Weekly Web Updates – July 24

We’ve made several chances to the front-end performance of the Drupal cluster to reduce page load times. All static text files served, including favicons, are now compressed before being inserted into the front-end caches. Additionally, we now instruct client browsers to store the CSS and JavaScript files produced by Drupal for up to two weeks, rather than only five minutes. New URLs for these files are generated when we clear the site cache, which happens any time we deploy an update, which will cause browsers to fetch the new files. Images served by some high-level pages on the MIIS site were also optimized.


  • Drupal token_language 8.x-1.x-dev
  • Drupal viewsreference 8.x-1.0-rc2
  • WordPress BadgeOS:
  • WordPress BBPress 2.5.13
  • WordPress enable-media-replace 3.1
  • WordPress wysija-newsletters
  • WordPress post-expirator 2.3.1
  • WordPress post-types-order
  • WordPress  the-events-calendar
  • WordPress social-icons-widget-by-wpzoom 3.0.0
    WordPress members 2.0

Fixes and Tweaks

  • The “short description” of all events in the Arts section was moved to the body field so that the short description can be used to override the body for the ArtsMail email newsletter, which also had its template updated and a new view created to make it easier to assemble.
  • Added a [mailchimp URL] shortcode to Drupal so that MailChimp campaign embeds can be added to the site.
  • Moved the MiddSafe Advocates information to its new location in the Health and Wellness Education site and set up redirects for the old URLs.
  • Fixed an issue were the Drupal login page would sometimes break if it thought it should display a carousel.

Ongoing Work

  • Creating a new website for the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.
  • Building out the configuration of our CAS servers in Chef, which is a configuration management system. We have already completed this work for our Drupal, WordPress, MediaWiki, GO, Omeka, and the Course Catalog services.
  • Upgrading the Drupal sites for the Davis programs, Dining Menus, and Museum of Art to Drupal 8.

Girls set AP Computer Science record –skyrocketing growth outpaces boys.

Ten years ago, just 2,600 female students took the AP Computer Science Exam.

Fast forward to 2017. Over 29,000 female students took an AP CS exam this year, which is more than the entire AP CS exam participation in 2013 when Code.org launched.

Participation in AP Computer Science is still far from balanced — female students still account for only 27% of all students taking AP Computer Science exams and underrepresented minorities make up just 20%. This problem continues through to higher education, where 83% of university computer science majors are men, and into the workforce as well.

Read the full Code.org article by Hadi Partovi.


Research intern position in DC at progressive non-profit

Research Intern

Priorities USA, Washington, D.C.

Priorities USA is a voter-centric progressive organization committed to standing up to the Trump administration and its allies in order to build an economy that provides real opportunity for all families to get ahead, and to protect the fundamental, democratic ideal of equality for all Americans – regardless of race, religion, gender or sexual orientation.

The Research Intern will support Priorities’ efforts to hold the Trump administration and congressional Republicans accountable by aiding in the compilation of facts, figures, and anecdotes relating to various aspects of the White House’s agenda. The intern will also help to ensure the accuracy and reliability of Priorities’ outward-facing products and assist in the day-to-day operations of the Research team.

Applicants should possess the following qualities:

  • Knowledge of basic internet research methods (experience with LexisNexis a plus)
  • Excellent oral and written communications skills
  • Proofreading skills and strong attention to detail
  • Ability to work independently and adhere to strict deadlines

Interns will receive a monthly stipend and may be part-time or full-time. To apply, please email a resume and cover letter including your availability to researchintern@priorities.org.

Senator Bernie Sanders PAID intern for fall in Press Office.

Independent Senator Bernie Sanders is seeking a Press Intern for the fall semester in his Washington, D.C. office, starting in early- to mid-August. The Press Intern will work closely with the communications team to track daily news coverage and produce content for sharing across social media platforms as part of a robust and creative digital strategy. Experience with video shooting and editing, graphic design and/or writing for social media is strongly recommended. Applicants must work well within a team, formulate and execute original ideas and have a working knowledge of new media. Please send resume and samples of multimedia work to sanderspressjob@gmail.com. This is a paid, full-time position.

The new Digital LSAT Field Test

The Digital LSAT (Law School Admissions Test) Field Test is being offered by LSAC free of charge.  It is intended for those who plan to take the LSAT in the near future.

The Digital LSAT Field Test includes actual LSAT questions, but instead of an LSAT score, you will receive a detailed performance report describing the number of questions you answered correctly for various question types and skill areas.  Like the LSAT, each field test will consist of five sections of multiple-choice questions—but they will be administered on a tablet. There will also be a writing sample, which the test taker will type using a keyboard attached to the tablet. The Digital LSAT Field Test will be given under conditions similar to those of an actual LSAT administration, and the timing of the sections will be identical (35 minutes for each section).

This is a good way to prepare for the actual LSAT you will take at a later date.  Check out this site for more details include the date and locations.  You must apply by August 25.



International Acclaim for Film Produced by Midd Faculty, Staff and Student Researchers

Michael Newbury (American Studies) and Daniel Houghton (Library) collaborated with several undergraduate student researchers to produce a film and educational website about the Collinwood fire tragedy. The Addison Independent recently featured the project. See story

A tour of Middlebury’s wireless network

Please join us for a special ITS Tech Partners meeting.  Rick James, our wireless network administrator, will provide a behind the scenes tour of Middlebury’s wireless network.  He’ll start with some basic information about how wireless networking works and how it is different than wired networking.  He’ll then describe Middlebury’s wireless architecture and how it has evolved over the last several years, including the recent extension to our Monterey, CA campus so that now wireless at MIDD and MIIS operate as one logical wireless network.  Rick will demonstrate how we use some of our monitoring tools to plan our wireless network deployment through a building, how we troubleshoot issues, measure performance and capacity.  Additionally, Rick recently analyzed a student survey of our wireless services, he’ll share the results and seek your input on constructing a similar survey for faculty and staff.

If you ever wonder how wifi works and Middlebury future plans for wireless, be sure to attend this ITS Tech Partners meeting.  All are welcome, please share with others you think might be interested.

When:  Wednesday, July 26, 2017 from 3:00 – 4:00 pm ET

Where:  Library 145 and Zoom:  https://middlebury.zoom.us/j/9445370958