Duke ITAC - December 5, 2013 Minutes
ITAC Meeting Minutes
Thursday December 5, 2013
4:00 - 4:05 - Announcements
· There were no exceptions to the 9-12-13 meeting minutes
· Leigh Goller is serving as the representative for internal audit until Mark Phillips’ replacement has been appointed as the director of internal audit.
· Welcome to Mark DeLong as the Research Computing Director, working with Julian Lombardi and our research computing faculty.
4:05- 4:20 – Calendar Harmony, Doug Drum (Infrastructure), Debbie DeYulia, and Matt Royal (OIT Service Desk) (10 minute presentation, 5 minute discussion)
What it is: Migration to Office365 is underway and once it’s complete, will provide a common platform for calendars. This new solution will provide access to users’ free/busy information for both the University and Duke Medicine environments. ActiveSync and Outlook based clients allow the most functionality for the new calendar service.
Why it’s relevant: We will discuss calendaring with Exchange, including specific use cases, helpful hints, and how Office365 might change calendaring
Specific Use Cases for Exchange Calendaring and recommendations based on the various clients used:
· Referring to your own calendar is most commonly being done through various clients - MS Outlook 2013 & 2010 for Windows, and MS 2011 for MACs, Outlook Web App (Web interface for Exchange mailbox and calendar), MAC Calendar (iCal), and Android/iOS calendar apps. NOTE: Calendaring synchronization using mobile devices is more challenging because the possibility of losing a connection to the network is more likely in the middle of a transaction. In most cases, we recommend removing and re-adding the account from the device to correct synchronization issues.
· Managing your own calendar can be accomplished using Outlook 2011, 2013, Outlook Web App (OWA), and MAC Calendar, but variations exist in the available feature sets to add events, create recurring events/meetings, invite others and respond to invitations. For example, iOS and Android calendar apps limit the ability to view the availability of invitees when scheduling a meeting. Our recommendation is to return to a computer to perform these functions using a different calendaring client. Q: In those cases, is it worthwhile trying to use the Web App on a mobile device? Yes, if you’re comfortable with making those changes on a small screen. Q: Is iCal the old MAC calendaring client? As of MAC OS 10-10.7, it’s called MAC Calendar. Q: Is the adoption large enough that you can count on the reports of availability being accurate? It depends on how up to date the other person’s calendar is with respect to blocking free and busy time.
· Working with shared calendars or mailboxes can be accomplished using Outlook 2010, 2011, and 2013 clients along with the OWA. OWA is the tool of choice to monitor the booking policy of a shared room or equipment. MAC Calendar only works if it was the tool used to initially set up the delegation permissions. The reason being, MAC Calendar has a smaller set of delegation permissions. The most current versions of MAC Mail no longer support shared mailboxes and there is no indication that the functionality will be available in the future. Android and iOS devices use the ActiveSync protocol and do not support shared calendars (viewing contents and making changes) nor mailboxes, but a room can still be invited.
· Outlook 2010, 2011, and 2013 have the richest feature sets for delegating your own calendar. OWA can be used to share details about your calendar with others, but cannot be used to delegate control of the calendar in Exchange 2010 but has been shown to be successful in Office 365. ActiveSync clients cannot control calendar delegation.
· Outlook 2010 and 2013 are the most robust choices for administering others’ calendars. OWA works particularly well if controlling access to a room or a resource since booking polices can be set from here. MAC calendar works well for managing personal calendars, but is not designed for managing others’ calendars. Neither iOS nor Android apps can be used for this purpose.
· Maintaining Calendar Harmony – Suggestions by Cornell University
o When working with Exchange calendars, send all updates to all recipients. If an update is not sent to all the recipients calendars, they have no visibility into the change(s) made.
o Always respond when accepting or declining (i.e. deleting an invitation does not denote a decline)
o Have only one person manage a calendar
o Keep recurring meetings simple. However, if there are occasions where exceptions need to be made within a recurrence, canceling the occurrence and creating a new instance of the meeting seems to work best. Outlook for Windows is the most recommended client for the more complex circumstances.
o Keep your software up-to-date – Dot 0 versions of Android and iOS releases sometimes present some issues, but the Dot 1 and further versions correct them.
