Accepting the ‘Challenge’
“Come celebrate AMERICA’S BIRTHDAY with class!” Patrick C. McDaniel ’13 wrote to summer residents of East Campus on July 3. “Join us tomorrow for the GALLON CHALLENGE!”
Day 1, June 25
Wolfe B. Styke ’10 testified on the opening day of <i>Commonwealth v. Anna Tang</i>, the trial of the former Wellesley student who stabbed Styke in his Next House dormitory room in October 2007.
Pops, Keith take the stage
Over 800,000 people gathered on the Esplanade on July 4th this year to watch the annual Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular. The show featured musical performances at the Hatch Shell by country singer and superstar Toby Keith, the Boston Pops Orchestra with conductor Keith Lockhart, the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, and the Middlesex County Volunteers Fifes & Drums. This is a “show that will surely dazzle the senses!” promised the announcer as the show went live on national television.
Lady Gaga pops by MIT
With aviator sunglasses hiding her eyes, lips painted fire-engine red, crystals dripping down her neck, and platinum blonde hair whisked to the side, the world-famous pop singer and recording artist Lady Gaga made a guest appearance to the MIT campus last Wednesday.
After three days in court, Tang trial postponed
The trial of Anna L. Tang — the Wellesley College student who stabbed MIT student Wolfe B. Styke ’10 in October 2007 — began last month, and came to an abrupt halt on its third day last week Wednesday.
‘Are you sure this is legal?’: a memorable encounter with Gaga
The expression of toughened boredom on the police officer’s face said quite clearly, “Lady Gaga does not want a 12-person serving of Caesar salad.”
Supreme Court defers IP case
The Supreme Court has elected to defer a decision on whether to take <i>Stanford University v. Roche Molecular Systems, et al.,</i> the intellectual property case that Stanford, MIT, and scores of universities have asked the Court to hear.
Student calls for oil spill aid; gains media attention
On June 10, Nora O. Hickey ’12 sent an email to President Susan J. Hockfield and copied all the dormitory lists, urging MIT to take a more active role in the recent BP oil spill.
In the June 11 issue, the second paragraph of a caption describing top compensation at MIT omitted a word from the definition of the “Paid compensation” column in the accompanying table. “Paid compensation” is the sum of “base compensation,” “bonus & incentive compensation,” and “other reportable compensation.” The second item was incorrectly rendered as “bonus & compensation.” The same caption omitted an explanation of “MITIMCo.” MITIMCo, the MIT Investment Management Company, manages MIT’s investments and endowment. MITIMCo employees’ compensation is linked to the performance of MITIMCo’s investments. Professor Nelson Repenning’s half-million dollar “other reportable compensation” is due to his role as faculty director of a custom executive education program called the BP-MIT Operations Academy.
Ortiz named new grad dean
Chancellor Phillip L. Clay PhD ’75 announced the selection of Christine Ortiz, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, as the new Dean for Graduate Education on June 28. Ortiz is scheduled to assume her position on August 1.
BOSTON — Children at a day camp near here were pulled from the swimming pool once an hour so the lifeguards could plunge in and cool off. Commuter trains in Washington were slowed because of overheating tracks. Horse-racing tracks were closed in Philadelphia and Wilmington, Del.
Colleges learn cheaters’ tricks to stop them; this includes TEAL
ORLANDO, Fla. — The frontier in the battle to defeat student cheating may be here at the testing center of the University of Central Florida.
Circuitry with a feel for humanity
Nothing Eileen Oldaker tried could calm her mother when she called from the nursing home, disoriented and distressed in what was likely the early stages of dementia. So Oldaker hung up, dialed the nurses’ station and begged them to get Paro.
Dreaming of Winter Yet?
Boy, it’s hot! Yesterday’s air temperature reached 100°F (38°C) at Logan Airport, which fell just short of a record high. However, the heat index, which is a measure of how it actually feels due to the combined temperature and humidity, made it feel closer to 105°F (41°C). At night, there is little relief from the stifling heat, making it really uncomfortable to sleep for those without air conditioning.
