Blacker Hovse FAQ

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Definitions

  1. Alley
  2. BoC (aka the Board of Control)
  3. Big Red Eject Handle(aka Big Red Drop Card)
  4. DRL
  5. Flame (verb)
  6. Flick
  7. Funnelator
  8. Gravity well
  9. Honor Code
  10. Hyperspace
  11. MOSH
  12. Random
  13. UASH



  1. Alley
      A hallway in Blacker. Alleys are much narrower than normal hallways found in typical dorms--they are typically 4 feet wide.

  2. BoC
      The Board of Control is the Student Committee that enforces Caltech's Honor Code. This body is frequently refurred to as the "Boc" (pronounced with a long "a" and a hard "k" at the end). The verb "to BoC" means to appear before this committee. Many times an umlaut (") is put over the "o" like the initials of the band Blue Oyser Cult. This tradition is from Blacker Hovse in the early 1990s. The committee consists of a chairman and secretary who are eleceted by the whole undergrad community, one member elected from each Hovse and two members at large who are elected by the whole undergraduate body.

      The BoC meets in secret and has the power to expell people. Altough technically the BoC makes its recommendations to the Dean of Undergraduate Students either tells the BoC to try again or carries out the recommendations and contacts those involved. It is rare that the Dean gives a case back to the BoC. Also the BoC does not punish people. It BoC decides if a honor code violation has been committed. If so, it then nullifies the advantage. After the nullification phase, it "protects the community". It is in the latter phase where those that are determined to be unable to reform their actions are told to leave. It takes a 3/4 decision of the BoC to convict, nullify any advantages or protect the community.

      The BoC meets in secret and it's decisions are almost never made public. The defendant never knows who contacted the BoC and the one that reported the incident is only told by the BoC when the case is closed. The reporter never knows the outcome or if a hearing ever took place. The documents of the BoC are kept in a safe in an alarmed building. Only the Dean, the BoC Chair and BoC secreyary have access.

      As an example of the process, if a person was proved to have cheated on a single problem of an exam, then that person would get no points for that question (nullify the advantage). The decision on whether to remove that member of the community (expell), would depend upon if this was a cronic problem with this individual and other simiar issues (protect the community).

  3. Big Red Eject Handle
      "Eject Buckaroo, Eject!". The Big Red Drop Card, BRDC, a document that is no longer red and no longer a card, is used to drop all of ones classes in one fell swoop. It's basically means that one was never a student that term. Invoking the BRDC, is a despirate maneover when one knows that one is flaming out and there is nothing that you can do to save the term. It is also used when one wants to go on voluntary leave for other reasons.

  4. DRL
      Director of Residence Life: There has only been one DRL so far and that is Dr. Kim West. Ms. West was brought in over the summer of 1990 to assist the then MOSH, Dr. Wilde. Over 1991 through 1993 the MOSH's powers were slowly shifted to Ms. West. When Dr. Wilde resigned, the position officially turned into a social position. The DRL position removed circa 2003.

  5. Flame (verb)
    1. To be asked to leave Caltech by UASH (Undergraduate Academic Standards and Honors Committee) for academic reasons.
    2. To fail out of Caltech. Cumulative GPA < 1.9 or termly GPA < 1.4

  6. Flick (verb)
    1. To undertake an activity that is much more enjoyable than any currently pending assignments in attempt to postpone working on those assigments.

  7. Funnelator
      A slingshot using surgical tubing and a funnel for the pocket. Two loops of tubing are attached to the funnel. Typically two person (one on each side) hold the ends of the tubing while a third pulls the funnel back, aims, and shoots the payload.

  8. Gravity well
    • A gravitational singularity in spacetime so intense that noone is able to escape for a long time.
    • When people gather around in a hallway to talk, invariably over time they sit down on the floor. It takes effort to get up and wander off. Hence a gravity (potential) well has formed. When leaving, or attempting to leave, a gravity well people have been known to utter phrases including the the words "Escape velocity".

  9. Honor Code
      "No member shall take unfair advantage of any other member of the community."

      Simple, but openended. It covers academic things like cheating and social issues like stealing food from the common fridges. The Institute has ruled that Sexual Harassment is not covered by the BoC and thus not covered by the Honor Code. A separate body deals with that and the decision was made based on existing laws. The Institute's Drug and Alcohol Policy (DAPAC) seems also to be excluded since such issue do no go to the BoC.

      The undergrads are bound by the Honor Code, as are the Graduate Students. The Faculty and Staff are not bound by it.

  10. Hyperspace
      The area above one floor, but below the floor of the next one. In some places hyperspace may be 6 feet tall.

  11. MOSH
      Master of Student Houses: I don't know when the MOSH position was created, but the first one that I know of was Colonel Goldsworthy. Col. Goldsworthy was MOSH after the Houses reverted to civilian control at the end of World War II. Col. Goldsworthy died in office sometime between 2 April and 4 May 1949. He was replaced by Mr. Tanham. Other MOSHes include Dr. Huttenback, Dr. David R. Smith, Dr. Sunny Chan, Dr. Christoper Brennen, Dr. Louis Wilde and Dr. David Wales. Since Col. Goldsworth, the MOSH has always been a full professor. Traditionally the MOSH was responsible for student life. He enforced rules, controlled the off-campus houses, was the student advocate, and bailed students out of jail upon occasion.

  12. Random
      A word used in a sentence to prove that you are a Techer. Usually what the speaker really means is "arbitrary", but Techers like to us random instead.

  13. UASH
      Undergraduate Academic Standards and Honors Committee. This committee comprising of Faculty, Administrators and Undergrads reviews the cases of any students that have not eligable to return due to academic reasons or who are currently on leave and wish to return. UASH can re-instate students or place them on leave with conditions for returning. Hence a common phrase is "You Flick, You Flame...UASH".

Page last updated: 11 January 2007
FAQ author: Benjamin Smith (fr: 1989, grad 1994).
version: 2.1
Last modified: 19 January 2017, Copyright 2015
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