Update on my cellphone coverage, solution found

On Saturday I wrote about the non-existent cellphone coverage I am experiencing and explored with my readers possible solutions.

My choices were:

  • Stay with Spark and get some sort of expensive booster thingy
  • Move to Vodafone, a company that I used to be with for 15 years and left because of poor service.
  • Move to 2Degrees that appeared on the surface to have better coverage, but using a company who had blacklisted me with their advertising.

The second and third options were as unpalatable as coughing a large amount of money for a repeater/booster thingy.

Still with 285,000 plus readers there was a marketing opportunity for an astute and fast moving company.

One company was fast moving.

Can you guess which?   Read more »

A mobile coverage technical dilemma

Screen Shot 2014-09-19 at 9.47.02 pm

I have a technical dilemma.

I have moved house, no you can’t know where I live…because the media will then know. I am not having my family hounded by them again.

However I have a problem.

Mobile coverage.

I am currently with Telecom…and live in a black spot. 200m in any direction and I have full coverage but have no bars at all in most of the house, but out by the fence one bar, or upstairs. This is unacceptable. The network coverage map shows no 4G coverage, little or no 3G coverage nor any other sort of coverage. It is next to useless.

Is there a solution? I’m thinking no, and so have some choices to make.   Read more »

Quite possibly the gayest ute ever devised


A certain MP is probably already on the waiting list for such an incredibly gay ute:

When Nissan engineers Roland Schellenberg and Arnold Moulinet needed a small shop truck for the company’s 3,050-acre technical centre in Stanfield, Arizona, they decided – as engineers are want to do – to build one.

And as engineers relish a good challenge, Schellenberg’s gaze fell upon the least likely candidate for pickup conversion, Nissan’s Leaf electric car. He tasked Moulinet with creating the sketches that, with help from their team of tinkerers, would be come the crimson conversation piece you see here.    Read more »

New Zealanders are already being spied on wholesale. Legally too.

What is the fuss about the GCSB and NSA? Our Dept of Internal Affairs conducts widespread Internet surveillance with international cooperation to catch child pornographers every day of the week:

What is the Department’s response to concerns that the filter impacts on the civil liberties of New Zealand internet users?

No one has the right to view illegal content that focuses on the sexual abuse of children; just as no one has a right to import illegal books and DVDs.

The filter will focus solely on websites offering clearly illegal, objectionable images of child sexual abuse.

It is a prevention tool, not a law enforcement tool and the anonymity of anyone who is blocked from accessing objectionable sites will be preserved.

The Department is concerned about the sexual abuse of children involved in the creation of the objectionable pictures.

The adults who make, trade or view these in New Zealand are parties to a serious offence. They contribute to an international market that supports and encourages further abuse.

The children who are victims of this activity sometimes suffer the psychological effects of their abuse for many years after the physical offending has ended.

Images that are distributed on the Internet never go away. With each download the person involved is re-victimised.   Read more »

Kim Dotcom’s hired political party failed to deliver

Ian Apperly writes

Following Greenwald the (unsurprising) start of the show Edward Snowden beamed in from Russia to tell us what he thought. There were really only two statements that came out of that. Firstly, the cable had been tapped and secondly, that the NSA had a presence in Auckland and “further North”. He also said that he had regularly come across New Zealand data as part of his job as an analyst. No evidence of any of this was provided, we assume that Snowden, a traitor to his own country and a hero of the far right and far left, is telling us the truth.

New Zealand has had foreign spies here as long as I can remember. Every now and then they really screw it up. And we see it. Americans, Russians, Israelis, and other nation states have all been caught out here. So the NSA having a presence is zero surprise. The cable tapping was a given, as we’ve seen. It doesn’t matter HOW it is tapped by the way. Pacific Fibre have said they have no knowledge of it, yet there are soft ways to do it, it could be done at the far ends, their are a myriad of ways. We know they are.