Free speech requires responsibility
Keith Yost misses the point in his column “Muhammad in a bear costume,” a thoroughly confused ramble that disguises prejudice in the guise of apparently reasoned discourse. He states up front that “I am not calling for offending for offense’s sake there is a reasonable argument to be had that responsible institutions should take measures, including self-censorship, to avoid inspiring animosity between Islam and the West.”
Check your intellectual freedom <br />at the door
In 1858, a relatively obscure lawyer named Abraham Lincoln ran for a U.S. Senate seat against Stephen A. Douglas, at that time the most powerful senator in the country. The two candidates agreed to a series of seven (seven!) three-hour-long (three hours!) public debates on slavery, each to be held in a different congressional district of Illinois. Although Lincoln lost the election, the debates and the publication of their transcripts brought him to national attention, and two years later propelled him to becoming the 16th president of the United States.
OPEN LETTER In preparation for MIT’s new campus centennial, <br />a modest proposal to Hockfield
<i>The following petition was sent to President Susan J. Hockfield on June 25, 2010.</i>
MOVIE REVIEW The Last Airbender: Shyamalan flops again
As fans of the animated series the movie is based on, and as human beings in general, watching <i>The Last Airbender</i> was a painful experience. Fans will mourn the film’s lack of resemblance to the original; everyone else will mourn the ghost of M. Night Shyamalan’s storytelling ability.
CONCERT REVIEW Give me the funk: War kicks off concert series at the Hatch Shell
With bubbles floating through the air and peace signs diffusing through the crowd at a rate that would have impressed even Robert Brown, the flower children of Boston made a comeback at the first of 103.3 WODS’s Free Summer Concert Series on June 19, featuring the wildly popular 70’s funk band, War.
Mandatory meetings at 9 o’clock in the morning should not happen, especially for software interns (and MIT students), whose natural sleep-cycle is more similar to that of a loris than a normal, functional member of society. But it happens, and it’s times like these when I’m glad to be working in Seattle, a city which boasts quite a competence in caffeinated beverages. After all, this is the home of the international coffeehouse chain which brought you the Frappuccino. Needless to say, after my meeting I needed a quality cup to get me through the day, and so I made my way around the corner to Uptown Espresso for a caffeine fix and some breakfast.
MOVIE REVIEW Crossing the finish line with <br />Spirit of the Marathon
<i>Spirit of the Marathon</i> is a rare documentary movie that tries to capture the drama and essence of the 26.2 mile running event. Director Jon Dunham and his crew filmed on four continents to chronicle the experiences of six very different marathon runners throughout their training and closing with their performances in the 2005 Chicago Marathon. The film focuses on two elite runners who focus on winning the race: American Champion and 2004 Olympic bronze medalist Deena Kastor and the Kenyan professional runner Daniel Njenga. The film also displays the struggles and successes of the five amateur runners Ryan Bradley, Leah Calle, Gerald Myers and Lori O’Connor. “The reason that most people run the marathon is that it is a challenge for them. And whether it’s physical, mental or both – it’s something that helps them in their everyday life” explains Marathon champion Alberto Salazar.
Savory Summer Stops
Tech staff shares stories about good grubs.
Once you’ve made the tourist pilgrimage to NYC, later trips usually revolve around exploring the more obscure offerings of the City. Since I always find myself in situations where I need to optimally allocate my monetary funds between food and shopping, I end up settling on tasty but relatively budget-friendly eats.
MOVIE REVIEW A moving story of a childhood’s end
The culmination of what may be Pixar’s magnum opus,<i> Toy Story 3 </i>is hands-down one of the best movies of the year.<i> Toy Story 3</i>, like the first two, follows the adventures of a group of sentient toys. The stars are, as in previous installments, Woody and Buzz Lightyear. Woody (voiced by Tom Hanks) is a cowboy doll based on a fictional 40’s and 50’s TV series called Woody’s Roundup. His former-rival-turned-friend Buzz (voiced by Tim Allen) is a space marine doll with a surprising level of self-awareness—most of the time.
