FAQ Page

Please click on a question to reveal the answer.

1: What is the purpose of this web application?
• This website is the senior project of Alex J. Fierro, senior in Mathematics/Computer Science at SUNY Purchase College. This was created for the Purchase students affected by the installation of security cameras. I used the Google Maps API to produce a map of the SUNY Purchase campus and built a social networking site around it allowing users to place virtual markers on the map to locate the positions of the cameras, as well as add comments, engage in discussion and upload photos.
2: Why doesn’t Fort Awesome or the Student Services Building appear on the map?
• The satellite imagery is generated by Google Maps/Google Earth and they get the images from third-party companies. Unfortunately, most of the satellite pictures are outdated. The company that provides the imagery for the Purchase area is called DigitalGlobe and they are generally 2-3 years behind on their imagery. In the meantime, I am close to a temporary solution that involves drawing the missing structures on the map. Updates to follow.
3: Why do I need a Purchase.edu e-mail address?
• At the current time, registration is restricted to those with purchase.edu e-mail addresses only. This limits users from having multiple accounts and should also keep vandalism (such as comment spamming and intentionally uploading false information) to a minimum. If you’re a member of the press and would like a temporary account, please contact me from your work e-mail address.
4: Is my password and personal information secure?
• Absolutely! Security is one of my main programming concentrations and this website is a shining example of my work. Among countless protection measures implemented on this website is the cryptographic hash function used to encrypt passwords and other sensitive data. The MD5 algorithm is used extensively and is explained at Wikipedia or at the official write-up.
5: Can I hide my personal information from public?
• Yes! This website is dedicated to protecting Purchase students’ anonymity, so naturally anything you submit (camera locations, comments, images, etc) may be done so anonymously. To change your privacy settings, visit the “My Account” page. Be warned though, submitting anonymously does not give you a free pass to break the rules. If caught, your account will be locked and I will trace it back to your Purchase e-mail address and send you nasty e-mails and sign you up for spam. :-)
6: What are cookies and why do I need them enabled?
• Simply put, cookies are tiny chunks of text generated by a website and stored on your computer. When you log in to this website (or any website), a small amount of data is written to your hard drive. Without cookies, you’d have to type in your username and password every single time a page on the website loads. For security, your cookie gets “destroyed” (deleted) two hours after you login or whenever you close your browser.
7: Why do I need to type those 4 letters/numbers all the time?
• I'm sure you've seen these before and I know they're annoying. A randomly chosen hidden code is displayed to make sure you aren't a robot and to make sure you don't accidently duplicate your information by refreshing the page.