PETA @ Princeton

iPhone, iPad, iPod, I…Chicken ?

300 animals die for the purpose of human consumption every second, according to the PETA2 representative who stood ground in Frist today, showcasing the first ever virtual reality machine of its kind: instead of a human body, you’re stuck inside a chicken’s.

As claimed on their websiteI, Chicken uses the most cutting edge VR technology to allow students to discover first-hand what it’s like to be poultry. Sensors attached to arms and legs will map their every movement to the virtual 3-D world projected before their eyes, taking them through a roughly 3-minute sketch of the life of a chicken: born free, trapped by farmers, and shipped to a ranch where they are forced to live in close quarters with hundreds of their kind. It’s purpose, as explained by the representatives and the many pamphlets they have for distribution, is to allow students to develop empathy for chickens, “who on factory farms aren’t seen as individuals with interests, wants, and needs but rather as producers of meat and eggs.” The exhibit will continue through tomorrow at Frist and is open to all who are curious enough to get inside the heads of our favorite feathered friends.

Watch as PETA2 intern Bridget exhibits the simulation in full:


What was Princeton Commencement like in 1766?

Ever wondered what a Princeton Commencement ceremony was like in the 1700s? Well, on the off chance you did, we’ve got an answer for you.

This article was published in the New-Hampshire Gazette — Dartmouth wouldn’t be founded for another three years — on October 24, 1766. It had been written exactly a month earlier, on September 24th, but in the late 1700s, it was quite common for reports on distant events to be published weeks or months after the events had take in place.

For the curious, “Mr. Finley” refers to Samuel Finley, Princeton’s fifth president. Also, all of those “f” looking letters that you’re seeing are actually “s”s; thus, “pleafure” is really “pleasure.” If you’d like to know why the printers used this type of typeface, feel free to ask your friendly neighborhood History major. Let’s all be glad that at modern commencements, we no longer have to explain to the audience what we’ve learned at our four years at Princeton.

[caption id="attachment_15578" align="aligncenter" width="230"] A newspaper report about the Commencement ceremony in 1766. Notice the month.[/caption]

New Reading Rooms Open in Firestone Tower

[caption id="attachment_15568" align="aligncenter" width="309"] Courtesy of Princeton University Library[/caption]

For the first time since Firestone Library opened in 1948, its remote fifth and sixth floors are open to library patrons after renovations added heating, air conditioning, and furniture.

The sixth floor reading room is characterized by an opulence foreign to Firestone’s cold attempt at modernity. The floor-to-ceiling lead-paned windows, wood flooring and paneling, and enormous chandelier seem a bit unnecessary for a space with a maximum capacity of eight, but the room is undeniably the most beautiful in the building.

The fifth floor is smaller and plainer, but the views are still pleasant. As an added bonus, the fifth floor reading room comes complete with a tempting, alarmed door for roof access.

There are, however, a few drawbacks. The newly opened spaces, like Firestone’s elevator banks and emergency exits, are monitored by CCTV. The rooms are also extraordinarily inconvenient: they are only accessible via stair four; not wheelchair accessible; and the nearest bathrooms, print clusters, and stacks are three floors down.

According to the Daily Princetonian, the fifth and sixth floors were formerly off-limits to patrons and served as a morbid RBSC storage attic for death masks and faculty office respectively.

The reading rooms are, at least for now, entirely without wayfinding, so here is a brief guide on how to get to these new study spaces:

  1. From the main stair and elevator banks, head towards the third floor signature reading room.
  2. Instead of entering the reading room, look for stair four, which is accessible via a nondescript beige door between the Institute for Advance Study and signature reading rooms.
  3. Head up three flights of stairs.

Enjoy these new study spaces!