I went on a MIT tour last week. I came to know a few interesting facts. MIT will celebrate its 150th Anniversary next year. The first students got admitted in 1865. MIT has almost 1:1 ratio of girls to boys in engineering. I was most fascinated with MIT hack stories.
Hacks at MIT are creative and difficult campus pranks. The pranks display the aptitude of the hackers. The themes of the hack could be current or past events. Below are three of my favorite hacks at MIT.
When a police car ended up on the dome (May 1994)
The students were annoyed with the parking tickets given by the MIT police. They wanted to protest in their own way.
One fine morning the MIT police found a police car on top of the dome. How did a car get on top of the dome? The police checked if all their cars were on ground. When they closely observed the name plate of the car on top of the dome, it had the sign of pi. The police realized that the students were up to something.
The police got the car down with a helicopter. The car was made with wood but the facade was covered with metal, therefore it resembled a real life-size car.
The next day they found the car again on top of the dome with the note, ‘Dear police, this is how you get the car down.’ The second time the police got the car down for good.
The police car hack is one of the most famous hacks in MIT’s history.
Drinking from a fire hose (Dec 1991)
One of the Professors at MIT remarked that getting an education at MIT is like drinking from a fire hose. There is so much information thrown at you that it is not easy to grasp everything.
The students decided build a real example of the quote. They replaced the water fountain in front of the class with a fire hose. When the students wanted to drink the water spilled everywhere. They had to remove the fire hose because of the mess but the replica was saved for the future students.
Caltech Cannon at MIT (Sep 2006)
California Institute of Technology (Caltech) is another top engineering college, which competes with MIT. The schools play pranks on one another. The famous Fleming cannon at Caltech disappeared, much to the surprise of the students and faculty. It was found at MIT. The cannon travelled all the way from California to Boston. The hackers made a MIT ring and welded it to the cannon. The ring has MIT logo and the Boston skyline.
After taking a ton of pics and after Caltech’s president implored to return the cannon, it was returned to Caltech.
The hack stories made me realize that I should keep my eyes open around the campus. Below are pictures of other famous hacks. More hacks documented at hacks.mit.edu.
French flag on dome to support Paris after the recent attack , 2015
Most of the pictures in this post are from hacks.mit.edu.
Quote for this post: Even though you’re growing up, you should never stop having fun. – Nina Dobrev.