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September 15, 1999 - Image 3

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The Michigan Daily, 1999-09-15

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The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, September 15, 1999 - 3

U. California
student group
*fights repeal
University of California Student
Association officials said they plan use
newly reinstated lobbying power to con-
vince the University's Board of Regents
to repeal the ban on affirmative action.
The group plans to appeal to state leg-
islature and officials who may aid in
increasing diversity on the California-
system campuses.
The lobbying power comes from a
recently reversed decision by the
California Supreme Court that ruled
mandatory student fees cannot be used
for off-campus lobbying efforts.
Harvard, Radcliffe
to sign merger
With the signing of final legal docu-
ments at the end of the week, the
Harvard University merge with Radcliffe
College will be complete.
Radcliffe College will be absorbed
into Harvard, retaining some of its name
as the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced
Study, which will become an institution
officially on Oct. I at 12:01 a.m.
Harvard will assume all responsibility
for Radcliffe's all-female student body.
The Ann Radcliffe Trust, a new orga-
nization, will sponsor events and groups
that deal with gender issues, but some
Radcliffe programs previously open to
only female students have uncertain
futures, due to Harvard's policy against
gender discrimination in the classroom.
Harvard to pay
$40M in land deal
A two-year dispute regarding payment
for the land where Harvard University
was built ended with a settlement -
Harvard will pay the city of Boston $40
million over a period of 20 years.
The $40 million settlement adds $12
million to the amount Harvard already
pays Boston annually. Harvard does not
pay taxes on land in either of the two
cities where it owns property, Boston or
Cambridge, because it is used for educa-
tional purposes.
Harvard owns 226 acres in Boston and
220 acres in Cambridge.
U Virginia Board
proposal raises
racial concerns
The University of Virginia Office of
Admissions and Provost's Office have
erected a program for the summertime
recruitment of underprivileged and minor-
ity students, the program was presented to
the Virginia Board of Regents on Friday.
The program's development is due in
part to recent challenges made to admis-
sion systems that use race as a factor,
Virginia officials said.
Expecting to increase the number of
minority students applying to Virginia,
the two-week program will expose mid-
die and high school students to various
aspects of Virginia's social and academic
Virginia's Office of Admissions uses
race as a factor in admissions and has
dealt with allegations from organiza-
tions, including the Washington-based

Center for Equal Opportunity, that the
practice is illegal.
'Inquiry finds
at U. Minnesota
Auditors uncovered evidence offinan-
cial mismanagement in the University of
Minnesota Biomedical Engineering
Institute after a seven-month investiga-
tion. The discovery may threaten the
institution's already-shaky standing with
the National Institute of Health.
Employees charged that Dennis Polla,
head of the Minnesota biomedical insti-
tute, has mismanaged funds from within
and outside the university since taking
9 office in January 1998.
Polla also allegedly used Minnesota
students, facilities and money to work,
unaffiliated with the university, as a con-
sultant for state and federal companies.
After acknowledging the investiga-
tion, Polla declined to comment on the
auditors' investigation or findings.

Online book ying
provides cometition

By Callie Scott
Daily Staff Reporter
The growing world of e-commerce has invaded
the University's campus this fall in a big way, with an
increasing number of options becoming available in
the textbook market.
On a local scale, Shaman Drum Bookstore pre-
miered a new Website this semester giving students
the option of purchasing their books via the Internet.
Customers of this service can avoid the long lines by
prepaying and picking up their books in the first
floor retail store.
Shamandrurn.com is the retailer's response to the
"changing buying habits of consumers," said Karl
Pohrt, owner of the Shaman Drum Bookshop.
Hoping to alleviate student dissatisfaction with
standing in lines, the combination of the virtual store
with the traditional brick and mortar store now offers
another option, Pohrt said.
The explosion of the e-commerce textbook mar-
ket in recent months is "making it more competi-
tive,' said Rise St. Arno, Shaman Drum's Textbook
Floor Manager.
At this time, "we haven't felt a crunch from online
vendors out there," St. Arno said, but the online ven-
ture was started because "we wanted to head that off
so that we didn't see a decrease in the future."
"In order for any retail business to survive, they're
going to have to respond to the challenge of the
Internet," Pohrt said, adding that "to avoid it is
extremely silly and dangerous."
John Bates, a co-founder of Bigwords.com, said

