Peter Simpson ’14 always wanted to know what was happening around Brown’s campus but never felt satisfied with the resources available. “Morning Mail was really hard to read through and took a lot of time,” says Peter. “I wanted a Morning Mail that really had the stuff I cared about. I wanted to know about archeology, computer science, and entrepreneurship.” So he came up with the idea for a website and mobile application that informs students about what’s going on around campus in a more effective way, and he found his software engineer and partner in Joe Stein ’16.

Peter describes Ventfull as a “tailored Morning Mail” that makes everything easier for students. Unlike Brown’s nightly email, where one has to jump through a couple of hoops to create a post, anyone can submit an event to be included in Ventfull. These events are categorized into six groups (social, organization, performance, sports, academic, and free food), which are also then subcategorized. New users are asked about their interests when they sign in for the first time, and then an email is sent to them with only relevant information about what’s going on at Brown. Even more, Ventfull gives its users the freedom to choose how often this email is sent out, whether it’s every single day or maybe twice a week. Ventfull allows for a great deal of social engagement, as events can be exported to both Facebook and Google Calendar. There is also a voting system like on Reddit, where posts are ranked higher when they receive a greater number of approving votes.

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SPONSORED: Geoff’s Superlative Sandwiches is adding a new Brunonian flavor

With over 85 sandwiches on its famous chalkboard menu, Geoff’s Superlative Sandwiches has been a College Hill staple for over 40 years. “People keep coming back,” says Julio Fonseca, the owner of the shop. “We get graduates who have not been here for 30 years. They say they love how everything is the same and that they can still order their favorite sandwich.” Julio, a native of Portugal, bought the sandwich shop from Geoff himself seventeen years ago.

While Julio wanted to stay true to Geoff’s creation, a few changes have been made such as the now famous 2 for 1 Tuesdays. What has not changed are the delicious sandwiches. “We have PhDs in sandwich making,” says the shop’s manager, John Reinhardt. When customers have trouble deciding which of the many options to order, employees usually point them in the direction of the eatery’s most popular menu item: The Juggs. This delicious sandwich includes hot turkey, bacon, cheddar, cranberry, and Shedd’s sauce, all on a superlative roll. “You don’t have these combinations at home,” says Julio. “When you come to Geoff’s, you get a sandwich you can’t get anywhere else.”

Each sandwich also has its own creative name, with some named after famous politicians, bands, and Rhode Island natives. As a side to the sandwich, Geoff’s is known for its white bucket of all-you-can-eat pickles situated in the middle of the room. Students also might see more of Geoff’s in the near future. Julio has thought about re-opening a Thayer Street location or potentially creating a food truck. Geoff’s used to be on Thayer a few years back, but it was forced out when a new owner purchased the building it occupied. Julio and John say that Brown students are their best customers and that they have loved meeting new students as the years have gone by.

Now Julio wants to make an exciting addition to this established eatery: add a sandwich called The Brunonian. In his mind, the sandwich would be modeled after the Brown Bear and include salmon, hot spinach, cranberry, and other tasty ingredients. Julio wants to hold a contest, however, and have the students decide on the contents of the sandwich.

Please send submissions of anything from your favorite homemade sandwich to a creative combination you thought up just for The Brunonian to blog@browndailyherald.com, and look out for a poll on Blog with the top sandwiches in the near future!

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Seasonal Affective Disorder: The February Funk

(BlogDH) February Funke

It’s the end of February. We’ve endured four months of sub-freezing temperatures, rain, snow, sleet, and general grey-ness. Spring is supposed to be coming, but it still gets dark around 5 p.m. Suddenly, the entire campus becomes overwhelmed in a collective hopelessness, a mass movement of misery that drives us away from the textbooks and towards the waffle fries.

