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  • Ahead of the Curve? Recent trans-Atlantic thinking on privacy that sounds familiar

    Malcolm Crompton     |      February 1, 2010

    At the risk of mixing metaphors, it seems that there is movement at the station, on both sides of the Atlantic, on the need for new thinking on how best to respect personal information about individuals and manage the risks to which they might be exposed as a consequence of its collection, use and disclosure.

    Throughout 2009 as the word was getting around you could hear the horsemen gathering in the distance, now they can be seen gathering on the horizon.   

  • Uncategorised

    Congratulations to our bloggers on 2010 Australia Day honours

    editor     |      February 1, 2010

    Steve Lawrence was made an Officer of the Order of Australia for service to the community through leadership roles in the development and implementation of not-for-profit ventures to create social change, particularly for youth and the long-term unemployed. Warwick Watkins was made a member of the Order of Australia for service to spatial information and natural resource management through leadership roles within a range of public sector agencies. To find out more about their passions in their own words check out Steve’s blog and Warwick’s blog today.

     

  • Charter of Rights no protection for the vulnerable

    Elise Parham     |      February 1, 2010

    The peculiarly moral nature of human rights can make it difficult to analyse the way a law enumerating those rights, a charter of rights, would operate in practice.

    Supporters and opponents often talk in sweeping generalities about the value of minorities, the need to care for those who slip through the cracks, and increasing government accountability. Yet it is critical that the government take an evidence-based approach to the question, to the extent possible.

    To wade through the rhetoric and research the practical operation of a charter is difficult, especially when the government has not yet indicated its intention to introduce a charter and has offered no particular charter model. There are, however, some good indications of what might happen if the government does propose a charter of the kind recommended late last year by the National Human Rights Consultation.

  • Population and Migration: understanding the numbers

    Les Pickett     |      February 1, 2010

  • Forgotten Consumers: The History of Medicine as a Marketplace

    GabeJames     |      January 31, 2010

    The health system is yearning to be a freer market. 

    The history of modern health begins with medical care as a freely available ‘consumer good’ that was regulated by a royal decree. Now we have come full circle. The system is straining under its own weight and lack of flexibility.

  • Car Accidents and Speeding

    Open Forum     |      January 28, 2010

    I am not an expert of any form however I have been thinking on this for many years. You see my brother died many years ago in a car accident and over the years I have heard of so many tragic stories.

    It seems to me that technology has improved so much especially in the last few years and yet we don’t seem to be utilising it in respect of the road toll.

    The latest innovation I have heard of is about GPS. Apparently nowadays they can not only provide us with our current location but also inform us of up to the minute road conditions.

    My question: why doesn’t some intelligent being utilise this technology and provide a computer system installed in a vehicle with localised speed limits which are then fed into a speed limiter so it becomes extremely difficult for anyone to speed on our roads.

  • Cloud Computing Made Simple

    Malcolm Crompton     |      January 28, 2010

    Cloud computing has been a popular term for a year or two now, but many of us still don’t know what it is or its implications. To a degree, it is old wine in new bottles (hotmail has been around for over a decade now) but it is also so much more. 

    This has led to some pretty slick selling of the concept without being entirely straight forward as to the impact on the interests of all stakeholders. In an article titled “Salesforce.com: Cloud Computing is a game-changer”, Peter Coffee is quoted as saying:

  • Bogans and their Flags

    sally.rose     |      January 28, 2010

    “In Australia we eat meat, drink beer and speak ****EN ENGLISH”. 

  • Heading for another great recession?

    patrickcallioni     |      January 28, 2010

    As I predicted in earlier posts, governments are reacting to the financial crisis by indulging in populist reforms that are intended to punish the culprits – banks and financial institutions – and to stop them from doing again whatever they did that caused the US and global economies to crash in 2008-9. The form and character of what President Obama has said he wants to do – if Congress allows him to do it – is a typical example (this is what the President said, in part):

  • Does Australia’s health system need to get worse before it can get better?

    GabeJames     |      January 22, 2010

    In 2010, governments across the world will redouble their efforts to reform healthcare. 

    Indeed, in most countries, they have been trying for decades. But a recent economic jolt reminded us just how tenuous our prosperity is and has given us a new sense of urgency.

    But will this renewed impetus, perhaps embodied in Obama´s efforts, allow health reform to succeed in Australia, the USA and elsewhere? Will we be able to reduce costs and improve efficiency? What will the future of our health look like? 

  • It’s back to work but is anybody there?!

    Clive Leach     |      January 20, 2010

    It’s the New Year, we are back to work and have hopefully got through the 18th January ‘Blue Monday’. Apparently the most depressing day of the year, when a combination of holiday aftermath, worry over debt, failed New Year’s resolutions and a general lack of motivation all conspire to undermine our sense of purpose and well-being!

    Perhaps then, this is a good time to think about how engaged we really are at work. Looking around we see everyone at their posts, but is everybody really there?

  • Australia’s enmeshment with Asia: The unseen evolution

    Warren Reed     |      January 18, 2010

    The Australian, on January 15, ran a one-page feature article by Rowan Callick called “Dysfunctional diplomacy”. A balanced piece of journalism, it looked at where this country stands in the international community and at turbulence in its relations with major nations like China, India and Japan. Early on in his article, Callick highlighted the fact that,

    “The government has focused its diplomacy on three multilateral goals: gaining election to the UN Security Council, an ambition that colours Australia’s approach to other foreign policy issues; nuclear disarmament; and creating a new Asia-Pacific community. All these aims remain distant.”