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Category: Neuland

Neuland outreach to England

The BBC has an article about the good people of Templeton, Devon burning an effigy of an BT Openreach van over frustration with slow broadband speeds. The villagers say they were promised superfast broadband three years ago, but are still waiting, because BT says it’s the wrong kind of rural environment to put connectivity into.

Templeton, which is in England where Freiburg would be in Germany, is getting all of 0.7 megabits per second.

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The Chaos breaks german elections, again

Actually, the election was broken before, and the Chaos Computer Club just happened to be the only one looking closely enough, again. (German PDF)

Ten years ago, they broke the digital elections in Hamburg, which were to be based on the Digitaler Wahlstift. Because of that, and Wij vertrouwen stemcomputers niet there is actually a completely offline paper record that can be used to rebuild election results from hand.

So this time CCC looked at the electrion result collection and tabulation software, PC-Wahl 10. And found something uses default passwords of the calibre test/test, using FTP based unsigned software updates, and using no secure way whatsoever to transmit and validate election results.

„Elementary principles of IT-security were not heeded to. The amount of vulnerabilities and their severity exceeded our worst expectations“, says Linus Neumann, a speaker for the CCC that was involved in the study.

If there is ever a valid use case for the Blockchain
Merkel Merkle Trees, it’s probably this.

1 Comment

Good news, bad news

Good news, we have left #neuland:

Ik wilde u graag de codes voor de SchoolApp alvast doorgeven, zodat u op de hoogte blijft van de dingen die in de klas gebeuren.
De app kunt u op uw telefoon downloaden. De naam is gewoon “SchoolApp’ en het logo is een soort blauwe bol.
De leescode van groep 4/5 is: …..

and there is even a Youtube video. On the other hand:

No app for you, come back one year.

Right, thanks.

Changing the country code of a Google account is by the way close to impossible, especially if >500 EUR apps, a GPMAA family account and Google cloud stuff are dangling from it.

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“Zwangsbemüllung”. Oh, and phonebooks.

Photo: kandschwar

Somebody is still printing and delivering phone books (Article in German). 300 000 of them have been dropped all over Nürnberg, where they are now rotting (Facebook article in German), because nobody wants them.

German is a good language to make up compound nouns. The current one: »Zwangsbemüllung«

As compounds go, this one is pretty awesome:

Zwang = Force, Müll = Trash, bemüllen = a made-up verb from the noun Müll, where the prefix be- conveys a sense of ‘from above’ and a sense of passiveness. But -ung is a suffix that makes a verb a noun again, which makes the construct even more awesome.

Together, Zwangsbemüllung all in all it transports a sense of helplessness and suffering, while one has to endure trash which is being dropped on oneself. It’s a made-up thing that is not in the Duden, but it is perfectly clear what it means.

Also, only in Germany: Printed Phone Books are still a thing.

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So Merkel was right?

Angela Merkel, November 2014:

“Wer wird einen fahrerlosen Autoverkehr organisieren, wenn er nicht weiß, ob ihm mitten zwischen Frankfurt und Mannheim irgendwann das Datennetz zusammenbricht, weil gerade Millionen von E-Mails Vorrang haben und die Sicherheit der Datenübermittlung nicht gewährleistet ist?”

Which is roughly »Who will organize autonomous traffic, if they can’t be sure that the net won’t crash between Frankfurt and Mannheim because millions of mails have precedence and traffic isn’t guaranteed to make it?« That’s nonsense, of course – an autonomous car is controlled by the onboard computer and not remotely, and especially not remotely in real time.

But, Tesla. So with Autopilot 2.0 in June this year, they gathered owner permission to collect video data from the onboard cameras, and will occasionally upload clips. Observed traffic is in the Gigabytes, now and then. And of course, it’s not real time remote control, but batched, non-time critical upload of learning data for Tesla’s Machine Learning training engine.

No need to panic over net neutrality, this is the lowest bulk traffic class and the opposite direction.

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Meanwhile, in Germany…

Yesterday was the big Tesla Delivery Event, in which the first 30 cars have been handed over to their new owners, and in which the final technical specs have been revealed. Electrek has the full scoop, of course.

Yesterday was also the date, on which Bavarian Ministerpräsident Horst Seehofer percolated the idea to give tax breaks on the purchase of Euro 6 Diesel cars. Yes, he was serious.

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Campaign Time and Summer in Germany

Merkel’s CDU has a programme, and it contains the impossible promise of “full employment”. CDU’s Peter Tauber comments “full employment is better than social justice”.

Of course nobody promised full employment at proper salary, so one commenter asked “So that’s now 3 Minijobs for me?”

Tweet

Tauber pulls a Marie-Antoinette: “Had you learned something proper, you would not need three Minijobs.”

Twitter understood, and escalated quickly.

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