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Minutes provided by Sue Ellen Richey, Recording Secretary*

Committee Graphic

September 19, 2006


VOTING MEMBERS PRESENT: PHILIP TURNER, CHAIR, JUDITH ADKISON, PATRICK PLUSCHT, TIM CHRISTIAN, LOU ANN BRADLEY, JIM CURRY, ELIZABETH HINKLE-TURNER, UWE ROSSBACH, JON NELSON, DON GROSE, CENGIZ CAPAN, DON BUTLER (for JOHN HOOPER), MARGARET AMBUEHL, BRUCE HUNTER, RAY BANKS, ROBERT NIMOCKS, GUILLERMO OYARCE, RAMU MUTHIAH, GINNY ANDERSON NON-VOTING MEMBERS PRESENT:  MAURICE LEATHERBURY, PHILIP BACZEWSKI, DOUG MAINS, JOE ADAMO, CHARLIE BRIEN, SUE ELLEN RICHEY (Recording Secretary) MEMBERS ABSENT:  TOBYE RAE NELSON, SARA WILSON MCKAY, JOHN PRICE, ABRAHAM JOHN, BOBBY CARTER, CHRISTY CRUTSINGER, SCOTT WINDHAM

GUESTS PRESENT: CHARLOTTE RUSSELL

The Chair asked for introductions of all members, since there were new members for this year, then welcomed everyone.

The minutes of the July 18, 2006 were approved as distributed.

Distributed Computing Support Management Team**  

Philip Baczewski reported for the Distributed Computing Support Management Team that the committee met on July 21 when they established a subcommittee to look into the technical feasibility of replacing Novell Netware with Microsoft Server and Active Directory and moving from GroupWise to Microsoft Exchange for email services.  A meeting of this subcommittee was set for the following week.  Representatives from the Gartner Group presented a demonstration of using the Gartner portal to find the IT analysis information Gartner provides.

At an August 4th meeting of DCSMT, Elizabeth Hinkle-Turner reported on new statistical applications that are accessible on the markov.acs.unt.edu server and available for inclusion in desktop and lab computer images. This includes network license versions of SPSS, JAWS, and MAGIC. 

DCSMT met again on September 15.  The idea of anti-copy software was discussed and it was determined that support for data encryption seemed to be a better approach than trying to implement anti-copy software at the department or University level.  Allen Bradley reported on the status of the CITC server maintenance service which supplements the manufacturer maintenance for Dell and HP servers with on-campus parts and service availability.  He stated that most areas that had expressed interest had signed up for the service at the rate of  $150 per server maintained.

Judith Adkison asked if DCSMT had come to any conclusion about the switch from Novell GroupWise to Microsoft Exchange Email.  Philip replied that they are still in the process of making an assessment of the features of each product as well as the needs of various departments.

Learning Enhancement Planning Group

Patrick Pluscht reported for the Learning Enhancement Planning Group that TurnItIn will be renewed on November 17th for another year and stated that the integration of that product with WebCT Vista is working well.  The product is available to all faculty and accessible by going to the TurnItIn website.  Patrick also reported that the Horizon Wimba product, “Live Classroom”, which is a web-conferencing system, will soon be available to faculty and staff for collaborative meetings.  They already have VoiceTools available within and without Vista.  He plans to send out information about the product as soon as it is available for use. 

Patrick also reported that a clicker technology called “Turning Point” is being used by about a dozen faculty members; and COBA is conducting a test program with several instructors, which seems to be going well, so far, according to Cengiz Capan.  Patrick stated that if the campus does decide to standardize on one particular clicker, it won’t prohibit departments from using another product; but of course, there would be an advantage to using one technology across campus since it would save students the cost of having to purchase more than one.  Ray Banks asked about the cost of clickers and asked if students were going to acquire them through the payment of a student fee, by purchasing one themselves, or by renting them by the semester.  Patrick stated his hope that students will use them for multiple classes over multiple semesters, thus making the purchase of only one clicker more cost effective.  Cengiz Capan stated that COBA is going to be charging students an annual fee for the use of a clicker (approximately $13/year).  There was some discussion about some of the clickers currently being used by various faculty.  Patrick said he would be willing to speak to student government senators if they would like him to.  There was some discussion about session cookies used to authenticate the clicker, following a question from Uwe Rossbach.

