četvrtak, 03.11.2011.



The Hotel At Mit

the hotel at mit

  • a building where travelers can pay for lodging and meals and other services

  • A code word representing the letter H, used in radio communication

  • In French contexts an hotel particulier is an urban "private house" of a grand sort. Whereas an ordinary maison was built as part of a row, sharing party walls with the houses on either side and directly fronting on a street, an hotel particulier was often free-standing, and by the eighteenth

  • A hotel is an establishment that provides paid lodging on a short-term basis. The provision of basic accommodation, in times past, consisting only of a room with a bed, a cupboard, a small table and a washstand has largely been replaced by rooms with modern facilities, including en-suite

  • An establishment providing accommodations, meals, and other services for travelers and tourists

  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology

  • (MITS (Museum Institute for Teaching Science)) The Museum Institute for Teaching Science (MITS), based in Boston, Massachusetts, USA, and founded in 1983, provides resources to K-8 teachers of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

  • Mitry is the name or part of the name of two communes of France: *Mitry-Mory in the Seine-et-Marne departement *Lemenil-Mitry in the Meurthe-et-Moselle departement

  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology: an engineering university in Cambridge

the hotel at mit - The Idea

The Idea Factory: Learning to Think at MIT

The Idea Factory: Learning to Think at MIT

This is a personal story of the educational process at one of the world's great technological universities. Pepper White entered MIT in 1981 and received his master's degree in mechanical engineering in 1984. His account of his experiences, written in diary form, offers insight into graduate school life in general--including the loneliness and even desperation that can result from the intense pressure to succeed--and the purposes of engineering education in particular. The first professor White met at MIT told him that it did not really matter what he learned there, but that MIT would teach him how to think. This, then, is the story of how one student learned how to think. There have of course been changes at MIT since 1984, but its essence is still the same. White has added a new preface and concluding chapter to this edition to bring the story of his continuing education up to date.

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Sunset at the MIT's main entrance

Sunset at the MIT's main entrance

Actually, sunset did not officially occur until an hour after I took this photo ... but it was starting to rain, so I decided that I had done enough photographing for one afternoon. I was lucky enough to find a cab here on the street, outside MIT's main entrance, and I jumped in for the ride back to my hotel...


It was a lifetime ago that I stumbled off a Greyhound bus in downtown Boston, a clueless 17 year old kid with two suitcases that held all my worldly possessions. I dragged them out to the street (no roll-aboard suitcases in those ancient times), and asked a taxi driver to take me to an address in Cambridge that I had scribbled on a scrap of paper: 77 Massachusetts Ave.

"Aye," the driver muttered, in a dialect that never did become familiar during the next several years. "SebendySebenMassAve."

When he dropped me off, I noticed two things. First, enormous stone steps leading up to the entrance to an imposing granite building. And second, a long line of scraggly, sloppily-dressed young men stretching from the building's entrance down toward the street where the taxi had dropped me. Aha, I thought: I'm not the only one who forgot to fill out the official form requesting a dorm room.

Welcome to MIT.

I waited in line for two hours before being assigned temporarily, with two other equally absent-minded, newly-arrived MIT students, to sleep on mattresses in an East Campus dorm room that had initially been assigned as a "single" room to an understandably annoyed fellow from Cincinnati. One of the other temporary misfits, whom we immediately nicknamed "Filthy Pierre," had just arrived from Paris with nothing but one large, heavy duffel bag that he dragged into the room. Its contents consisted of miscellaneous telephone parts, which he dumped on the floor and kicked under the bed before wandering out of the room to explore Boston. (He had not showered in weeks, and he was eventually expelled for burning a cross on MIT's Great Lawn on Easter morning. But that's another story.)

Thus began my four-year experience at what many still consider America's premiere scientific/engineering university. That I survived and graduated is a minor miracle; and while I'll hint at the adventures along the way, in this Flickr set, you'll have to look elsewhere for the details...

