Duke ITAC - April 2, 2020 Minutes
Duke ITAC Meeting Minutes – April 02, 2020
4:00 – 4:05 p.m. – Announcements (5 minutes)
Before the meeting started, Laura Webb mentioned a few housekeeping items.
Laura emphasized the “raise hand” feature in zoom for questions to the speakers. The chat history will not be shared post-meeting. Rachel will monitor the chat and will monitor the raised hand and will call upon participants in the order that each “raise hand” appears. For participants' chat, Laura mentioned the use of people’s names when responding to a chat message for chat conversation clarity. Lastly, Laura is the go-to person for any technical issues.
Rachel commenced the meeting and circulated the meeting minutes for March 5, 2020, for review. Hearing no objections regarding the meeting minutes, they are approved and will be published.
4:05 – 4:30 p.m. – UPDATE: IT response to COVID-19 risks, Shawn Miller, Evan Levine, Charley Kneifel, Jen Vizas, John Haws, Richard Biever (25 minutes)
What it is: Earlier this year Duke University leaders responded to the risks posed by COVID-19 to the Duke community. Policies were put in effect to suspend classroom learning, restrict travel and cancel, postpone or virtualize all gatherings and events. The timeframe for these policies has been ever-changing and currently planned to last through early May.
Why it's relevant: On March 23 students returned from Spring Break to classes entirely online from remote locations. We will provide updates since the last ITAC on resources including the latest on:
Shawn Miller started the presentation and shared data regarding the keep teaching effort and keepteaching website.
Website: Since launch - 28k page views; 10,339 unique visitors
- Popular Content: Workshops, Lowtech options, Getting Started; FAQs, Class Meetings Online Workshops + daily office hours: ~1200 participants (over 2 weeks)
- Newsletter: 9k faculty (and some staff) have signed up.
- 31% open rate over the last 7 days. Approaching 49k opens
- Popular content: Zoom practice sessions; Zoom advanced settings: Zoombombing; DKU lessons learned; faculty stories (how Duke faculty keep teaching)
Triage: 360 support requests directly via email@example.com
- Common topics: Zoom, Sakai, content, assessments, misc. tools, student support and services, clarity on policies and decisions posted on Keep Teaching
Overall, triage support has been manageable.
Next, Evan Levine. Evan presented on the CoLab and the COVID Design Working group. The COVID Design Working group has been working to create personal protective equipment for Duke. This working group has been working closely with the command center at Duke Health in terms of what is needed. One area where work has been done is working on face shields for nurses. Evan mentioned that 25 nurses came to test out the face shields. All the 25 nurses that came out said that they would use this as opposed to not using any form of protection. Other areas of work for the group have been working with ventilation filters, isolation tents for patients, pressurized air suits and many other interesting projects coming out of this.
Evan Levine continued to present on CoLab Roots courses. Evan mentioned that due to the current state of things, classes have moved to an online format. There are 24 classes on the schedule. 7 classes completed over the last 2 weeks. Attendance has been high compared to traditional sit-in setting. 164 attendees, 23 per class average.
Q: The equipment that has been created at the CoLab, are they being in use now or how quickly can they be used?
A: face shields are being produced for use.
Up next, Charley Kneifel talked about a network connectivity survey for all students (grad and undergrad). Out of 17k survey invitations, 4369 responses were collected. From those 4369 responses, responses came from 54 different countries. The survey collected data about network performance, download/upload speeds. The data is available through Kits. This data was also given to the college IT offices.
A similar survey was also conducted for faculty. Interesting facts for the faculty survey, 58% of the faculty are spectrum customers, 30% of the faculty have ATT. Trinity had 272 faculty respond to the survey and School of Medicine followed next with 191 respondents.
A few students and faculty had low network bandwidth. Charley mentioned that reaching out to these individuals has been conducted to try and aid connectivity issues by distributing MIFI hotspots within the area.
