Student site reflects unique Tech culture

Four students, three guys and a girl, created a website for fun and launched it during a group presentation in their Small Talk class. In two days the site had over 1,000,000 hits. Only at Tech.

is a new site on campus, though technically not affiliated. Its popularity stems from the pride Tech students find in complaining. It captures the sentiment that since we suffer more, we are better than everyone else.

The format of the site may look familiar to those who waste their time on FML or Texts From Last Night, the stories however, are totally unique to Tech. For example, #212, “More squirrels than girls. Only at Tech.” Or how about #694, “The freshman guys on my floor at Smith figured out that they could keep playing Xbox during a power outage by wiring their television and Xbox directly into the emergency fluorescent lighting. Only at Tech.”

The students behind the website are Andrew Ash, third- year CS; Holden Link, third- year CM; Kaliyana Finney, fourth- year CM; and David Turk, third-year CM. The ratio might seem too ironic to be true based on the postings, but she does exist, honestly. The idea came about during lunch one day after their CS 2440 class.

“We created [the site] back in the beginning of October,” Turk said, “but we didn’t tell anyone or actually launch the site until Nov. 4” Since then, the site has over 5,000 fans on Facebook, and has a visitation the size of a quarter of Tech’s campus.

“One of the things that really struck us about how fast it spread was how fast it spread without any kind of advertising…we launched the site was when we were giving a presentation in our Small Talk class, and we just added it on a slide at the end,” Link said.

Link provided the graphic design for the website as well as the hosting.

“I have a web server because I run a little video game company so I already had all of the resources we needed to be able to put the website online,” Link said, “All we needed to do was buy the name and put it up there.”

Finney and Turk moderate the site by approving the stories that Tech students submit. and Ash is a programmer that maintains the site. Keeping the site clean doesn’t take too much time according to Turk, who says that he does his post monitoring work mostly when he’s bored in class or has nothing to do.

“The point of the site is for people to tell their stories…things that happen in their dorms or when they’re walking to class,” Turk said.

In the two and a half weeks since the site was launched the stories have come in to their own consistent style. Ash said that when the site first launched people had stories from their past four, five or six years at Tech to tell.

“Even alumni would come along and say ‘you know back in my day…’ But now we’re starting to get stories that happen on a day to day basis. We’re also starting to see the style has changed a lot. If something happens at noon it will be on the site by 3 p.m.,” Ash said.

The lone female on the Only at Tech team is feeling the fame. “Apparently I don’t exist…people have submitted stories asking if I’m single,” Finney said.

The site isn’t perfect. According to the team there are more ideas coming in than there is ability to make happen, creating a bottleneck.

The solution, more time working on the site so that we can spend more time on the site not doing our work.

The speed at which this site has become part of the Tech culture truly shows how closely connected the Tech campus is, for better or worse.

A website spreads quicker and more easily than the swine flu, Only at Tech.

So next time you wish you did have the swine flu so that you would have an excuse to skip Lab, check out the site at . Because sometimes, saying FML just isn’t strong enough, Only at Tech.