MOVIE REVIEW Enjoyable for fans, but questionable for others
This is not the type of movie you see unless you’re genuinely interested in the characters. Sure, it seems to have all the makings of a fun girl movie; unlike such series as The Lord of the Rings, where knowledge of the books is a nice supplement but completely unnecessary for appreciation of the films themselves. Some prior exposure to Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte, and Samantha is a definite prerequisite for any real appreciation of the Sex and the City film series.
Having grown up in Los Angeles, I’ve learned to recognize good sushi. My friends and I are regular haunts at the best not-too-expensive sushi place in our suburb of Burbank, and when we’re really in the mood, will drive up to an hour and a half for the ultimate all-you-can-eat experience.
ALBUM REVIEW Stars paint memories in shades of longing
If anyone asked me what band I could listen to without ever getting sick of them, I’d have to say hands down, it is Stars. Stars, a Canadian indie pop band, is closely related to the band Broken Social Scene (actually, all of the members of Stars are members of BSS). The band is known for setting poetry to music; it is difficult to describe their musical style without using the words beautiful or ethereal. Their characteristic electronic sound is interwoven with string instrumentation, narrative lyrics, and soothing, caressing vocals. Their songs range from whispered words to upbeat numbers. I can’t help but gush about the vocals. Quite a few of their songs feature duet vocals with Torquil Campbell and Amy Millan, whose voices create a harmony that cannot be duplicated easily.
“A little something sweet in Cali”
Busboys and Poets
I’m struggling to put my finger on Busboys and Poets: part restaurant, part bookstore, part slam poetry venue, and all-around hipster. Their website describes their location as a “gathering place where people can discuss issues of social justice and peace [in] an environment where shared conversations over food and drink allow the progressive, artistic and literary communities to dialogue, educate and interact.” Sounds like something the Bohemians would say in the Moulin Rouge.
Urbana Restaurant & Wine Bar
DC in the summer is a town full of ambitious and caffeinated interns who, after 5 p.m., slide out of their awkward, ill-fitting new suits to hit up the various happy hours around town. I admit it’s been fun, but one night, I was looking for a change: I was willing to spend more than $1 per drink or appetizer in exchange for good food in even better company.
A runner to remember
In the past few months, Jacqueline M. Wentz ’10 has completed a dizzying journey – from finishing up finals at MIT, where she graduated and double-majored in Physics and Biological Engineering, to competing in the finals of the 3000-meter women’s steeplechase at the USA Track and Field (USATF) National Championships.
Racing for the top spot
Last month the MIT Motorsports Formula SAE team competed and placed 8th in the Formula SAE West competition. Over the past two years the team has been designing and building a Formula 1 style race car. Our hard work has paid off, as MIT placed higher than ever, taking 8th place out of 80 registered teams.
Dew Tour brings world’s best to Boston
At a quarter to three on June 26, hundreds of people ran through the doors of Boston’s TD Garden and rushed up the escalator stairs to the balcony of the stadium to watch the first of five stops on the 2010 Dew Tour and IFC Skateboarding World Championships. General admission ticket holders were not guaranteed seating and therefore contributed to the dog-eat-dog situation. Why choose to risk your life in the mob? Because tickets were only $15 (cheap when compared to the $100 action zone tickets), they were perfect for the moderate fan as well as the monetarily-challenged college student.
Engineers travel overseas; claim basketball tourney title
Last month, the MIT men’s basketball team competed in the Kainan University Invitational Tournament in Taiwan. This annual event, now in its fifth season, featured mostly teams from Asian universities. Using their depth and size advantage over their opponents, the Engineers cruised through the tournament, picking up four straight wins en route to their second tournament title in two trips (They also competed in the tournament in 2006).
Rebuilding the Machine Man
Trying to figure out where I stand on the line between “good taste in movies” and “cinema snob” has been a bizarre process. Looking through my movie collection, the balance between “mindless but enjoyable fluff” and “underappreciated gems that I spend most of my time trying to show other people” is surprisingly even. One of my recent purchases, a blockbuster action-comedy starring Dwayne Johnson (while he was still credited as “The Rock”), even manages to fall into both categories.