Monthly Archives: May 2012

So what has SpaceX achieved?

The attention that the SpaceX Dragon capsule’s visit to the International Space Station is, in some ways, a bit of a surprise. As a technical achievement, there’s nothing really new here; spacecraft have been docking with each other since Gemini. … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Nerdistry, Science | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Greener cars – an update

It’s amazing how companies can change when prodded by market conditions, regulation, or a combination of both. Take the big Aussie sedan, the Ford Falcon. You can now buy it with a turbocharged, 2.0 litre engine. And even the boofheads … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Science | Tagged , , , , , | 11 Comments

An unchallenging Australia Day

The MTC’s new play Australia Day has a theme ripe for comedy – the organization of the Australia Day celebration for a medium-size coastal town. It’s got a great cast, including the wonderful Alison Whyte as the archetypal treechanger Greens … Continue reading

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Indonesia, Asian languages, and what’s in it for me?

Over at the Lowy Interpreter, there’s been a series of posts also pointing to articles in the Fairfax press about “deepening our engagement with Asia”. One idea, mentioned by White and Joshua Frydenberg, is to fund more Australian university students … Continue reading

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Cenitex and project failure

Painful as it is when your team loses, changes of government do have a silver lining; it allows the out-and-out screwups of the last lot to be dealt with. Cenitex is the agency for the Victorian government’s attempt to centralize … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Nerdistry, politics, Victoria | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Bureaucracy BS bingo

The Victorian Government’s consultation paper about reform of Psychiatric Disability Rehabilitation and Support Services looks like a serious first step towards addressing a really important problem. But the bureaucratese in the paper is something to behold. Try this choice cut: … Continue reading

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Broken street light promise penny wise, pound foolish

In amongst the slash-and-burn Victorian state budget, one of the promises that got abandoned was a promise to kick in part of the cost of installing energy-efficient street lights. The project comes from a campaign run by the Municipal Association … Continue reading

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