Category Archives: middpoints

Join us at our first Write-In

Middlebury Write-In

On Wednesday, May 4th from 8-11 PM, the Writing Center at Middlebury College will join 75 other colleges and universities who sponsor a Write-In between the weeks of April 24-May 5. Supported by CTLR, the Writing Program and the Library, the Write-In fosters a writing community by creating a calm time and space in LIB 201, LIB 145 and the Harman Reading Room for students to write together. A Peer Writing Tutor and a Research Librarian will be on hand in LIB 201 to provide support. During the Write-In, students may work on academic papers, do personal writing, or brainstorm writing for fellowships, internships, and jobs. We’ll provide snacks and prizes. See Swarthmore’s International Write-In page for more information.

Why come to a Write-In?

Writing can be lonely, solitary work. Joining a group of other student writers can be motivating, productive, and calming.

How will this work?

  • Come to Davis Family Library 201 any time between 8-11 PM. Stay from 15 minutes to 3 hours.
  • Sign in to receive prizes
  • If you want, we’ll give you a pen and a pad.
  • Have some tasty snacks (Cheese and Crackers, Chicken Satay, Rice Krispie Treats, Brownies)
  • Meet with a Peer Writing Tutor or Research Librarian.
  • Stay in Lib 201, or go to one of our two reserved quiet spaces: Lib 145 and the Harman Reading Room.

What kind of writing should I do?

  • Academic writing (Start your end of the semester papers this week!) (We’ll provide some research questions.)
  • Personal writing (No idea where to start? We’ll provide some writing prompts.)
  • Brainstorm writing for fellowships, internships, and job applications (We have a handy worksheet to get you started.)

Who is making this great event happen?

Mead Chapel Centenary: Then & Now

In celebration of the 100 year anniversary of the completion of Mead Chapel and Hepburn Hall, Special Collections presents a series of posts featuring interactive before-and-after imagery of these Middlebury icons.

Built with the help of a $60,000 donation from former governor Dr. John Mead to celebrate the 50th anniversary of his graduation from Middlebury in 1864, Mead Chapel was dedicated on June 18th, 1916 and marked “the completion of two years’ work and its entrance into the history of Middlebury as a meeting place for religious worship by faculty and students.”

Below is an interactive slider with images of Mead from the archives (tap or click on the bar to slide between images). The before image comes from the scrapbook of Arthur Thomas Vaughn, Class of 1917, and shows scaffolding around the spire. The after image is a 1916 postcard marking the completion of the chapel.

 

Sources:

Stameshkin, David M. 1985. The Town’s College: Middlebury College, 1800-1915. Middlebury, VT: Middlebury College Press.

Dedication of Mead Memorial Chapel.” The Middlebury Campus, June 21, 1916.

S6 Scrapbooks Box 92, Special Collections & Archives, Middlebury College.

A12 PF Mead 1916 02,  Special Collections & Archives, Middlebury College.

 

“Shall we their fond pageant see?” A Midsummer Night’s Dream May 5-8!

While our February Folio fever has passed, the Shakespeare celebration continues with the theater department’s upcoming production, A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Come watch the latest show in the long legacy of Shakespeare at Middlebury with performances at 7:30pm Thursday-Saturday, May 5-7 and 2pm Sunday, May 8th in Wright Theater!

MID_127_15_MSND_Art_v14-OL

And be sure to catch Special Collections’ archival exhibit featuring historic costume and set designs of past Middlebury Shakespeare productions! On display for a limited time in the atrium of Davis Family Library.

Middlebury's 1971 production of A Midsummer Night's Dream
Middlebury’s 1971 production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream
TheTempest1978
Original watercolor costume design by legendary Middlebury costume and set designer Capp Potter for the 1978 production of Shakespeare’s The Tempest.

@MiddInfoSec: Don’t Get Hooked

You may not realize it, but you are a phishing target at school, at work, and at home. Phishing attacks are a type of computer attack that use malicious emails to trick targets into giving up sensitive information. Ultimately, you are the most effective way to detect and stop phishing scams. When viewing email messages, texts, or social media posts, use the following techniques to prevent your passwords, personal data, or private information from being stolen by a phishing attack.

