Archive for September, 2012

Stanford beats USC for the fourth straight year in a row

September 16th, 2012

On Saturday, Sept. 15, Cardinal football beat University of Southern California 21-14. Here are some video highlights:

Gretchen Daily wins Swedish environmental prize

September 14th, 2012

Gretchen Daily

Biology Professor GRETCHEN DAILY recently won the prestigious Volvo Environment Prize for 2012. The prize includes a cash award of 1.5 million Swedish kronor (about $209,000).

The prize, awarded by the Volvo Environment Prize Foundation, an independent foundation in Sweden, recognized Daily’s “pioneering research on quantifying the production and value of ecosystem services; on harmonizing biodiversity conservation and agriculture; and on policies for integrating conservation and human development in major societal decisions.”

Daily, the Bing Professor in Environmental Science, is a founding director of the Natural Capital Project and a senior fellow at the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment. An ecologist by training, Daily’s work spans scientific research, teaching, public education and working with leaders to advance practical approaches to environmental challenges.

She will receive the prize in Stockholm on Nov. 20.

Previous Stanford winners of the award include fellow biology faculty HAROLD MOONEY (2010) and PAUL EHRLICH (1993).

Stanford Report click rates prove popularity of Andrew Luck

September 13th, 2012

Turns out, Stanford Report Dish readers were very fond of former Cardinal quarterback ANDREW LUCK. In fact, according to a recent analysis of open rates for the Stanford Report from January to July 2012, readers often clicked on items that promised news of the popular football player.

The open rate analysis, done annually by University Communications, publishers of Stanford Report, also shows that overall average open rates for the daily electronic news are up 12.4 percent from 2011 and 30.9 percent from 2010. An average of 7,295 people open Stanford Report daily.

April turned out to be the most popular month among the seven surveyed, with Monday the most popular day.

The most-read Stanford Report was published on Monday, April 9. That issue contained the news of the death of junior CADY HINE, as well as articles on future plans for the Stanford Arts Initiative and the recovery of a 14-year-old sickle cell anemia patient at Packard Children’s Hospital.

The most-read article from January to July was about Hine’s death, followed by the announcement on March 27 of the passing of volleyball player SAMANTHA WOPAT.

Rounding out the top 10 articles from January to July were:

  • Don’t get burned: Sun exposure facts and fiction, June 2, 2012
  • Stanford FAQ explains NYC withdrawal decision, Jan. 3, 2012
  • Forecaster’s take on Yahoo’s future and the “Mayer factor,” from Stanford magazine, July 23, 2012
  • Stanford researchers teach girls to ward off depression, Feb. 9, 2012
  • Researcher discovers and tracks his diabetes onset, March 20, 2012
  • Stanford vascular surgeon Weesam Alkhatib dies at 34, April 26, 2012
  • Six undergrads, dozens of alums headed to Olympics, July 24, 2012
  • Cuthbertson, Dinkelspiel, Gores awards honor nine, June 11, 2012

When it came to the Dish, Luck accounted for two of the five top-clicked items. The most popular Dish items were comedian Seth Meyers’ appearance in Roble Hall, news of President Hennessy’s sabbatical, Luck’s appearance on The Late Show, the Harvard Crimson’s coverage of Stanford’s “Marvard University” and Luck’s selection as the top pick in the NFL draft.

Archives of experimental filmmaker Bruce Baillie now in Stanford University Libraries

September 12th, 2012

Bruce Baillie

Two years ago, Stanford University Libraries acquired the archives for Canyon Cinema, one of the leading distributors of avant-garde independent films. Now it also has the archives of Canyon founder BRUCE BAILLIE, a major figure in the development of counter-cultural filmmaking in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Baillie’s films been described as “poetic documentary.” The archives, which document Baillie’s life and work as a filmmaker, strongly reinforce Stanford’s focus on independent, alternative and documentary films and filmmakers. The collection of papers, correspondence, notes, files and other materials will be housed in the libraries’ Department of Special Collections, where it will be permanently preserved and made available to researchers.

