and opportunities to contain and restrict the damage may be lost   Read More ...
Sydney-based blockchain startup Havven raises $39 million in Australia’s largest ICO
2018-03-02 12:19:31 Move over Power Ledger, Australia has a new top crypto dog in town after blockchain startup Havven finalised a $US30 million ($38.6 million) initial coin offering (ICO) this morning. Kicking off at 7.00am, the token sale was over in just 90 minutes. But the full $US30 million was not sold in that time, as the company had already completed a massive $US26 million pre-sale from high net worth individuals and crypto investment funds   Read More ...
Ghana man goes viral for teaching computer technology on a blackboard
2018-03-01 16:59:02 A viral photo of a teacher in Ghana explaining how computers work — without computers — has resulted in a promise by Microsoft to send him new computer equipment. Information and communication technology (ICT) teacher Richard Appiah Akoto shared a photo of himself using a blackboard to show his students how to use Microsoft Word. "Teaching of ICT in Ghana's school is very funny," Mr Akoto said in a Facebook post   Read More ...
Punters upset at Sony removing headphone jack for new Xperia XZ2 smartphone
2018-02-27 13:08:49 SONY has made plenty of improvements to its latest flagship device but there is one feature that is getting all the attention. Lose yourself in immersive entertainment with Xperia XZ2 and the best of Sony technologies, designed to captivate your senses. Courtesy: Sony. SONY is attempting to take on the iPhone X with a new flagship smartphone that is betting on entertainment as a key feature of the radical new design   Read More ...
Apple Australia's New Wedding-Themed Ads Continue 'Shot on iPhone X' Campaign
2018-02-25 20:00:30 Apple Australia has published a series of new iPhone X ads to its YouTube channel showcasing the smartphone's camera being used at various weddings. Titled "First Dance", the short ads continue the company's "Shot on iPhone" series by demonstrating the general quality of the iPhone X camera rather than highlighting any specific feature. Of the four videos, three are 15-second spots that focus on a single nuptial event – "Meg and Ann-Marie", "Nick and Rob", and "Anthony and Ron" – while one minute-long ad includes clips from several weddings   Read More ...
Privacy Commissioner’s small budget to make policing new data breach laws difficult, experts say
2018-02-22 23:13:28 Australia's new data breach laws require businesses and government entities to disclose hacks and leaks that cause "serious harm", with fines of up to $2.1 million for those who don't comply, but experts say the agency responsible for enforcing them may not have the resources to do so. The Notifiable Data Breaches (NDB) scheme — which came into effect on Thursday — is likely to cause a swell in reported breaches   Read More ...
Mandatory data breach reporting comes in tomorrow: Here’s what your business needs to know
2018-02-22 12:23:49 From tomorrow, small businesses will be required to report all instances of personal data breaches to affected stakeholders and government authorities, with experts reminding business owners this is the perfect time to review their cyber security measures. On Thursday, requiring businesses to disclose any breach that involves personal customer data. The legislation applies to business with an annual turnover of $3 million or more, or for smaller businesses that operate by holding personal information, such as credit reporting agencies   Read More ...
Amazon boss Jeff Bezos is building a $50 million clock inside a mountain
2018-02-22 09:07:47 The uber-rich tech CEO says the ridiculous venture is a “symbol for long-term thinking”, and shared a video of the clock’s construction on Twitter. Installation has begun—500 ft tall, all mechanical, powered by day/night thermal cycles, synchronized at solar noon, a symbol for long-term thinking—the is coming together thx to the genius of Danny Hillis, Zander Rose & the whole Clock team! Enjoy the video   Read More ...
Simple trick to recording video of your iPhone screen — and it doesn’t require an app
2018-02-22 01:09:58 From Motorola to Nokia to now Google Android, Samsung and the Apple iPhone, we've grown to love our mobile phones and gotten quite dependent on them. DID you know that you can record everything on your iPhone screen? Better still, you don’t even need to install any extra apps to do it. Apple has built screen-recording functionality right into your iPhone operating system, and we’ve got an easy guide on how to do it   Read More ...
If a company has lost your personal info, they now have to tell you
2018-02-21 22:13:30 Uber, Ashley Madison, Equifax: these brands are known for ride hailing, infidelity and credit scores respectively, but also for the exposure of customer information. As of today, many businesses that operate in Australia are subject to the country's new notifiable data breaches scheme. Lose a hard drive? Give an unauthorised person patient files? In certain circumstances, companies will have to tell the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) and any individual affected if personal data are lost, stolen or leaked   Read More ...
Important email likely to be missed in flood that's about to hit your inbox
2018-02-21 14:12:20 "Once more unto the (data) breach, dear customer." To misquote Oscar Wilde, there is only one thing worse than not being told about a data breach, and that is being told about a data breach 10 times a day from 10 different service providers for the rest of eternity. From today, Australian business enters a brave new world of data protection   Read More ...
