The Sizzle

Issue 181 - Monday, 4th July 2016 - Sometimes People Can Be Oh So Dense

I received a random email last week from the State Library of Victoria saying that they want to add The Sizzle (and a bunch of other garbage I write) into the National Library's PANDORA archive. Pretty cool yeah? Generations to come will be able to read The Sizzle's archives as I upload them a few weeks after you get it in your inbox.


ACCC to decide if they'll keep forcing Telstra to wholesale ADSL
The ACCC is looking to revisit its declaration that Telstra be forced to fairly wholesale ADSL services. Back in 2012, the ACCC made Telstra do this because it was making life hard for people to obtain decently priced internet. It was basically Telstra or bust for many people who wanted ADSL. This regulation will hang around until Feb 2017 and the ACCC has to decide whether to keep it going, or do something else - particularly since the NBN is now a thing (it was still gathering steam in 2012 before Malcolm fucked it). They're accepting submissions now if you're keen to give your two cents.

Windows 10 Anniversary update lands August 2nd
Probably should have mentioned this earlier, but it's a slllowww news day, so may as well dig it up now - Microsoft is releasing its big Anniversary update to Windows 10 on August 2nd. It's the first major update to Windows 10 and will bring stuff like extensions for Internet Explorer Edge, allowing apps and websites to authenticate against Windows Hello and the ability to buy a game on Xbox or Windows and share save games between both platforms.

Intel, Mobileye & BMW to make fully autonomous cars by 2021
Intel, Mobileye and BMW are joining forces to put BMW branded self driving cars on the road by 2021. The announcement is the typical stuff - autonomous cars will change society, bring huge economic benefits, be a revelation in safety, etc. etc. Now, I've heard of Intel (sweet CPUs) and BMW (cool cars), but who's Mobileye? They're an Israeli company that make all the bits and pieces necessary to make the car do stuff on its own. They already sell crash avoidance systems to various Tier 1 car part companies (e.g Delphi, TRW) who take Mobileye's tech and make it into something OEMs (GM, Ford, Toyota, etc.) put in their cars. Their CTO uploaded an interesting video of what's required to make a car autonomous.

More info on Seven's Rio Olympics app
Seven has announced what they're gonna do for the Rio Olympics and part of it is an app that will have every sport streaming live and on demand. It's on Android and iOS and will cost you $20, unless you're a Telstra customer, where it will be free (yessss). No detail on whether it'll let you Chromecast/Airplay to a TV though - that's the $19.99 question I reckon.

The Pope wants solar panels on every Catholic school in the world
The Vatican wants Catholic schools around the world to install solar panels. Where did his Holiness get this idea from? Queensland. Some Queensland Catholic schools have installed panels, saved a stack of cash and also helped the environment. According to Eco Community, the company the Townsville diocese hooked up with to get the panels installed, slapping some solar panels on all the Catholic schools in Australia could save about $1.4b over 25 years on electricity costs. Still can't like my baptised religion due to the whole no abortions and no gays thing, but I like this.


Linksys still sell the WRT54G
Did you know Linksys still sell the WRT54G? Yeah! That ancient 802.11g wi-fi router with the blue front and antennas sticking out the rear is still a "multi-million dollar SKU" according to Linksys's marketing people. The damn thing even gets firmware updates every now and then. It's popular, apparently, because it works. Lots of people had one, their friends had one, so they buy it. Many people don't have broadband fast enough to hit the ~50mbit/sec on 802.11g anyways. Plus there's the popular DD-WRT and OpenWRT firmwares available for it.

SimpleCitizen cuts out the bullshit from government paperwork
Over the weekend I read about SimpleCitizen, a website that's much like the ATO's eTax (compared in the article to TurboTax in the USA, as the IRS is a bit more backwards than our lovely ATO - arguably because of companies like TurboTax making sure filing taxes is a pain, so you buy their software), that takes the bullshit out of applying for US citizenship. Where previously you'd either need to spend weeks filling out the paperwork yourself and praying it's correct, or, paying thousands of dollars to an immigration lawyer, you can use SimpleCitizen instead. I love when arse backwards systems are replaced with 3rd party front ends that make sense.

Raspberry Pi speed camera
This guy got pissed off with people speeding down his street and wanted proof of all the speeding motorists to show the police, so they'll come bust some people. So he got a Raspberry Pi and the camera module and used some of that geometry most of us forgot about from high school to work out how fast cars are going past. The script he made detects motion, takes some photos, analyses those photos to work out how fast the car was going and then output an image with the car's speed.

Here endeth the sizzle (until tomorrow!)

The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Today's subject line is from Alec Eiffel, by The Pixies. Like The Sizzle? Tell your friends!