The caption for the mood meter photo in the April 15 issue mistakenly identified the creators as M. Ehsan Hoque G, Professor of Media Arts and Sciences Rosalind W. Picard ScD ’91, and Javier H. Rivera G from left to right. The creators should be, from left to right, Javier H. Rivera G, Professor of Media Arts and Sciences Rosalind W. Picard ’86, and M. Ehsan Hoque G.
Beta alumni disband fraternity
Beta Theta Pi (Beta) has been disbanded, a decision that was made by its local alumni association, advisory board, and the national organization. Members were notified of the decision on June 5 and were asked to move out of their house within five days.
Facilities may move
The people who keep MIT running day-in, day-out are looking for a new home. The Operations group of MIT’s Department of Facilities is mulling use of the former California Products Corporation’s property at the corner of Waverly St. and Putnam Ave., just northwest of West Campus. At a June 22 meeting, MIT officials pitched the idea to residents of Cambridgeport — the neighborhood where this property currently lies dormant.
NEWS ANALYSIS Dorm transfers review
Next semester marks the first year of MIT’s new undergraduate dining plan, requiring students who live in Simmons, McCormick, Baker, Next, and Maseeh Hall to purchase meal plans ranging from $2,500–$4,500 per year. Opponents to the plan have suggested that the cost may be prohibitive for some, driving students away from dorms where they otherwise would have liked to live. Here we present a breakdown of requests for transfers to and from every dorm from 2008–2011. Data from prior to 2008 is not available, nor do we yet know how dining plans will affect how freshmen pick dorms. However, with these data we can begin to ask whether dining changes significantly impacted dorm popularity.
Boston celebrates July 4th
Despite the hot and humid weather, masses from around the world crowded into Boston for one of the most anticipated Fourth of July celebrations in America. Everyone was full of national spirit; children and adults alike wore red and blue foam Lady Liberty crowns and played games on blankets spread out along the banks of the Charles River. Those seeking the best seats for the spectacle arrived early in the morning, stretching clusters of lawn chairs from the Harvard Bridge all the way to the Hatch Shell, where the 38th Annual Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular would take place later in the day. Other spectators took to the seas, docking their boats around the barge from which the firework show would ignite and release its potential energy into the skies.
Here today, gone tomorrow, those cameras.
Surveillance cameras come and go in Lobby 10, with some frequency, it would seem.
The Tech’s behind-the-scenes look at the fireworks barge
Producer: Joanna Kao
Agarwal officially CSAIL’s director
Anant Agarwal, a professor in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, assumed his role as director of CSAIL (Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory) last Friday on July 1. Agarwal will succeed Professor Victor W. Zue ’76, who held the directorship for four years. CSAIL is MIT’s largest interdisciplinary lab and is home to over 900 undergraduates, graduate students, and researchers.
Borges to manage Maseeh Hall
As of July 1, Rui Borges is officially the new house manager of Maseeh Hall, MIT’s newest undergraduate dorm. For the past 10 years, Borges has served as the house manager of Simmons Hall. In an email to Simmons residents, he said that he will miss everyone at Simmons and is looking forward to the new challenges he will face as manager of Maseeh Hall. Over the next few weeks, he will be working closely with Nika L. Hollingsworth, who was named as his successor as house manager of Simmons Hall. Hollingsworth has spent the past two and a half years as assistant manager of the Warehouse, one of MIT’s graduate dormitories. Rounding out the house team at Maseeh will be Suzanne Flynn and Jack Carroll, formerly of the Phoenix Group, who will now be the Housemasters of Maseeh Hall.
Disney lab resurfaces
Disney Research opened a new lab near MIT in East Cambridge this month, 11 years after closing the doors to its old Cambridge lab. Disney Research works in a number of areas — including robotics, computer graphics, and video processing — that benefit many facets of The Walt Disney Company. The new lab plans to work in the social sciences and forge ties with researchers at MIT.
