[LINK] RFC: NBN Issues

Marghanita da Cruz marghanita at ramin.com.au
Thu Jan 21 17:57:45 AEDT 2010

Roger Clarke wrote:
> Concerned about several aspects of how the NBN might unfold, I tried 
> to engage with the relevant executive.
> I was told it was inappropriate for NBNCo to spend time on this 
> submission, because she'd have to give equal time to everyone if she 
> did so.
> That seems to rather emphasise the point the paper is making.
> (The relevant exec is Christy Boyce.  Her job-title - perhaps 
> tellingly - is 'Head of Industry Engagement').

Yesterday, I attended the Sydney Forum on
the consultation paper. Christy Boyce
chaired the meeting. It was well
attended, in terms of BOS.

The panel comprised:
christie boyce head-industry engagement
jamie chard cto office
matthew lobb - industry consultation and

Mike Quigley also rocked up for
question time and answered a few
questions - including mine on whether
the NBN would be using any custom
equipment - apparently vendors were keen
to help develop some (or I suggest keen
to get paid to be seen to be developing
a custom solution) but any such
customisation is to be kept to a bare
minimum. Though I doubt Australia is
a big enough market for any special

The CPSU was there and asked questions
about employment. There were a few jokes
about the construction jobs necessarily
being in Australia, but apparently the 
will be manufactured, if not designed 

Christie Boyce, was apparently the
second employee of NBNco but will
probably go down in history as the
conceiver of a "population replacement
program". She was optimistic that those
without a need for a 100mbs optical
fibre connection would soon die out - or
at least would be gone by the time the
NBN rolls out in 20 years.

When Jamie chard finished, he apologised
for going into so much detail. Most of
the room nearly choked because, all he
had done was explain the OSI model and
that the NBN would be doing level 1 & 2
only. Mike Quigley reemphasised this.

They also laughed off any suggestion of
wireless (though I predict) that the
best use of the NBN will be to connect
3G cells or maybe WiFi see:

Though they did acknowledge the other part
of the Population Replaccement Program -
people move house and relocating services
needs to be managed.

There was also an issue of backup in the
case of power failures for the Optical
Network and the environmental impact of
batteries (the current copper network
carries sufficient power to keep your
phone working during blackcouts). Though
the provision of an analog phone port on
the Premise termination device seemed to
be the risk management plan if the
population replacement program failed.

The development of the NBN is to be a
collaborative process, interestingly for
me, is it isn't necessarily providing
infrastructure, but filling in any gaps.

This paper is one of a series of
consultative papers and it contains
specific questions they are seeking
input on.

There was a question about fault
resolution and customer support. The
idea seems to be that the RSP will deal
with this....I guess along the lines of
the Optus deal with Virgin as a reseller
of their 3G network.

> As ever, constructively negative criticism gratefully received, and 
> feel free to pass this on to other appropriate channels.
>       The National Broadband Network (NBN): Privacy Considerations
>              http://www.rogerclarke.com/II/NBN-PC-0912.html
> The NBN holds great promise. It also harbours considerable potential 
> threats to privacy. There is to date no sign that NBN Co. is engaging 
> with the issues. It needs to do so.

The NBN's focus is the development of
product specifications and this is where
I guess the privacy and other issues can
be addressed. But they want submissions
and comments on the specific questions
in the consultation paper. Though there
was a complaint that the questions in
the presentation were slightly different.

The session was videoed and will be made
available along with the Melbourne Forum
on the NBNCo website.

I didn't quite understand your stuff
about IPV6 as the NBN would respond that
this is an issue for the RSP (layer 3
and above) not them. Based on their
market analysis (UK and Singapore got a
mention) layer 1 & 2 is the gap they
need to fill.

PS there were lots of references to the
Government/Minister being the Shareholder
and some issues were batted to ACMA and
the ACCC.
Marghanita da Cruz
Tel: 0414-869202

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