Wednesday, December 12, 2007

You're Not From the Public Radio, Are You?

I guess I haven't posted in a while. Let me fill you in. Sean left for the US today for his graduation. He will be back here in a week. He is probably just getting to the airport in Chicago now.

I have been working, I've been verifying the mathematics in Dr. Flandro's newest combustion instability theory. I had a bit of a break yesterday so I got back to working on some CFD (computational fluid dynamics) results. I don't know what I did, but the thing I was having a problem with works now. So for the past couple days I have been running simulations of the experiment I did for my masters thesis. It is exciting when you get things working. Maybe I'll post a vid in a few days.

And now to the title of the post: they have a public radio/television station here in Germany. It differs significantly from our PBS. Here it is a lot like a normal network station, but the kicker is how they get their funding. In the US, we donate to PBS, they always have those telethons to raise money. Well here you are required to pay a fee to the public media service if you have any device that is capable of receiving their transmissions. Now, it gets a little crazier. In the constitution it says that the government can have no control over the public media, which is a fine idea, except for the fact that the public media service can pretty much do whatever it wants as a result. In order to prove that you have a TV or radio or computer they may try to get into your house by pretending to be someone else. The government can't stop them.

A while back we got our letters for payment, which we promptly threw away. We are not paying anything. Because they can be tricky, Banuti warned us not to let anyone into our place unless we knew them or knew why they were there. Yesterday Sean left the office early to get some things before leaving. When he was leaving from our place a couple guys came by and wanted to fix something. Well, we don't speak German, so Sean had no idea. Though he immediately was skeptical and asked if they were from the Public Radio (or whatever it is called.) The guys were confused, maybe because they probably didn't speak much English. Anyways, long story short, they were just here to fix the thermometer on the radiator. That is probably not as climactic of an end as you were expecting. But still, evil German public television, that is a bit odd :)

Uh, lets see, I have one more Peenemunde post to do, I'll finish that soon. So that is it for now. I am working on some CFD stuff at the moment. -Eric

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