Archive for September, 2012

Koh Phangan Airport

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

For those living on Phangan Island in the Gulf of Thailand the biggest news is not the next dance party (there is always another party just a few days away) rather it is the rumors about an Koh Phangan airport being built. The island has seen a steady increase in tourist numbers over the last 10 years. This is because of the phenomenal success of the Full Moon Party and because many people have opted to stop going to Koh Samui for their holidays and instead go to the better beaches in Koh Phangan. The beaches of Thong Nai Pan, in particular, have seen a massive upswing in the number of ’5 star’ customers attracted to its pristine white sand beaches.

When the rumor first broke on Thai forums most people were quick to claim it was rubbish. That Koh Phangan didn’t have any suitable places to build an airport, that Bangkok Airways would never stand losing its lucrative monopoly over air travel in the region, and that Koh Phangan just wasn’t important enough to deserve an airport.

Now that a large area of jungle is being cleared between Than Sadet and Koh Phangan the scoffers are not so sure. There is a big billboard in the main town of Thongsala that says Kan Air have been given permission to build a runway for commercial flights to Koh Phangan. The sign is in Thai and as is often the Thai way very little public announcements have been made regarding the change.

The clearing in the jungle, the sign in Thongsala makes it more than a groundless rumour. I have seen the sign: it clearly shows a runway and in Thai it says something like “Thank you Mr. Phum to support Kan Air to arrive in KPG”. This makes Koh Phangan more than just a rumor in my estimation.

The real question will be how an airport will impact tourism on Koh Phangan. Will the island be ruined as many fear? or will it see a new and exciting stage in Koh Phangan development?

Koh Phangan Airport

Wednesday, September 26th, 2012

hello world

Internet Filtering – Iceland

Friday, September 14th, 2012

There is a campaign in many European countries to censor adult content from the internet.  There are debates taking place now in the UK around plans to enforce some sort of default censorship through the ISPs. Now Iceland is considering taking the same step and Vodaphone is considering making it’s own Online Filtering Service a default for all it’s customers.

People would still be able to opt out of they service but the default would be to be filtered.  Customers would be in charge of the filter through a self admin page to configure the settings.  Another ISP in Iceland called Siminn already offers the option to filter and block porn but it is off by default.

Users who are subject to these filters could also bypass them by using a proxy service which operates beyond the filters.  For instance this discussion takes place on this page – where you’ll find lots of information on proxies, VPNs and how to change your IP address when online.  The site is based mainly on American issues although the concepts are the same wherever you are, there is a bit on watching Canadian TV which some might find useful.

Obama Likes Being a Dad?

Monday, September 3rd, 2012

CNN recently ran an interview with President Obama which surprised a ton of people.  Evidently, he doesn’t spend the hours of 6-9pm talking to members of Congress, like most sitting Presidents do.  Instead, he spends that time with his family.

I have to wonder, what does that mean for our country? Does it really affect his job performance?  Are we left to think that our Presidents all have to be over the age of 60, or not have kids?  Personally, given that I have young children I don’t like the idea that somehow wanting to be both a good and hands on father would preclude me from being successful at work.  Personally, I simply don’t think that makes sense!