Duke ITAC - August 12, 1999 Minutes

DUKE ITAC - August 12, 1999 Minutes


August 12, 1999

Attending: Pakis Bessias, John Board, Jim Coble (for David Ferriero), Nevin Fouts, John Harer, Alfred Trozzo (for Paul Harrod), David Jamieson-Drake, Betty Leydon, Andy Keck (for Roger Loyd), John Oates, George Oberlander, Lynne O'Brien, Mike Pickett, Rafael Rodriguez, Clark Smith, Robert Wolpert.

Guests: Bob Currier.

Review of Minutes and Announcements:

Minutes of the previous meeting accepted without revision.

Instructional Technology Incentive Grants

Lynne O'Brien stated that her department awarded the Instructional Technology Incentive Grants. On the ITIG Wep page there is a list of applicants, proposal title, school, department and dollar amount of the award. This year the committee plans to call for proposals at the end of January, obtain the proposals by March and award the grants before spring.

During the year the award-winning applicants will give a presentation to share information about their projects with the rest of the campus. Grant recipients also will submit an end-of-year project report.

The committee will consider a variety of ways to publicize the projects, including, possibly, a spring fair. The review committee would like to refine the proposal process to ensure that all proposals are well developed and closely fit the funding criteria. By requesting proposals earlier this year, there will be time for CIT staff to review them and offer help in revising them before the proposals are submitted.

This Instructional Technology Incentive Grants program will be repeated for 1999-2000. The program could be extended for future years depending on the success of the program.

Clark Smith suggested that the award reports should be archived so others can use the reports for research.

Lynne O'Brien stated that the proposal criteria indicated that projects should be strongly endorsed by the school or department. However, because the call for proposals was sent out so late in the semester, the review committee accepted proposals that stated that they had departmental endorsement without requiring written proof. Next year, the committee will be more explicit in indicating what kind of endorsements from department chairs or deans are required. The committee gave higher priority to proposals which supported stated university curriculum goals, such as meeting the requirements of Curriculum 2000 or increasing the internationalization of courses.

Role of the Vice-Provost for Academic Affairs

John Harer explained how the Provost office is organized. There are three "academic" vice provosts. Cathy Davidson is Vice-Provost for Interdisciplinary studies, Bruce Kuniholm is Vice-Provost for Internationalization and Development and John Harer is Vice-Provost for Academic affairs. The word "academic" means that they are faculty members on term appointments, as compared to the other Vice-Provosts, like Jim Roberts and Betty Leydon, who have more "permanent" appointments.

John Harer's office takes the lead with overall planning efforts with the deans. John organizes and runs the meetings of the Academic Affairs Committee and the Board of Trustees. He believes in decentralized computing. His responsibility is combining and coordinating instructional needs with research needs and how both can use high performance computing. John will work with the Deans on all aspects of supporting science and engineering, including coordinating the efforts to use computing effectively in all aspects of teaching and research.

Discussion on Academic and Research Computing Needs

    • Provide a high-speed network?
    • House the share memory machines?
    • House the visualization studio?
    • Have the experts?
    • To run the shared machine.
    • To have the idea.
    • That can translate and convert the idea, making it comes alive on the computer.
  2. John Board stated that there would be changes in the shared North Carolina Super Computing Center. Duke may have to pay for time on the super computer and will decide which projects get Duke's share of computing time.

    David Jamieson-Drake suggested that there should be some way to get in touch with the people in Duke's research areas.

    Nevin Fouts stated that a blend is needed across domains, PCs, Servers.

    Clark Smith stated that one computer model would be where work stations work together to solve a problem instead of central processing of a mainframe.

    John Board discussed which model too used to solve problems.  Which problems can be solved with a super computer and which problems can be solved with many PC's working together. Problems can be broken down into pieces and a PC assigned to solve each piece of the problem.

    There was a general discussion on user fees. What are Duke?s needs when it comes to the super computing area and which needs will get the funding.

    Betty Leydon wanted to know what OIT could provide centrally. Should OIT;

    There was a general discussion on who the experts should be and whom they would report too. The experts should not be long-term people who tend to become stale with years on the job. It was suggested that the person's tenure would be tied to the life of the grant. Also, there is the problem concerning how much help the grant person can give to people not involved with the grant. They have solved this problem in the past.

    Nevin Fouts suggested that the model would involve three types of people. One person;

    John Board said that we need people who understand the computing needs of others. People need to be drawn out so they can relay what their computing needs are.

    David Jamieson-Drake said there is some problem finding a way to work out computing needs.

    John Harer said the Dean at the Medical School would like the school to work more closely with the rest of the university in all aspects of research, including computing.

DukeNet Upgrade

    2. One monitor would show the speed using the current network.
    3. One monitor would show the speed using the upgraded network.
  2. Robert Currier explained the upgrade to the DukeNet to a 100-megabyte backbone will be completed the end of September 1999. This was the first time persons from different areas collaborated to design the backbone. The web site www.netcom.duke.edu will have the layout of the upgrade. There is redundancy build into the system with primary and backup machines.

    There will be fast Ethernet from PCs to the closet machine where the connection is made to the 100-megabyte backbone. There will be a gig connection to the Medical CSN.

    Expect a performance increase at the end of September. The routers will support IP, IPX and APPLETALK. APPLETALK is needed for the MACs to connect to the peripheral machines such as printers.

    John Board mentioned that the future will be IP but there is a need to help people move to IP.

    Robert Wolpert asked if there would be any issues concerning DukeNet.
    Robert Currier said the routers will handle video conferences - large band width use and low band width demands. The routers are scalable boxes. They can adjust these to protect the network from broadcasts.

    David Jamieson-Drake brought up the denial of service attacks.
    Robert Currier said that stopping denial of service attacks would be possible once OIT detects them.

    Betty Leydon wanted some ideas on how to showcase the DukeNet upgrade to senior management.
    David Jamieson-Drake suggested videoconferences.
    John Board suggested how the setup is used for security.
    Nevin Fouts suggested that videoconferences be shown to senior management.
    Clark Smith suggested a demonstration on what videoconferences looks like before and after the upgrade.

    Betty Leydon stated they need to start planning for the time when the band width becomes congested. Also, priorities for band width usage needs to establish.
    Mike Pickett agreed that the band width might become congested  before the time expected.

Other Business

Robert Wolpert in closing asked how the GTE negotiations are going.

Betty Leydon stated that progress was being made and that OIT needs to create a support model in case there are many people signing up for this service at one time. Also OIT needs to make sure GTE can deliver what is in the contract. This year's contract price is lower. Rafael Rodriguez mentioned that there were some issues with the upgrade from a T1 line to DS3 service. The information that OIT had was that the current routes would support about 1,000 users on a DS3 line. OIT testing has resulted in overloaded conditions at about five users. OIT is working with GTE and Cisco to figure out the problems and potential solutions. Until there is a solution to this problem, it would be counterproductive to add more ADSL users so it's important to resolve this issue prior to announcing the new ADSL rates.

The meeting adjourned at 5:30 PM.