John Haws next talked about data analytics. The data analytic teams created a dashboard for the First Day of Offsite Classes. The dashboard showed campus activity, how many are using VPN, how many are on campus vs off campus, metrics about the different service usage, metrics for Zoom, Microsoft Teams, RDP gateway, ServiceNow tickets. This data can also be used for regular usage in the future. Lastly, John mentioned that other metrics are coming soon.
Jen Vizas next started to talk about the KeepWorking site. There have been 34k views to the KeepWorking site. The top viewed page is the FAQ page. Webinars is the second page with about 7k views. There have been 25 Webinars over the past 2.5 weeks. An estimated 1500 attendees. How-to videos have been published about different services along with an explanation of how to use the various features these services provide. Promoting EMMA, an email messaging service.
This concluded the first presentation of the evening.
4:30 – 5:30 – Staff Response to Graduate and Undergraduate IT Issues, Jen Vizas and service owners (60 minutes)
What it is: Earlier this semester, ITAC undergraduate and graduate student representatives surveyed their peers on a variety of IT services and perspectives and presented their findings at the ITAC meeting on February 6, 2020. In today’s presentation, Duke’s IT leadership will provide feedback on the students’ concerns.
Why it’s relevant: ITAC values the input and needs of students, especially as it pertains to our goals of supporting Duke’s academic mission and reviewing the status of information technology. The dialogue between staff and students keeps the lines of communication open to identify and address problem areas, as well as to recognize successes. We invite further discussion of student concerns and proposed solutions and will share feedback with Duke’s IT leaders.
Jen Vizas started the presentation by thanking the students for putting the survey together and for collecting feedback. Jen emphasized that the focus for the next year is awareness of the different services. Jen next gave the stage to Bob Johnson to speak about TransLoc.
Bob Johnson mention that they are working with the application owners, Parking and Transportation. The primary change is an application upgrade that Duke will be piloting in the fall. There will also be an effort in supplying analytics to TransLoc. There will also be work regarding market review of alternative solutions.
WiFi, Cellular, Smart Devices
Bob Johnson started by mentioning that they are in the final planning stages on a pilot of supplying WiFi to the East/West bus routes in the Fall of 2020. Bob also mentioned expanding WiFi outdoor coverage. Bob mentioned a few places at Duke where outdoor coverage has been implemented and a few other places that outdoor WiFi coverage will be implemented.
Concerning cellular coverage, Bob mentioned that there was a hold up with T-mobile due to a permitting delay and issues with the Sprint merger. However, he recently met with T-mobile representatives and the result of that meeting seemed to be hopeful. Also, the merger with Sprint will probably fast track the process hopefully by the end of 2020.
Regarding smart devices, enabling 2.4Ghz for IoT devices to easily connect to WiFi. These devices will need to connect to the DukeOpen WiFi access point.
Richard Biever next talked about security. He first started talking about account security. Richard mentioned that there have been many conversations regarding password changes. That is, how to handle password change across the Duke Health and the Duke University side. The changes there are,
- Basic complexity check
- Passphrases (12 + characters)
- No special character requirement. (e.g.! $ : , etc.)
- No expiration on password
Concerning Multifactor Authentication (Duo), there is still a plan to keep the 72 hours remember me feature. There will also be a communication effort to SMS users to move to Duo Push. Lastly, advise people to use passwordless authentication with the Duke Unlock service (https://unlock.duke.edu). The only hiccup here is that the technology is not supported on all devices (apple devices not fully supported- IOS).
Q: Any communication plan to push this out more?
A: We have not made that full-on push about communication. That is due to the technology not being supported across all operating systems(phones/computers). Different channels have been used to spread the word out of the service. For example, Facebook groups and also word of mouth has helped a lot.
Richard also continued to talk about Security Awareness. Richard mentioned the Digital Citizen series whose focus will be on giving people messages about cybersecurity. Richard also highlighted the COVID-19 lessons learned in terms of making and getting online content out to people. One of those highlights was a course regarding home network security.