9 a.m. class? Pssh, you’re lucky if I’m out of bed by noon. Screw orgo. Homework? Please, there’s whole seasons of Keeping Up With the Kardashians on Netflix to keep up with. The Ratty? Yes please, I suddenly feel like eating everything, including scrod (whatever the hell that is). Going out? Nah, it’s a much better idea to lie on the floor in fetal position and silently attempt to fill the lack of love in my life with a giant tub of EasyMac.

Basically, the whole campus — male and female — has a communal case of PMS.

There’s a name for this phenomenon: Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). This is not to be confused with Singles Awareness Day. We joke, but SAD is a real and serious problem. If you suffer from the winter doldrums, you’re not alone.

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Surviving Finals: Library Etiquette


It seems as though finals week is one of the only socially acceptable times on campus to let one’s sense of style and (perhaps) cleanliness fall to the wayside.  Granted, this rare chance to wear sweatpants in public is not to be exploited too much, as your peers certainly probably may continue to judge you.  You don’t want to show up at a party the night before your flight home all dolled up, only to be asked by some hot stranger if you’re the one that licked ketchup off of your shirt in the library – not that anyone does that. Cough. Moreover, you don’t want to risk becoming known as that horrible person who slept for three hours at a desktop computer in the SciLi basement. People will hate you forever. Please abide by the following rules of etiquette in pursuit of a more perfect union library experience.

1. If your laptop battery has more than half of its life left to live, be kind and don’tyoudarepluginyourlaptop, especially in a coveted outlet.

2. If you must nap (and believe me, sometimes it cannot be helped), keep those inter-chapter snoozes to 30 minutes or less.  Learn the art of power napping, and don’t forget to set an alarm so you don’t end up sleeping for hours on end.  Of course, I always advocate closing the books and actually going to sleep, but keep that in the bedroom, please.  Can’t you see that I’m waiting to print my paper??

3. Speaking of bedrooms, keep that in the bedroom.  I have walked past far more moments of self-love in the stacks than I’m willing to admit, and I may have to suffer through years of psychotherapy for it.  Continue Reading

Nostalgia Trip: NOW! 5 Revisited

As college students, we’d like to think we have refined tastes and interests. We eat breakfasts of Natty and cold Nice Slice, listen to the esoteric electronica of Nico Jaar (or not) and don’t read pre-Nietzsche philosophy because it’s ignorant. Now it’s hard to believe, but somebody so sophisticated probably watched Rugrats at some point. Nostalgia Trip is here to re-experience the diversions of your youth so you don’t have to.

Before it was a sad advert during a midnight Jersey Shore rerun, Now! That’s What I Call Music was the forerunner in compilation albums, filling the commercial breaks between morning Saved by the Bell episodes with an onslaught of pop music video snippets that screamed: “Buy me, I’m awesome!” The idea behind the NOW! series is quite sensible–people only like pop singles, so make an “album” out of them. NOW! 5 is a particularly salient example of this method, rounding up Janet Jackson, Bon Jovi and ‘N Sync like its Grammy night circa 2000. Since its release, the album has been certified 4x platinum by the RIAA, making it the best selling non-Christmas CD in the NOW! series. We ate it up at the time (most likely downloading all the songs on Napster and burning it to a CD), but how does the beloved compilation of our childhood hold up NOW!adays? Find out after the jump. Continue Reading

Spring Weekend on a budget

Get the bang for your buck and booze in BDS style. Keep it casual and classy, fill a water bottle with your favorite cheap vodka and head over to the Ratty for springtime delights, where all of these ingredients can be found.

  • The Cape Codder – equal parts cranberry juice and vodka
  • Lemon Drop – equal parts vodka and lemon juice (get resourceful with the lemon wedges), a spoonful of sugar; alternatively, mix vodka and lemonade
  • The Salty Dog – one part vodka, three parts grapefruit juice, salted rim (called a Greyhound without the salt)
  • Screwdriver – one part vodka, two parts orange juice
  • Sea Breeze – one part vodka, one part grapefruit juice, three parts cranberry juice
  • Tea Tini

Stay tuned for more as the weekend wears on.