5 things you need to know in Australian tech today

Alleged Bitcoin creator Craig Wright Image: BBC Screenshot

Hello, this is what you need to know in tech today.

1. Aussie Craig Wright says he is the creator of Bitcoin, experts say he is not. In an interview with the BBC and in a blog post, Craig Wright, the man Wired and Gizmodo have claimed is the creator of Bitcoin, claimed that those reports were correct, and that he is Satoshi Nakamoto.

The problem is, nearly all Bitcoin experts don’t believe him. One labelled his actions as “intentional scammery”, while another said his post was “flimflam”.

Except one of Bitcoin’s most respected figures, Gavin Andresen, the Bitcoin Foundation chief scientist. He wrote in his own blog post that he has seen proof Wright is indeed Satoshi Nakamoto.

So the saga continues.

2. Jason Pellegrino is the new boss of Google in Australia. Jason Pellegrino has been announced as the new managing director at Google Australia & New Zealand.

He replaces Maile Carnegie, who quit as managing director to join ANZ earlier this year.

Pellegrino’s background is a range of sales leadership positions in Google, which he joined in 2008. He lives in Sydney and has four children.

3. The NBN has spent $1.5 million on travel costs for meetings. While the NBN is advertising the advantage of virtual meetings over the internet, its own staff aren’t leading by example apparently.

Answering a question submitted to the Senate standing committee on environment and communications, the company advised: “International flight costs for the period 8 September 2013 to 29 January 2016 have amounted to $1,540,016.”

“The reasons for international travel are varied and include meeting with overseas suppliers and investigating technology developments,” it said.

4. Snapchat now has an Australian boss. Snapchat Australia has hired a new general manager, picking up Kathryn Carter, the former NSW sales director at News Corp Australia.

The Australian arm of Snapchat is almost completely based around local sales opportunities, with Carter joining senior sales executives Danni Hudson and Alicia Doumani at the company.

Titles from Carter’s former employer such as News.com.au and Fox Sports were among the first to appear on Snapchat’s ‘Discover’ publisher platform when it went live locally early last year.

5. Telstra is trying to work out what it’s going to do once the NBN’s rolled out. With Telstra expected to take a hit of between $2-3 billion once the NBN is fully rolled out, the telco is looking to lift its game to become a technology company.

CEO Andy Penn said yesterday that Telstra’s future should revolve around providing the essential connectivity layer that connects customers as seamlessly as possible.

“We don’t expect to become a Microsoft or a Google but the point is that Telstra is in a position to provide a window into the best of technology available today and deliver it across our network,” he said.

Also, it’s budget night tonight, so expect to see some news that will affect local startups and the NBN.

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