Richard concluded his presentation by discussing Mobile Device Management (MDM). The takeaways here are that Duke Health requirement for personal devices is that these devices need to be enrolled in MDM. This applies to students in programs associated with the School of Medicine & Nursing due to the potential for PHI in mail or course work. MDM checks that the devices OS is up to date, it is not jailbroken, and enforces the Medical Mail policy.
Q: if one has a password that is already 12 characters, are we good to go? Will we need to change the password?
A: If you already have a long password and this password hasn’t been compromised, you will not need to change it.
Q: When is MDM being rolled out?
A: MDM is already in place for the Health System. It has been in place for a few years now.
Michael Greene started the presentation and mentioned that Sakai usually rolls out new upgrades every year around commencement week. However, due to the COVID-19 crisis this year, the upgrade has been pushed back to August 15. Michael Greene then gave the stage to Martin Briones-Soupcoff to talk about the upgrade and its features.
Below are some of the features coming out:
- Date manager – allow instructors to see an overview of assignments that are due and allow them to change dates if necessary.
- In browser grader – give students the ability to upload file assignments and give the instructor the ability to grade it on the browser instead of downloading multiple files and taking up storage on their computer.
- Anonymous assignments – allows the ability to hide the student name to combat grading bias.
- Name pronunciation – allow users to record themselves or type out phonetic pronunciations of their names.
Other changes to Sakai Defaults include:
Roster: Removed the official roster photo source option (all templates)
Gradebook: Student DUID column added. All templates except for DKU
Email: a button that says ‘send me a copy enabled by default for new messages.
Quiz: default to one attempt. (all courses)
Login: Upped inactivity timer from 3 to 8 hours.
Q: is there a plan to move Sakai to a mobile application in the future? Any plan to move into canvas?
A: there is not a firm plan to move into a mobile application. But we are having a few conversations about it. One of those conversations is the Trinity UI project we are working on whose aim is to do a UI investigation and make it more mobile-friendly.
Q: email function in Sakai where you can’t save a draft if you move to a different part of the page?
A: I have not seen this as a big concern, but we definitely can take this request to save email as a draft to the community. Thank you.
Hugh Thomas started the conversation and thanked the students for the survey they conducted and for the feedback given concerning Duke Mobile. Thomas highlighted some features coming Later in 2020. Two of those features are
- User login and persistent experience for more apps
- And Apple map option for iOS.
A few of the new features coming:
- New live bus/restaurant hours feature been well received since launch Fall 2019
- Crash problems in Oct/Nov/Dec have now been resolved (version 7.3.3 onwards) – network connectivity issues
- A new initiative to drive user feedback (feedback button in the app) and establish a formal working group to provide inputs on roadmap
- Desire to establish a formal testing group with students/faculty
Michael Faber started talking about ePrint and highlighted two responses that came up in the student conducted survey. One of those issues was concerning printing large files.
Regarding large files/slow printing:
- Tested and replicated with provided OneNote file (thanks Shrey and Achilles!)
- Not an issue with ePrint itself or Pharos (unfortunately) - this is a result of the printer itself having to do a lot of heavy lifting to process files
- OneNote files (and presumably, others) themselves are not a supported Pharos filetype, so the printer is having to do a lot of processing to convert it to something it knows how to print.
- Certain file types, like PPTs, for example, can grow in size once sent to the printer. PPTs may have recurring background images, etc. that need to each be individually rendered and processed before printing, again increasing file size and printing time
- Recommended remedies: convert to greyscale, export to pdf or image file that printer has an easier time understanding, though it may still pause between pages.
The other issue was regarding mobile print. Michael highlighted the ways you can get jobs to the printer.
- Available on Android - can be downloaded from Google Play store
- Support directions and setup information available at https://oit.duke.edu/help/articles/eprint-mobile-ways-use-eprint-mobile (search ePrint Mobile on OIT site, first result)
- can always print via email as well by sending jobs to firstname.lastname@example.org (for black and white) or email@example.com (for color). Note: email address must be associated with netID to use print-via-email, and file size and amount restrictions (max: 10mb per attachment, 10 files/email, 100 emails/day)
Evan Levine thanked the students for their feedback about the software. He also showed his gratitude for the number of students that are familiar with Duke's software services. However, some of the questions from the student survey were about adopting GSuite and using Slack for team communication services.
