I sat down on the end of a row just before the State of the Institute speech began, and quietly introduced myself to the woman next to me. She wanted to know what I was expecting President Hockfield to talk about. I guess I was expecting a mention of the supposed drop in student integrity, or the demise of the moral hacker, both of which were highlighted in that recent e-mail that caused such uproar among students. As I explained this, the woman next to me seemed surprised, and told me she was wondering about the status of the Stata leakage lawsuit.
A new poll says that 85 percent of Americans want our presidential candidates to debate science issues. I found this statistic on the website of a somewhat botched initiative, Sciencedebate 2008, which, despite its catchy title, has not had much luck convincing the candidates to clearly and contemporaneously voice their views on what should be near and dear to the hearts of most MIT students: science.