Daily Archives: February 2, 2009

What a pity I am retired…

That was my first thought when I saw Teachers in laptop of luxury.

Every NSW public high school teacher will get a wireless mini-laptop computer just like their senior students.

The $44 million expansion of the school computers program means teachers will have access to the same equipment and software as students in years 9 to 12. It also provides an extra 20,000 computers for primary schools, ensuring more junior students have access to the latest learning technology…

Ms Firth said $16million of state funding and $28 million of federal money would be spent buying laptops for the state’s 25,000 public high school teachers and providing an extra 20,000 new computers to primary schools.

Some netbook manufacturer/seller will be rejoicing, assuming the NSW government pays on time of course – which hasn’t always been the case. But then I thought: why should 25,000 teachers get a netbook? Think about it. Surely they could buy one, if they don’t have one already? Perhaps the items will be packaged with certain wireless configurations and filters, and certain program suites, to match the student computers. Maybe that’s it. Students get to keep their computers, I believe; they would be pretty useless after three years or so anyway.

And then, what about Google? I put a tart note on one of my Google Reader selections the other day when the Reader was malfunctioning, as it does from time to time, to the effect that there is a Rule of Google: this product will work – most of the time… But this morning’s story is a corker! Tangled web as Google goes ga-ga.

YOUR local phone exchange is down and your landline and mobile are not working. You need to make an urgent business call but you have no way of communicating with the outside world. What do you do?

A similar scenario hit the internet yesterday when Google, the dominant search engine, suffered a malfunction and marked all websites as dangerous, blocking them from use.

Millions of users were unable to access the sites they were looking for, and instead received the warning: "This site may harm your computer".

While the problem lasted only about 40 minutes, experts estimate millions of dollars were lost from online transactions dependent on the company’s search functions. Users reported failures on other Google applications such as Gmail, which has 1.3 million accounts with the (NSW) Department of Education…

Must see if there has been any effect on this humble site’s visits… Hmm, there is a gap between 1 and 2 in the morning our time…

And while on the Internet, I am sorry to see that BlogExplosion seems to have exploded at last. It had been like the “Marie Celeste” for some time now, with the last faithful volunteers having jumped ship and the forums choked with spam messages. But it was a useful site, and quite a few of my blogroll people came to me via BlogExplosion – Worldman and Benjamin Solah to name just two. See also BlogExplosion is gone?, Is BlogExplosion Down, Closed, Out of Business or what? and LiveUniverse Unavailable– BlogExplosion.

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Posted by on February 2, 2009 in computers, education, NSW politics, web stuff, www