Duke ITAC - July 2, 1998 Minutes

DUKE ITAC - July 2, 1998 Minutes


July 2, 1998

4pm, 211 Tel-Com Building

Robert Wolpert, Chair

Attending: Robert Wolpert (RW), Betty LeCompagnon (BLC), Rafael Rodriguez (RR), Jim Dronsfield (JD), Landen Bain (LB), Ed Anapol (EA), Ginny Cake (GC), Jimmy Grewal (JG), Kevin Cheung (KC), Paul Harrod (PH), Alvin Lebeck (AL), John Oates (JO), Nevin Fouts (NF), Pakis Bessias (PB), Donna Hewitt (DH), Roger Loyd (RL), John Board (JB), Rex McCallum (RM), Pete Boyd (PB), Ken Hirsch (KH), David Ferriero (DF), Jay Senerchia (JS), Melissa Mills (MM), Jim Rigney (JR).

Agenda for the meeting approved. Minutes of June 4 meeting approved as circulated, for posting.


BLC: Dr. Trask has created four small work groups reporting to him; BLC and LB are on the technology group. Others: money, people, facilities. BLC attended conferences sponsored by IBM, Microsoft, and (with DF) the Higher Education Forum.

ADSL Offering

RR: The GTE contract has been signed, with rollout being planned in targeted areas of the GTE calling area, to get the largest concentrations of Duke people. Subscribers will have Dukenet IP addresses. Flat fee for installation to the house $60.00, plus $80.00 for wiring in the house. Modem purchase $300.00 if not leased; lease is $12.00/month. Service levels:

  • Bronze (256Kdown, 64Kup) $35/mo (plus modem)
  • Silver (384Kdown, 384Kup) $55/mo (plus modem)
  • Gold (768Kdown, 768Kup) $75/mo (plus modem)
  • Platinum (1.5Mdown, 768up) $110/mo (plus modem)

OIT and GTE are both creating websites to provide information, and preparing for help-desk support. All Duke users (faculty, staff, students) can be billed directly, or through departmental billing if preferred. Payment will be possible as a regular recurring credit card deduction; probably not as a payroll deduction (PH).

GC will work with student members of ITAC to be sure the highest concentration areas for student residences are included.

New Computer Purchases Web Site

RR, JR led discussion. RR: Status report: Since May 19, have sold 404 systems for office/clinical and 42 individual. Compared to commercially-available prices, the savings to Duke was $239,000. Mailings describing the packages are going out to all students. Vendors vary in flexibility (Dell's prices competitive; IBM, HP pricing not yet competitive). All vendors want Duke to offer servers; JR needs ITAC members' advice on server sales. MM: JR should be invited to CLIC/CLAC to discuss software configuration on the bundled computers. Pricing is regularly checked; because of vendors' forward-pricing, pricing does not vary as quickly as market prices do. Possibility of seeking other vendors (Micron, Compaq, etc.) was mentioned. JR will circulate lists of the current bundles' hardware and software to ITAC through RR.

Use of Technology in the Classroom

DF reported on progress on the search for a Director of Information Technology; good pool of applicants, screening underway. Five will come for campus visits of 1 1/2 days each. Goal is to make an appointment during the fall semester.

Further step: Making classrooms technology-ready, or upgrading the technology already present. Recent discussion with Jim Siedow, BLC, DF, others focused on the issue of technology in classrooms; currently there appears to be no university-wide process for dealing with the issue. A letter from Owen Astrakhan to Dean Chafe provided impetus for forming a small group to be constituted to look at technology in classrooms. There should be some way of involving the schools (beyond A&S) in such discussions, though the main focus will remain on undergraduate education. MM indicated that an Arts & Sciences Council committee has worked on fitting classrooms with technology, especially in lecture halls. Overall goal is not to create one pattern, but to install technology that fits the needs of teaching/learning in each site. JB: If the idea is to create central facilities by fitting out classrooms, there may be scheduling problems between 9:00 am and noon, when classroom space is at a premium.

Later needs will be for user education (both faculty and students) and support for the equipment and software. JO: Humanities' use of computing is sadly behind at Duke. JB: Wireless installations may make use of technology in multi-use classrooms more feasible.

ITAC members are to send ideas on the topic to DF (at dsf1@acpub).

Strategic Plan Renewal Discussion

JB: The previous plan is now two years old; should it be renewed, rewritten? How? By whom? It spoke somewhat in generalities, and provided a tactical plan for one year (not updated). Particularly need to revisit enterprise-wide and process areas.

RW: All members should commit ourselves to READ the plan by the next meeting. See "Report of the Strategic Planning Committee" at <http://www.oit.duke/edu/itac/stratplan/report/report.html>.

LB: Respects the value of the original document; its principles have held up well. Would prefer an update, not rewrite.

BLC: Agrees. Thinks the principles were thoughtful and right; processes need further attention.

JG: The appendices were outdated, but the rest read well; structure of the document might be redesigned to take all of the more time-bound information into appendices.

EA (welcomed by BLC as new ITAC member): The major issues should be listed regularly for review; for instance, the document needs a discussion of Y2K issues. EA read the document before the meeting, and commended it. He is chair of the Administrative Computing Advisory Committee.

Decision: All to read the document, discuss its revision (when? who? how extensive?) at next meeting.

Other Business

JG/KC: Students are proposing to establish an emerging technologies research facility for pre-release software/hardware, where anyone from Duke might go and be able to explore technology. Currently, no such facility exists. JG/KC will bring a proposal to a future meeting. JB: Such an idea was also in the strategic plan. MM: Issue is who manages such a facility, where would it be located, how would it be funded and administered?

The meeting adjourned at 5:20 pm.