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Friday, September 19, 2008

Copyright Act Unworkable

As a consultant and in several ways a small time ISP the recent "Copyright (New Technologies) Amendment Act" has created a mine field for me, and many other IT Professionals as ISP's and also in business, universities, schools, and even homes.

In an unprecedented move many of the separate ICT groups in the country have come out with a joint press release slamming this act.

s92A includes:

"An Internet service provider must adopt and reasonably implement a policy that provides for termination, in appropriate circumstances, of the account with that Internet service provider of a repeat infringer."

So even as a parent (and I am more ICT savvy than most) I am required to implement a policy to stop my "clients" (family) from using the Internet if they repeat infringe. How many parents of teenagers will this potentially impact on.

To read more about this see:

Red Cross IT & T ERU

Since May last year I have been connected to the recently activated NZ Red Cross It & T (Information Tecnology & Telecommunications) ERU (Emergency Response Unit). The team that has been put toghether have all been through initial Red Cross basic training for International 'Delegates' and technical training to be able to work with the equiment supplied by the International Federation of Red Cross to assist local Red Cross societies in times of disasters.

Very soon after the last of the team completed the last of the required training two members were on their way to joing a European IT&T ERU to Haiti.

Emergency Sex

I recently read Emergency Sex (and othe deperate measures) - True stories from a war zone.

The stories of 3 people involved in Red Cross and UN humanitarian missions in the '90s.

It was recommended to me during a Red Cross training course, mainly due to the connection with one of the authors staring out as a Red Cross delegate before moving to work with the UN.

It also covers some of the history of missions to Haiti which is of potential interest to me.

It also gives a different perspective on the UN peacekeeping missions in some of the hotspots during the '90s, including the "Block Hawk Down" incident.

I found it hard to put down.

'A hell of a good book' Phillip Gourevitch

'A riveting read that vividly dramatises the many contradictions of the world it moves through' The Guardian

'Vividly told ... this book is all the more engaging because its perspective is personal before it is political' Daily Mirror

'The real beauty of Emergency Sex is that it's one of those rare books that is as wonderfully written as it is controversial ... impossible to put down' The Sunday Telegraph

By Kenneth Cain, Heidi Postlewait, Andrew Thomson
Biography/Politics
Ebury Press, Random House

And a lowlight

Then rather unexpectedly Mum passed away in June this year.

It seems that while she had put on a strong front for such a long time, the pain and suffering had finally gotten too much, and she had had enough.

So now is the huge task of sorting out all the effects etc.

Another sobering time

A highlight

Mum had not been in very good health for some time, and quietly I was not sure how well she would cope after Dad passed away. However with the strength that she has always had, she was determined to carry on, and to manage at home alone.

One thing that she was keen to do was to get to Queenstown and to sail on the Ernslaw.

When an opportunity arose where I was going to be working in Queenstown in December last year I made arrangements for Mum to join me for a few days.

It was great to be able to achieve her wish, and she managed to get two trips on the Ernslaw, one with me and one alone, and we also did the Gondola trip.

Life - Don't talk to me about life

After two deaths in the family half way through last year, I was then restructured and made redundant from the position I had held for 18 and a half years at Datacom Software Research/Trimble Navigation.

This on top of everything else that had happened prompted me to make some lifestyle changes, and in particular I went out on my own.

So I am now self employed working as an ICT Consultant and Contractor in business as Davis Networking

Being self employed has certainly worked out better in many ways, in particular allowing for a more flexible lifestyle which also allows me to pursue other options aligned with the volunteer work that I have been doing in Search and Rescue, Civil Defence and Emergency Management.

Some things that have happened in my life 'recently'

What can I say, it has been a roller coaster ride.

In May last year I started the process of becoming a member in the NZ Red Cross Information Technology and Telecommunications Emergency Response Unit, however due to the death of my father I was not able to attend the initial introductory training course at that time. (More on the IT&T ERU later)

So my father passed away unexpectedly at the age of 68. This was the start of the roller coaster ride. While Dad had had some health problems this was completely unexpected, and by the time I heard that he had gone into hospital he was in a coma and never came out of it. I spent a bit of time supporting mum and sorting out some of the things that needed to be done.

3 weeks later my wifes father passed away from cancer. While this was more expected, on top of the recent loss of my father this was another low on the ride.

more to follow ....