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Members of the BU Terriers women’s ice hockey team celebrate and carry the Beanpot trophy after winning the 41st annual Beanpot championship. Photo by Cydney Scott
The 2023-2023 BU Athletics season in a nutshell: highs, lows, new records, championships, turnarounds, and yes, some disappointments along the way. Here are 11 memorable highlights of the year in sports for Boston University:
August 27—Men’s soccer’s Matt McDonnell nets a hat trick against Boston College
It’s always a feat when you score a hat trick—three goals in a single game—in soccer. You also get bonus points for accomplishing it against your archrival. But junior Matt McDonnell (Questrom) scored that third goal against BC and what made it all the more remarkable was that it was the first Terrier hat trick since Shaun Taylor (Sargent’10) did it in 2008.November 4—BU women dominate conference in two sports
Winning a championship is a great accomplishment, but when a school claims two on a single day? That’s a whole new level of impressive. That’s exactly what the Terriers did on November 4, when BU’s field hockey and women’s soccer teams won their Patriot League titles just hours apart.December 1—Sarah Cicchetti breaks 31-year-old weight throw record
When you break a 31-year-old school record, you’ve done something right. Women’s track and field’s Sarah Cicchetti (Questrom’19) threw for 17.27 meters in December to break the record of 16.54 meters. She’s beaten her own record twice more since, with the latest record standing at 17.97 meters. Read BU Today’s Q&A with Cicchetti here.February 12—BU claims the Women’s Beanpot title
After 38 years of waiting, the BU women’s ice hockey team finally reclaimed the Beanpot trophy. It marks the Terriers’ first Beanpot win as a varsity program and only their second title ever. BU had to overcome Northeastern, then the third-ranked team in the country, and host team Harvard along the way. BU Today’s photo essay captured the emotion and excitement.February 23—Swimmer Erin Nabney breaks three school records at Patriot League Championships
Approaching the final meet of her collegiate swimming career, Erin Nabney (COM’19) told BU Today that her goal in the conference championships was to break a school record. Well, she broke three of them: 200 IM (2:01.22), 100 breast (1:02.74), and 400 free relays (3:22.26).April 12—Men’s ice hockey’s Joel Farabee named national Rookie of the Year
Freshman Joel Farabee (CGS) became the third Terrier in five years to win the Tim Taylor Award, given to the best freshman in the country. When your name is in the same group as Clayton Keller (2023) and Hoby Baker winner Jack Eichel (2023), you’re doing something right. Before departing to join the Philadelphia Flyers, Farabee led the Terriers with 36 points.April 13—Men’s lacrosse upsets No. 2 Loyola, 18-11
The BU men’s lacrosse team enjoyed a strong season that was upended in a narrow 10-9 loss to Lehigh in the conference semifinals. But along the way, the team saw some spectacular moments, among them a blowout of second-seeded Loyola Maryland. Led by James Burr (Questrom’19), who scored a career-high nine points (five goals, four assists) and broke the program’s career goals record, the Terriers claimed their first top-five win in program history.April 21—Hanako Kawasaki becomes first rookie to win Patriot League Golfer of the Year
Freshman Hanako Kawasaki (Questrom) is on a mission to become the greatest golfer in BU history, and she might just finish as the greatest ever in Patriot League history. In a season that saw her set new 36-hole and 54-hole program records, Kawasaki became the first rookie ever to win the Patriot League Championship, and she was named both Rookie of the Year and Player of the Year. Along with Kawasaki’s individual conference title, BU also won the Patriot League Championship as a team.April 30—Larosse’s Chris Gray scores his 100th point of the season
Speaking of becoming a sports program’s greatest, men’s lacrosse’s sophomore Chris Gray (CGS) also seems to be bound for that spot. The attacker finished the season with a best-in-the-nation 111 points on 49 goals and 62 assists. Gray’s 100th point of the season in the Patriot League Tournament quarterfinals made him the first player in conference history to reach that mark and the 18th ever in NCAA history.May 5—Lightweight rowing wins Eastern Sprints
The BU women’s lightweight rowers are ranked the third-best team in the country—an impressive feat on its own. But facing a tough field that included several nationally ranked teams, the Terriers needed their best efforts to claim the regatta win. BU ultimately edged second-ranked Princeton University to claim its second-ever Eastern Sprints title.May 11—Record-breaking softball team defends Patriot League title
Last season, the BU softball team swept the Patriot League awards. The Terriers weren’t able to repeat that feat this season, but in equally impressive fashion, 10 Terriers landed on an All-Conference Team: 7 on the First Team and another 3 on the Second Team. That talent helped the Terriers win back-to-back conference championships, their third in four years, and catapulted them into the NCAA tournament. The softball Terriers lost 3-0 to No. 5 Florida in the first tournament game May 17 and the next day bowed to Stanford 13-2.