    • Verify the source. Check the sender’s email address to make sure it’s legitimate. Remember that the name of the sender is not the important part. The sender’s email address is what you are really looking for. If in doubt, forward your message to phishing@middlebury.edu.
    • Read the entire message carefully. Phishing messages may include a formal salutation, overly-friendly tone, grammatical errors, urgent requests, or gimmicks that do not match the normal tone of the sender.
    • Avoid clicking on erroneous links. Even if you know the sender, be cautious of links and attachments in messages. Don’t click on links that could direct you to a bad website. Hovering your mouse over a link should disclose the actual web address that the link is directing you too, which may be different from what is displayed in the message. Make sure this masked address is a site you want to visit.
    • Verify the intent of all attachments with the sender before opening them. Even when you know a sender, you should never open an attachment unless have checked with the sender to verify the attachment was sent intentionally. Word and Excel documents can contain malicious macros which could harm your computer. Other files, such as zip files and PDF files, could download malware onto your system. Always verify the intent of attachments with the sender before you open them from an email.
  • Verifying a message is always better than responding to a phish. If you ever receive a message that provides reason to pause, it is always better to forward the message to phishing@middlebury.edu or to send a separate email to the sender to verify its intent, before clicking a link or opening an attachment that could potentially impact the security of your computer..
  • Change your passwords if you have fallen for a phish. If you think you have fallen for a phishing attack, change your password at go/password and then contact the helpdesk at x2200. It is also a good practice to change your personal passwords outside of the College.

 

Watch for phishing scams. Common phishing scams are published at sites such as http://IC3.gov , http://phishing.org ,https://www.irs.gov/uac/Report-Phishing. These resources will also allow you to report phishing attacks if you should fall victim outside of the College. Again, if you think you have fallen victim to a phishing attack, always start by changing your passwords.

What’s an Approval Profile, and Why Does the Library Want to Change Ours?

A brown-bag lunch will be held on May 3 at 12:30 pm, in the Crest Room of the McCullough Student Center, to explore the subject of the library’s approval profile. Douglas Black, the library’s Head of Collections Management, will be presenting, with some sweets and coffee to augment your own lunch. He’ll give some history of the approval program in library acquisitions over the years and lead discussion on its role in the academic library collection of the 21st century.

For context, the library selects, acquires, and provides access to materials in many different ways:

  • upon request by students, faculty, and staff
  • automatic purchase of e-books and streaming media based on usage
  • subscriptions
  • package deals on journal subscriptions and purchased journal archives (“backfiles”)
  • one-time purchases of electronic databases, which often require annual maintenance fees
  • gifts/donations
  • and through automatic purchase via an “approval profile.”

Under the approval model, the library utilizes a library vendor (in our case, YBP Library Services) to purchase automatically books that meet certain criteria (e.g., subject, hardbound only, no workbooks, scholarly publishers only, within a certain price range, etc.).  Middlebury typically purchases about 3,000 volumes/year this way, at an average annual cost of $97,000 in the last few years. We recently conducted a thorough analysis of the program’s effectiveness, finding that print books purchased through the approval profile are used much less than those specifically requested. The library believes some of that money could be spent more effectively and would like to gather input from members of the campus community on reshaping the profile.

Please feel welcome to contact your liaison or Douglas Black (dblack@middlebury.edu or x3635) with any questions (whether or not you can attend the meeting), or comment here in the blog.

Romance of the Skies: Middlebury College Observatory

In 1936, Middlebury chemistry professor John Haller spent three months grinding a 12.5 inch parabolic mirror which he donated to the College under the condition that an observatory be built on the knoll north of Pearsons Hall.  A simple frame was soon constructed and the mirror was installed in a 10-foot-long Newtonian telescope under a dome built by Guatemalan amateur astronomer A. R. Ibarguen.

Astronomy had been studied at Middlebury since the early 1800s when the Old Chapel cupola served as an observatory. Upon its completion in 1937, the new observatory hosted weekly meetings of an extra-curricular course called Romance of the Skies which combined celestial observation with lectures on the history of astronomy and mythology of the constellations.

This recently rediscovered 16mm film reel in the College archives shows unique interior and exterior shots of the observatory as well as students using sextants near Wilson Hall.

Despite these promising beginnings, by 1970 the observatory was little-used and had fallen into disrepair. Settling of the foundation made rotating the leaky dome difficult and wasps had built nests in the barrel of the telescope. But interest in astronomy was growing at Middlebury after the recent successes of NASA’s Apollo program and the building was refurbished. Professor Heller’s original mirror and other optical instruments had thankfully been safely stored away from colonizing wasps and were reinstalled.

Although Middlebury’s octagonal dome on the hill was torn down to make way for the construction of McCardell Bicentennial Hall, a new observatory was built atop that same science center and has been serving stargazing students, faculty, and the public since 2001.

