The hottest news of the day is Trevor Noah, who was announced this morning as Jon Stewart’s replacement on The Daily Show. Grantland has a great piece on everything you need to know about him. And to get a taste of his comedic chops, check out one of his previous spots on The Daily Show, “Spot the Africa.”
Another trending topic this week is political correctness and safe spaces on college campuses, sparked by Judith Shulevitz’s article “In College and Hiding From Scary Ideas” in The New York Times. The piece begins at Brown–because, after all, where else does the media turn when trying to portray liberalism gone rampant? Shulevitz’s article was criticized by many, in the Brown community and beyond, as insensitive and missing the point. The backlash is best encapsulated by Slate‘s “Are College Campuses Really in the Thrall of Leftist Censors?”
Politico‘s “Michelle Obama, Race and the Ivy League” looks at how the First Lady’s experiences at elite, and predominantly white, educational institutions–Princeton and Harvard Law School–shaped her into the woman she is today.
Here is the lineup for 2015’s Spring Weekend. Stay tuned for more updates!
Note: This post has been updated with Saturday’s openers, What Cheer? Brigade and Kelela.
Waka Flocka Flame
We’ve had a little extra time to get pumped about Waka Flocka; if you haven’t already seen the videos of him in a recording booth or reading/responding to a fan’s comments, please do so now. His most recognizable songs, “O Let’s Do it” and “Hard in da Paint,” are from his first album, Flockaveli, (not to be confused with Flockaveli 2, coming out later this year).
Perhaps more famous for his work as half of TNGHT, Ross Birchard — Hudson Mohawke — is also behind multiple hits for Kanye West. As part of Kanye’s G.O.O.D. Music stable, the Scottish DJ sometimes referred to as “HudMo” helped with the beats on “Blood on the Leaves” and “Mercy” (more on that later). Though he might not have the name recognition of past years’ electronic acts like Diplo and A-Trak, Hudson Mohawke should bring plenty of energy to Friday night.
As students poured out of their 11 o’clock classes this morning, approximately 400 student protesters gathered outside the Ratty, handing in plain dollar bills to the protest organizers and in return receiving ones with “IX” emblazoned in red tape–what has become the unofficial symbol of the #MoneyTalksAtBrown movement. The movement has gained national attention, as reporters from a variety of professional publications were present at the protest.
Last semester, two female students filed reports that they were drugged at an unregistered party at Phi Psi. One of the students also filed a report that she had been sexually assaulted later that night, by someone who was not a member of Phi Psi.
The fraternity was originally suspended for four years, with loss of housing and University recognition. Earlier this semester, Phi Psi distributed posters all over campus, with a QR code that directed to a statement on the lack of transparency in University’s handling of the case.
The media frenzy started when the Brown Daily Herald published an article on the fraternity’s false claim that the test results for GHB were solidly inconclusive. Since Monday, there has been a flurry of Herald and Huffington Post articles on the situation’s unfolding. We urge you to stay updated on their coverage, but in brief summary:
The urine test, originally thought to test positive for GHB, was deemed inconclusive. The University modified the fraternity’s sanction, allowing a petition for reinstatement after two and a half years.
The hair test found only natural levels of GHB, but the results were discounted due to concerns about the test’s methodology. While Phi Psi used the outcome to further their case for reinstatement, the University faces public scrutiny for hiring labs that produced faulty results.
Before recently, I hadn’t had the chance to meet any computer whizzes at Brown–or, for that matter, anywhere else–so I don’t quite know what to expect when I venture into the CIT for the first time to meet Graham Carling. He takes me up to the 5th floor of the building and as we walk past old computers on display he tells me, “It’s usually pretty deserted up here.” And he’s right: the two top floors feel like a ghost town. I find myself wondering whether I should have chosen a concentration with its own swipe-access-only building. This place is like a goddamn personal library.
I’ve reached out to Graham to hear more about an app he’s been a part of for close to two years, Push For Pizza – an iPhone application that streamlines the process of ordering pizza. If the name sounds familiar, it’s probably because Push for Pizza went viral last fall with an awesome video [above] that the team made for the launch of the app. The video and the app caught the attention of Forbes, New York Times,Buzzfeed, Huffington Post–for Christ’s sake, it featured on Steve Harvey. It was everywhere. But don’t Google “Push for Pizza” and expect Graham’s face to pop up. He’s not on the public side of the app. Instead, he’s busy developing it – building and maintaining the complicated code that makes the app function.
“It’s not that simple,” Graham says as he explains some of the intricacies of how the app actually goes about ordering pizza for a customer. “We first thought about writing a code that went onto Dominos.com and just filled out forms…we could’ve done that. But that would’ve been boring.” Without getting too specific, Push For Pizza version 1.0 worked by sending a customer’s information to Ordr.in, where the order was processed, confirmed and then routed to the pizzeria. “It was extremely janky and so inconsistent…it was not good,” Graham says. Still, the Push for Pizza team released the app to the public in August of 2014 with phenomenal media success. “Then the VCs started to get involved.”
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