Jonathan Chang (COM’19) can be reached at [email protected]; follow him on Twitter at @jonathanychang.
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Day 1: Public Safety and Security
Did you know that there are special programs from the FAA to account for law enforcement, search and rescue, and fire rescue drone? You can get involved, just don’t try flying your drone around an emergency situation, you’d be endangering lives and risking some serious fines.Day 2: Business – Photography, Real Estate, Insurance
What you really need to know is simple: You can fly your drone for fun, or you can fly your drone for pay. The moment you accept compensation for your flight, or for photos and videos captured from the sky, that is a commercial operation, requiring you to have your Part 107 Certification, and to follow a few different rules in the sky.Day 3: Business – Infrastructure and Agriculture
Using drones to inspect radio towers, rail lines, power lines and large buildings is a huge business, at least it might be when the drone industry satisfies the line-of-sight rule we have to follow for drone flight. That’s right, whether you fly for fun or for pay, you must be able to see your drone in the sky at all times.Day 4: Business – Commercial and Medical Package Delivery
We’re all excited for drone deliveries, having Amazon drop off our next package right at our doorstep sounds super cool! That said, think about your home, is there really a safe place for a drone to fly in, land, leave a package and take off again? There are a number of difficult tasks a drone delivery needs to overcome before it can deliver stuff to you, but we’re getting there, and that’s very exciting.Day 5: Education and STEM Day 6: Recreational Flyers
There are enough rules and safety guidelines for hobby pilots that we needed two days. Day one for recreational flyers covers the tasks you need to accomplish before you fly. We hope you know that you need to register most drones with the FAA before you fly, and you’ll need to affix that registration number to the outside of the craft. The hardest part some days is learning the airspace restrictions — You cannot fly anywhere you want, you must be aware of airspace designations, then acquire authorization to fly in controlled airspace. If you live within five miles or so of an airport, you are likely in controlled airspace.
Check out Drone Rush’s airspace map for more details.Day 7: Recreational Flyers
Day two for hobby pilots, and the final day of the safety week, wraps up the recreational flight rules. Some of the basics include the 400 foot altitude limit, do not fly over people, stay away from emergency situations, don;t fly over stadiums, and more. Most of all, safety is in your hands, following the line-of-sight rules ensures you can see your craft and navigate it to a safe place when and if there are obstacles in the sky. Remember, you do not have the right of way if a manned aircraft comes around, you must get out of the way.
We invite you over to Drone Rush for all this and lists of the best drones for your needs. Whether you are looking for mini drones, 4K camera drones, commercial drones or more, we’ve got you covered.
October 3 — LG V40 ThinQ
LG launched the LG V40 ThinQ on October 3. The V40 ThinQ continues the trends of LG’s V-series phones with its ultra-premium features, including a triple-lensed rear camera, a 32-bit DAC (with a headphone jack), two front-facing lenses for superior selfies, and more.
