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IBM Australia Announces New Global Research Development Lab

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the study-room dept.

Australia 68

davidmwilliams writes "Today Prime Minister Julia Gillard and IBM Australia and New Zealand Managing Director Glen Boreham announced a new global research and development lab to be based at the University of Victoria, creating 150 jobs and tackling Australian national concerns. The controversial Labor Government's National Broadband Network has been cited as a major drawcard."

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68 comments

I'm first :) (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890048)

Absolutely the first time too :)

Re:I'm first :) (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890376)

You're absolutely the first nigger too. OH NO SLASHDOT, THE TERRIBLE N-WORD! Quickly now, suppress it, censor it, silence it! IT'S THE N-WORD!

To reiterate, that "first post" jackass sure is a nigger. OH SHIT, HE SAID IT AGAIN!

Re:I'm first :) (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890500)

You didn't say anything you stupid fucking nigger, you typed a fuckload of nonsense. Why don't you go eat a dick you fucking faggot retard double nigger.

It's not even done yet. (4, Insightful)

mjwx (966435) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890094)

The NBN has only begun rolling out, it's future is still in jeopardy and already it's drawing new business to Australia. Does anyone still need that CBA (Cost Benefit Analysis)?

Of course I mean anyone rational.

Australia has been built on developing new tech, on research. CSIRAC (CSIRO) was the worlds fourth digital computer and the CSIRO have done a lot more since then, a lot which has benefited Australia's main export industries (agriculture and mining). Killing this trend will only result in Australia shooting itself in the foot.

Re:It's not even done yet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890212)

I see something, more patents and other technology acomplishments made thanks to Australia.
NBN infrastructure win = money for Australia and Abott/Turnbull still complaining

Re:It's not even done yet. (1)

mjwx (966435) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890254)

I see something, more patents and other technology acomplishments made thanks to Australia. NBN infrastructure win = money for Australia and Abott/Turnbull still complaining

Turnbull/Abbott have to complain. They're in opposition and the NBN is Labor's crowing achievement.

The NBN will incite more tech oriented business in Australia, we have a better education system (overall) then the US and work harder (more hours) they Europe. I think we'll see local data centres form an economy around delivery of content via the NBN.

Re:It's not even done yet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890444)

I see something, more patents and other technology acomplishments made thanks to Australia. NBN infrastructure win = money for Australia and Abott/Turnbull still complaining

Turnbull/Abbott have to complain.

Actually, they do NOT necessarily have to complain. They can actually come with a coherent alternative and propose it, be constructive even if in opposition.

Personally, I'm sick of politicians bitching only because the political game is simplified to: "When in power, ignore whatever anybody would say, that's why it is called power. When in opposition, raise hell and do nothing else: afterall, you can't do anything until you have the power".

Re:It's not even done yet. (1)

Ocker3 (1232550) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902188)

Exactly! We've learned all the wrong lessons from foreign politics, with things devolving into the blame game and personal insults, rather than actually getting anything done.

Re:It's not even done yet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890244)

"Of course I mean anyone rational."

Yeah, because under 200 some jobs is worth the...how much are you guys investing in this again?

And isn't this the same country that had a lone ISP that ran your internet for years? Or was it DNS, I forget. Then you had some sorry ass links to the outside world because of this, which went on for years and became evident every time you lost an underseas line and connections to you folks dropped to, well, crap? Then it was shown that ISP wasn't providing service, because they were pocketing the funds, not upgrading lines, and wouldn't be held responsible to upgrade lines, because they were,well, a monopoly? How long did that take you Aussies to fix that? I seem to recall it got sorted out after about 6 years after the manure hit the grate.

And nowadays, you have some ridiculous on and offline censorship. Video games. And aren't you the folks that has a hit list, sorry, morality blacklist of unacceptable web sites, with lone government oversight, thanks to your governments and population's newfound "morality"? I remember when we used to buy games we couldn't find in the US from guys, because you got the good stuff. And had good hardware too. That all dried up.

So chalk up one for you with an IBM research center. Good for you. They smelled the dollars, and came running. When it runs out, they'll leave. And thank the US for sending jobs to China; your internet lines don't have to run to us so much anymore, as they can take the shorter route to China, since the economy's going there anyways, and they'll back supply their lines to you if you need to connect to the US from time to time.

Now *that's* a perfect match for you commonwealth folks. Now let's see, where's that brothel registration link I had....

