Tag Archives: Internet

Unofficial Orientation Series 2017: WesTech

This is an update of michelle‘s update of kitab‘s update of alt‘s update of pyrotechnics‘ update of lesanjuan‘s update of Syed’s 2010 post.

Screenshot 2014-08-22 08.48.19

This is part of our 2017 Unofficial Orientation Series. A quick reminder that you can check out the welcome post here and past years’ series here.

Welcome to the internet, dear prefrosh. We’re so glad you came.

You have already proven that you have some knowledge of how to navigate the digital multiverse (delete your WesAdmits bio before you get to campus, trust me), but there’s a lot to learn when it comes to figuring out the digital landscape here at Wesleyan. Rest assured, I’m gonna try to demystify the finer points of all things technology at Wes.

The first thing you should know: WesTech. It refers to the kindly people who provide “technical services and support to all faculty, staff and students,” you might think. No, that’s ITS and how they describe themselves. Here’s what a previous WesLingo post says about WesTech:

WesTech is a word that will pop up every once in a while (via the ACB): “WesTech refers to everyone not DKE/Beta* or mostly the ‘very Wesleyan’ population. It comes from the idea that Wesleyan has unattractive girls and bad sports and thus might as well be a technical school: WesTech.” Apparently, however, this is a term used mainly by other schools to make fun of Wesleyan, and has been appropriated by the sports teams as a label of pride (sports teams doing the ironic appropriation? Only at Wesleyan). A Techie was a term generally used by athletes to describe a “typical” Wesleyan student (artsy), or a “Techie.”

Now that you know what it means, this is required viewing: WesTech State of Mind.

If you’re confused, don’t worry: I’ve never heard anyone use the term WesTech, which probably means I’m a techie. Huh. Anyway, for instructions on how to be technologically savvy at Wes, read on.

Unofficial Orientation Series ’14: WesTech

This is an update of pyrotechnic‘s update of lesanjuan‘s update of Syed’s 2010 post.

Screenshot 2014-08-22 08.48.19

I’m not sure I can survive without access to the web or my phone, so the first thing that you’ll probably do after moving your stuff into your dorm is to connect your phone/tablet/computer/laptop/other gizmo to the internet. Here’s some info for you on how to do that, and other tech things on campus.

The first thing you should know: WesTech. It refers to the kindly people who provide “technical services and support to all faculty, staff and students,” you might think. No, that’s ITS and how they describe themselves. Here’s what a previous WesLingo post says about WesTech:

WesTech is a word that will pop up every once in a while (via the ACB): “WesTech refers to everyone not DKE/Beta or mostly the ‘very Wesleyan’ population. It comes from the idea that Wesleyan has unattractive girls and bad sports and thus might as well be a technical school: WesTech.” Apparently, however, this is a term used mainly by other schools to make fun of Wesleyan, and has been appropriated by the sports teams as a label of pride (sports teams doing the ironic appropriation? Only at Wesleyan). A Techie was a term generally used by athletes to describe a “typical” Wesleyan student (artsy), or a “Techie.”

Now that you know what it means, this is required viewing: WesTech State of Mind.

Of course, we’re not really going to talk about that much (or at all after this). This is a how-to about Tech(nology).

COL370’s Runawayct.org Site Launch

From the students of COL 370:

Joseph Yannielli’s Digital Humanities class (COL370) is pleased to announce the  launch of Runawayct.org this Thursday, May 15 at 1:10pm in 41 Wyllys Rm.113. Runawayct.org is a digital humanities resource for the study of runaway slaves in Connecticut, conceived and executed by the students of COL370. The site provides free access to a searchable database of runaway slave ads published in the Connecticut Courant, accompanied by scholarly content providing context and insight into slavery-era Connecticut. Runawayct.org also provides interactive features for an enriched and engaging user experience, including a maps feature for geographic visualization of data on runaways. The project is intended for use in independent research and as an educational resource to be used by Connecticut area educators in US History classes and the like.

Refreshments will be provided by the department. We’d love to see you at the launch!

Date: Thursday, May 15
Time: 1:10 p.m.
Place: 41 Wyllys Rm.113

WesKids in the Blogosphere

all drawings from Jason Katzenstein '13's blog, Literally Drawn Lyrics

drawings by Hannah Baker and Jason Katzenstein [all drawings from Katzenstein ’13’s blog, Literally Drawn Lyrics]

You may not have known but probably expected that some of our brilliant peers are killing it in the online realm. Once upon a while ago, frostedmoose did a post on some Gov professors in the blogosphere. Abrogs have gotten attention. But this doesn’t even begin to cover it. I compiled a list of some of the more well-known bloggers among us– complete with blurbs from the bloggers themselves! You’re missing some QUALITY bloggin’ if you haven’t checked these girls (see what I did there?) out:

Procrastination Destination: Don’t Miss that Connection!