· What about Office 365?
o The user experience on Office 365 is not fundamentally different than Exchange, but the Outlook Web App is different.
o Scheduling across environment will still work with the ability to schedule between Duke University and Duke Medical units improving.
o As part of the Office 365 migration, we are moving departments together to allow users and resources which have to interact together are moved at the same time. Q: Is there a way to synchronize Office 365 with a Google Calendar to meet the needs of the student and faculty? We will do some testing and produce some documentation.
4:20- 4:40 – Hack-A-Thon, Michael Faber (OIT), Dennis Li & Ashley Qian (Student Representative and HackDuke Organizer) (10 minute presentation, 10 minute discussion)
What it is: Earlier this fall, Duke sponsored a 24 hour event to allow students from across the country to write applications and build gadgets. Over 500 students participated in this event.
Why it’s relevant: The Hack-A-Thon challenge resulted in over 100 different projects, which were submitted for review and judged based on relevance, creativity and overall technical design.
· 500 students from colleges and universities in the Southeastern U.S. participated in the event. The event presented an opportunity to meet and work with students of all different backgrounds and experiences. For examples, the third place winning team was a combination of 2 Rutgers students and a Duke student.
· The sponsors not only provided financial backing, but flew out mentors and developers to assist with the recruiting process, helped students develop code, provided APIs to write the code and created their own prize categories. Approximately 25-30 sponsor employees participated in the event.
· Of the top 11 projects, 6 or 7 were hardware based. Q: Are this many hardware submissions atypical for these events? Yes. Most project submissions are software based, especially considering the 24 hour timeframe.
Students provided very positive reviews of the event, specifically related to the tech talks provided and crash courses on app development for those new to hack-a-thon events and programming. While the mentors were instrumental in helping participants, the students were a great help to each other.
A team of four Duke students designed the winning submission. While wearing a pair of sensor-laden gloves, a user can communicate using a variety of hand signs, and the system will translate those signals into speech. The system also has the ability to add new words to its vocabulary on the fly. Q: How did you conceive the idea; How far in advance did you plan? What was the lead-up and what do see next? We started planning 2 days before the event and began implementing it at 3PM on the first day of the hack-a-thon. In the future, we’d like to make the glove blue-tooth enabled, creating better ways to mount the sensors for reliability and push the process to mobile phones, allowing the sounds to be played through speakers on phones.
Q: What are the sensor sets used in the gloves? We used a gyroscope with 5 resistance values and 3 X-Y-Z values. One of the complexities for this project was taking all the complexities of sign-language and converting them into a product easily and quickly decoded. We developed a button system where we looked up all the signed and determined that each sign has a defining point. When a user signs, a button is pushed at that defining point, the computer takes a snapshot and processes the data. We plan to make the system much more dynamic in the future. Currently, the system recognizes about 85% of signs. Since the gyroscope has an accelerometer, we could take time point readings and record entire motions, creating more accuracy
Q: How does it translate as different people use the glove? Right now, it works if the glove fits perfectly and works by glove size. In the future, we could use more association and machine learning, more training to create less of a dependency on the glove and its wearer.
Q: Are there any other note-worthy projects to highlight beyond the winning submission? Over 100 projects were submitted, including Air Instruments (allowing a user to play an instrument by tracking hand movements and playing corresponding notes on the desired instrument), a Nerf Gun powered by and Oculus Web Cam, a portable OnStar device for drivers, athletes, soldiers and senior citizens, and Crowd Crunch, an online virtual assistant grants permission for someone else to perform tasks a user has no time for.
Q: When will the next event take place? We don’t have a schedule confirmed, but will keep you posted on our progress.
