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20 Years on the Internet

Fall 2014 marks the 20th anniversary of Hobart and William Smith Colleges' connection to the Internet. (For a few years prior to that connection, HWS was part of BITNET.) Soon after that, Professor David Eck set up a web site for the Colleges running on our main academic computer, a VAX named hws3.hws.edu. For a time, the HWS web address was http://hws3.hws.edu:9000. (The link is to a copy of the site captured by the "Wayback Machine" at the Internet Archive in 1997.)

Our own web site, math.hws.edu, was also established at about the same time. Originally, it ran on a Mac IIci computer in Professor Eck's office. You can see a version of that site. Most of the links don't work, but the one to Professor Vaughn's original web pages does. The web site math.hws.edu later to moved to a Solaris workstation for a while, before finally settling onto a series of Linux servers. You might also like to browse the history of the site on the Wayback Machine.

One more historical note: Professor Eck's first course web page, for CPSC 328, Winter '95 (Program Translators) was up and running by early January 1995.

Posted 17 December 2014

Spring 2015 Staffing

Two new faculty joined the department as Visiting Assistant Professors in Fall '14, and they will continue with us for Spring '15. They are Andrew Gainer-Dewar, shown on the left below, and Jacquelyn Rische, shown in the center.

Also continuing in the Spring will be our math intern, Josh Danis, shown on the right below. Josh graduated from Hobart last year with a major in Mathematics.

Professors Kevin Mitchell and David Eck are on leave for the Spring semester. Professor Carol Crithlow, who was on leave for the past year, returns to teaching in the Spring.

Posted 17 December 2014

iPhone Game by Shaun Viguerie '12

Hobart Alum and Computer Science Major Shaun Viguerie '12 reports that he has started writing mobile phone apps, working together with Marc Bertucci H'12. Their first entry in the iPhone store is a game called "Rocky River," in which the player tries to guide a salmon upstream through a river full of rocks. Shaun says, "Be forewarned -- the game IS difficult -- there is a rhythm to it -- once its figured out the game becomes quite fun and addicting." A version for Android should be coming soon.

For his regular job, Shaun works at Markit Financial Information Services, along with fellow HWS alumni Kathryn Middleton '14 and Joseph Howe '14.

Posted 24 November 2014

Joe Bochynski (Math and Studio Art, 2007)

Joe has an upcoming solo show at TFNF Gallery in Brooklyn. The show, entitled Permission, consists of a new series of figurative wall sculptures made with ceramic tile.

All are welcome to the opening reception this Friday, November 7, 2014 from 6 to 9 PM at
TFNF Gallery
89 Bridge Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
The show will be on view until November 28th. Open gallery hours are on Saturdays, 12 - 4 PM. See more at Relationships.

Posted 2 November 2014

Derrick Moore, H' 2005

Derrick reports: "I left my job at White & Case LLP (where I had been since I started practicing in November 2009) back in May, and in August started up at the New York office of an economic consulting firm called Analysis Group. Among other things, Analysis Group supports economic experts in litigation cases. They thought my background in mathematics and physics, and my law background would be perfect complements. So far it has been great, and I'm sure it will be even better once my technical skills get fully dusted off in my head."

Derrick is also a member of the Hobart Alumni Council.

Posted 7 October 2014

Department Prizes for 2014

The Department of Mathematics and Computer Science awards a variety of student prizes each Spring. These prizes have been funded by various gifts to the colleges for the purpose of recognizing excellence in Mathematics and Computer Science. Here is the list of award recipients for 2014:
  • The Robert Beinert Prize, awarded to a a graduating Senior for excellence in Mathematics, to Joshua Danis H'14.
  • The John S. Klein Prize, awarded to a graduating Senior to recognize excellence in Computer Science, to Erxin Du WS'14 and Nicholas Schmidt H'14.
  • The Catherine Adele Rippey '35 Prize, to a William Smith senior to recognize excellence in Mathematics (extended for 2014 to include excellence in Computer Science), to Erxin Du, WS'14.
  • The Glenn M. Lee Prize in Mathematics, awarded to the Hobart senior who has been most proficient in the areas of mathematics and athletics, to Michael Green H'14.
  • The Abigail Mosey Book Prize, awarded to a Hobart or William Smith Senior for generosity in helping others to learn and appreciate mathematical ideas, to Joshua Danis H'14.
  • The William Ross Proctor Prize, awarded to the William Smith Sophomore who has achieved the highest rank in mathematics in her first two years at the Colleges, to Siyan Tao WS'16.
  • The Irving Bentsen Prize, awarded to the second year student at Hobart College who has the most outstanding record in mathematics and computer science, to John Remmert H'16.

For more about student prizes in the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, including lists of past recipients, visit our department prizes page.

Posted 20 May 2014

Honors 2014: Mike Green and Nick Schmidt

Two students completed honors projects in the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science during the academic year 2013–14. An Honors project is a year-long endeavour culminating in a long Honors thesis and an oral examination by a committee of three examiners.

Michael Green '14 did Honors in Mathematics, working with Professor Yan Hao. His honors project was titled "A Mathematical Model of College Friendships". Here is Mike's description of the project: "We are creating a computer model to study the social interactions between college students. In this model, we will use the exchange of available social hours between friends to study the interactions between friends. From this study we will look to find how well college friendships help students to distress, how long college friendships typically last, and the optimum number of friends to have."

Nicholas Schmidt '14 worked with Professor John Vaughn on an Honors in Computer Science. His project, "i3: An Environmental Sensor Base Station," is described as "My honors project is in two parts. One is creating a weather base station that collects weather and sensor data. The second is a mobile application that shows the collected data to the user. The base station is cube-shaped and the mobile platform will be iOS."

Posted 11 May 2014

CS Graduates at Beef-n-Brew

Many of the 2014 computer science graduates got together with Professor David Eck during the reading period between the end of classes and final exams. Here's a group photo with soon-to-be-alumni Joe Howe, John Darby, Jessie Hall, Kathryn Middleton, Erxin Du, Tom Charest, and Maddison Case. (Not present for the photo were CS graduates Nick Schmidt and Mark Benya.)

Posted 8 May 2014

Integrated Circuit Competes

The Mathematics and Computer Science Department again had a team running in the Seneca 7 relay around Seneca Lake. The 77.7 mile event took place on April 27 in cool conditions that were conducive to good running.

This year's team consisted of Abby Blumenthal (WS' 14) and faculty members John Lasseter, Yan Hao, Jon Forde, Stina Bridgeman, Carol Critchlow, and Kevin Mitchell. The last four have competed in all four of the Seneca 7's to date. The team shaved 20 minutes off last year's time to finish in 10 hours, 44 minutes, and 10 seconds (8:16 min/mi) and finished in 60th place out of 215 teams.

Posted 30 April 2014

Finalist for "The Pitch"

John Darby H'14 was one of the four finalists this year for The Pitch, an annual contest where students develop and promote ideas for products or services. The final contest was held on Wednesday, March 12. The finalists competed for a $10,000 prize by presenting their projects to a panel of judges made up of four HWS alumni who have been successful in the business world. (The day of the pitch turned out to have some of the worst winter weather that Geneva has seen in years, but it went ahead as scheduled.)

John Darby is a double major in computer science and architecture and is a member of the HWS Sailing team. His idea for the pitch arose partly from an independent study that he did in web site programming. John will attend graduate school next year in the architecture program at the University of Pennsylvania.

The Stu Lieblein '90 Pitch was held for the third time this year. It was established to promote entrepreneurial leadership and is organized by the Centennial Center for Leadership of Hobart and William Smith Colleges.

Posted 18 April 2014