Location: Media Lab (E15 -- East side, outer wall)
Date: 1/27/94 (Spring Term Registration Day)
Since its construction, students have often remarked that the Wiesner Building, with its
white tile exterior, looks like an inside-out bathroom. Since the
building's architect is I. M. Pei '40, the building is often called the
"Pei Toilet" in jest. On registration day for Spring semester, 1994,
students turned this verbal wordplay into a hack, taking an opportunity
to parody a number of other current events on campus in the process.
The Hack was accompanied by a flyer explaining how the Pay Toilet would
solve many of MIT's current problems. [Inside] [Outside]
The Pei Toilet was decorated with various MIT-related graffiti.
- the Pei/Pay Toilet accepted "The MIT
Card" for payment. At this time, MIT was just starting to transition
to "The MIT Card". This magnetic strip ID card served as a meal card
and dormitory access card. Housing and Food Service were announcing
plans to widely expand its use. Students were generally less than
satisfied with the new system.
- The Pei/Pay Toilet allowed MIT Food Service to collect money for
food both coming and going. The MIT's food service has had trouble
breaking even. At the same time, many students believe the food is
- The Pei/Pay Toilet provided bathroom security. Secruity was a big
issue around campus at this point in time. The Institute had even gone
to the point of locking women's bathrooms in areas of the main buildings
they deemed "unsafe."
This was probably the first hack ever to be "covered" first in
electronic media. The
Freshman Fishwrap ran an article while
the hack was still up.
Top of the IHTFP Hack Gallery