7.30 Report a disgrace to the ABC

Kerry, what is the speed of light?

It is clear that many would have noticed the outrageously transparent  ”gotcha” approach by Kerry O’Brien last night with Tony Abbott on the 7.30 Report. In spite of much public criticism of his bias, O’Brien continues his ruthless and shameless approach to the treatment of the Liberal opposition.

Kerry was successfully in confusing Abbott with his sophisticated mastery of the technical aspects of broadband and explaining how much better the ALP’s network would surely be. Nevertheless,  Abbott was able to get in this.

TONY ABBOTT:  And what they’re going to use, as I understand it, is to string cable on telegraph poles, which is hardly the most marvellously sophisticated technology to use in this day and age either.  Look, Kerry, err …

KERRY O’BRIEN: Its fibre … where … where signals will travel at the speed of light.

Really, Kerry. Please explain just how many megabits of light that is?

Surely, Kerry, if you don’t know the difference between the speed of networks and the speed of light, you shouldn’t be expecting a higher standard for your interviewees.

6 Responses to “7.30 Report a disgrace to the ABC”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    um, I thought the issue was that Abbott didn’t know enough about his own policies? Kerry is right about the signals travelling at the speed of the light because its fibre optics, but the speed of the NBN is not based on that but rather at the frequency of the signals. Fibre optics is just a better way of delivery those signals, almost instantly since its light. Maybe you, like Abbott should have a look at what you’re saying before publishing stuff like this on the internet. In the worst case for Kerry, its forgivable that he wouldn’t know what the speed of light is, but at least he knows the concept of peak speed.

  2. Simon from Sydney Says:

    Well said, Andrew. I watched with a mixture of astonishment and disgust at O’Brien’s contempt for Abbott. With the ABC on their side, a Labor victory is all the easier. O’Brien is a disgrace.

    Australian Climate Madness

    P.S. I await the follow-up interview with Gillard where he humiliates her about her lack of knowledge of the technicalities of the NBN… no, wait, that will never happen.

  3. David of Tyabb Says:

    Information is carried by light in fibre optics thus it is travelling at the speed light is travelling in the cable and thus Kerry O’Brien is correct.

    Fibre optics is the solution for the future. It is up to 100x faster than wireless which is a lot for wireless to make up without recognising that fibre optics advances continually maintain that gap. Further a fibre optics is readily upgradeable as the hardware improves.

    The Coalition plan is the same one that’s failed many times (partly because of the Telstra problem) and it’s a disappointment to see them going back to it. There is a clear distinction in policy here on which plan is better for the technological future of the nation and it is plainly that of the ALP. The Coalitions plan is clearly better on price however it comes with the hard reality that going cheap on price comes with costs – you get what you pay for.

  4. Bob K Says:

    Well, I left a comment on 7.30 Report’s web-site, similar to this one.
    I pointed out to Kerry that while the speed of Abbot’s medium – radiowaves – is 300,000km/sec, speed of light in the fibre-optic cable is less than 200,000km/sec.
    Kerry is soooo clever when he can read things he doesn’t understand, isn’t he?
    Somehow, the comment didn’t make it into publishing – it just disappeared…

  5. Andrew McIntyre Says:

    David of Tyabb,
    You have missed the point. In fact light travels much slower through glass fibre, so Kerry is not correct.
    Secondly, how fast do you think signals are sent through copper, or by radio?
    The issue is clearly NOT the speed within a given medium—they are all, for all intents and purposes instantaneous—it is the volume capacity that is the issue. Kerry confused the two types of “speed”, which was my only point.
    It is clearly true that cable is generally superior from a capacity point of view.
    The question is ultimately of whether you need a ten lane, dual carriage highway, with lighting and signage, with attendant costs, to go all the way to Boulia or Oodnadatta.

  6. Andrew McIntyre Says:

    Well said, anonymous.
    I also understand the concept of peak speed [which is volume capacity], but that has nothing to do with the speed of light, which is a measure of velocity. Kerry clearly does not know the concept of velocity.
    For a partisan, biased, tax payer paid bully like Kerry, almost nothing is forgivable.

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