Preliminary comments on BSEG report
Mon, 13 Mar 1995 23:15:09 +1000
On Mon, 13 Mar 1995, Rhys Weatherley wrote:
>But let's not get blinkered into thinking that centralised services and
>the Internet is all there is. Imagine an artist who has created some
>full-blast multimedia work. If they have to "rent" space on the local
>telephone exchange or the local commercial provider so people can view it,
>then the number of artists who can do this will be limited by economics.
>If however all they need do is connect their computer to the telephone
>socket and anyone can call them for the multimedia stream, then we've
>moved to a totally different level of social participation.
>The broadband system of the future should be based on the telephone model,
>not the television model. i.e. I dial a phone number and have a n Mbps
>bidirectional link to whoever is on the other end. I fear that with the
>current BSEG bias that we may end up only being able to call a few
>telephone numbers: the local pay TV channels, the CD-ROM server in the
>local exchange, the local AARNet router, commercial services like the
>Microsoft Network, and that will be it. This is a both a technical and a
>social consideration, because bad technical decisions can affect the
>degree of social participation.
I think that you've really got to the crux of the issues here. There simply
has not been enough public debate about these issues.
The Internet is truly revolutionary in the way that anyone can "publish"
whatever their background, financial status or education (well, in theory
anyway). This has resulted in an information infrastructure which is
breathtaking in scope.
At the moment, Telstra and Optus are about to spend some $4 Billion each on
sticking fiber in the ground and stringing it up along the power poles (the
reason why they're spending $8 billion giving everyone TWO fibers each
defies logic). Anyway, why are doing that? To give us cheaper local calls?
Faster internet access?
They are doing it to _sell_ us a range of interactive services. Would you
pay to see your "artist"? Probably not, somewhere along the line, there
will be demand for professionally produced interactive entertainment,
information services and education material. BSEG would like to make sure
that there is some decent Australian produced material there, and therefore
recommends those service providers buy some of their material locally
rather than just recycled US material.
>Subsidise Australian content all you want, but let's make sure that those
>who are unsubsidised can contribute too. Don't underestimate the amount
>of money that someone working out of their garage can make given the
>chance. The computer games industry world-wide leaves Hollywood for dead
>money-wise, and was mostly built from nothing by geeks hacking in their
>spare time. The authors of Doom are now very very rich. Not bad for
>practical nobodies huh? I want to ensure that _these_ people are
>empowered too, even if they cannot get handouts from the government or big
>business. 10% rules don't help them. Better technical designs do.
I take exception to your assumption that I want government subsidies, I
simply want to make sure that we have a home market to use as a "jumping
off point" for our title development. I have no ambition to get rich off
the violent junkware that passes for entertainment. I think we can build a
decent business, publishing high quality interactive educational material.
I am prepared to invest my hard earned cash to create interactive products.
I need a local market and I expect a return on my investment if the market
judges it worth it.
Marius Coomans Firmware Publishing Pty Ltd
Phone +61 47 217 211 Firmware Design Pty Ltd
Fax +61 47 217 215 28 Coombes Drive Penrith NSW 2750
Take a look at MediaTools, our Web site at <www.firmware.com.au> for lots
of Multimedia news and goodies (March issue out now!)