Tour Down Under payments are not secure

Friday, 30 November 2007

I went to register for the Challenge Tour (the 134km ride on 25 January 2008) today.

I clicked on a link from an email from the South Australian Tourism Commission that goes to this site - http://www.bizgate.sa.gov.au/shop/tdu/site/page.cfm?CONTENT=shop%5Ffront.

Fine.

I pick the correct event to pay for, add it to my cart, enter my details, then go to checkout. I then get a popup window asking for my contact details again (didn't they already know that?), and then the next page asks for my credit card info.

Whoa!

Hang on!

We're still on a HTTP page - no lock icon, no coloured address/location bar, nothing, just plain text sailing off into the Internet for anyone to snoop!

So I rang up the SA Tourism people, and the lady tried to reassure me - "yes, our online payment system is secure".

I was not reassured.

"Funny, we had someone else contact us with a similar query 10 minutes ago" - what a surprise.

I finally got her to find someone else who looks after the Tour down under website - a guy by the name of Darrenn. I spoke to him and explained the problem. I don't think he quite understood my concerns (not being an IT person apparently). Anyway, he gave me his email address and promised to look into it. I fired off an email to him.

Not content with that, I then thought I'd try and find someone who actually runs the BizGate site. Their top-level web page says they're run by the Department for Transport, Energy and Infrastructure. Fine. I rang DTEI and was given another phone number. I rang that and left a message.

Why do I feel a bit pessimistic that anything will get done :-(

The solution by the way, is to use this link instead:

https://www.bizgate.sa.gov.au/shop/tdu/site/page.cfm?content=search_results.cfm&mode=browse

Marvelous what a difference an 's' makes.

Update late Friday afternoon: The link has been fixed now

Microsoft Office Mobile 6.1

Thursday, 29 November 2007

Here's an upgrade for the Office Mobile applications to support Microsoft Office 2007 file formats. I wonder if this will appear on the Windows Update for Windows Mobile?

Cell broadcast name

Thursday, 29 November 2007

In Australia, channel 50 is used for the "cell broadcast" information for mobile phone networks. Most often this contains the suburb or locality of the current base station the phone is talking to.

I enabled this on my new phone, and it works ok for GSM.

I've just been speaking to Optus technical support who told me that their 3G network doesnt' support this feature. A bit odd, as you'd think 3G would have more features, not less. The guy didn't know if there was some other way to retrieve the same kind of information.

One problem that I did discover is that every time the phone receives notification that it has changed base stations, it wakes up from standby mode.

That's probably why I was woken up at 2am this morning wondering who had left the light on - turns out it was my phone. Amazing how bright a backlit display can be in the middle of the night :-(

I've contacted HTC in Australia and asked them to find out if this is a bug or a feature. I'm certain my old phone didn't do this, so I consider it the latter.

I've also emailed our local Australian mobile device MVP Nick Randolph to see if he has any suggestions.

The old and the new

Wednesday, 28 November 2007

Here's a side-by-side comparison of my old HP rw6828 and my new HTC TyTN II.

  HP iPAQ rw6828 HTC TyTN II
Processor Intel® PXA270 Processor 416MHz Qualcomm® MSM 7200, 400MHz
Operating System Windows Mobile 5.0 Windows Mobile® 6 Professional
Memory 45MB available for persistent user storage
64MB SDRAM for running applications
ROM: 256MB RAM: 128MB SDRAM
Dimension 102mm (L) x 58mm (W) x 19.5mm (D) 112 mm (L) X 59 mm (W) X 19 mm (D)
Weight 140g 190g with battery
Display 56 x 56mm (2.205 x 2.205 inches) transflective TFT QVGA color, 240 x 240 pixels,0.24mm dot pitch, 64K-color support, portrait and landscape support with touch screen 2.8 inch, 240 X 320 QVGA TFT-LCD display with adjustable angle and backlight
Network GSM, GPRS, EDGE HSDPA/UMTS: Tri-band 850, 1900, 2100 MHz
HSDPA: Up to 384kbps for upload and 3.6Mbps for download
UMTS: Up to 384kbps for upload and download
GSM/GPRS/EDGE: Quad-band 850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz (The device will operate on frequencies available from the cellular network)
Device Control   Finger scrolling and panning 5-Way navigation control
Keyboard None Slide-out QWERTY keyboard
Connectivity Class II device; up to 4 dBm transmit, typical 10 meter range
(approximately 33 feet) - High-speed, low-power, short-range
wireless communication with other Bluetooth devices Serial IrDA SIR, data transfer up to 115.2 Kb per second, USB
1.1 Client - support via HP standard mini-USB cable 802.11b (WEP and WPA)
Bluetooth® 2.0 Wi-Fi®: IEEE 802.11 b/g (WEP, WPA, WPA2)
HTC ExtUSB™ (11-pin mini-USB and audio jack in one)
GPS antenna connector
Camera Built-in UXVGA 1.3MP with LED light, 1280 x 1024 resolution,
JPEG and 3GP format, support for still image, and video
playback, H.263
Main camera: 3 megapixel CMOS color camera with auto focus Second camera: VGA CMOS color camera
Audio Integrated microphone, receiver, speaker and one 2.5mm
stereo headphone jack, MP3 stereo (through headphone jack)
Handsfree speakerphone
Built-in microphone and speaker
Ringtone formats Simple MIDI Type 0, WMA, WAV, MP3, polyphonic MIDI
  • MP3, AAC, AAC+, WMA, WAV, and AMR-NB
  • 40 polyphonic and standard MIDI format 0 and 1(SMF)/SP MIDI
Headset 2.5mm jack with single earbud style headset (mute and volume control) mini-USB connector
Battery Removable/rechargeable 1200 mAh, 3.7 Volt, Lithium polymer battery 1,350 mAh rechargeable Li-polymer battery Standby time:
  • Up to 350 hours for UMTS
  • Up to 365 hours for GSM
Talk time:
  • Up to 264 minutes for UMTS
  • Up to 420 minutes for GSM
  • Up to 120 minutes for video call
Expansion Slot Supports mini SD memory standard microSD™ memory card (SD 2.0 compatible)

Interesting things I've noticed so far:

Daylight Saving in South Australia

Wednesday, 28 November 2007

In most states and territories of Australia, we have daylight saving. While there probably aren't as many benefits for those living in the northern areas of the continent, I quite like it.

Next year, South Australia's daylight saving will end on Sunday 6 April at 3am. This is a change from the previous rule of the last Sunday in March, but it brings us into line with NSW, Victoria, ACT and Tasmania, which is probably a good idea.

Microsoft have been busy releasing time zone updates this year, particularly with changes in some US states and also Western Australia.

The latest revision includes updates for Australia, including Central Australian Standard Time, Australia Eastern Standard Time and Tasmania Standard Time. Updates for various operating systems are linked from the KB article.