The LG V40 ThinQ specs include the expected flagship details: a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, 6GB of RAM, 64 or 128GB of internal storage, IP68 certification, and a 6.4-inch OLED display.
October 4 — Nokia 7.1
October 9 — Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL
Google Pixel 3: Where to buy, when, and how much (Update: General sales begin)
Other than that, most of the specs and information we already knew from the multiple leaks. If you somehow missed all that, you can see a full rundown of the specs for the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL here.
Google also significantly raised the price for the Pixel 3 while slightly increasing the price of the Pixel 3 XL. The Google Pixel 3 starts at $799 for the 64GB model and the 128GB model goes for $899 (the Pixel 2 was $649 and $749 respectively). The Google Pixel 3 XL price-raising is less extreme, starting at $899 for the 64GB variant and going all the way up to $999 for the 128GB model (the Pixel 2 XL was $849 and $949 respectively)
Additionally, Google launched a new tablet called the Pixel Slate and a new smart display called the Google Home Hub. No other new hardware items were announced.
And in case you missed it, we recorded a podcast immediately following the event. You can listen to it here:
October 10 — Razer Phone 2
Samsung Galaxy A9 (2023) announced: Four rear cameras, but there is more to like
The Samsung Galaxy A9 comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 chipset — the Nokia 7 Plus and BlackBerry Key2 notably feature the same processor — and 6GB or 8GB of RAM. There’s also 128GB of internal storage, which you can expand even more with the microSD slot. Everything is powered by an impressive 3,800mAh battery and the phone runs Android 8.1 Oreo.
Normally, a phone like this from Samsung — which features many similar specs as its flagship devices — would cost an arm and a leg. While Samsung isn’t selling the Galaxy A9 for the low prices the likes of OnePlus will offer, it is at least getting closer to the right ballpark: the Galaxy A9 starts at 599 euros in Europe and 549 pounds in the U.K., which is about $725 in the U.S. Once again, still too expensive, but Samsung is at least getting better.
October 15 — Palm Phone
October 16 — HUAWEI Mate 20 series
October 18 — ASUS ROG Phone
Hands-on: The ASUS ROG gaming phone is a beast
However, the ASUS ROG Phone looks a lot more like a “gaming” phone, with built-in air triggers which you can map how you like, conveniently-placed ports for charging while you are playing in landscape mode, and a suite of accessories which push the idea that the ROG Phone means serious gaming business.
The ASUS ROG Phone also looks a lot more like a phone designed specifically for gamers, whereas the Razer Phone 2 is more of a comfortable middle ground between a mass market smartphone and a gaming phone.
You’ll have two choices when you buy your ASUS ROG Phone: a 128GB storage variant, or a 512GB storage variant. Both devices come with 8GB of RAM and the same relative specs, with the 128GB variant costing $899 and the 512GB variant costing $1,099. The 128GB variant is available to pre-order now, while the 512GB variant will start pre-orders in November.
October 25 — Xiaomi Mi Mix 3
October 29 — OnePlus 6T Other Devices
NEXT: Should you replace your OnePlus 5 or 5T with a new OnePlus 6T?
Don’t miss: Best of IFA 2023 Awards: The best new tech at Berlin’s big trade showPanzerGlass: New glass back protection for your glass back phone
PanzerGlass’s range of tempered glass screen protectors grew one bigger, with the release of the PanzerGlass ClearCase Black Edition. With the new range of smartphones increasingly using swirling, shimmering designs embedded into the glass, it’s a shame to hide that behind a tough case to protect it. PanzerGlass first introduced a glass back case to protect that fancy glass, along with usual protection on the top and sides.
The new ClearCase Black Edition adds a honeycomb protection pattern, with the company stating this has “19% more protection.” While that seemed pretty much unquantifiable, the photos we took of a prototype clearly shows that honeycomb build, able to dissipate any drops or falls a little more.
