In This Issue


Fair Work Ombudsman takes aim at poorly paid migrant IT workers

Two Korean nationals working in Australia as software developers on working holiday and student visas went to the Fair Work Ombudsman alleging their employers, POSnet Pty Ltd and ECNEsoft Pty Ltd was only paying them between $6 to $24 an hour for their work. Way lower than any software developer should be earning. The Fair Work Ombudsman agreed, made the dodgy employers pay what they owed and an additional $5,000 fine. The punishment itself isn't that interesting, but the fact the Fair Work Ombudsman intervened in a case involving migrant workers in the software industry is unique and hopefully sends a message to the industry that you can be busted for pulling this sort of shit.

Qualcomm’s latest ARM-based laptop SoC is faster than Intel’s

Qualcomm used the latest Computex expo to show off an ARM-based laptop with its new Snapdragon 8cx SoC, running Windows 10 faster than the same laptop fitted out with an Intel i5-8250U (a great CPU imho). In PC Mark 10's battery life benchmark, the Snapdragon 8cx laptop had almost double the battery life of the Intel based CPU and in all the performance benchmarks, outpaced the Intel CPU. Unfortunately, laptops with this SoC probably won't be available to buy until early 2020, but we can dream about what Apple would do with a MacBook fitted out with an ARM CPU.

AMD upgrades Ryzen range of desktop CPUs

Also at Computex, AMD announced a new range of Ryzen CPUs. They're like the previous Ryzen CPUs, but faster for the same amount of power consumption. The Ryzen 7 3700X looks like an amazing deal, with 8C/16T, 4.4GHz max clock and 65W TDP for just ~A$500. To get a 16 thread CPU from Intel (the i9-9900), you're looking at spending at least $800 and when you enable all the security fixes, it'll be nowhere near as fast as AMD's CPU. This, combined with that Qualcomm SoC, equal a world of pain for Intel right now. Oh, and these new Ryzen CPUs have PCIe 4.0

Huawei’s CEO lets us know what he thinks of Trump & US trade sanctions

Ren Zhengfei, the usually media shy CEO of Huawei, sat down with Bloomberg for a chat and two statements grabbed everyone's attention - heckling Donald Trump ("I see his tweets and think it's laughable because they're self-contradictory", "how did he become a master of the art of the deal?") and that he doesn't want the Chinese government to retaliate against Apple ("Apple is my teacher, it's in the lead. As a student, why go against my teacher? Never."). Let's see how Trump reacts to someone bagging his tweets. I'll keep digging my fallout shelter.

The EU is launching three satellites to monitor global CO2 output

The EU is launching a fleet of satellites to monitor the world's CO2 emissions. The three satellites will launch in 2025 and act as a way to inform the UN who is and who isn't adhering to the Paris climate agreement. It would not surprise me in the least if there's many countries (Australia included) that straight up fudge the numbers when it comes to CO2 emissions and having this satellite send raw data back to Earth is an interesting way to try and keep everyone in check. I'm honestly surprised we didn't have this stuff already, seems so obvious!

Not News, But Still Cool

Sans Forgetica is a typeface “scientifcally designed” to help you remember

Thank you to Sizzle subscriber Marius for letting me know about Sans Forgetica, a font designed by RMIT University that is "scientifically designed to help you remember your study notes". According to the RMIT Behavioural Business Lab, "Sans Forgetica is more difficult to read than most typefaces – and that's by design. The 'desirable difficulty' you experience when reading information formatted in Sans Forgetica prompts your brain to engage in deeper processing". I have absolutely no idea if it works, but it's a free download so go nuts.

Use ImageOptim to make your PNGs and JPGs smaller

ImageOptim is a really easy way to compress images without losing quality, saving loads of storage/bandwidth in the process. It's a drag and drop app for macOS and runs images through the latest image compression techniques like MozJPEG, pngquant, Pngcrush, 7zip, SVGO and Google Zopfli. As an added bonus, it'll also strip out all metadata (e.g: location info, device info, etc.) to maintain some privacy and it's free (unlike some dodgy websites). I use it to make screenshots about 60% smaller without any discernible loss in quality.

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😁 The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Join us on Slack and chat with other Sizzle subscribers.

The Sizzle is created on Wathaurong land and acknowledges the traditional owners of country throughout Australia, recognising their continuing connection to land, water and community. I pay my respect to them and their cultures, and to elders both past and present.​