Stilgherrian

Stilgherrian is a freelance journalist, commentator and podcaster interested in big-picture internet issues, especially security, cybercrime and hoovering up bulldust. He studied computing science and linguistics before a wide-ranging media career and a stint at running an IT business. He can write iptables firewall rules, set a rabbit trap, clear a jam in an IBM model 026 card punch and mix a mean whiskey sour.

Latest Posts

Twitter turns five: will it rule?

Twitter turns five: will it rule?

Work on the social-messaging service Twitter began exactly five years ago today. Now it has some 200 million registered user accounts, but that's only about 10 per cent of internet users, and even less if you take out the spam bots and inactive accounts. Will Twitter ever become a universal service?

published March 20, 2011 by

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'Arrogant' Apple battles over copyright

'Arrogant' Apple battles over copyright

Apple is being sued for copyright infringement by Jigsaw Entertainment, an Australian TV production company. The iPhone app, Chopper Soundboard, contained material lifted without permission from one of Jigsaw's shows, The Ronnie Johns Half Hour, and the company reckons that Apple should have done more to prevent its sale.

published March 13, 2011 by

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Cybercrime convention: civil liberties risk?

Cybercrime convention: civil liberties risk?

If Australia joins the Council of Europe Convention on Cybercrime, police and intelligence agencies will get new powers to monitor your internet usage. Is it, as law enforcement officials claim, merely bringing the internet into line with traditional communications channels? Or is there a real risk to our civil liberties?

published March 6, 2011 by

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Bionic eyes, gigabit Wi-Fi and the NBN

Bionic eyes, gigabit Wi-Fi and the NBN

The National Broadband Network's connection speeds of 100 megabits per second and more are essential for new health and education applications, according to Dr Terry Percival, director of NICTA's Neville Roach Laboratory.

published February 27, 2011 by

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Cyberwar: we're in it together

Cyberwar: we're in it together

Stuxnet, the first malware capable of causing physical damage, represents a strategic shift in cyberwar, something on everyone's mind at the RSA Conference on information security this year. While it's still hard to sort facts from fiction, there were calls for further cooperation between government and the private sector.

published February 20, 2011 by

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The end of the open internet?

The end of the open internet?

"I think the age of the deeply competitive internet is over," says author and telecommunications lawyer, Tim Wu. "The next five years is going to be a story of the big four or big five."

published February 13, 2011 by

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7 tips for a safer internet

7 tips for a safer internet

Tomorrow's Safer Internet Day is about helping children and young people avoid online risks, but there's plenty that adults can do. On Patch Monday this week, seven information security industry representatives give their tips for making the internet a safer place.

published February 6, 2011 by

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Microsoft-Google-Apple 3-way cage fight

Microsoft-Google-Apple 3-way cage fight

The battle lines have been drawn. The war chests are stocked with tens of billions of dollars in cash. Microsoft, Apple and Google are ready to compete with their integrated technology stacks connecting mobile devices to cloud services. Who is best placed to win?

published January 30, 2011 by

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Inside Intel's second-generation core

Inside Intel's second-generation core

The new second-generation Intel core processor chips launched earlier this month promise substantial speed increases and lower power consumption. What can they deliver? And what of Intel's competition with rival chipmaker AMD?

published January 23, 2011 by

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Flood-proofing your business IT

Flood-proofing your business IT

The floods in Queensland and now further south in Australia are a reminder that natural disasters can strike even in rich, technologically advanced nations. Data backups are essential, but business continuity planning also needs to cover communications links, the computers themselves, documentation, premises and, of course, the human factor.

published January 16, 2011 by

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Avoiding Vodafone's Wikileaks moment

Avoiding Vodafone's Wikileaks moment

What an unhappy New Year for Vodafone! News emerged across the weekend that customers' personal information has been leaked thanks to dealer log-ins on the loose. This comes on top of a planned class action suit against Vodafone alleging poor 3G service quality.

published January 9, 2011 by

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2010: IT's year of domination

2010: IT's year of domination

2010 was a huge for IT. The National Broadband Network dominated Australian politics. Wikileaks is dominating the news right now. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was named Person of the Year by Time. The iPad was born. And everything was coming up cloud.

published December 19, 2010 by

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Service goes social, but how?

Service goes social, but how?

In the social media era, dissatisfied customers seem reluctant to phone a call centre. Instead, they just complain on Facebook or Twitter. Businesses are expected to notice and respond. How will this change the way customer service is done?

published December 12, 2010 by

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Cybercrime: the FBI's worldview

Cybercrime: the FBI's worldview

At last week's second annual eCrime Symposium in Sydney, the FBI's new assistant legal attaché to Australia for cybercrime issues, Will Blevins, outlined the bureau's worldview, including concerns about the increasing sophistication of targeted phishing attacks conducted by nation-state actors.

published November 28, 2010 by

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