Online column

A weekly tech column written for The Southland Times, a company that pays well enough to keep me in handbags and Drambuie

What is life without Cerf-ing the net?

What is life without Cerf-ing the net?

(This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times) The internet has become so much a part of everyday life so quickly that it’s probably hard for the average young-ish person to imagine a time when it wasn’t around. But there was a time, and I remember it because I’m not particularly young-ish. Yes, I remember the days when there was great excitement over the arrival of that radical and exciting TV3 on...

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Everyone is out to get you on the web

(This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times) They say that it’s not paranoia if they really are out to get you (they being those who are out to get you), and that’s never more true than on the web. It seems like everywhere you turn, there’s some lousy bugger wanting to break into your computer, wipe your hard drive and steal your collection of porn and/or pirated music. Facebook, never far...

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Vanished online friends

Vanished online friends

(This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times) The web is great for making connections (being nothing more than a whole bunch of connections itself) but there are also disconnections to think about. Last week I mentioned that through the wonders of the web, I’d caught up with a friend I hadn’t seen for more than 20 years. This week the news was pretty much the polar opposite. I was one of...

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Looking forward to another year

Looking forward to another year

(This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times) Well, here we are then, staring down the barrel of another year. I’ll get the cliche over and done with by trundling out that oft-quoted old chestnut here about time going fast and be done with it (although, to tell the truth, I used to think that was just something old people said, now I know it’s true. Either that or I’m old). But...

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Trade Me: the gift that keeps giving

Trade Me: the gift that keeps giving

(This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times) It’s that awkward time of the year where Christmas is wrapped up (no pun intended) and the New Year is looming on the horizon. There’s really not much to do except eagerly await news of whether this is my year to get something in the New Year honours (I live in hope), work your way through a fridge full of leftovers (luckily Seymour the...

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Festive consideration

(This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times) Is everyone feeling all festive and tinsel-riffic yet? It’s getting dangerously close to the big day and with all the shopping chaos and weirdly muggy weather it wouldn’t be any great surprise to find everyone in a bad mood but to be honest, I’m finding things are the exact opposite: everyone’s very chirpy and, even better, considerate. I went out for lunch the other...

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An iPad by any other name

An iPad by any other name

(This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times) It might be the new product with the stupidest name ever but there’s no denying just how excited all the tech geeks get about the iPad. Sure, it sounds more like a feminine hygiene product than a grunty little piece of technological treasure but it’s taken the world by storm (both online and offline) and even I’m considering whether or not I should add...

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Sheltering from the leaks

Sheltering from the leaks

(This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times) I can’t begin to tell you how relieved I was when I realised the latest batch of leaked WikiLeaks documents didn’t give away any of my secrets. I might not have been spying on foreign governments or plotting nasty things against other countries but I do have a secret stash of Drambuie that I’m quite fond of and I’d hate for that information to...

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Facebook email may struggle to grab users

(This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times) It’s always good to see new, free web tools available for us consumers. However, I don’t know that I’ll be rushing to join the Facebook email/messaging revolution. The social networking site has announced a new messaging service that it hopes will handle email and other communications across different services. In other words, Facebook is taking on the likes of Google and Yahoo in the...

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Plugin sinks drunken tweets

(This is the Online column, written for The Southland Times) There’s some good news for those of you who drink and browse in the form of the Social Media Sobriety Test. A news report on Stuff this week says the plugin for Firefox web browsers has been devised by an American internet security firm as a way of stopping us making dicks our ourselves on Facebook while liquored up. Webroot reckons nothing good happens...

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