Re:It's not even done yet. (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890322)

because they were,well, a monopoly? How long did that take you Aussies to fix that?

We still haven't fixed that, but the NBN is part of doing so.
A lot of the NBN is about the same as what was planned for 2000 back in 1996 before Telstra decided to do the absolute minimim it could get away with.
Telstra for many years was a government owned organisation that pretended to be a private enterprise when it suited - so the worst of both worlds. When a large portion was sold off the mexican bandit running Telstra spent a lot of time taking legal action against various shareholders and PR campaigns against the government while attempting to bleed the company dry.

Re:It's not even done yet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890832)

And NBNCO is the new Telstra, the worst of both worlds, and will continue to be until it is privately owned.

Re:It's not even done yet. (1)

drsmithy (35869) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902514)

A lot of the NBN is about the same as what was planned for 2000 back in 1996 before Telstra decided to do the absolute minimim it could get away with.

The NBN is exactly what privatising Telstra *should* have produced. A government-owned and -controlled base infrastructure that private entities resell bandwidth from.

Re:It's not even done yet. (2, Interesting)

Gadget_Guy (627405) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890544)

Yeah, because under 200 some jobs is worth the...how much are you guys investing in this again?

$43 billion. But what makes you think that the only benefit will be 200 jobs? This is a massive undertaking, which will have massive consequences.

And isn't this the same country that had a lone ISP that ran your internet for years? Or was it DNS, I forget. Then you had some sorry ass links to the outside world because of this...

You might be thinking of Melbourne IT [wikipedia.org] , which was responsible for the .com.au addresses. One person handled the entire registration process for the entire country. This was much more complicated than getting a .com address because you had to provide documentation to prove you had the company name to match the address. Back in the 90s it ended up with a massive backlog. But this didn't affect the ability to connect to the Internet.

You might also be thinking of Telstra [wikipedia.org] . It is true that Telstra resells their ADSL as a wholesaler, which was quite proper. However, they also are a public ISP and this creates a conflict of interest. The big problem that we had with Telstra in this respect was that it was privatised at about the time the Internet was becoming popular. It should have been broken up before privatisation so that they would not be in competition with their own resellers. Even worse, they were in competition with themselves. I remember many years ago when we wanted to use Internet access over mobile phones (long before 3G). We could get a cheaper price at Telstra if we asked at a different department. It was way too massive.

The ideal would have been to keep the wholesaler in government hands and sell off the retailer parts. This is exactly what the NBN is going to fix.

And nowadays, you have some ridiculous on and offline censorship. Video games.

I have a lot of issues with the Australian Classification Board [classification.gov.au] . But I don't see how this is relevant to this topic.

And aren't you the folks that has a hit list, sorry, morality blacklist of unacceptable web sites, with lone government oversight, thanks to your governments and population's newfound "morality"?

No. Apart from a trial of a few ISPs (now over), it has never been implemented. And I doubt it ever will. There was always going to be too large a backlash.

So chalk up one for you with an IBM research center. Good for you. They smelled the dollars, and came running. When it runs out, they'll leave.

So what? Don't ever try anything because things might change in the future? Seriously, what is the point of your rambling?

Re:It's not even done yet. (2, Interesting)

sortius_nod (1080919) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890256)

There's also stories of high tech IT companies waiting with baited breath for the NBN to be rolled out so they can move manufacturing, datacentres, DR sites, etc, out of the big cities. This is a major chance for Australia to revitalise the bush, but the opposition feels that sabotaging the first major public infrastructure project in decades is a smart idea. Their alternative is wireless. No business worth anything would rely on wireless for high speed data, mainly because of the limitations and security concerns with wireless.

Add to this that the estimate of how many towers would be required is insanely higher than there currently is (some estimates put it at 1 tower per street).

Re:It's not even done yet. (2, Interesting)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890300)

Add to this that the estimate of how many towers would be required is insanely higher than there currently is (some estimates put it at 1 tower per street).

But that sounds perfectly okay to me. Pretty much every intersection in the Melbourne CBD has microcells mounted on traffic signal pylons. Why not do it in the suburbs? Cheaper than pulling cable from the street into houses.

Re:It's not even done yet. (2, Insightful)

sortius_nod (1080919) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890362)

Go price a cell and then go price a few hundred metres of fibre and a fibre exchange card.

Not only will the cells need fibre to each of them and the card, but the cable will need to be hauled down every street anyway. All you're saving is the cost of a fibre lead in and a fibre splitter for every 32 houses, to spend much more on cells.

