Fairfax Tech Talk Column

Fairfax Tech Talk Column

25.9.2020 Is AI going to prove to be painful? Tech Talk Column 217


Before COVID-19 hit the world, there were six aged care facilities in the region that I would regularly visit – sometimes with one of my children - to deliver a presentation on technology or perform poetry for the residents. On some occasions I might be interrupted during my presentation by one of the residents. I dismissed it as a resident being a bit cantankerous. Sometimes my kids would comment that a particular person seemed rude. Other residents would tell me the person in questio ..

18.9.2020 The irony of Newcastle reducing coal dependence - Tech Talk Column 216


In September 1797, Lieutenant John Shortland went in the direction of Port Stephens searching for runaway convicts. He stumbled across what he later described as “a very fine coal river” and, in one of those ultimate moments of praising your boss, he took it upon himself to name the estuary the Hunter River after Captain John Hunter who was Governor of the British colony in New South Wales. With Shortland’s description of the deep-water port and the abundant coal in the ..

11.9.2020 The Holy Grail of solar panels - Tech Talk Column 215


In raising our four children, my wife and I hope we have managed to achieve many things but, at the very least, we hope we have taught them to have a sprinkling of scepticism about the world around them. When something seems just way too good to be true then, well, there is a pretty good chance that it is. You know the type of thing…the five million pound lottery win for a draw you didn’t enter; the windfall from the massive estate from the overseas deceased unknown relative and ..

04.9.2020 Fairfax Tech Talk Column 214


Look! Up in the sky. It's a bird! It's a plane! It's…sorry, it’s not Superman. As much as many people like the idea of a guy flying around with his underpants over his pants protecting us, it is much more likely that if you look up in the sky today, you will see a drone. With a third company recently cleared by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for commercial drone deliveries, we continue to edge closer to the vision of a thirty-minute turnaround from order to delive ..