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Campus Computing News

By Dr. Maurice Leatherbury, Senior Director of Academic Computing

New Building for Computing Center and Others

Everyone in the Computing Center is excited and grateful about plans to build an expansion to the Information Sciences Building to house many of our operations. Approved by the Board of Regents in February, the expansion and resulting additional space is planned to be shared between the Computing Center, the Microcomputer Maintenance Shop, and Classroom Support Services. The Computing Center will vacate the offices it has on the second floor of the ISB (to be filled by the School of Library and Information Sciences), all of its second-floor offices in Marquis Hall, and the offices its telecommunications department currently has in the Health Center. In addition, the ISB 110 general access computer lab will be turned over to the Science and Technology Library (the lab will be relocated, either within the ISB or in the new addition).

The additional space is badly needed to house CC staff (most of whom share offices designed for one person) and to provide adequate space for the growing number of computers and data communications devices that are currently on the first floor of the ISB. Planning for the building has begun, with anticipated move-in some time in late 2002.

Team Web to Start Drafting New UNT Web Publishing Policy

New State of Texas rules for state Web sites have been adopted (see http://www.state.tx.us/Standards/S201-12.htm for the new standard) and UNT's Web policy needs to be revised to conform to the State's mandate. Team Web, the group on campus that is charged with recommending Web policy, will meet during the week of March 27th to revise the current UNT policy (http://www.unt.edu/irc/policy/webpubr.htm) for adoption by the IRC and the Board.

There are significant new requirements in the State standards that will affect Web design on campus.  Principal among those new rules are:

  1. Accessibility guidelines have to be followed to insure that persons with visual impairments can use Web pages. This rule in general prohibits the use of frames because screen reader software doesn't handle frames very well now.
  2. We have to have a privacy policy that answers questions about the use of information our Web site collects about visitors to our site(s), such as the server logs by which we measure traffic on our site, or information we collect from potential students, for example.
  3. Any new or changed Web page that meets the definition of "state publication" (which most UNT Web pages do) will have to have four "metatags" assigned to them after July 1. Those metatags are intended to provide better searching capabilities and consist of (1) a title of the page, (2) a brief description of the subjects covered on the page, (3) up to keywords covering the subjects of the page, and (4) the author of the page, which the rules say are the State of Texas and the agency name.
  4. Our University home page and key entry points to UNT's Web site have to provide links to the State of Texas Web site and various other pages specified in the rules.

Anyone at UNT who develops Web pages should be on the lookout for the revised UNT policy and should start familiarizing themselves with the State regulations.