Re:It's not even done yet. (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890386)

And the labour to pull fibre into the home. Labour is expensive. And you have to maintain it. Thats labour as well. Then you need a network terminator in the home. Thats money. With wireless the consumer pays for the network terminator. Its in their ipad or whatever.

Re:It's not even done yet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890388)

Why not do it in the suburbs? Cheaper than pulling cable from the street into houses.

Inner suburbs or out ones?

Because in the outer suburbs, I imagine the major cost is getting the fiber there in the first place.

Re:It's not even done yet. (2, Insightful)

fabs64 (657132) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890400)

This possibility has intrigued me for a while. We have a lot of very very very cheap land in rural towns that already has roads/water/electricity/sewage and has basically sat idle since the mechanisation of agriculture.

There do exist knowledge workers who don't want to live in a city, or hell just want to be able to afford a house.

Re:It's not even done yet. (0, Offtopic)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890494)

Say your business is in Melbourne and your workers could telecomute from Marysville. At the same time other workers can do the same work for one third the price in Mumbai. Who do you choose?

Re:It's not even done yet. (2, Interesting)

fabs64 (657132) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890526)

The ones who speak perfect english, went to university in Australia and are only a 2 hour drive away.

Having worked with Indian outsourcing for IT projects before I'd say 3x the price for onshore is a no-brainer. But no doubt it's more competitive than that.

Re:It's not even done yet. (1)

rdnetto (955205) | more than 3 years ago | (#33929630)

The opposition's (poorly marketed) alternative was fibre for 99% of the population and wireless (satellite) for the remaining 1%, at a fraction of the cost.
Besides, if it were true that the economy would obviously benefit from the NBN as claimed, then wouldn't a CBA be a mere formality? The fact that the government has been so reluctant to have one done speaks volumes about what the most probable outcome of a CBA would be.

Re:It's not even done yet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890670)

More likely that the Australian Government has called up it's major service provider in IBM and said "hey we need something that makes the NBN useful, we need an R&D Lab, because we don't have any in the whole bloody country". IBM knows where it's bread is buttered and says "well... we might as well, theres nothing to lose", whilst simultaneously counting the billions they make out of the aus government and the deployment of the NBN. It's a positive thing but it's really just scraps, and the government laps it up, and holds a media conference about how awesome the NBN is.

Re:It's not even done yet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33891272)

Anyone that suggests we shouldn't subject $43 billion investment to any scrutiny whatsoever has rocks in their head...

Then again this is the government which was quite comfortable to use a whiteboard http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ros_Kelly to track pork barrel funding decisions, erasing the justification after each decision was made.

Clearly a government who (a) isn't too worried about measuring effectiveness of policy decisions (cf BER) and (b) Doesn't worry too much about keeping records either.

Be afraid, be very afraid...

Re:It's not even done yet. (1)

cfryback (870729) | more than 3 years ago | (#33891298)

Sorry, but IBM is up there with Dell and Acer for me. Down here in Tasmania, we are told we are suburb of Melbourne... Server down, critical app out? Can you download this app and run? Yeah, SLA's don't mean much to us. Yeah that drive to get the app server going again won't be to you until next week. Tasmanian rep? He's in Melbourne... Sorry, IBM, if you can't look after us "small fry" I pitty those that drink the Kool-Aid...

Re:It's not even done yet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33892920)

Slashdot Fail.

Communism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890100)

TFA read like an announcement from Big Brother:

"demonstrating to the world the contribution Australia can make in science and technology"

Which Uni? (4, Informative)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890104)

TFS and TFA refer to the "University of Victoria" which could be the same as "Victoria University" but the announcement was made at the "University of Melbourne" which leaves me confused.

Then there is this: [techworld.com.au]

Natural disasters, resource management, life sciences and e-health will be keyed as high priorities for a new global research and development lab to be opened at the University of Melbourne by IBM.

So I think its Melbourne Uni.

Re:Which Uni? (3, Funny)

datakid23 (1706976) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890134)

Indeed, The University of Victoria is, in fact, in Canada. They are welcome to take PM Gillard off our hands if they would like.

Re:Which Uni? (2, Interesting)

catsidhe (454589) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890148)

You are correct, it's in the University of Melbourne.

In fact, it is about two floors directly underneath me as I type this.

Re:Which Uni? (1)

Pseudonym (62607) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890450)

What's two floors beneath you? The announcement or the lab?

On the plus side, maybe CSSE won't have to move yet again...