I had a friend in the eighties who’s father was in the SIS and spied on the Russian spies in and around Karori. They would park in one particular elderly woman’s driveway to keep an eye on the Russians, so the story goes, because she would creep out with cups of tea, biscuits, and scones to feed the boys who were “keeping an eye on the naughty Russians.” Read more »

Snowden: Get rid of Key, although it won’t actually solve the problem

Snowden writes

This government may have total control over the checkbox today, but come Sept. 20, New Zealanders have a checkbox of their own. If you live in New Zealand, whatever party you choose to vote for, bear in mind the opportunity to send a message that this government won’t need to spy on us to hear: The liberties of free people cannot be changed behind closed doors. It’s time to stand up. It’s time to restore our democracies. It’s time to take back our rights. And it starts with you.
and then: This misuse of New Zealand’s spying apparatus for the benefit of a single individual is a historic concern, because even if you believe today’s prime minister is beyond reproach, he will not remain in power forever. What happens tomorrow, when a different leader assumes the same power to conceal and reveal things from the citizenry based not on what is required by free societies, but rather on what needs to be said to keep them in power?

and later:   Read more »


Green energy continues to fail… spectacularly

Highly subsidised and highly inefficient, it’s also not able to deliver the little it is meant to


The turbines in Devon and Cornwall came down when the wind  was blowing at barely 50mph,  despite the fact that they are supposed to withstand blasts of just over 115mph.

And, as the HSE concluded, the causes were manufacturing faults and basic mistakes in the way  they were installed. The errors  have already been replicated elsewhere in the country, as the two reports make clear, and could affect dozens – if not hundreds – more of the giant towers.

It is hardly encouraging to learn that the HSE reports were not published in a normal sense, but were available only on request and in redacted form.

They have come to light now only through Freedom of Information (FoI) requests lodged by a number of concerned residents.

Total incompetence followed by a cover-up.   Read more »

Some forensic work on @whaledump’s “Facebook” messages

I’ll start with the executive summary, so you can avoid the technobabble:  @whaledump is publishing fake conversations between Judith Collins and Cameron Slater.   I know this for certain.

When I was reading these supposed Facebook chats between Judith and Cameron, one thing immediately struck me:  where is the profanity?

Working closely with Cam, and almost a thousand chat logs (none of them via Facebook, incidentally) to draw on, I looked back over them, and for any that go on for a reasonable length, there is always some stomach cringing statement somewhere.  That’s “our” Cam.   I’ve heard him on the phone with other journos – and they damn well know that he can’t go for two sentences without saying something crude.

Anyone who has dealt with Cameron Slater will know his conversations, written or otherwise , are peppered with sledges, slights and pretty nasty language.  Even in chats with multiple participants, he will call us by derogatory nicknames, or use other ways to have over-the-top blokey type of conversations.   For example, I drive a car not worthy of his respect, and I’m constantly getting hammered for it.

It’s the banter you have when you think you’re talking privately.

All this is completely absent from the forged “Facebook chat logs”.   I don’t know about Judith Collins, I haven’t had any private contact with her (another hint this is a beat up?).  We haven’t even met.   As such, I can’t gauge her “voice” in these logs.

I have “admin” rights to the Whaleoil Facebook page, as I have access to many things to help Cam with the day-to-day chores.   So I decided to pull down the conversation and have a look at it.

It doesn’t exist.   Read more »


Botnet operators versus Hacktivists, it’s not just politics that is dirty

The first signs that Nicky  Hager’s book Dirty Politics are hitting the Internet for free download are coming up.


There are two download links (not shown above, for obvious reasons) – both say it is a 491 KB “rar” (compressed) file of the “ePub” electronic edition of the book.



However, if you try to download from either of those links, this happens   Read more »

The media is dead. Long live the media

STW Communications Group Ltd (ASX: SGN), one of Australia’s largest marketing companies, has provided what might just prove to be a rather insightful precursor to the full-year results of the three major domestic television stations and our newspaper giants.

SGN included the following graph in its 2014 financial year results presentation, which indicates that companies are dramatically reallocating their advertising spend from newspapers and television to digital media.


Television, newspapers, radio and magazines are all lose advertising market share hand over fist… to new media.

Read more »