Information Systems

Tech Talk

  • Final Reminder: A/V Capital Requests Due Friday

    Posted April 8, 2015

    You may recall earlier notices that computing capital requests will be deferred until early in the fall quarter given the disruptions to business as usual associated with construction. The only exception is for permanently mounted audiovisual systems since it is difficult to install them when school is in session.

    Requests for those kinds of systems are due Friday, April 10. This is a hard deadline. Please use the Google form (link below) to submit your request.

    A/V systems already planned for Gordon Parks Arts Hall construction or other renovations in process do not need to be requested.

  • Garage Sale This Spring

    Posted April 8, 2015

    Though the date has not been set yet, there will be an IS garage sale this spring. We'll have MacBook laptops, Mac Minis, and for the first time, some iPads and even a few projectors. Details will follow soon with dates, ordering procedures, frequently asked questions, terms of sale, and equipment specifications, but we wanted to make sure you knew it was coming. Kindly hold on your questions about the sale until we share that information with you as it will answer most if not all the question you have.

  • What We Have Been Up To

    Posted April 8, 2015

    Chasing down costs for end-of-cycle computer replacements for next fiscal year ■ supporting the MS iPad Pilot ■ providing a/v gear and support for special events ■ forecasting support requirements for the Gordon Parks Arts Hall ■ preparing equipment and documentation for the Garage Sale ■ participating in a/v coordination meetings with construction and installation companies for GPAH ■ planning for summer moves ■ nearing completion of a service catalog document that outlines all the services available from the IS group ■ pushing forward with Uniflow installation and preparations for launch ■ replacing older server hardware and creating new virtual servers for student organizations ■ participating in the Learning Management System project ■ writing documentation about backups to publish on the IS web site ■ working with Brent LaRowe on preparing for a PowerSchool update ■ evaluating options for replacing remaining Xerox printers over the summer ■ working with other administrators to comply with a new Illinois law about cyberbullying that takes place off the premises ■ and plenty more...

  • Play Ball!

    Posted April 8, 2015

    Your friendly neighborhood IS team enjoyed the traditional Opening Day hot dog luncheon on Monday. IS has several hardcore baseball fans and those who don't much care for baseball still like Chicago-style hot dogs with all the trimmings, Cracker Jack, and peanuts. You might still find some leftover Easter candy if you happen to be in Judd 11.

  • now available for HS students

    Posted April 8, 2015

    File sharing service now available to Hight School students, courtesy of the University's IT Services. Just like faculty and staff, students go to to log in using their C-Net credentials. Interested in learning more about Box? Here's an overview of the service and here's a quick-start guide to using it.

DIT Bits Blog

  • Slice of Life

    11/12/2014 12:22 PM

    Every now and then, I have a day that touches almost all of the different facets of the work I do. I offer this brief recap of just such a day for those who might wonder about what a technology director does besides sit at a computer answering e-mail, or those who may be considering pursuing a tech director position after succeeding in other education technology roles.

    8:30: Convene a meeting of senior IT staff to make sure our message to Lab users about an imminent, first-ever forced password change by the University covers all the right bases while remaining concise. We decide to put a web page together that covers all the gory details that are necessary but don't really fit in the main message going out. 

    9:00: Take part in Executive Team meeting. Updates from Admissions, the construction team, the Communications director, and the Director prompt numerous discussions of how best to navigate upcoming events, school communications, and decisions that need to be made about the Gordon Park Arts Hall. 

    10:30: Complete a handful of help desk tickets involving audiovisual systems; gather and deliver portable speaker sets to support a 5th grade Haunted Hallway project for Halloween. Answer a dozen or so e-mails.

    11:30: Meet with a Middle School teacher to learn more about her plans for participating in the iPad pilot. We go over her instructional goals, apps she has selected to achieve those goals, and how to set a proper level of expectation with students about using the pilot iPads.

    12:00: Meet with a fellow administrator over lunch to discuss personnel issues, how best to manage her time and increased demands for communication she is currently experiencing. 

    1:00: Impromptu discussion with an IT staffer looking toward some major life changes and seeking counsel on how best to navigate them.

    1:30: Do some investigation of a reported possible instance of a Facebook-related social media policy violation. Formulate an appropriate response but hang on to it until I'm sure it's needed (the person involved came in the next day and all was worked out, no violation occurred).

    2:00: Participate in a consultant-requested conference call doing research on the mobile laptop/iPad cart industry. She asks me about market trends, design considerations, experience with various vendors, and more. It goes much longer than I thought it would. I don't normally accept such invitations, but bad cart design has been a pet peeve of mine over the years. 

    3:30: Sit in on a good-sized meeting to work through different points of view on proposed changes to the construction of the Assembly Hall. I get to mostly listen as the the different stakeholders exchange thoughts, ideas, and concerns and decisions are made. Some of the changes may affect the IT side of things, so it's good I'm invited to be there.

    4:45: Complete draft of biweekly newsletter, including the carefully-composed item we went over at the 8:30 meeting. Take five minutes to find an appropriately nerdy carved pumpkin to add to the newsletter.  

    5:20: Head home.