(I work over the road.)

Re:Which Uni? (1)

catsidhe (454589) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890514)

Depends. There's some confusion, now. There's a big IBM system being commissioned below me in Queensberry st, but I've just been told that it's for different things, and that this announcement might be for another, different, new IBM installation.

I used to be in CSSE, but I'm seconded to ITS right now. (That should be enough to identify me uniquely to those in the right circles...)

As for CSSE moving... that's been on-again-off-again for years, but last I heard it's definitely on-again. With deadlines and everything.

OK, hands up all you Unimelb peons...

Re:Which Uni? (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890648)

OK, hands up all you Unimelb peons...

Well I am an ex Unimelb peon if you count stuff from the 1980s. Also my current employer used to occupy 780 Elizabeth.

Re:Which Uni? (1)

Pseudonym (62607) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890748)

OK, hands up all you Unimelb peons...

Hand down in my case. I'm NICTA.

Re:Which Uni? (1)

catsidhe (454589) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890758)

Hand down in my case. I'm NICTA.

That counts. If Unimelb EngIT does your desktop support, trust me; it counts.

Re:Which Uni? (1)

Pseudonym (62607) | more than 3 years ago | (#33904528)

I would make a joke about that, except that someone from EngIT might be reading this, and I wouldn't want to give a mistaken impression. So I won't.

Almost everyone in EngIT is a delight to work with. And all of those same delightful people know exactly why I just said "almost".

Re:Which Uni? (-1, Flamebait)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890170)

Natural disasters,

Research into aggrivating seismic activity and weather control for the purposes of warfare and other disaster capitalism. [wikipedia.org]

resource management,

Securing the world's dwindling supplies of foodstock, petroleum, minerals, and rare-earth metals...one disaster at a time.

life sciences and e-health

Clandestine psychological and physiological experimentation, eugenics, elimination of transients and the mentally ill.

Re:Which Uni? (1)

catsidhe (454589) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890190)

Natural disasters,

Research into aggrivating seismic activity and weather control for the purposes of warfare and other disaster capitalism. [wikipedia.org]

resource management,

Securing the world's dwindling supplies of foodstock, petroleum, minerals, and rare-earth metals...one disaster at a time.

life sciences and e-health

Clandestine psychological and physiological experimentation, eugenics, elimination of transients and the mentally ill.

Careful, there, mate. I think you may have put the shiny side of the tinfoil the wrong way round this morning.

Re:Which Uni? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890214)

Speaking as someone who sits above the data centre for this.

I suspect "University of Melbourne" would be the correct Uni..

Re:Which Uni? (2, Interesting)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890240)

Thats two people who work directly above this lab. Getting crowded at unimelb.

Re:Which Uni? (2, Funny)

catsidhe (454589) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890324)

I wouldn't be surprised if the AC and I are within twenty meters of each other.

Who would have thought that sysads might read /.

Re:Which Uni? (1)

cas2000 (148703) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890774)

> Who would have thought that sysads might read /.

No! say it can't be true....not during work hours!

ps: UOM, SoC, about 300m away at a guess.

Re:Which Uni? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33903342)

I am from IBM - the lab will be located at the University of Melbourne.

Great... (2, Interesting)

pookemon (909195) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890106)

Just what we need in Melbourne - an IBM "Research" lab. Because we don't have anything like it. Except for maybe the CSIRO, who, IMO are more worthy than IBM for getting tax payer funded hand outs. Or RMIT, or Monash, Melbourne University... I'm betting this will be another flash in the pan development like the IBM centre at UoB which is essentially just IBM getting IT students to work for peanuts on their help desk.

Re:Great... (0, Offtopic)

shooteur (1559845) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890160)

They stopped working for peanuts a long time ago, now they work for imitation peanuts! :)

Re:Great... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890282)

I wish I had a job working for imitation peanuts. Right now all I get is packing foam.

Re:Great... (0, Offtopic)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890330)

I wish I had a job working for imitation peanuts. Right now all I get is packing foam.

You get packing foam? All I get is state labour election promises.

Re:Great... (1)

fabs64 (657132) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890416)

labor. Labor. LABOR.

But I'm sure, outside of being unable to spell the name of the party that has been running the state for the bulk of the last 30 years, that you are very well informed about victorian state politics.

cost benefit of the rollout (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890182)

The existing copper infrastructure is already failing. It also would have failed any modern CBA test.
Liberal's wireless proposal requires a new cable in every street to feed the transmitters, hence having 60% of the cost with only 5% of the benefit.