I continued to live in Cambridge for a couple of years after I graduated; took a couple of graduate courses in AI and computer science, taught a couple summer MIT classes to innocent high school students (one of whom challenged me to write the value of pi on the blackboard, to 100 places, from memory - which I did), took full advantage of MIT's athletic facilities, and 25-cent Saturday-nite movies at Kresge auditorium, which always featured the enormously popular RoadRunner cartoons, and occasionally walked through the same halls and pathways that I had first explored as an overwhelmed undergraduate student. But then I got a new job, moved to New York City, got married, settled down, and began raising family. After that, I typically travelled to Boston two or three times a year on business trips, but never seemed to have time to come back to MIT for a casual visit.

But one of the advantages of a near-fanatical devotion to the hobby of photography is that you begin to appreciate that all of the experiences you internalized and took for granted need to be photographed -- for posterity, if nothing else. Some of my most vivid memories of MIT, which we took for granted - like the huge,red, neon, flashing/pulsating "Heinz 57" sign out on the northern edge of the (Briggs) athletic fields -- are gone. Some of the legendary professors and deans have died and commemorative plaques have been erected in their honor. And there's a whole lot of new stuff - mostly new buildings and laboratories, whose specific purpose is a mystery to me - that I just have to shrug and accept.

But the basic campus is still there. And the memories are just as vivid as they were, so many years ago. I can't say that I captured them all in this Flickr set; the photos were taken at sunset one evening, and dawn the following morning. But they'll give you an idea of what it was like, a long long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away ... and what it's still like today.

MIT Bookstore

MIT Bookstore

This picture was taken in Boston at the MIT Campus. This is what I saw when I walked out of my hotel (Marriott Boston Cambridge) and crossed the street. I think I actually bought a t-shirt out there and a magazine. The MIT Technology Review.

the hotel at mit

the hotel at mit

The Sorcerers and Their Apprentices: How the Digital Magicians of the MIT Media Lab Are Creating the Innovative Technologies That Will Transform Our Lives

If you've ever read a book on an e-reader, unleashed your inner rock star playing Guitar Hero, built a robot with LEGO Mindstorms, or ridden in a vehicle with child-safe air bags, then you've experienced first hand just a few of the astounding innovations that have come out of the Media Lab over the past 25 years. But that’s old hat for today’s researchers, who are creating technologies that will have a much deeper impact on the quality of people’s lives over the next quarter century.

In this exhilarating tour of the Media Lab's inner sanctums, we'll meet the professors and their students - the Sorcerers and their Apprentices - and witness first hand the creative magic behind inventions such as:

* Nexi, a mobile humanoid robot with such sophisticated social skills she can serve as a helpful and understanding companion for the sick and elderly.
* CityCar, a foldable, stackable, electric vehicle of the future that will redefine personal transportation in cities and revolutionize urban life.
* Sixth Sense, a compact wearable device that transforms any surface – wall, tabletop or even your hand - into a touch screen computer.
* PowerFoot, a lifelike robotic prosthesis that enables amputees to walk as naturally as if it were a real biological limb.

Through inspiring stories of people who are using Media Lab innovations to confront personal challenges - like a man with cerebral palsy who is unable to hum a tune or pick up an instrument yet is using an ingenious music composition system to unleash his “inner Mozart”, and a woman with a rare life-threatening condition who co-invented a revolutionary web service that enables patients to participate in the search for their own cures - we’ll see how the Media Lab is empowering us all with the tools to take control of our health, wealth, and happiness.

Along the way, Moss reveals the highly unorthodox approach to creativity and invention that makes all this possible, explaining how the Media Lab cultivates an open and boundary-less environment where researchers from a broad array of disciplines – from musicians to neuroscientists to visual artists to computer engineers - have the freedom to follow their passions and take bold risks unthinkable elsewhere.

The Sorcerers and Their Apprentices can serve as a blueprint for how to fix our broken innovation ecosystem and bring about the kind of radical change required to meet the challenges of the 21st century. It is a must-read for anyone striving to be more innovative as an individual, as a businessperson, or as a member of society.

Also includes 16 pages of color photos highlighting some of the lab's most visually stunning inventions - and the people who make them possible.

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