Meetings between lawyers and staff for the NFL and its players resumed Tuesday, with lawyers drafting language for a potential deal on certain issues. Among those present were people who are concerned with drug testing and how free agency would work.
China acknowledges spill from northeastern oil rig
BEIJING — Oil that spewed from an offshore drilling rig in northeastern China for two weeks last month has spread over 320 square miles, government officials acknowledged Tuesday, amid uproar over why it took so long for fishermen, local residents and environmental groups to be informed of the spill.
Finance minister in Greece moves from crisis to crisis
ATHENS, Greece — As he approached the end of another 16-hour workday, Evangelos Venizelos had one question on his mind: Will Europe come up with the money that Greece so desperately needs? As the new Greek finance minister, Venizelos is the man in charge of steering a nearly bankrupt economy back on track — and, perhaps, preventing another global financial crisis.
Big business leaves the deficit to the politicians
WASHINGTON — If you want to understand why cutting the deficit is so hard, you can’t do much better than to look at the Business Roundtable.
Netflix said Tuesday that it would begin offering its streaming movie and television service in Central America, South America and the Caribbean this year, a major expansion of the company’s geographic footprint.
Romney questioned on critique of economy under Obama
HAMPTON, N.H. — For much of this year, Mitt Romney has laid low, seeking to reap the benefits of being the presumed front-runner in the race for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination (strong fundraising, positive polling) without suffering the downsides (intensive media scrutiny, endless shelling from rivals).
Summer in Boston; floods and droughts elsewhere
After a hot Fourth of July that allowed hundreds of thousands of spectators to watch fireworks along the Charles River without fear of rain or cold, it looks as though summer has arrived in full force in Boston. Even with a cold front passing through the region on Wednesday night, daytime temperatures should not drop below the 70s.
US to prosecute Somali terrorism suspect in civilian court
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration announced Tuesday that it would prosecute in civilian court a Somali accused of ties to two Islamist militant groups. The decision to fly the man to New York for trial, after interrogating him for months aboard a U.S. naval vessel, is likely to reignite debate about the detention and prosecution of terrorism suspects.
Yes on same-sex marriage
Last month’s vote to legalize same-sex marriage in New York was a welcome victory in the struggle to provide all Americans, no matter their sexual orientation, with equal rights. It is self-evident that people should have the right to marry whom they love.
Good job ending bias toward heterosexuals…
A central tenet of all true libertarianism is that individuals, not the state, are the final arbiters of morality. The role of the state as a promoter of moral behavior exists only as a corollary to its monopoly on force or its role as a coordinator of collective action, i.e., the state exists to prevent a man from imposing his will upon another through violence or theft, and to broker an agreement when decisions cannot be made at the individual level. To extend the law beyond that is to make the state a conduit for the very impositions that it was built to defend against. It is a subversion of free society.
Of lawyers and scientists
There are two methods by which mankind searches for the truth.
Gay marriage should not be made legal
It is unfortunate that there is such a growing stigma attached to arguing against gay marriage — at least here in the liberal bastion that is Massachusetts. If one is opposed to legalizing gay marriage, it is automatically assumed that the opposition rests on a basis of hate, homophobia, or other such negative motivations. There are, in fact, legitimate, substantive reasons as to why gay marriage should not be legalized.
I am dissenting from the above editorial because it is my firm belief that by legalizing gay marriage, New York has become the latest state to embarrass itself and this country. Contrary to what the rest of the editorial board suggests, there is strong research conducted by Dr. Bruce J. Ellis, Professor of Psychology at the University of Canterbury, and others demonstrating that a child needs a father to develop properly. Further, there is no interest compelling enough to justify legalizing gay marriage. By the logic above — namely that “it is self-evident that people should have the right to marry whom they love,” the government should allow first cousins or siblings to marry. Love is not enough for the government to spend my tax dollars subsidizing a relationship which does not serve a compelling interest. Heterosexual relationships, on the contrary, allow for the propagation of American society, which justifies a government subsidy. For the rest of my argument, please see my counterpoint on page five. While I do not endorse New York’s decision, I do agree with the rest of the editorial board’s encouragement of the MIT community to continue providing support and services and raising awareness for LGBT students, as it would for any other group that has faced lack of acceptance or has been the subject of social marginalization.