“Baillie’s work addresses the impact of experimental filmmaking on techniques and styles that permeate all forms of cinema,” said HENRY LOWOOD, curator for film and media collections.

Baillie, who turns 81 this month, founded Canyon Cinema in 1961, when he started showing new films in his backyard in Canyon, Calif. Canyon became the world’s leading collective of independent filmmakers after its humble beginnings. Later, Baillie also co-founded the San Francisco Cinemathèque with experimental filmmaker CHICK STRAND.

From Baillie's 1961 film "Mr. Hayashi"

One of Baillie’s films, Castro Street (1966), was added to the National Film Registry in 1992. The Registry selects films for the Library of Congress that are “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant.” That film documents the sights and sounds on the city of Richmond’s Castro Street, which runs by the Standard Oil Refinery. Other Baillie films document street life in San Francisco, the life and rituals of Native Americans, people Baillie encountered and other topics drawn from his varied interests and observations.

The new collection includes copies of the original notebooks for Castro Street (the originals have been lost), written as Baillie was editing film at the Morning Star Ranch in Santa Rosa. He scribbled in the notebooks by flashlight after what he calls the “singularly complicated editing process, in my homemade tent under the stars with my dog, Mama.”
—Cynthia Haven, Stanford University Libraries





DISH customers can now get PAC-12 Networks

September 11th, 2012

Cardinal senior Usua Amanam makes a tackle during the Stanford's 50 - 13 win over Duke Friday, Sept. 7. The DISH Network carried the game on the PAC-12 Networks.

DISH and Pac-12 Networks announced Friday that they have entered into a multiyear agreement making DISH the only satellite provider to offer the sports programming that includes conference football and basketball games. DISH customers now have access to hundreds of live sporting events, including 35 football games, more than 140 men’s basketball games and hundreds of national championship-caliber Olympic sporting events this season on Pac-12 Networks.

Pac-12 Networks is available to all DISH customers as a free preview for a limited time. It is included in America’s Top 120+ package and above for customers in Pac-12 territory (which includes the six states with Pac-12 schools) and available nationwide in the Multi-Sport Pack.

Visit the Athletics website for more information.

Haber shares Mexican award for banking essay

September 10th, 2012

Stanford social scientist STEPHEN HABER was recently awarded the 2012 Manuel Espinosa Yglesias Prize for an essay on the Mexican banking system. The manuscript, “These Are the ‘Good Old Days’: Foreign Entry and the Mexican Banking System, was coauthored with Harvard Business School Associate Professor ALDO MUSACCHIO.

The prize, awarded by the Centro de Estudios Espinosa Yglesias, a nonprofit think tank in Mexico City, recognized Haber and Musacchio’s detailed analysis of the Mexican banking and financial system. The winners were selected by a panel of Mexican financial officials, scholars, economists, bankers and a journalist, and will share 1 million pesos (approximately $75,000). Haber and Musacchio will be awarded the prize on Nov. 20 in a ceremony in Mexico City.

Haber is the A. A. and Jeanne Welch Milligan Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences and the Peter and Helen Bing Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution. His scholarship on the Mexican economy and politics spans more than three decades. He is the author, coauthor or editor of five books on Mexico, as well as the author of more than 60 scholarly articles.

The prize follows on the heels of two other major honors for Haber. In June, he was awarded the Walter J. Gores Award, Stanford’s highest teaching honor. He also received the 2012 Phi Beta Kappa Teaching Prize at Stanford earlier this year.


Daniel and Katherine most popular names among Stanford students

September 6th, 2012

Try this experiment sometime: Stand in the middle of White Plaza and yell, “Hey, DANIEL!” or “Hey, KATHERINE!” Then see who turns around. Chances are, it will be a fair number of students.

That’s because Daniel and Katherine are the most popular names among Stanford students, including the incoming class.