Chris Moraitis on big data challenges for public service organisational change
2018-02-21 10:10:37 Secretary of the Attorney General's department Chris Moraitis says big data and the pace of technological change present challenges for the public service in the same way it does for the private sector. In a speech on navigating organisational change given on Wednesday, Mr Moraitis used technology to explain how important it was for the public service to be willing to change quickly   Read More ...
iMessage outage: Telstra customers unable to send messages on iPhone
2018-02-21 04:57:58 A Telstra mobile issue resulted in some iPhone users being unable to use iMessage or Facetime for around two hours on Wednesday, with many taking to social media and Telstra's website to express their confusion and displeasure. iMessage is a feature that detects when an iPhone user is sending a text message to another iPhone user, and sends the data via Apple's interent services rather than by the phone networks   Read More ...
Building your dream smart home starts with smart decisions
2018-02-21 04:57:48 Before you spend up big on smart home gear, make sure you're laying the foundations for a truly smart home rather than a house full of uncooperative smart gadgets. For a while it looked like gadget makers such as Belkin WeMo and Philips Hue might become the smart home overlords, but it's clear that talkative smart speakers are the glue which will hold the smart home together   Read More ...
Australian Scientists Design 3D-Printed Smartphone Microscope
2018-02-21 03:43:46 Out in the field and need to determine if there are parasites in your water? Now there's a portable microscope that attaches to your smartphone will do the trick, Engadget reports. Developed by Australian researchers from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Nanoscale BioPhotonics, this clip-on microscope magnifies up to 1/200th of a millimeter. It can be made by anyone with a 3D printer, as the researchers have made the files available to the public   Read More ...
RMIT joins forces with Stone and Chalk to launch blockchain course for entrepreneurs and business leaders
2018-02-20 12:25:25 Melbourne-based university RMIT has today launched a new eight-week course aimed at teaching entrepreneurs and company executives the ins and outs of blockchain technology. The Developing Blockchain Strategy course will kick off on March 19 and run online, offering participants a way to develop a “rich and relevant” understanding of the blockchain. The course was developed by RMIT in conjunction with familiar startup faces: fintech hub Stone and Chalk and consulting firm Accenture   Read More ...
Mandatory data breach reporting starts for small business
2018-02-20 09:12:33 than half of Australian small business owners are blissfully unaware that new laws around mandatory reporting of data breaches that come into play on Thursday could attract crippling fines, research shows. The Notifiable Data Breaches (NDB) scheme of the Privacy Act establishes new reporting requirements that mandate that small business covered by the Australian Privacy Act 1988 must report eligible data breaches to authorities and also members of the public if it believes or is aware that data has been compromised   Read More ...
You can now study Blockchain at university
2018-02-20 06:18:47 An Australian university is banking on Blockchain, the technology behind the lucrative yet volatile cryptocurrency industry, by launching a nation-first course in the emerging sector. Australia's first short course on Blockchain strategy, aiming to educate the nation's next wave of tech start-up entrepreneurs, will take flight on Tuesday at Melbourne's RMIT University. "Blockchain is now becoming a core part of contemporary digital literacy," Vice Chancellor Martin Bean said   Read More ...
Google's neural networks detect heart attack risk by looking at patients' eyes
2018-02-20 04:59:02 By looking at the human eye, Google's algorithms were able to predict whether someone had high blood pressure or was at risk of a heart attack or stroke, researchers at the company have confirmed, opening a new opportunity for artificial intelligence in the vast and lucrative global health industry. The algorithms didn't outperform existing medical approaches such as blood tests, according to a study of the finding published in the journal Nature Biomedical Engineering   Read More ...
Aussie rocket brothers ink NASA deal as local space agency wait continues
2018-02-20 04:58:15 An ambitious plan to fly low-cost rockets into space carrying nano-satellites has been given a boost as the brothers behind it reveal their start-up has signed an agreement with NASA. Gold Coast based Gilmour Space Technologies — backed to the tune of $5 million by Australian venture capital firm Blackbird Ventures and US-based 500 Startups, among other private investors — said on Tuesday that it has entered into a Space Act Agreement with NASA to work on various research, technology development and educational initiatives   Read More ...
QLD to develop world first energy Big Data system to cut power bills
2018-02-18 15:09:11 The University of Queensland is creating a 'Big Data' platform with artificial intelligence that can use information from millions of homes to control energy usage and drive down electricity costs. Researchers at UQ’s School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering are building a system that can provide real-time analysis and manage household energy on a massive scale. The project is a collaboration between UQ, energy start-up Redback Technologies – a subsidiary of EnergyAustralia, the Springfield City Group, and state power distributor Energy Queensland   Read More ...
One person's trash is another's DIY 3D printer at this volunteer-run innovation hub
2018-02-17 00:15:10 Think twice before throwing that old computer into landfill — it may be missing out on a second life as an electric bicycle or 3D printer. An innovation hub south of Brisbane is turning trash into hi-tech treasures. From electric bicycles to solar-run bluetooth portable speakers, volunteers at Logan's Substation33 have worked on projects that have bought in $1 million in the last year   Read More ...
Canberra cyber security business Penten wins $1.3 million Defence contract
2018-02-16 14:15:25 Canberra technology company Penten will provide secure wireless devices to the army to protect it from cyber threats under a $1.3 million contract, changing the way it shares classified information. The federal government on Friday will announce the Australian Defence Force will adopt the 40-strong company's AltoCrypt technology, USB sticks providing secure access to information over WiFi. While access to classified information is limited to hard-wired computer systems, or paper files, Penten's technology is expected to change this by improving the speed information is received and reducing cabling costs   Read More ...
