Friday, April 30, 2021

Forced to wait over four hours to get through to Qantas to use a credit

A flight I booked last year with Qantas was cancelled by them due to pandemic lock-down and so I have a credit. Now that things are open again I wish to use that credit. It's not easy... The web site told me I had to ring them.

I've rung a few times in recent months and been informed that the wait time was over two hours so I gave up. Today I decided to stick it out as it didn't give any information about the wait time. I interpreted this lack of estimate as a sign that it was going to be quick.

After more than two hours I started trying to contact them via Twitter as this seems to have worked for some other people in my situation.


Facebook looked like it might be a more efficient way to contact them as they say this:

Alas, "7 days" doesn't seem to include today.

I tweeted a thread of comments but didn't get a response. 

This is what you have to listen to:

Finally, after more than four hours I got to Eric. A very nice operator who was able to fix me up.


I value my time and this punched a big hole in my day. My guess is that many people are not able to invest this much time in redeeming their flight credit so Qantas gets to keep it. This reeks of being a "dark pattern".

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Talked about monetising Podcasts on ABC Download This Show

Great to get back to a studio for these shows at last.. Although I look like I'm coming from a black void compared to my co-guest Meg Coffee.

On the TV bit we talk about Apple's announcement of support for Podcast subscriptions.

The podcast version is out (and it's free!) The radio version is available here. I had a question from someone asking why my video quality was better than the others. This episode was the first time I've appeared from the ABC Melbourne radio studio where they have a Sony AX53 camera in HD mode.

Here's the view from my perspective.




Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Appeared as a guest on ABC Sydney Focus talking about 5G and the 6G controversy

This week it was my pleasure to be a guest again on Cassie McCullagh's ABC Sydney show called Focus. It's always easy to work with these folks.

The discussion ranged over a variety of topics including my skepticism about the consumer benefits of 5G, the controversy about the early specifications of 6G (don't panic, it's not due until 2030). We also talked about how much we all value a fast and reliable NBN after our shared experience over the past year.

You can hear the program here.

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Monitor multiple digital modes simultaneously with Hermes-Lite and SparkSDR

The Hermes-Lite 2 continues to impress. I've now been turned on to the wonders of the cross platform SparkSDR software which open up multiple receivers, running different modes, and (if you have WSJT-X installed in the normal place), it decodes. Here is my setup under Ubuntu with receivers for WSPR, FT8 and JT9.

My thanks to Robin, G7VKQ, for bringing this to my attention! 


Tuesday, April 06, 2021

Farewell to the van

The van has been an entertaining project over the last few years. A 2000 Toyota Hiace with 411,000km on the clock.

We have travelled up and down NSW many times and made the big trip across Australia to Perth.

Despite a few mechanical problems it has never let me down. 

Now though, each time I register it expensive repairs are needed. The time has come.

Highlights for me have been listening to ham radio in remote, and quiet, locations and just sleeping in the van - particularly when it's raining.



Farewell Morrison.