PGP Encryption and why should you care?

This is a quick overview of PGP Encryption and how to use it yourself! Bulk surveillance violates everyone’s fundamental human rights, it makes free speech risky. This guide will explain what email encryption is (using a commonly known standard called PGP) and will teach you how to use a free tool called mailvelope. Remember, even if you have nothing to hide, using encryption helps protect the privacy of the people you are communicating with, and makes life difficult for bulk surveillance systems.

This video includes closed captions, click on Youtube’s closed caption option if you are hearing impaired.


Haere mai ki te Aotearoa

When travelling, sometimes you remember things that you have let sink into your subconscious. One of those things for me is the fact that I grew up (for the first eight years anyway) in Malaysia. When you are a person who lives in Malaysia, you don’t even think about the fact that things are announced in at least two, sometimes three or four languages. So as we get off the Air Asia flight today, they announced the notices in both English and Bahasa Malay.

Why does Aotearoa’s national carrier not do that?

Air New Zealand should announce everything in te Reo as well as English. (Don’t even get me started on sign language! How are deaf people meant to know what the pilot just said!! What if it was important!?)

It will not only help to create that unique point of difference for tourists, it will also help to normalise the use of te Reo in everyday situations. It’s time we stopped just using te Reo as a touristy gimmick and actually started incorporating it into our everyday lives… I, for one, would love to be welcomed back home to Aotearoa in te Reo.

Agile…or am I?

In the current span of my career, i’ve had many and varied training courses but none have blown my mind like the one I did last week with Sandy and David from Nomad8. In fact, i’ve specifically done courses on facilitation in the past and I can honestly say none have even come close to this one.

I’ve been dabbling in Agile for a wee while now, and recently brought in Agile methodology to a non-dev environment, but the chance to spend two days really thinking about what it means to be an Agile facilitator was amazing.

The other participants were from a range of much larger companies than the people I normally get to meet, and it was heartening to hear that people are much the same everywhere. The same issues that everyone has running meetings (or planning/executing a project) are normally due to personalities rather than skills or environment… and that really simple facilitation techniques (tricks even) can make a world of difference.

I won’t talk about it too much, after all, I wouldn’t want to be accused of #spoilers! If you are at all interested in Agile, all that i’ve heard about the courses at Nomad8 is good things, and now I can vouch for it personally!

Jumping into an adventure

A new adventure awaits!

With a deep breath of excitement, a fair amount of trepidation and a wee bit of sadness, I officially announce my resignation from Amnesty International NZ. It’s been an amazing and mindblowing time…and over the years, I have learnt a lot about IT, and a lot more about people.

For those of you that didn’t know, I have been their ICT Manager for the last nine years, and have decided that now is a good time to find a new adventure.

I have grown incredibly in nine years, and I credit all the people, past and present, that I’ve worked with over the years. I won’t name any of them now because I know I will forget someone significant and that will make me sad. All I can say is that I know that you know who you are, we’ve been there together, the late nights, the marching in the streets, the vigils in the bright sunlight, and the vigils in the rain.

I also acknowledge all the IT people that have helped me and Amnesty International over the years. The IT community in Aotearoa is so generous with their time and their expertise, and I am truly humbled by the amount of effort and time some of y’all have put in to help me and (more importantly) the cause out.

To my international colleagues and friends, some of which have also moved on from the Amnesty International whānau, I also thank you for the love and support you’ve given me over the years.

Of course, I don’t really move on from Amnesty International. It is as much a part of my DNA as it was when I was a fresh faced 16 year old in a school group, activism is in my blood, and I wear the badge of social justice warrior proudly. I am just no longer a human rights activist that does IT, I can just be a plain ole human rights activist now.

Ngā Mihi