Although the government is currently at war with Google, Kevin Rudd says you need the NBN because... you'll be able to access Google faster.
Above: some of Google's algorithmically calculated search suggestions for "Kevin Rudd is"
Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has published a letter in Tasmanian newspaper the Mercury, talking about how technologies such as Google Maps and Skype are examples of the benefits that high-speed broadband can bring to Tasmania -- especially through the rollout of the National Broadband Network that is shortly to bring fibre broadband to homes and businesses.
Consider an application such as Google Maps, the very handy online mapping service. Go to the website, type in where you are and where you want to get to, and you'll not only get a map, you'll get directions and even how long it will take to get there, either on foot or by car.
You would be forgiven for thinking this was a business concept developed in New York or Silicon Valley in the United States, but it was developed here in Australia. As Lars Rasmussen, co-founder of Google Maps, says: "The web means that it doesn't matter where you are ... you can live here in Australia and build products for the world thanks to the internet."
Fast broadband also means loading webpages with fewer frustrating delays. And it means being able to keep in touch with friends and family more easily with cheaper voice calls, or with webcam and Skype. It is for all these reasons that the Australian Government wants Tasmania to lead the country in the rollout of the superfast National Broadband Network.
Read the full letter at the Mercury.
Reading this letter, the first thought that struck my mind was that it wasn't actually written by Kevin Rudd, but by one of his minders. Has Rudd ever made a Skype phone call in his life? Doubtful. And it is extremely doubtful he knows who Google engineer Lars Rasmussen is.
Secondly, it seems to me to contain just more of the hype that the Federal Government keeps spewing out about the National Broadband Network. Yes, fibre to the home will be great, but I anticipate that most of the bandwidth will be used for downloading online videos ... most of the applications that Rudd is talking about here are available right now through ADSL, HFC cable or 3G mobile broadband services.