MOVIE REVIEW Conversing with the stars
Midnight in Paris is Woody Allen’s most recent film. Like many of Allen’s past films, Midnight in Paris tends towards the more philosophical and the atmospheric. The film heavily references many influential figures in literature and draws a contrast between a modern-day man unhappy with his current life and the romantic atmosphere of Paris in the Roaring Twenties.
MOVIE REVIEW One small step for man, one giant leap for … wait, is that an alien ship?
Michael Bay’s newest installment of the Transformers movies, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, starts with a sequence explaining the “true” motivations behind NASA’s Apollo program: In 1961, scientists witness an alien spaceship crash on Earth’s moon. To explore the wrecked vessel, the Apollo program is initiated. President Kennedy makes his famous statement to bring a man on the moon within a decade, and when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin finally land on the moon in 1969 with Apollo 11, their true mission is to investigate that wrecked vessel on the dark side of the moon.
MIT’s Jack Barry Field is under construction that is expected to be completed in the first week of August. After 12 seasons of use of the current surface, a new synthetic surface will be installed. The facility is not only used by MIT’s field hockey team, but is also used by the entire MIT community. Students, faculty, and alumni can often be found playing lacrosse, soccer, and other sports on the field in the evening. Improvements on the field will not only include the new synthetic surface, but also a new walkway, safety netting, sound system, and lighting for use in the evenings.
McShane honored with nod by Academic All-America Program
Standout Molly E. McShane ’13 was honored on June 9 with a Third Team nod on the Capital One Academic All-America team, as presented by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). McShane, a two-time field hockey All-American, was honored in the At-Large category, which encompasses the sports of bowling, crew, fencing, field hockey, golf, gymnastics, ice hockey, lacrosse, skiing, swimming and diving, tennis, and water polo.
PREFROSH Settling high school affairs
The hallways of my high school have emptied, the Class of 2011 has graduated, and I have reached the plateau linking a conquered challenge and the beginning of an intimidating journey. But while everything academic from high school has come to a final, satisfying halt, I’m still trying to conclude an equally significant portion of my life for the past four years: extracurriculars. I’m the type of person who can’t sit still atop a colossal mound of ideas. I was always going out to organize events, start traditions, and sign up for activities, but now I am struggling to bid my favorite things farewell.
NERDY WITH A CHANCE OF RANDOM Why grades suck
“You know what really grinds my gears?” as Peter Griffin of Family Guy fame would say. Grades. Grades annoy me more than a textbook that continuously switches between unit systems for no apparent reason. A letter that supposedly reflects the mastery of a subject actually disallows students to learn to their full potential. And the reasons for this endless frustration are as follows:
Guide to Pikan food codes
Because of the many different dietary restrictions at pika, pikans have created a system of abbreviations to identify the ingredients in dinners. Here is a handy guide in case you find yourself dining at pika’s table.
A taste of pika
Ah, summer. Free from the flurry of p-sets, labs, and tests burying us in a pile of work, I finally have time to slow down and enjoy the simple pleasures of life: leisurely reading books instead of hastily cramming for a HASS paper, staying up until 3 a.m. watching Doctor Who without worrying about sleeping through an alarm, and having time to explore Boston with my friends while the temperature permits shorts.
Institute Double Take
Orange skies in the early morning are a spectacular view. In the month of June, the sun rises over the dome, while in the winter, it rises between the Hancock Tower and Prudential Center — quite a dramatic shift. The key challenge while taking this picture was the dynamic range — the sun is much brighter than its surroundings, and even more so when it rises higher. With a few iterations in the manual mode (and the knowledge of post-processing freedom), one can take a picture that is uniformly illuminated.