For Daniel, that’s not much of a surprise. It ranked eighth on the U.S. list of the 100 most popular baby names of 1994, which is when most of the freshmen were born. In California specifically, Daniel ranked number one in 1994. Katherine, however, doesn’t show up on the U.S. list until 30.

Theoretically, Michael and Jessica should be the most popular names on campus, based on name popularity in 1994, 1993, 1992—with maybe Christopher and Ashley not far behind.

The most popular names for Stanford male students are, according to the Registrar’s Office:

1. Daniel
2. Michael
3. Matthew
4. Andrew
5. Alexander, David (tie)
6. Christopher
7. John
8. Benjamin
9. Kevin, William (tie)

The most popular names for Stanford female students are:

1. Katherine
2. Sarah
3. Alexandra
4. Emily
5. Rachel
6. Jessica
7. Laura
8. Nicole
9. Hannah, Julia (tie)

Stanford Libraries launches user-friendly website; changes name

September 5th, 2012

The Stanford University Libraries’ website, which gets about 10,000 visits a day, hasn’t had a major overhaul in a decade. “In web years, that’s 200,” said CHRIS BOURG, assistant university librarian for public services.

Now the libraries’ Internet presence has been revamped to match the times: A brand-new website went “live” on Aug. 28 – with a lot of input from faculty, students, staff, researchers and a range of other users.

“The new site was built with their voices in our heads,” said STU SNYDMAN, who coordinated the redesign as manager of digital production & web application development.

For the past 18 months, the libraries have been offering lottery tickets and Coupa Café coupons to encourage participation for in-depth interviews, postcard wish-lists and rapid-fire user testing.  The new website is the result.

An integrated search function makes looking for resources in the collections or in the library far more straightforward.  The homepage highlights a chat link for contacting librarians – not a new feature, but one previously buried under layers of clicks.  It even helps students find places for group study – “That’s a piece of information we didn’t have on the site before,” said Bourg.  “Students learned about the Bender Room maybe by the time they were seniors.”  It also directs users to subject librarians, who can give special help.

Another change: When getting help at the information desk, the librarians’ online search often didn’t look like anything you ever saw on the home page. Here’s one reason why: The information center site website had been updated more recently, as had many of the branch library sites. Think of a dinosaur surrounded by racecars.  Now the dinosaur has been traded in for a Maserati, and all the vehicles are going at the same speed, together.  They’ll be using the same website you’re using.

And it’s going to get even better.  “A hundred library staff members are building content, starting now. That’s highly distributed authorship,” said Snydman.

According to Bourg, “The bottom line is that research, teaching and learning at Stanford will be easier now because the new library website rocks!”

The careful viewer will notice another change: The campus network of library, technology and publishing services previously known as SULAIR (that is, Stanford University Libraries & Academic Information Resources) is now called simply “Stanford University Libraries.” In early August, a quiet announcement to this effect went to the staff.

– Cynthia Haven, Stanford University Libraries


First up: Julián Castro

September 4th, 2012

San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro, ’96, is scheduled to give the keynote address tonight at the Democratic National Convention. Photo: jamesgatz

Tonight, San Antonio Mayor JULIÁN CASTRO, who earned his bachelor’s degree in political science and communication from Stanford in 1996, is scheduled to make history as the first Latino to give the keynote address at a Democratic National Convention.

“The keynote honor is typically bestowed upon a rising star within the party. In 2004, BARACK OBAMA, then a little known state senator from Illinois, took the stage and vaulted to national attention. Such selections, however, aren’t just about grooming up-and-comers; they’re carefully calculated decisions to help win the coming election,” writes Sam Scott in a Stanford magazine online exclusive.

Scott interviews political science Professor GARY SEGURA, chair of Chicana/o and Latina/o Studies at Stanford’s Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity. Segura researches political representation and the politics of America’s growing Latino population.

[Update: Castro was introduced by his twin brother  JOAQUÍN, also a Stanford alum.]

Read the interview with Segura on the magazine’s website.