For Gmail/Gsuite, Evan mentioned that they are continuing to evaluate the use of Gmail for students, but that there is not a quick answer as many students are involved with the health system and would be subject to Duke health rules. Evan also mentioned that they are evaluating the potential of Gsuite for EDU, and primarily Google Drive and their docs applications as a start.
Regarding Slack, Evan mentioned that they are continuing to evaluate overtime for licensing and security. At the moment Microsoft Teams is growing in usage and meets security expectations. An issue that arose with Teams is the single sign-on implementation. Slack requires some items that don’t play well with our SSO implementation.
Q: Has there been any issues with accessibility? I know an institution I previously worked at that they shut It down because google did not have the best accessibility practices.?
A: We have not but we can start looking at it. Thank you for that feedback.
Q: any thoughts on offering this only to Alumni?
A: We have not but we can take this feedback and converse about it.
Charley Kneifel briefly talked about email login, Sakai and log out/timeout for email. Charley mentioned that due to the shibboleth log in page requiring the input of NetID and password, one recommendation is to use a password manager or use Duke Unlock which makes the login process easier.
Concerning Sakai, we need specific info when emails from Sakai get put into the spam folder. Charley mentioned that they are working with their spam vendor Proofpoint and Microsoft to eliminate these challenges.
The logout/time-out issue reported is a timeout issue. That means that if there has not been any activity in those 6 hours, you will be logged out. As long as you keep using the application you will not be logged out.
Chris Derickson next talked about DukeHub. Chris mentioned that this is a response to the feedback collected from the student survey about DukeHub 1.0. Four major pieces are being rolled in DukeHub 2.0.
- Campus Experience (CX) – significant upgrade of the UI/UX for PeopleSoft’s Campus Solutions. DukeHub 2.0 will provide a more modern look and feel, as well as a more intuitive overall experience for users. This upgrade will go live at the end of summer 2020.
- Message Center (MC) – leveraging delivered communication tools within PeopleSoft, Message Center will provide a secure inbox within DukeHub for important announcements and time-sensitive documents from central offices.
- Degree Planner (DP) – a fully-featured degree planning tool that will allow students to map out multiple plans to complete their degree requirements. DP allows advisors to lock in the preferred or approved path so that students and advisors are on the same page with degree requirements. DUSON will be piloting Degree Planner this summer.
- Schedule Builder (SB) – already utilized by students, Schedule Builder has been completely overhauled to improve the overall look, feel, and efficiency of this class scheduling tool for students. SB and DukeHub are synched in real-time so there is no delay as students are planning their schedule and enrolling in classes.
To conclude the presentation, Chris shouted out the people working behind the scenes.
Ed Gomes next talked about the 25 Live software. Ed Gomes mentioned a few issues that have risen with the usage of 25Live. He then talked about EMS which is the competitor to 25Live. EMS has been used by Athletics, Fuqua, and Nursing school. There are other interests from Pratt, Libraries, Student Affairs, Divinity, and Trinity schools. A project team/task force has been approved. Lastly, there is an ongoing effort to resolve integration modifications in preparation for the resumption of the project.
Tim Bounds next talked about a few topics regarding TV Boxes and DukeGroups.
Tim highlighted one question about Campus Vision IPTV that is in the commons rooms. The service is maintained by OIT. Tim addressed some issues concerning missing remote controllers or missing batteries. Tim mentioned that there is a web-based channel selector and that they started to test it but have been delayed due to COVID-19. Tim also addressed an issue with HDMI cables being recessed into the walls. Tim mentioned that they are looking at installing wall plates for future installs.
Next Tim talked about DukeGroups which is the system for campus engagement at Duke. In January, there was a replacement of the system but still keeping the same name. The plan is to do more with DukeGroups this Spring to build it up and then do heavy marketing push during the summer and fall.
This concluded the presentations for the day. Rachel concluded the meeting and wished everyone a good day.