Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Harvard News Items

Some highlights:

1) From the Crimson:  "An undergraduate has been dismissed from Harvard College after allegedly hacking into online accounts of the teaching staff in his courses." 

Makes me wish I was still on Faculty Council; I'm trying to figure out how the student "...designed a website to obtain the Harvard University IDs and the personal identification numbers (PIN) of his instructors."  (Designing the website is easy;  how did he get his instructors to log into it?)  I'm still trying to figure out if those antics are more or less impressive than the former Harvard student who sent in completely bogus data and recommendation letters in all sorts of various applications.

2)  Here's two articles (USA Today, Business Week) about the IRS looking into university spending, and in particular whether rich universities are hoarding endowment money.  The idea that universities who are spending under 5% should be encouraged (or forced) to do otherwise probably seemed a lot more compelling back in 2007-2008 when apparently they were surveying the universities about their spending;  with some schools (Harvard, Princeton) having to payout 6% this year to deal with recent losses, I'd imagine it seems less compelling now...

I've heard most endowments have made up a lot of their losses this year.  Harvard, ever a black box, has not released any information I'm aware of... anyone out there know more than I do?

3)  Various articles out (here's one from the Times Online) about the very negative portrayal of Facebook's Zuckerburg in the upcoming Facebook movie "The Social Network."  I'll probably have to go see it, if only to see the scenes with the Harvard Professor (check the IMDB credits) -- supposed to be, from what I hear, a representation of our own Matt Welsh.

1 comment:

Norman Ramsey said...

How did he get the instructors to log into it? Never underestimate the power of social engineering...