Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The Meeting with the Architect

  1. The math building is getting a complete gut-and-remodel starting in a little bit under a year. Every wall that is not essential for holding the building up will be taken down or moved. This is why the university chose to repaint two classrooms (from white to white) over winter break.

  2. Somehow some of the faculty seem to have gotten the idea that when the university plans to remodel a building that the department housed in that building should have as much control over the details of renovating the space as if they were having their own homes worked on. They seem personally offended that the goals of the institution trump the wishes of the individual. In the words of my grandfather: "Whoever does the payin' does the sayin'."

  3. If a bunch of mathematicians end up burning down the architectural firm and taking architects hostage, I can assure you that it would be precipitated by the board issue. Most of the faculty have a very strong preference for real slate chalkboards. Some people don't really care. No one prefers whiteboards. The plans call for whiteboards.

  4. The man who smokes in his office was upset that while most of the lights would be controlled by motion sensors that the emergency exit lighting would be on 24/7. A waste of electricity! Bad for the environment! Everyone else is courteous enough about indoor air quality to go outside to smoke. Maybe we can ask the architect for a smokers' cabana -- with a real slate chalkboard -- and run a smokers' seminar outside. Supposedly Herstein quit his job at Kansas because they wouldn't let him smoke in his office.

  5. Professor Unger explained his special medical issues to the architect. If he were to teach and work in the renovated building, changes would need to be made to accomodate his disabilities under the ADA. Who wants to bet that the university will keep the plans as they are and move his office and teaching assignments to some other space that accomodates his conditions?