Be sure to visit the Middlebury College Observatory during one of their Open House Nights this spring to get your own glimpse into the Romance of the Skies.

 

Sources

Prof. John Haller Builds Telescope and Observatory.” The Middlebury Campus, January 27, 1937.

Star Gazing.” Middlebury College News Letter, March 1, 1937.

Would You Try to Reach Jupiter with a Rig Like This?Middlebury College Newsletter, Jul 1, 1971.

 

Stacks & Tracks the WRMC Radio Hour celebrates National Poetry Month with guest DJ, Karin Gottshall

Join us this Wednesday, April 13, 2016 at 12p-1p when Stacks & Tracks, the Special Collections & Archives radio show, celebrates National Poetry Month with Karin Gottshall, poet, Visiting Lecturer in English and American Literatures, and director of the New England Young Writers’ Conference at Bread Loaf. It will be music to your ears, promise.

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Wednesdays 12p-1p, live at 91.1FM or live-streaming through iTunes or online.

Middlebury’s Google Apps for Education – Account status

As we continue to integrate Middlebury services with cloud providers like Google Apps and Microsoft Office 365, we are aware of possible account conflicts that may arise. In particular, on Monday, April 25th, we will begin automatically syncing Middlebury Google Apps accounts for all students, faculty and staff with @middlebury.edu or @miis.edu addresses. This may result in conflicts for those who have been using stand-alone Google services with an account that you set up to use your Middlebury address but was not provisioned by ITS in our Middlebury Google Apps instance.

What if I have registered my @middlebury.edu address for stand-alone Google services?

If you have been using stand-alone (i.e. not Middlebury Google Apps) Google services with your @middlebury.edu address, you have what Google considers to be a “conflicting account”.

How can I tell if the account I’m using now is a personal or institutional account? 

Try logging out and logging in again. If you enter your Google account password at Google’s login page, that’s a personal stand-alone account and the above considerations apply. If instead you enter your Middlebury e-mail and password at our new login page, that’s an institutional account and you’re all set. You can also watch this video.

Do I need to do anything now?

Yes. Watch the video above and follow the steps to determine if you have a conflicting Google account. If so, it will be much easier to download your documents prior to the sync. This provides you with an archival copy of all documents for which you are the owner.   After the sync, you will be able to place desired documents into your Middlebury Google Apps account.

To download the documents you own:

  1. Login to the Google account that uses your Middlebury email address.
  2. In the upper right corner, click on the icon for your account and click on the “My Account” button.
  3. In the “Personal info & privacy” column, click on “Control your content”.
  4. In the Download your data section click on “CREATE ARCHIVE”.
  5. Under the “Select data to include” section, click the “Select none” button to clear all of the selections.
  6. Click the check box for “Drive” and click “Next” at the bottom of the page.
  7. In the window that appears, leave all options as they appear and click the “Create archive” button. You will see a progress window. When the archive is complete, you will receive an email from Google at your Middlebury email address that indicates the completion of the archive process.
  8. In the email, click on the “Download archive” button.
  9. You will be taken to a Google login screen. Login.
  10. You will see the archive. Click on the “Download” button.
  11. Look in your downloaded files location. You will find a folder named “Takeout” which will contain your files.

After the accounts are synced, any Middlebury-related documents (Docs, Sheets, Slides, or files in Google Drive) that you created with your personal account need to be uploaded to your new Middlebury Google Apps account.

The download process removes all sharing and converts the Google documents to Microsoft format: Docs to Word, Sheets to Excel, and Slides to PowerPoint. If you wish to share these as collaborative documents again, you must first upload (drag and drop) the files to your new Google Drive, then click on them and open them in the Google version of the application. You will then be able to share the document with others.

What if I wait until after the sync occurs?

You will still be able to download your files, though it is a more cumbersome process. ITS can provide assistance if you have not done this prior to the sync.

Can I still access Google’s services for my personal use?

You can choose to maintain a separate account for your personal use of any Google services under a non-middlebury.edu address. If you have multiple Google accounts, the username that appears at the upper right corner of most Google services will help you ensure that you’re using the intended account.

What if I have questions about this?

Please email any questions about this change to helpdesk@middlebury.edu.  Or create an helpdesk ticket.


Defining and avoiding conflicting accounts
https://support.google.com/a/answer/185186

Help with your conflicting account:
https://support.google.com/accounts/troubleshooter/1699308?rd=2

Moving your personal data between accounts:
https://support.google.com/accounts/answer/1109839?hl=en&ref_topic=30035