Aardvark Daily aardvark (ard'-vark) a controversial animal with a long probing nose used for sniffing out the facts and stimulating thought and discussion.

NZ's leading source of Net-Industry news and commentary since 1995
Australasia's "New Economy" News And Commentary Site
Headlines | XML feed | Contact | New Sites | Press Bin | Job Centre | MARKETPLACE | For Sale
Note: This column represents the opinions of the writer and as such, is not represented as fact
All We Need Now Is A Plan 13 February 2002 Edition
Previous Edition

Million $ Ideas
At last, the contents of Aardvark's "million-dollar ideas" notebook are revealed for all to see!
Click To See
Yesterday the New Zealand government hyped up what was an otherwise rather "expected" announcement relating to its vision for this country's economic future.

The fanfare surrounding the announcement was a bit like the release of the nation's budget -- the information being treated with great secrecy and embargoed so that none of the media could jump the gun.

Now don't get me wrong -- there's little wrong with the government's declared goal of boosting our involvement and performance in hi-tech markets through the promotion of our own innovation and talent.

Need Cutting-Edge Copy?
As NZ's longest-running online commentator, I'm looking for extra syndication opportunities for this daily publication -- or I'm happy to write casual or regular material specifically to order for print or Net-based publications. If you're interested, drop me a line

There was little substance in the announcement however -- certainly nothing that merited the theatrics surrounding its release. Perhaps the PM's obsession with the performing arts has meant that such drama os to now be a part of all government decrees?

Readers Say
(updated hourly)
  • Taxation... - Alan
  • free internet providers... - Robert
  • Jetstart & P2P... - Neil
  • Have Your Say

    It seems that there are three key areas that will be focused on in future: bio-technology, IT and communications, and "creative" industries.

    Unfortunately I see some problems with bio-tech.

    I wonder exactly how the government are going to fend off the strong objections of the Green Party and the anti-GM brigade while also fostering an industry in which genetic engineering and genetically modified organisms are becoming an increasingly important component.

    IT and communications are areas where we've already excelled and proven ourselves capable of competing with other countries. What's been missing of course is the investment capital that these industries need to turn good ideas into commercial success.

    Although yesterday's announcement defined the goals fairly clearly, it made little attempt to define the methods for reaching those goals.

    The PM more or less ruled out the chances that personal tax rates would be lowered but the Finance Minister did hint that changes to the rates of business tax were not out of the question -- albeit they will probably be focused on attracting overseas companies to our shores.

    Given the self-imposed limits on taxation reform and the need to maintain a center-left position, the current government has a very difficult task ahead if it is to reach those lofty goals announced yesterday.

    I can't see how it would help us if we were to give foreign companies a preferential tax rate to local ones in order to attract them to our shores. This would simply encourage local entrepreneurs to spend US$399 to set up an LLC (Limited Liability Company) in Delaware, USA -- or even worse -- take their innovation and talent offshore to a country that offers even better tax rates to foreign companies.

    Likewise, the philosophical aversion to bringing NZ"s rates of personal tax into line with those of other key players in the IT and communications industries means that even if the corporate tax rate is dropped, it will still be hard to keep our brightest and best individuals from jumping ship to Singapore, the USA or other low-tax countries.

    If I issued a press release saying that my goal was to put a Kiwi on Mars by the year 2006, would I get as much press coverage?

    Would my announcement be given any credibility without some proof that I had a pretty good plan for reaching that goal and was prepared to make the hard decisions required to do so?

    Probably not.

    Maybe this explains the reason why the government chose to try and dramatise yesterday's launch. However, I have to say -- let's have more steak and less sizzle eh?

    Linking To Trouble
    The BT hypertext linking case hasn't gone away yet -- and the media are still intrigued with the possible outcome.

    However, infringing BT's patent isn't the only way that linking can get you into trouble.

    Take the case of this page on the ClearNet website.

    Looks harmless enough doesn't it?

    However, unless they've fixed it already, clicking on the link titled "American Race Fan" will take you to a porno site (The Best Teen Sex Review Site). You have been warned.

    Was this intentional? Are revenues so tight that ClearNet has signed up to an affiliate scheme to pay the rent? Is this a new Telstra-inspired policy?

    No, it's simply one of those things that happen if you're not totally vigilant about manually checking every link on your site with regularity.

    It's Still Free -- So Pay Up!
    Note: If you can't afford a donation, please check out The Aardvark Marketplace and visit the advertisers instead.

    Every month, Aardvark scores over half a million hits, at least 150K page views and delivers more than 6GB of data to visitors.

    All this traffic has meant that I've had to shift the site to a new server to ensure that your daily dose is always fresh and delivered to your browser with minimal delays.

    I also invest over 300 hours per year writing the daily column and compiling the day's news index -- all for your illumination and entertainment.

    If you haven't sent any money to help offset the costs of running this ad-free, 100% Kiwi, always fresh, often controversial site then you can give yourself the warm-fuzzies this Christmas by doing so now.