Seen someone on campus wearing the most flattering parka? A friend bring a smile to your face when you really needed it? Crushing on that special somebody but don’t see them around much? Good news, everyone! There’s a site for that.

Up and Coming

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Springing up sometime over the Thanksgiving break, the I Saw You phenomenon has finally reached Wesleyan! Great for those who have not partaken of the Zuckerberg Kool-Aid and less depressing/trolltastic than the ACB, “I saw you Wesleyan” allows you the option of posting about a missed connection, ranting about your crush, complimenting strangers, and even e-mailing the site’s manager if you think a post is about you.

Straight from the front page:

Ever shared a moment with a stranger.. but never acted upon it? Post a missed connection! because you never know. and nothing will ever happen until you try.

Check out Harvard’s I Saw You, and MIT’s. Brings to mind “real world” missed connections sites like Craigslist, for which there is also a comic book (coincidentally named, “I Saw You…”).

Going Strong

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Since 2012, Wes Compliments has been making the young folk of Wesleyan go “aww” and “oh my!” with good vibes every few days, crowned Wesleying’s “Feel Good Facebook Profile of the Year” for 2012. Keep up the good stuff, you covert complimenters. Now with over 2,300 friends, straight from their Facebook description:

This is a social project that was originally started by students at Queen’s University and is also experiencing growing success with Ryerson University, Wilfred Laurier University and Washington University in St Louis. With their success, we’re hoping to spread the joy to the Wesleyan campus. Simply send us a compliment for someone in the Wesleyan community and have it published here anonymously. Your name will be kept anonymous. Keep in mind that hateful or rude remarks will be completely disregarded. Spread Happiness!

[Liveblog]: Reddit’s Alexis Ohanian in Beckham

If you haven’t heard already, the “mayor of the Internet,” a.k.a reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian is at Wesleyan today.

His itinerary:

11:15 a.m.    Arrive at Wesleyan and join Professor Greg Goldberg’s “Media and Society” class already in progress

12 p.m.          “Without Their Permission” talk and booksigning with Peter Frank ’12 of Texts.com (details here)

2 p.m.             Meeting with student programmer group and student entrepreneurs Exley 139

3 p.m.             Depart Wesleyan

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There are a bunch of questions for Ohanian on the Wesleyen subreddit, some selected ones here:

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shameless selfie

From the Argus: Some people would say the internet is the most powerful means of doing good the world has ever seen, and that it can bring people together to solve seemingly intractable problems. It does, however, have its downside–one notable example would be the Boston Marathon bombing manhunt, during which a group of Redditors identified the wrong suspect, causing widespread panic and hindering the investigation. What are the limitations and risks of harnessing the power of the internet for problem-solving, and how can they be best addressed?

From the classic ‘wes anon’:

Can you talk about anonymity on the internet? Specifically, how does one foster a community that is anonymous and not have it overrun by things like bullying or racist language (this is one of the things I hate most about reddit, to be honest, even though I love certain parts of the site). Is there a solution?

If you didn’t get a ticket to the event, you can check out our liveblog below:

Reddit Co-Founder will Visit Wes; Get Your Tickets Now

reddit co-founder visits; get tickets here

Dubbed the “Mayor of the Internet” by Forbes, and one of the greatest believers of the Internet’s democratic potential, reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian will visit Wesleyan on Thursday, December 5 as part of a 77-college book tour to promote his new book, Without their PermissionWith a 140 character limit, he describes himself as:

Startup guy making the world suck less: redditbreadpighipmunkY Combinator. Investor, speaker, host of Small Empires, author of Without Their Permission.

Ohanian is now part of the NYC tech scene and extols the idea that “all links are created equal,” which means that this AMA (ask me anything) with Amanda Palmer ’98 and her husband is on the same level as the AMA with Heemz ’07. But mostly, this means that Ohanian believes people can do awesome things together when they use the right platform effectively.

In 2011, Ohanian was involved with the Internet activism against the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Cyber Intelligence & Sharing Protection Act (CISPA). Ohanian was invited to speak in front of Congress and subsequently asked the reddit community what he should say in his testimony. When reddit blacked out its home page in protest on January 18, 2012, Wikipedia and Mozilla followed suit, and Google posted a link to a page protesting the piracy bills. Afterwards, legislators were barraged with 10 million petition signatures, 8 million calls, and 4 million e-mails.

