The new campus

The past two days have been the grand opening of our new campus, right on the water in Oberschöneweide. The weather has been horrible - heavy rains and quite windy.

The papers write of a "modern place to study" (all news to be found here), and indeed, there are some highlights here. The Spreehalle includes a lunch hall with large windows out to the Spree, a coffee bar, a new library with many places to work, and some engineering labs. I took a tour of some of the labs - some have new equipment, others have just moved their older equipment down here. For example, they have a cleanroom for doing work in micro- and nano-sized areas. There is a terrace stuffed will all sorts of solar panels. And there are many rooms full of oscilloscopes and such.

There are two "modern" lecture theaters in the complex - two beamers installed! But the seating is your normal, cramped rows with fold-down tables, and no electrical outlets. What are they thinking?

Speaking of electricity - our labs still can't be opened, because we don't have the wiring or the electricity. I still have the specifications we submitted in 2003 - we noted that we needed 42 additional outlets for electricity and 21 for Ethernet, on account of having 21 computers on 21 tables in the rooms. I even drew diagrams showing how the tables were to be arranged. But no, there is only electricity along one wall, and just a few outlets. We have been screaming about this for months, but there is just so much else to do, it seems. At least I spotted an electrician yesterday - putting in Ethernet. Maybe they'll work all weekend...

The dirt is indescribable. They did a "final cleaning" in August - but have been working through September. Desks and chairs are covered with plaster dust, the floors are occasionally mopped, but that just smears the plaster around.

There are modern visualizers and beamers in every lecture hall - but they don't work. I was giving tours to colleagues, and only one out of three halls had functioning connections. This will be interesting.

There is a chalkboard in the rooms for mathematics instruction - but no water for wiping them. We threw out all of the chalk prior to moving, because we though we didn't have any of these, so we have to get some sorted out pronto.

There are no chairs in the hallways, no bulletin boards, no nice pictures on the walls, no garbage cans in the lecture halls or labs - these things can hopefully be fixed!

Instruction begins Monday - I think we will need oral lectures and paper-and-pencil labs for the first few weeks.....

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

...and probably no water fountains either! Damn those Krauts!

btw... I voted! ...the No-War Party got ALL my votes! :)