his e-commerce company is in the process of chang-
ing a system tha has been set in its way for a long
time. \Vc'e already trced the traditional book-
store to sit up and take notice," Bates said.
Bigwords com \\ s launched at the end of August
1998, initially serving eight schools in California.
Within two momts, the company had sold to more
than 200 campuses nationwide, Bates said.
With Bigwvordcom expeiencing growth measur-
ing 15 to 20 times .he pre vious sales every new
semester, since its inception a year ago, Bates
describes the companY as a "fierce and ferocious
competitor" in the annual S7 billion new and used
textbook market.
Strong pub.cit' campaigns on campuses across
the nation and commercials on MTV speak to
today's college stadent said Bates, adding that the
focus of Bigords.com is "to serve the Gen-Y col-
lege market, ages I to 24."
Many new competitors have entered into the field
of online textbook vendors this semester. "It's unbe-
lievable how much nose there is' Bates said.
This "noise" has failed to sway some University
students from the familiar long lines accompanying
the start of each semester. Nick Koster, a Business
junior, attributes his reluctance to buy online to a
"fear of the unknown."
But still other students, like LSA sophomore
Alicia Johnson. have found the growing range of
options in the textbook market a welcome change. "I
compared prices in the bookstore and online," said
Johnson, who eventually purchased books from

Students crowd the cash registers yesterday at Ulrich's Bookstore located at East University and South
University avenues.

Bigwords.com. "I'm really happy that I saved 30,"
Johnson said.
VivaSmart.com is an online textbook company
with a different twist. It is an independent company
that offers a free textbook price-comparison service.
The vendor-neutral company, founded by Stanford
University graduate students Thai Tran and Amr
Awadallah earlierthis yearis "by students, for students,"
said Rachel Polish, VivaSmart.coms marketing Leader
Originally started as a senior project,
VivaSmart com became an immediate success at
Stanford and quickly spread to other campuses.

Sept. 8 marked VivaSmart.com's official launch at
the University. "Michigan offers us a very wired
campus," said Polish, who added that as of Monday,
the University was the company's No. I campus with
more than I 00 students using the service.
With a textbook pice comparison between more
than 16 locations, inc luding a Used Book
Marketplace as xeil as online vendors and tradition-
al bookstores, ViiaSmart.com lets the students
decide. "One book vendor is not always the cheap-
est;' Polish said, adding, "our goal is to save students


to hear
By Michael Grass
Daily Staff Reporter
At their meeting tomorrow
afternoon, the University Board
of Regents will receive a full
report on future renovations to six
Central Campus buildings.
As part of the Central Campus
Renovation Phase II project, the
University plans to renovate the
LS&A, Frieze and Perry build-
ings and Mason, Haven and West
"We've been looking at these
building's infrastructure needs
and focusing in on their academic
uses," said Hank Baier, associate
vice president for facilities and
Specific plans for the projects
will not be revealed until tomor-
row. Plans to move University
President Lee Bollinger's offices
from the Fleming Administration
Building will not be included in
Thursday's report.
When Bollinger assumed the
University presidency in 1997, he
said he wanted to move his office
to a more accessible section of
At the July regents' meeting,
the eight member board approved
an administration recommenda-
tion to commission SHG
Incorporated to develop renova-
tion designs for the LS&A
The state will provide $16.5
million for the $25 million reno-
vation project.
When asked by Regent
Laurence Deitch (D-Bloomfield
Hills) in July, University Chief
Financial Officer Robert Kasdin
said LS&A Building renovations
would not include a re-bricking of
the building exterior.
Deitch said he and many others
in the University community
would like to see the salmon-col-
ored bricks make way for a more
traditional color.
The LS&A Building was built
in 1948 with the orange bricks
due to a shortage red brick, fol-
lowing Wo'rld War I.
Baier said one of the goals of

In a report to be delivered
tomorrow to the University
Board of Regents th
University plars to renovate
Central Campus buildings
a LS&A Building
m Frieze Building
a Perry Building
m West Hall
in Haven Hall
m Mason Hall
When the regents reconvene on
Friday, they are expected to
vote on a sep;rate actn item
for the $1.8 million renovation
to the Burton Memorial Tower.

