Flying Cars / ABC Illawarra

Uber Air made a splash today announcing that they are currently investigating either Sydney or Melbourne as a possible third international site for a trial of their new Uber Air taxi service.

Over the past few weeks we’ve seen a few of these announcements from various potential players and there seems to be a growing interest from passengers as well as governments and investors.

This afternoon I caught up with Illawarra’s ABC Radio’s Lindsay McDougall to chat about all things flying cars including these:



Uber Air

E Hang

Kitty Hawk

and have a listen to our on air chat ( 9 mins 50 secs):

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2016’s top 10 good, bad and ugly tech / ABC Far North

top-10-tech-2015It’s always fun at this point in the year  look behind us and review the years best and worst tech’s and this week ABC Far North’s Kier Shorey and I explore my top 10 list of good, bad and ugly tech, 2016 style.

1. Headphones disappear – Apple continues to do what it does best, unilaterally decides what we need and then try to convince us their right. This year they decided, that because 48% of all device listening is done through Bluetooth headsets, that it was the right time to get rid of the hole in the phone that lets us plug our headset in and free up the space for something else. This has, as usual, come with huge outcries, 3rd party dongles and Apple temporarily reducing its own peripherals to help existing users overcome, but behind it all Apple stands strong on its decision and we resist change.

2. Fake news becomes the news – hoaxes, scams and false stories been around for ever, but this year they became mainstream when Zuckerberg was blamed for Trump’s win by allowing fake news stories to circulate through Facebook. Interesting because yes fake stories abound and we need to be mindful of where information is coming from, but what fascinates me is that so many people are calling for social media to practice Censorship and decide what should and shouldn’t be seen and read.

3. Samsung Galaxy 7 Note burns – fascinating look at how a big brand copes with a big problem and how enveloped the world becomes when a piece of tech goes bad. Will Samsung lose it reputation and sales moving forward. my guess is not, bring on Samsung 8.

4. Self driving cars are revving up their engines – this year self driving transport moved from science fiction to science fact with lots of media conversations and car and non car brands and everyday people all finally accepting that driverless cars, buses and trucks are coming to a road near us within the decade. Stay tuned in 2017 for more talk, more cars and more debates around “how we make it so”.

5. Hacking our nightmares – Bad people breaking into good people’s premises and stealing their possessions is not new and online this is no exception with cybersecurity becoming the hot topic of the year as we saw the Census site taken down, Government and retailer portals compromised and a recent Mirai botnet targeting the Internet of Things, this story. Unfortunately this story is only set to gain momentum in 2017 and beyond.

6 Facebook goes live – not since the advent of Skype have we seen such an uptake of personal live broadcasting and now Facebook Live lets us easily share with the world what we’re seeing and experiencing. This first person point of view reporting is already becoming the norm and is taking us to places and sharing experiences that we have never had access to before, Voyeurism or Visionary? – you decide

7 No one wants Twitter – Despite its big brand status, Twitter is having difficulty monetising its site and also finding someone to buy it. This unfolding story is a lesson into today’s unicorn corporations, well-known, well used, great on-paper value, but too often not profitable and unsaleable in its current form.

8 VR seen everywhere, but nowhere – Big year for Virtual Reality with lots of brands offering headsets for sale, but as is often the case with new tech it takes a while for it to find its purpose and place. Next year will be a year of conversations of why do we have it and what do we need it for, but behind the scenes the groundswell will continue to rise as this infancy tech slowly begins to find its way and purpose.

9. Uber everything – wherever we turned this year it seems Uber, used both as a noun and a verb, was there, doing it, promoting it, touting it, fighting it or being used as the yardstick for somebody else’s great innovation or thought – is any publicity, still good publicity it seems Uber thinks so.

10 Transport gone Hyperloopy – the story of the year in transport has to be Hyperloop, the vacuum tube train capable of doing speed of 750km per hour, has left the station this year and gone from being a geek dream to a Sheik reality with Dubai and several other countries all vying to be the first to have their own fast train.

As always a great chat, so listen live (15 minutes 03 seconds) and then add your thoughts to the best and worst of this years tech.


Calm down and get real

deep-breathing2014 will be a year of great change – psychologically, emotionally, technologically and pretty much for all of the other ology’s.

Alright we get it. The worlds had it tough. Things will take a while to build towards a new normal, which will for the first time have to include a digital version of ourselves and the world and yes we’re obviously all connected all day (well almost) and we can do lots of cool stuff with our new gadgets and new toys – but I’m over all of this obvious stuff, so just tell me how does all this make a real difference to my life?

This backdrop started the conversation between James Lush of ABC Local Perth and I in our regular on-air look ahead.

As well as the new normal, we chatted about the growing movement for digital detox’s, digital Sabbaths and digital time out, the rise of ephemeral apps like Snapchat that allow us to communicate, but don’t long term store the conversation and apps that are time and place sensitive and can automatically stop, halt or silence technology like when you’re at the cinema, in bed or at Church.

We also chatted about the changing business landscape that will eventually see many of us as Entrepreneurs and Intrepreneurs (same thing as an Entrepreneurs but is an employee of the company stirring things up internally); the rise of new businesses and business paradigms by looking at websites and apps like Etsy and Ebay that allow anyone to sell anything to anybody and digital service providers such as Uber that allow you to find a driver and car in your local area in real time and the slew of uberesque innovations I’m sure we’ll see in the very near future that will connect people needing goods and services with those providing it in real time.

As always it’s great gazing into the future with James, take a look at all my predictions for 2014 and beyond, and have a listen to the segment and share your thoughts for what you see ahead.