5 things you need to know in Australian tech today

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Look mum, I’m improving my grades. Photo: Sascha Schuermann/Getty Images

Hello and happy census day! Here’s what you need to catch up on:

1. US tech billionaire and venture capitalist Tim Draper is on the hunt for Australian start-ups, getting Right Click Capital on board with his Draper Venture Network. So keep an eye out for where Draper’s money starts to flow, since this is a guy who tipped cash into the likes of Skype, Baidu, Tesla and Hotmail.

The Fin has the details on the deal.

Incidentally, Right Click Capital co-founder Ben Chong is on Business Insider’s Disrupt HQ panel, a group of entrepreneurs and investors which has been sharing its advice for start-up founders and the tech sector.

2. Sendle is delivering. The logistics startup, which is taking on Australia Post with door-to-door small parcels delivery, has just pulled in another $5 million in Series A funding, backed by the likes of the NRMA (for a second time), alongside VC firms Full Circle and Black Sheep.

Sendle CEO James Chin Moody has some glowing endorsements from his investors, who compare the tech-based business to Uber in harnessing existing infrastructure to deliver big business logistics to small business at an affordable price. The details are here.

3. American banking services are rubbish. When Aussie Josh Reich turned up in the US in 2004, he didn’t know how to write a cheque and it was the start of “an adversarial relationship” with American banking, especially the difficulties in transferring money. He finished his MBA and then started Simple, a financial services disruptor, in his Brooklyn basement in 2009.

The company, which now has 320 employees, encourages saving while tracking spending via a mobile platform. Simple uses fee-free ATMs – not branches – and makes money splitting interest margins with partner banks and the service fee on debit card purchases. There are no overdraft, late or other traditional banking fees.

Read Reich’s amazing story of taking on the US banking system here.

4. It’s census night! Which, depending on your fear of data and optimism, is either the end of the world as we know it or the chance to plan wiser smart cities. If you’re wondering what all the fuss is about, here’s an explainer on why the census matters.

If you still have more questions, Rae Johnston at Gizmodo has done a brilliant ultimate guide to the census here.

5. Hey kids, it’s official – gaming is good for you. Researchers have found teenagers who play online video games generally get better school results. But you need to get off Facebook and other social media, because you’re more likely to fall behind in maths, reading and science.

More than 12,000 Australian 15-year-olds were tested in maths, reading and science, and students who played online games almost every day scored 15 points above the average in maths and 17 points above the average in science.

For all the arguments you need to convince your parents that playing Minecraft is good for your education, Chris Pash has all the details.

Have a great day. I’m on Twitter at @simonthomsen

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