    Just drop by, click on the Aardvark, and hand over your loot.

    Add Aardvark To Your Own Website!
    Got a moment? Want a little extra fresh content for your own website or page?

    Just add a couple of lines of JavaScript to your pages and you can get a free summary of Aardvark's daily commentary -- automatically updated each and every week-day.

    Aardvark also makes a summary of this daily column available via XML using the RSS format. More details can be found here.

    Contact me if you decide to use either of these feeds and have any problems.

    Did you tell someone else about Aardvark today? If not then do it now!

    Security Alerts
    MS server bugs open the door to hackers (ZDNet - 12/02/2002)

    IE bug allows full MSN Messenger hijack (TheRegister - 9/02/2002)

    Mac Office vulnerable, Microsoft warns (AAP - 07/02/2002)

    BlackIce Firewalls Vulnerable To DOS Attack NewsBytes - 6/02/2002)

    MIRC Chat Users Vulnerable To New Attack (NewsBytes - 4/02/2002)

    Virus Alerts
    Klez worm reborn as nastier version (ZDNet - 13/02/2002)

    Gigger worm can format Windows PCs (The Reg - 11/01/2002)

    Happy New Year' worm hits Windows (ZDNet - 19/12/2001)

    Bookmark This Page Now!


    NZL Sites
    NZ Netguide
    NZ Herald Tech
    PC World NZ
    NZOOM Technology WordWorx

    AUS Sites
    Fairfax IT
    Australian IT
    AFR Tech
    AUS Netguide
    NineMSN Tech
    APC Magazine

    USA Sites
    CNNfn Tech
    Yahoo Tech
    ZDNet Tech
    USA Today Tech
    7am.com SciTech

    UK Sites
    The Register
    BBC SciTech


    The Day's Top News
    Open in New Window = open in new window
    New Zealand

    Open in New Window Spotlight swings to high-tech
    The information and communications technology (ICT) sector is one area the Government is targeting for "Growing an Innovative New Zealand"...
    NZ Herald

    Open in New Window "Cyberquacks" investigated: ComCom
    New Zealand's Commerce Commission has no exceptional concerns about offers of dubious health remedies over the internet or over the counter...


    Open in New Window Why This Link Patent Case Is Weak
    It may be a long time before British Telecom knows whether it lucked out or lost big in the legal sweepstakes. But even if it wins its court battle, experts said the British telephone company has already lost the war...

    Open in New Window Basic network flaw threatens Net's users
    Software bugs in a fundamental language of the Internet--the Simple Network Management Protocol--could leave routers, switches and even PCs open to attack...

    Open in New Window Targeted Hacks - Hard To Uncover, Harder To Fight
    The number and variety of computer worms, security vulnerabilities and attacks on the Internet continue to grow, often leaving more dangerous, targeted hack attacks that go beyond random worm infections and hacker scans overlooked...

    Open in New Window Europe not sold on Internet at home
    Europe's love affair with the Internet may never become as intense as that between US citizens and cyberspace, according to the latest eEurope benchmarking report of the European Commission...
    The Register

    Open in New Window Porn Hunters Unwelcome in Canada?
    Proposed legislation would make it a crime to do so much as alert the authorities that a website is peddling kiddie porn...


    Open in New Window Australian owner gives Kazaa a facelift
    Australia's Sharman Networks, a consortium of private investors with multimedia interests, has unveiled a new version of its popular Kazaa file-swapping software...

    Open in New Window Intel Australia warns consumers over desktop-laptop
    Intel Australia has warned consumers to be wary of manufacturers offering laptops containing processors designed for desktop PCs...


    Open in New Window Microsoft Patch Leaves IE Users Exposed To Attacks
    A bundle of software fixes designed to close security holes in Microsoft's Web browser leaves Internet Explorer users vulnerable to several published attacks...

    Open in New Window Hackers Shortcut Hotmail Password Reset Protections
    Security researchers have discovered a vulnerability in Microsoft Corp.'s Hotmail service that allows hackers to bypass security questions that users must answer before resetting their passwords...

    Open in New Window Web Media's Positively Surprising News
    Most investors gave Web media companies up for dead long ago. And many of those that have survived are still swimming in red ink. But here's the surprising news: A few actually look like they could make it...

    Open in New Window MS, Sony shaken by game suit
    Immersion, which develops technology that lets video game controllers vibrate in-sync with on-screen effects, on Monday filed suit against Microsoft and Sony, claiming that elements of their consoles violate its patents...

    Open in New Window Getting Scammed on eBay
    Lori, who lives in Fairfield County, Connecticut, won the auction on eBay in late January: She’d been the high bidder, at $4,000, for a hard-to-find Hermes Birkin bag. Then, she got an e-mail...

    Looking For More News or Information?

    Search WWW Search Aardvark

    Privacy Policy | Copyright © 2001, Bruce Simpson, republication rights available on request

    jet engine page