The 7 best new smart home gadgets we saw at CES 2023
I had a chance to handle the company’s (only!) Allroundo Power sample at IFA, and it felt like a handy mobile accessory for a range of devices that could be tucked away in a pocket or dropped into a bag with convenience and a touch of style. It’s available next month across the globe, including the U.S., with pricing to come.
The Aura range of wireless charging pad is also nice and tasteful, in leather and glass, and a range of colors. Again, final pricing and availability to come.
Seagate: Hip new One Touch SSDs
Seagate’s new range of small One Touch External SSDs with USB 3.0 connection are targeted at a younger crowd and meant to be hip, with colorful designs. Unfortunately, for me, they were zero-touch devices — strictly behind glass, and I couldn’t really get a handle on their textile design, which is arguably what makes these SSDs so special in the first place.
They come with USB 3.0 ports instead of USB-C and speeds of 400MB/s, which is fairly pedestrian. But the pricing is good for the Seagate brand and small size: the One Touch SSD retails for $105/€99 (500GB) and $200/€69 (1TB), with worldwide availability later in October.
Oh, and the One Touch External SSD Special Edition also exists for some reason, sporting a camo-clad outer design for managing files with “extra flair” (words from the press release, I kid you not) starting at $5 more, or $110, in 500 GB only.
Anker: More power!
Anker arrived at IFA with a host of new products. While we covered them in an earlier article, you’ll want to know more about at least one product: the all-metal Anker PowerCore+ 26800 PD 45W. This looks exactly like the previous 26800 PD 30W, which caps out at 30W delivery. The new 45W USB-C power delivery port really steps it up further, and of course the battery with a high 26,800mAh capacity means a serious amount of juice.
PNY: More power also!
PNY is an American manufacturer of everything from SD memory cards to SSDs to fast memory for graphics cards.
At IFA, PNY had new devices on show. I was able to get hands-on with the new Power Delivery battery packs, including the 10,000mAh offering with Power Delivery 3.0. These are priced at around $50 and will be available as soon as this week depending on your region.
PNY also had some tiny SSDs on show at IFA for the first time — PNY claims the SSDs are the world’s smallest SSDs — but I only saw these behind glass. They measure just 60 x 35.6 x 8.9mm. It’s not meaningfully smaller than the world’s competition, so I can’t really say much more. But the race is on for SSDs to get smaller, while retaining useful capacity and fast data transfer speeds. PNY is in the race.Aukey: Wearbuds put earbuds in your smartband
AUKEY had a couple of interesting devices on hand at IFA, including an update to its neat little standalone earbuds solution. However, it was the AUKEY Wearbuds — or Smartband-Stored True Wireless Earbuds — that really caught my attention. Why?
Look! The Wearbuds are capable of counting steps, tracking heart rate, and so on, with a pair of earbuds tucked into the side:
The above GIF shows just a brief hands-on, and I didn’t get to hear how the buds sounded. But it’s an interesting concept to avoid carrying around a case, while wearing a fit band. It comes in black and white, and the buds are said to have 5.5 hours of battery life and noise isolation.
Although much can change, AUKEY told me the Wearbuds would be around the $180 mark, and available everywhere before Christmas, likely via Amazon.
Tumi: New luggage-inspired phone cases
If you want your phone case to look like an expensive suitcase, now’s your chance! The new Tumi line of smartphone cases has been available in limited forms, but now there’s an entire range of cases that look exactly like the hardshell luggage that Tumi makes, including the 19 Degree line of cases that matches the 19 Degree luggage line, based on the angle of the rippled lines.
I don’t doubt that high-end, expensive luggage with lots of premium touches makes sense for holding your travel stuff. For holding your phone… well… I’m not so sure. There are a lot of little techniques to making great cases, and Tumi says these have raised edge protection and button protection. These Tumi cases are only for iPhone users and start at $60. Cases for Samsung and other Android devices will be launched in time, according to reps.
