In Short

Student groups located on the fourth floor of the student center will host a block party for freshmen from 3:30 to 5:30 today.

Ashdown Dining, located in NW35, will no longer be open to the MIT community this year, but it will still serve undergraduate students who live in the dorm. Ashdown offered all-you-can-eat service.

All public Athena clusters except the one in 4-167 were updated to Debathena during the summer, according to Student Information Processing Board member Geoffrey G. Thomas ’10. Debathena allows Ubuntu users to install the same versions on software on their Athena accounts as on their personal computers, and will allow Athena software to stay up to date with their latest Ubuntu versions, said Thomas. Dorm clusters are in the process of being updated, he said.

Professor Andrew J. Whittle became head of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering on September 1.

In an e-mail sent to the MIT community on August 20, Provost L. Rafael Reif, Chancellor Phillip L. Clay PhD ’75, and Executive Vice President and Treasurer Theresa M. Stone announced the release of the Institute-wide Planning Task Force’s preliminary report and solicited feedback on this report in the form of comments submitted to the MIT Idea Bank ( Since that e-mail, 49 non-anonymous comments have been posted to the report by 19 distinct people. Alvar Saenz-Otero PhD ’05, currently a research scientist in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics, submitted 21 comments, the most of any individual person.

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