Patrick also reported that they have had a response from Legal regarding the iTunes University contract; apparently there is a questionable clause regarding putting files up that do not have rights management.  CDL or someone will need to develop a system to monitor and enforce copyrights; and CDL is checking with other universities to see how they have handled these same concerns. 

Communications Planning Group

Lou Ann Bradley stated that the Communications Planning Group has not met since the last IRC meeting.

EIS Planning Group

Don Butler reported for the EIS Planning Group that information regarding on-going projects can be accessed at www.eis.unt.edu.  Don stated that they are working on putting the UNT Fact Book online and expect to have it available by some time in November and the current year’s Fact Book will be the last one published in paper form.  Don also reported that the Campus Solution upgrade is presently underway and the new URLs will be published by early next week.  A second request for bid will have to be conducted for the CRM module due to the fact that by the time the contract made its way through the legal department, UNT’s needs had changed.

Standards & Policy Planning Group

Tim Christian stated that the Standards & Policy Planning Group has not yet met and will not meet unless there is a new charge or issue to deal with.

Student Computing Planning Group

Elizabeth Hinkle-Turner stated that the Student Computing Planning Group has not met but reported that presentations about student computing services have been made to over 6,000 incoming students and their parents, and a large number of pamphlets were distributed at the Mean Green Fling.  In response to a question from Cengiz Capan, Elizabeth stated that this Planning Group is made up of representatives of GALMAC, GALC, RESNET, Student Government and Graduate Student Council.

Don Grose announced the expansion of library lab facilities by an increase of 40 workstations, and Elizabeth added that many standard office types of software applications have been added to the Library’s public servers.  Lou Ann Bradley stated that the Library has also added 10 laptops for checkout in the Science Technology Lab by faculty, staff and students.

WebCT

Dr. Turner reported that for the first time enrollments in online courses has crossed the 50,000 mark, with 25,000 individual students using WebCT.  The peak usage has been 2000 simultaneous users.  Distributed Learning will be forming a committee to look at the ramifications of Blackboard’s acquisition of WebCT.  UNT has been assured that WebCT Vista will be supported over the next 18 months or so, but WebCT will be putting out a fused product by the end of that time.   Dr. Turner stated that there are a few technical problems with WebCT, but for the most part, they are satisfied right now.  It was reported that in this year’s Coordinating Board report, UNT is considered to be #1 in the amount of online enrollments, with University of Houston at #2, and TWU #3.

IRC Organization and Function

Maurice Leatherbury reported having met with UNT’s new President Bataille regarding the organization and function of the Information Resources Council, and asked her what she thought of its current function.  Pres. Bataille said she would wait to answer that until after the study group reports to her on the status of information technology at UNT.

Legal issues

The Chair asked if the council is still interested in having Nancy Footer attend an IRC meeting to discuss the processing of contracts through the legal office.  The consensus was to invite her so Dr. Turner said he would ask her to attend either the October or November IRC meeting.

Firewall

Joe Adamo distributed a schematic drawing of the firewall since there was some discussion regarding the new firewall at the July IRC meeting.  Joe explained that the first diagram shows the layout of the network as it exists presently.  The second diagram shows the firewall itself, and Joe explained that they have moved the rules that were on the router over to it, so everything should work about the same as it had before.  Access has not changed and everybody still has the same level of capability as they had previously. 

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.


* For a list of IRC Regular and Ex-officio Members click here.

**DCSMT Minutes can be found here.

IRC Meeting Schedule

The IRC generally meets on the third Tuesday of each month, from 2-4 p.m., in the Administration Building Board Room. From time to time there are planned exceptions to this schedule. The schedule can be found here. All meetings of the IRC, its program groups, and other committees, are open to all faculty, staff, and students.

 

 


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