That’s it for our list of the best new mobile accessories from IFA 2023. Which one was your favorite?
We’re in the thick of developers’ conference season. Facebook put on its F8 conference last week at which it announced a total redesign of its app and site, as well as a shifted focus toward privacy. Google takes the stage tomorrow, but today it’s Microsoft’s turn. Microsoft typically keeps things more technical than some of the other companies, but there are almost always some tidbits worth knowing about.
We’ll run down the most important announcements here so you can absorb all that fancy information in one convenient spot.What we’re expecting
Microsoft recently revamped its browser on the same groundwork as Google’s Chrome. It’s an attempt to wash out the bad taste of Internet Explorer that has lingered in the mouths of internet users for decades now. We expect to see some updates for the new Edge browser during the event. If any of the other conferences are an indicator, it’s also safe to assume we’ll hear some talk about security and privacy.Azure
Predictably, Microsoft is talking about the cloud first. Azure has 54 data center regions around the world including one in South Africa. Azure as a service encompasses a huge number of processes. CEO Satya Nadella touts examples of Azures uses like hospitals sharing data about cancer research to Walgreen installing cooler doors with screens in them to show consumers what’s inside without having to open them.
Starbucks is clearly a high-profile partner. Part of the Starbucks demo includes a responsive drive-through display that uses AI to try and show people food and drinks that are popular at that specific location and time. Starbucks also uses Azure to connect its coffee machines to the web. It can monitor vital performance stats and also try to diagnose problems in real-time to try and manage downtime and repair needs.
The menu uses AI to try and show you food that it thinks you want based on a variety of variables including location and time. Microsoft
Speech recognition and transcriptions
Microsoft has been working on real-time transcription for years—it even demonstrated a microphone array hardware device last year. Now, the feature can learn industry-specific tech jargon. So, if you’re an engineer and you use a lot of specific names and acronyms, the transcription can keep up and won’t throw in nonsense when it hits a word that’s not commonly understood. The demo showed it working with both the medical and coding fields.Cortana
Microsoft’s digital voice assistant isn’t on the same level when it comes to users as the Google Assistant or Apple’s Siri. But, Google is continuing to add new features to its disembodied helper. Microsoft’s focus for Cortana is making the whole experience more conversational. The idea is to keep the context of the conversation consistent throughout the entire interaction. So, if you’re talking about a specific meeting, Cortana will remember what you’re talking about, even if you ask several follow up questions or give more related commands.Microsoft Edge
Right now, you can try out Microsoft’s new Edge browser on PCs, but according to the Build conference, the plan is to bring it to every platform including macOS and iOS, so you’ll eventually be able to use Microsoft’s browser across just about any device. It may not seem like a huge development, but Microsoft moving to the Chromium platform is actually an important step because it means Google and Microsoft engineers are working together on the platform. Also, Chromium is an open-source project and Microsoft’s involvement will likely funnel tons of new data into the process of refining the platform.
Microsoft’s entire presentation was largely geared toward actual developers and was relatively short on info that’s specifically relevant to consumers and other users who just want to see front-end software and hardware. Microsoft has hammered on the importance of software for years, and now the focus is largely placed on software that many users don’t even see.Minecraft in AR
See you tomorrow for Google I/O.
BU’s New LGBTQIA Task Force for Staff and Faculty Cochairs talk about BU’s progress, their long-term goals, challenges to overcome
A new task force, aimed at making BU more LGBTQIA-inclusive for faculty and staff, is collecting ideas for a plan to improve programming, recruitment, retention, professional development, and network-building for the University community. Photo courtesy of the BU LGBTQIA Task Force
In an effort to make Boston University more LGBTQIA-inclusive for faculty and staff, a new task force has begun studying and collecting ideas about what other universities are doing, with the aim of drafting a plan for BU to improve programming, recruitment, retention, professional development, and network-building for the University community.
