Tech News: 5 Things to Know in Australia Today

Tech News: 5 Things to Know in Australia Today

Hello. It’s a good day for Wolverine fans, there’s also what appears to be snow-like hail dropping in backyards in Canberra. It has been an interesting morning, so here are five things happening in the tech world to ice that proverbial cake.


1. Help for NSW/Vic/SA driver’s licences in the wake of Optus breach

As I’m sure you’re more than aware, Optus last week suffered a massive data breach, with the latest appearing that the hacker apologised and deleted their data scrapings, after leaking 10,000 instances of info on Australians. With driver’s licence details at risk, the NSW government is helping those affected obtain new licence numbers. Queensland, as well as the South Australian government, are on the case, too. There are calls for the passport office to do the same, but that’s a whole other thing.

2. A Samsung slidable PC

Samsung Display and Intel are reportedly working on “slidable” PCs. During Intel’s Innovation keynote today, Samsung Display CEO JS Choi appeared onstage to show off a prototype PC that slides from a 13-inch tablet into a 17-inch display. As reported by The Verge, the prototype device that Samsung Display and Intel have shown off today essentially turns a 13-inch tablet into a 17-inch monitor with a flexible display and a sliding mechanism.

Image: Samsung Display

3. Programmers are self-sabotaging their own code

The Conversation is reporting that ‘protestware’ is on the rise, that is, code that has been deliberately toyed with by its creator to sabotage the company they’re working for. The authors of the article have identified three common types of protestware: Malignant protestware, Benign protestware and Developer sanctions. It’s an interesting read, you can find the full analysis here.

4. Google Maps now includes Aussie air quality data

Google Maps has been updated to display air quality information Australia-wide, with data provided by state and territory governments. Results are largely split across five categories: good, fair, poor, very poor and extremely poor, with context on what’s causing the air quality to be impacted. In the app, you’ll also be presented with guidance on if your outdoor activities require a change of plans. The air quality layer is available on Google Maps now across Apple and Android devices.

5. Did a school in the U.S. ban the Girls Who Code books?

It’s been widely reported that four books in the Girls Who Code book series, slim middle-grade novels infused with lessons about life and programming, were banned in a Pennsylvania school district. Founder of the organisation Reshma Saujani, spoke out against the ban in vehement terms: “This is about controlling women and it starts with controlling our girls,” she told Insider. Yet, in response to those news stories, school district at the centre of the controversy denied it had ever banned the books. Here’s our deep-dive.

BONUS ITEM: A millionaire has been investigated for torching a $10 million Frida Kahlo painting in what can only be described as a disgusting NFT stunt. Start from around the 2:00 mark (if you must watch at all), the rest is insufferable.

Have a good one.

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