That the local gas and water supplier of Lübeck, Germany also acts as an ISP for residential DSL connections is maybe surprising, but not particularly bad.

Painful, however, is that they apparently keep the administrative interface of their customers' DSL modems open to the evil, evil Internet. No prob, as long as it is password protected, you might think. Of course it is. But, to make attacking the poor customers a piece of cake, the current password is automatically provided in a value field of an HTML form.

Every, even only partly intelligent fifth-grader can probably write a script to use this invitation for playing around with other people's internet connection. Which - of course - did not lead the ISP to do anything about the situation so far. Even if they were already mailed a username-password list of all their customers...

This shining example of ISP insecurity really makes me want to cry.

And, considering I am a Comcast customer, I hope that at least they know what they are doing. The last time I had to do with their customer service, I honestly did not have that impression -- so I wonder who's possibly playing around with my modem in this very moment? ;)

(via a German story by Isotopp)

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How was it again, the way home when I was in Germany? Aaaah I remember!

Markus just sent me a picture message from his cellphone in the tram. Woohoo! How fancy the green-yellow pattern on the seats is ;)

Straßenbahn 1 Straßenbahn 2

Thanks for reminding me of the 45 min journey that I have to take to university in Germany every day. Oh, and, thanks for reminding me of the other 45 minutes it takes me to get back home again.

Okay, this belongs to the things I do not miss here. However, the "bike riding action" here is somehow flawed by the rain getting you soaking wet easily... Everything has its drawbacks.

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German electionsI just voted for the German Bundestag today. The regular election day is September 18th, but as I'm about to go to the U.S., I was forced to make my decision in advance.

Interestingly, the English Wikipedia also has a page covering the upcoming German federal election. It is way shorter than the German one, though.

No wonder, because when the Constitutional Court ("what's that?" see some (interesting!) Background) had to decide over the legality of the intentionally unsuccessful motion of confidence in the Bundeskanzler Gerhard Schröder on Juli 1st. This led to controversial political discussions all over Germany between the people who support Schröder's action and those who don't. If you ask me, this has somehow been quite good for the political culture in Germany: People started to develop interest into their political system again.

Finally, the Court allowed the elections to go ahead as planned.

By the way, on September 18th, I will just come to Corvallis after a two-week stay in Portland, Oregon. German polling stations usually close at 6 p.m. - this is, regarding the time shift, 9 a.m. PDT. Just before lunch time, I can hopefully see the first projected election results, then.

I'm curious how many of the people I meet in Oregon even know that Germany votes on this day. :)

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from flickr, cc-licensed: and TV series are shown in the U.S. quite a bit earlier than they come to Germany. (They have to be translated etc...) Usually I don't care but when you go to the U.S., you're heavily endangered to miss good films and TV series. - Crap.

I wanted to see Sin City in the original, english version while I am still in Germany, but no movie theatre anywhere in Karlsruhe shows it in English. They all have the German version, though. Plus, there is no chance to see it in a cinema in the U.S.: The film has already left cinemas for quite a long time and the DVD was released two weeks ago. Argh! (Hm, maybe they offer those dvd rental machines in Oregon, soon?)

Another PoA (point of annoyance ;) ) is that CSI: NY starts on German TV just next week, but the first season has already been on TV in the U.S. a lot of times. I nearly assume, if I eventually happen to get a TV (or freevo? :) ), the second season will start before I were able to see the first one. grrmpf

Okay, you're right: I really shouldn't watch TV at all. It's too frustrating ;)

But I'm going to watch quite a lot of new movies and tell my German friends if it was good - for them to be excited for about two months until the film comes to German cinemas! I am so evil, I know ;) hehe

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I am just getting a press release (germ.) from the German Federal Constitutional Court (which can be found in direct neighbourhood to the University of Karlsruhe which I attend).

It says that there will be a hearing next week concerning the recent dissolution of the German Parliament. Some MPs sought the Constitutional Court in order to stop early elections.

As it’s so near and I’m going to leave town for quite a long time shortly, I am really tempted to attend the hearing (as part of the public).

I don’t know whether it’s allowed, though - but usually, it is supposed to. :)

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