Re:cost benefit of the rollout (2, Informative)

dbIII (701233) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890270)

It's not a "proposal" or policy, it was a series of off the cuff comments from people who barely know how to use MS Word. One thing that set off alarm bells was the suggestion that the current wireless implementations can carry more bandwith than fibre-optic cable. Nobody in that party has put a high school weekend homework project worth of work into the idea, it's just another example of saying no to everything the government does.
All of the "detail" we've got is a couple of newspaper journalists at the Australian trying to fill in the gaps of inane comments along the lines of "we don't need expensive cables, we'll use wireless".

My rights online? (2, Interesting)

BitterOak (537666) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890264)

This sounds like an interesting project, but why is this story classified under "Your Rights Online."?

Re:My rights online? (1)

king_grumpy (1685560) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890394)

Maybe because the government wants to roll out an internet filter that will bring the NBN back to dial up speed...

Re:My rights online? (2, Funny)

rakslice (90330) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890496)

The Bayesian network that now performs all Slashdot editing has come to associate "Australia" with the "Your Rights Online" category, due to what I will call "poor quality training data" from Australian lawmakers.

Classic Discussion Broken - Sliders won't slide (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890436)

Hi, I run iceweaasel 2.0.0.18 and *read* /. with "classic discussion system" which is no longer working in "nested" mode. I attempted to enable Javascript for a numbers of sites - not doubleclick, yet - but the damn sliders won't slide in non-classic mode. What gives?

Re:Classic Discussion Broken - Sliders won't slide (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33890936)

The code running this site is a steaming pile of shit.

What Australian National Concerns Are There? (3, Funny)

frank_adrian314159 (469671) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890550)

Not enough stubbies in the fridge? Too many sheep to perve? Bosses spewing because too many folks are chucking a sickie? Automatic translation of Aussie into English?

Re:What Australian National Concerns Are There? (1)

H0D_G (894033) | more than 3 years ago | (#33890632)

We agonise endlessly over the fact that our dollar's about to hit parity with the US dollar.

Re:What Australian National Concerns Are There? (1)

Psychotria (953670) | more than 3 years ago | (#33891532)

"Parity"? Can't you think for yourself? Do some Google searches. "Aussie dollar exceeding US dollar". "Australian dollar exceeding US dollar". Every single result includes the word "parity". If you used the sentence "We agonise endlessly over the fact that our dollar's about to hit parity with the US dollar" talking to me in real life I'd probably punch you in the face.

Re:What Australian National Concerns Are There? (1)

H0D_G (894033) | more than 3 years ago | (#33901880)

Well, Guess I'm lucky you're nowhere near me in real life then.

Re:What Australian National Concerns Are There? (1)

ian_from_brisbane (596121) | more than 3 years ago | (#33891650)

Even without hitting it, it's close enough now that when you take a bank or exchanger's rates into account, you end up with less AUD than USD if you're doing an exchange. eg. I bring 10,000 USD to Aus now and only get 9,800 AUD. Sucks for people earning in USD like me.

FIt is not "IBM Research" Lab, it a "IBM R&D (1)

fuzzel (18438) | more than 3 years ago | (#33891902)

There are only 9 labs which are real IBM Research Laboratories: Almaden, Austin, Brazil, China, India, Haifa, Tokyo, Watson and Zurich

linky: http://www.research.ibm.com/worldwide/index.shtml [ibm.com] which does not list Sao Paolo, Brazil yet though.

This new one in Australia is just a new IBM R&D center, part of IBM, but not part of IBM Research though....

Fascinating List (1)

andersh (229403) | more than 3 years ago | (#33898212)

It's fascinating to see how IBM, an American "global" corporation, identifies all of these centers using different standards.

Why are the American, Swiss, Japanese and Israeli entities listed using city names, while the Chinese and Indian are organized using country names? Does this speak to some American sphere of influence or common knowledge? Tokyo is obviously easily identifiable as Japanese.

I'm only addressing this because it's fascinating in itself. I would understand the American cities being listed using city names, but why does that "domestic" view apply to Zurich, Tokyo and Hafia? In contrast to China and India those cities are almost within the "domestic" or at least sphere of influence of the US.

Talk about drawing a picture of how IBM/the US views the world.

Chinese Company makes a play for Australia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33892520)

At this time, IBM is a Chinese company. All that remains is that the executives need to move there.
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