Monday, December 19, 2011

Child's play

Child's play
Originally uploaded by rob helpychalk.

Caroline and Joey were playing Buffy using the big lego set up. This is Willow, being held captive by The Master, on the evil side of the lego world.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Who is behind, and why do they have so much information about me? is a website that lets students compare professors. The main thing they have over sites like is that they have access to the complete grade records of each instructor, so you can select the instructor who gives out the highest number of As. Here is my profile.

I'm happy that this information is published. I would have offered it to anyone who asked. But how did get it? Apparently, someone at LCCC has given them access to our enterprise level software, as have people at many many other colleges and universities. Now is a for-profit company that makes its money from advertising, and probably also selling information on its registered users. They have been accused of sending spam using the emails they gather.

The founder of got a fawning article in the New York Times, which strikes me as supremely misleading, given that they never mention that the point of the website is to find easy graders.

My question is this: if is making money using information we gave them, why don't we get a cut? There is no reason they should be the ones to make money off information that we collect.