Q: Did you capture the range of disciplines represented? The majority of the disciplines were Computer Science and Electrical & Computer Engineering, but there were some people who were studying design, and some from the UNC school of journalism.
Q: Will this event be held every semester? We’re still deciding whether to host another event next semester, whether we’ll scale the event, stay the same or become exclusive.
4:40- 5:00 – 3D Printing, Evan Levine, Chip Bobbert (10 minute presentation, 10 minute discussion)
What it is: 3D printing is a process of making a three-dimensional solid object of virtually any shape from a digital model. 3D printing is achieved using an additive process, where successive layers of material are laid down in different shapes.
Why it’s relevant: 3D printing systems have reached a price point where using this technology is a viable option here at Duke. We will review this technology and update you on the future plans for 3D printing offerings at Duke.
· 3D printing is not new, but is becoming increasing popular and affordable. The question remains, how can it be utilized at Duke? Currently 3D printing has been reserved for specialty labs in largely the sciences and engineering. Our goal is to expand its availability to other departments across Duke.
· What is 3D printing?
o The manufacturing model for the last 3,000 years has been to cut away material. Regardless of the raw material’s composition, we cut away what we needed and discarded the rest. 3D printing works differently in that it stacks dots of material on top of other dots to eventually form an object. Many of the parts being produced today could not have been built using subtractive manufacturing.
· According to Bloomberg, 3D printing was a $2.2B industry in 2012. GE has invested about $2.8B into their new line of jet engines manufactured primarily using 3D printing technology and broke ground on a plant in Asheville, NC to fabricate the parts for the new engine series. Forbes has speculated the 3D printing to have an impact from approximately $230-$550B by 2025.
· Why does 3D printing matter?
o The manufacturing industry has been changed in that we can reach a more detailed level of intricacy with the objects produced using this method. For example, doctors were able to replace 75% or a man’s skulls with a 3D printed object. Dentistry and prosthetics (both humans and animals) are also industries actively incorporating 3D printing technology into their service offerings. For example, cells have been used to recreate ears, and our colleagues at NC State successfully created dog prosthesis. 3D printing is also seeing growth in the food science industry.
· 3D Printing at Duke: It’s currently not readily available across the campus. We are looking to make the technology more available since the costs for purchasing and operating are decreasing. What that means for training and pedagogical use cases remains to be seen. We’re interested to see how departments outside the sciences will make use of 3D printing.
· What are other universities doing?
o NC State, Johns Hopkins, MIT, Caltech, and Northeastern all have prominent maker labs.
· One of our first goals is to obtain lower cost units and experiment with them to determine the best locations based on how much noise and/or odor they emit, for example. Q: One observation is that the printers are not as fast as 2D counterparts and the finite manufacturing time constraint is something to consider before using these devices.
· Q: Are there still thoughts of creating a maker space in the LINK? Yes, The LINK or the MPS Lab are currently being considered, but the whether either space will be the best fit has not been determined.
· Q: Why did the term printing stay around since the resemblance to 2D printing is so remote? The idea that multiple copies are made over and over, similar to the printing press and the printers actually layer multiple copies of 2D images to create a 3D object.
· Q: What materials are available to print objects? In terms of getting projects going, what do you need to know in order for the output of a graphics program to feed a 3D printer? The industry standard file format is the STL (StereroLiothography). The two material polymers we’re focusing on right now are PLA (Poly Lactic Acid) and ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene), ABS is the more sturdy of the two, but requires a slightly more expensive machine. Note: There are techniques associated with 3D printing involving forming a mold, the mold has been filled, softened and cut away, and using various iterations of that approaching, metal castings and other things are being created.
· Q: Arts and Humanities Interests: From visual arts, as part of prototyping and from the historical reconstruction, reproducing models. For example, a group of students is working on the history of medicine collection and can reconstruct the anatomical manikins that appear behind the glass and will be a part of the history of medicine exhibit.
5:00- 5:30 – Holiday Reception