Blockchain startup Havven eyes $31 million in pledged funds for ICO with goal to create crypto’s first “stablecoin”
2018-02-16 12:17:11 An Australian blockchain company looking to tackle one of the biggest issues in the cryptocurrency space has received more than $US25 million ($31 million) in pledged funds for its initial coin offering (ICO) at the end of the month. The startup is called Havven, and it is looking to create one of the first successful ‘stablecoins’ in the cryptocurrency space. Stablecoin projects look to provide cryptocurrency traders and other businesses in the space with a tradeable, decentralised token that has a stable value — akin to putting fiat currency on the blockchain   Read More ...
Thank you, Linux Conf Australia!
2018-02-15 12:02:52 Recently I was lucky enough to get to travel to Sydney, Australia for Linux Conf Australia (LCA). Along with Free Software Foundation (FSF) executive director John Sullivan, I spent the better part of a week in Sydney, getting to know members of the global free software community I rarely get to see. LCA is Australasia's grassroots free software conference, organized by Linux Australia   Read More ...
Boston Dynamics releases video showing humans can't hide in a robot apocalypse
2018-02-13 10:14:23 Engineering and robotics design firm Boston Dynamics has once again released new footage of one of their robots performing an ordinary but surprisingly unnerving everyday task — in this case, opening a door. In the footage, a four-legged SpotMini robot — unveiled in November last year — uses a claw mount on its head to reach out and deftly manipulate the handle to open and hold the door, keeping it open for its fellow robot   Read More ...
Don’t believe the hype of the iRobot Roomba 890 wi-fi connected vacuum robot
2018-02-12 15:14:22 From robot vacuums to DIY checkouts, find out how our love of technology helped kick-start the inevitable robot uprising as the 'automation industry' looks set to take 800 million jobs from humans by 2030. WHEN my mother and father taught me how to do my own washing, cooking and cleaning during my teenage years, I knew there was very little chance of them pandering to my household needs when I finished school, let alone well into my early 30s   Read More ...
How the founders of fashion app ShopYou are using artificial intelligence to deliver a personalised shopping experience
2018-02-09 12:14:52 The co-founders of fashion retail app ShopYou are looking to ride the waves of the artificial intelligence boom to make shopping easier for women in Australia, and they’ve already teamed up with 30 brands to bring their vision to life. The free ShopYou app, which launched today, uses artificial intelligence and personal shopping data to customise and propose clothing options for customers to suit their circumstances   Read More ...
Aussie blockchain startup Power Ledger forms US partnership to roll out “hundreds” of energy trading projects
2018-02-07 12:14:40 Australian blockchain success story Power Ledger has landed a partnership with American not-for-profit energy company Helpanswers to bring the company’s peer-to-peer energy trading platform to hundreds of sites across North America. The projects will stretch across Texas, the Chicago to Washington region, California and New England, and will cover 50 Megawatt solar storage and 50 Megawatt hour energy storage. Initially, Power Ledger and Helpanswers intend to focus on energy-intensive project areas, such as schools, low-income housing, and wastewater and cement plants   Read More ...
EHang 184 passenger drone makes first public flight in China
2018-02-07 08:16:50 The world's first passenger drone has made its first public flight in China, taking off from Guangzhou City. Key points: EHang 184 can carry one passenger weighing up to 100kg The passenger drone is electrically powered The company tested the drone 1,000 times before it made its first public flight With the newly developed EHang 184, all passengers need to do is to get into the small cabin and fasten their seat belts and the automated flight system then takes over   Read More ...
The future of wireless communications is terahertz
2018-02-06 19:00:18 Electrical and optical engineers in Australia have designed a novel platform that could tailor telecommunication and optical transmissions. Collaborating scientists from the University of New South Wales in Sydney and Canberra, the University of Adelaide, the University of South Australia and the Australian National University experimentally demonstrated their system using a new transmission wavelength with a higher bandwidth capacity than those currently used in wireless communication   Read More ...
Amazon Echo Plus: built-in Zigbee hub ties a smart home together
2018-02-06 02:10:25 Acting as a digital butler to control your smart devices, the Alexa-powered Echo Plus smart speaker brings an extra dimension to Amazon smart homes. Of the three new Amazon speakers available in Australia, the $229 Echo Plus is the pick of the bunch when it comes to sound quality. While that's great for entertaining guests, the Echo Plus' big party trick is that it can control other devices around your home   Read More ...
Telstra opens 5G Innovation Centre on Gold Coast
2018-02-05 23:15:14 Mobile networks are no longer just aimed at people chasing fast download speeds. Instead autonomous drones, self-driving cars and other smart devices will benefit most from Australia's new super-fast 5G networks launching next year. Swarms of smart drones are set to patrol Australia's beaches, taking advantage of 5G's multi-gigabit data speeds to work in unison and stream high-definition video back to land, where artificial intelligence will scan for swimmers in distress and watch for sharks   Read More ...