Reddit FB Event Cover Photo

Ohanian’s new book is a lot about “harnessing the power of the web for good,” and along the way, he shares his philosophy about entrepreneurship. In a teaser for the book, he had more to say about this (and to Stephen Colbert), in the eloquent, hyped up way I imagine a successful 30 year old tech start up philanthropist to sound like:

Interview: Peter Frank ’12, Former Owner of CollegeACB, Launches New Textbook Venture

“If a campus as tight-knit and progressive as Wesleyan can’t come together to defeat yesterday’s monopolist and incumbent powers, then maybe it just can’t be done.”

Peter Frank ’12, the famed Internet entrepreneur who ran the CollegeACB empire from his Fauver dorm room and made his way into the pages of TIME Magazine before selling the site in 2011 for an undisclosed six-figure sum, is back in the game with a new start-up. Not quite as juicy as the ACB (but probably far more useful), Frank’s latest venture is Texts.com, a “lean, green, student-first platform” for students to buy and sell textbooks to and from each other online. The start-up made its Wesleyan debut on Foss Hill around 4:20 p.m. yesterday; you’d be forgiven for assuming it’s a service that provides free pizza to stoned Wesleyan students at all hours of the day (that’s my new start-up idea, don’t tell anyone):

With help from Lisa Sy ’13 and Benjamin Halpern (a student at Mount Allison University in Canada), Frank aims to build a “commission-free, zero-fee, student-to-student textbook exchange” that eliminates the middleman.

Study: AOL Screen Names, When Combined With Old Photos, Produce Humorous Effect

Now you can relive your awkwardest Internet glory days on livejournal MySpace Tumblr.

Jesse R-S '13: "'My Little Needle' was a song by the Alkaline Trio, my favorite band in 5th grade. I presume it's about heroin."

Jesse R-S ’13: “‘My Little Needle’ was a song by the Alkaline Trio, my favorite band in 5th grade. I presume it’s about heroin.”

Last month, Yatta Zoker ’14 (screen name: ” tumblinhottie05″) launched a Facebook event (the all-capsed “OMG I JUST REALIZED I DON’T HAVE YOUR SCREEN NAME“), began soliciting fellow WesKids’ AOL screen names and corresponding photos, and inadvertently set off a wave of contagious AOL nostalgia (nostAOLgia?). The submissions came flooding in, and with them torrents of comments, likes, and general look-back-and-laugh hilarity. Naturally, the results are worthy of archiving on Tumblr, and Zoker has finally gotten around to putting one together: “hey, what’s your sn?” If you missed all the fun, you can still submit your own screen name to the Tumblr via this link.

“I’ve always thought of old screen names as a hilarious insight into people’s past pysches,” Zoker explained to me in an IM email. “The Facebook event was initially meant to be the start of an archival project for my Photo II class, but it didn’t fly as fine art. Smh. Regardless, it’s been a blast. Screen names are such a beautiful display of the struggle for tweens to create identity. Also, mostly, lol.”

In the meantime, we’ve compiled some of the highlights below (leaving out last names, because no one wants this crap showing up on Google). Relive your awkwardest Internet moments below, and for more AOL nostalgia, check out “your away message.”

Solow ’12 Makes a Tumblr: “Messages For Survivors”

If you’ve followed the Steubenville trial in recent weeks, you may have found some of the media responses disconcerting. Instead of providing support for sexual survivors, popular media outlets like CNN lamented that the conviction will impact the once-bright futures of the rapists. In these comments, CNN did not detail how Jane Doe was harassed online and slut-shamed by her community (and America at large) for reporting the crime and pressing charges. CNN did not lament how rape culture creates an environment that renders survivors of sexual assault afraid to talk about their experiences and ashamed of something that isn’t their fault. One in five women in the United States is sexually assaulted and 60% of these attacks go unreported to the police. It seems like there’s something wrong with the common discourse of sexual assault.

The unceasingly inspirational Lena Solow ’12 wants to provide messages of hope and positivity for survivors that were so lacking from many Steubenville responses. This blog is not just for Jane Doe—it’s for any survivor who seeks affirmation and encouragement. Solow writes, “This is a place to consolidate messages of hope and encouragement and affirmation for sexual assault survivors. Created in response to the backlash, victim blaming, and all-around horrifying language about the Steubenville rape case. If Jane Doe, the Steubenville survivor, searches for messages, there should be something else available for her, and for all survivors of assault.”

Here is a link to the blog, “Messages for Survivors.” You should definitely check it out and even contribute if you feel so inclined.