“This University has a complicated legacy and history around diversity issues,” says Judi Burgess, BU’s director of labor relations and cochair of the task force along with Karen Warkentin, a College of Arts & Sciences professor of biology and of women’s, gender, and sexuality studies.
“When I was hired, there was a point, maybe in my second year as a junior faculty, when the Gay Straight Alliance at BU Academy was banned,” Warkentin says. “Those situations sent a message that LGBTQ faculty and staff are not valued and not welcomed. It was like, ‘We want your work, but don’t want to know about your personal life and we consider it personal.’”
It wasn’t acceptable to be a “whole person at work,” Burgess adds.
Now, both women say, times have changed—dramatically.
“Our understanding of community at work, and the value of workforce diversity, has really shifted over a decade,” Warkentin says. “Different people with different life experiences and different perspectives bring value to the workforce and the environment, more creative solutions. And enabling people to be their whole selves at work increases their productivity. We want to send a message that all kinds of people are welcome here and valued here.”
A new website has been created to communicate with LGBTQIA faculty and staff and give them a way to communicate back to the task force. (Find details on the website about LGBTQIA+ at Work, a series of community meetings, on November 27 and 28 on the Charles River Campus, and November 29 on the Medical Campus.)
“Among our highest priorities is the nurturing of an institutional culture that is welcoming and inclusive for people of all backgrounds, genders, and identities,” Jean Morrison, BU provost and chief academic officer, said. “There is always work that we can be doing in this regard, and it is incumbent on us to be introspective, to listen, and to collaborate within our community to produce the best working environment possible. I am confident and hopeful in this Task Force and its leadership to help answer a number of critical, often difficult questions and provide the guidance we need to fulfill our objective.”
Robert A. Brown, BU president, also addressed the issue in a pre-Thanksgiving letter to the BU community: “I believe that, given today’s political climate, we have a particular obligation to affirm our core values to members of the LGBTQIA community at Boston University. These members of our community are understandably concerned about potential discrimination resulting from reinterpretation of federal statutes.”
Burgess and Warkentin spoke about the significance and timing of the new BU task force and its goals in a conversation with BU Today. (For those unfamiliar with the final two letters of the acronym LGBTQIA, the “I” stands for “intersex” and the “A” stands for “asexual” or “allied.”)
Warkentin: Part of this mission of welcoming diversity was creating the position of associate provost for diversity and inclusion [Crystal Williams], who started last December. And one of the things she did last year was to have lunches. More than 100 people attended, and all of these people came together and looked at each other and stood around talking, and nobody touched the food. Some people were there as allies. And this was the first time I felt the University cared about who I was. That was an incredibly powerful thing. The second luncheon recently happened. It was very moving. This space gave someone there a chance to come out. To see a gentleman say he is out, and is feeling joy, is a really powerful story.
Burgess: My experience has been different. As an openly gay woman of color with a wife and three children, it was incredibly important to have the support of the entire University, to feel welcome and accepted. We are so excited to make sure all employees at every level, top to bottom, across races and genders, are supported. It’s a great statement.
Warkentin: Our deliverable will be a report, with a set of recommendations, from within the University, as well as best practices from outside the University.
Burgess: We know there is strength in diversity. Our work is our students, but this will help create better research, better performance. It’s also great for the students to see that, hey, if I want to be a professor or an administrator at BU, I can be because BU welcomes me.
Warkentin: Most people understand LGBTQ. The “I” is intersex, and we often think of sex as exclusively 100 percent male or female, but as a biology professor that is not how developmental biology works. There is a spectrum of human variation where people cannot be classified in either the male or female category. Intersex people have been pretty badly treated by society and the medical profession. “A” is asexual. We, like most societies, consider sexuality with other people to be a defining part of life, but that is not true for a lot of people. Allies need to feel welcome. A heterosexual person, or a cisgender person, whose identity matches their gender, and who doesn’t feel a sexual attraction with other people, they identify as asexual.
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