Website offers quick access
to Ann Arbor restaurants5

By Michael B. Simon
For the Daily

which are located
But the servic

the upcoming
renovations is
to ensure
C e n t r a l
Campus facili-
ties maximize
their academic
needs, making
sure the build-
ings meets
campus master
planning ini-
Earlier this

Board of
Regents Room
at 2:00 p.m.

Students no longer need to wade, competition.
sometimes late at night, through National com
dozens of glossy menus frbm area cites college stude
restaurants shoved under their doors and fastest grow
to find a suitable place to eat. corporatel
New entrepreneurs, LSA junior CommunicationsI
Adam Feldheim and Business junior Food.com plan
Evan Frank, launched their Website, days, to roll out a
AnnArborMenu.com, www.annar- attract college stu
bornenu.com, on Aug. 15 after a puses nationwide.
summer spent designing pages and currently lists ab
signing restaurants up for the service. rants across the
AnnArborMenu.com is the latest menus for all an
in a trend of Web menu sources avail- placing orders on
able to students. Frank said An
The mission of the site, Frank said, may appeal to st
is provide a "comprehensive restau- information it coi
rant index" for Ann Arbor. the Ann Arbor ar
The site lists about 200 restau- The company
rants, sorted alphabetically or by actively in Ann A
genre - from Middle Eastern to ners at Michigant
coney, Thai to pizza - in addition to promotional t-shi
a host of other information. Phone aims to benefit th
numbers, addresses and directions tised on AnnArbo
are available for the majority of the "Students do
restaurants listed, and menus for Food~eom, they d
roughly half. Frank said.
Additionally, the site denotes But, Food.com
which credit cards the restaurants posters on campu
accept, which restaurants deliver and to begin placing
Water _ min
rupture floods
'U' buildings
From staff reports
The Medical Science Building, Unit II, at 1137 Catherine
St., suffered extensive damage due to a water leaking from a
broken 8 inch main from within the structure.
Water flooded up to four inches in several of the building's
lower levels, leaving the area without power and elevators
The water was found at I a.m. Tuesday morning by the
University's security service. Crews are still scrambling to
return the building to full operation.
Estimates of the damage were unavailable, but it looks to
be a costly problem, said University Department of Pubic
Safety Lt. Douglas Swix.
"There so many areas involved, it probably will be expen-
sive," Swix said.

on campus.
e could face stiff
petitor Food.com
ents as their largest
ing audience, said
Director of
David Gilcreast.
s, in the next 60
major initiative to
:dents on 65 cam-
, he said. Food.com
out 15,000 restau-
country, including
nd instructions for
udents because the
ntains is specific to
also advertises
krbor using air ban-
football games and
rts, he said, which
e restaurants adver-
n't know about
on't advertise here,"
already has 150
us and is scheduled
inserts in campus

publications in the next couple of
weeks, said Diana Nafissi,
University Program Manager for
Restaurateurs are undecided on the
fusion of food and the net.
"I told them, I'll try it for three
months, and we'll see how it works,"
said A Taste of Italy owner Tom-
Sinawe, who advertises his State
Street restaurant on
AnnArborMenu.com. Sinawe said he
has had a few students come in and
order with menus printed off the
But Good Time Charley's, an
advertiser on both Websites hasn't
"seen any results from it yet," said
daytime manager Ben Ballweg.
Many of the site's advertisers said
they have a difficult time gauging the
number of students using the service.
Whether students will use the sites
or stick with traditional methods of
locating menus remains unclear.
"It sounds like it would be conve-
nient to be able to get menus and
other information about restaurants
online, and if that is the case, this is
definitely something I think students
would use," LSA first-year student
Jeff Hamuth said.

year, the regents were presented
multiple campus planning and
building project presentations. In
May, Philadelphia architects
Denise Scott Brown and Robert
Venturi presented their firm's ini-
tial plans for the Life Science
Institute, a multi-building com-
plex to be located along
Washtenaw Avenue across from
Palmer Field.
Venturi and Scott Brown are
two of the architects in charge of
the University's master plan ini-
The initiative aims to unite the
different areas of the Ann Arbor
campus through comprehensive
When the architects presented
the plans for the LSI, they showed
the regents how the complex will
create the first physical link
between Central and Medical
Other building projects on the
board's agenda include a vote for
a $1.8 million renovation of
Burton Memorial Tower, built in
1936 and the approval of archi-
tects for the renovation of the
Student Publications Building,
constructed in 1932.
Baier said since both projects
are "historically significant," the

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