Area 51 notes – July 29, 2010

Present: Mike Lynch, Carol Peddie, Shel Sax, Mike Roy, Mary Backus, Terry Simpkins (notes)
Guest: Rick James

Rick James joined us to discuss how we will support the Distributed File System (DFS) for Mac users.  There is no native DFS support in MacOS 10.6, so we need to look at 3rd-party solutions.  One such solution that seems promising is a filer solution from NetApp.  We have a quote from them, but that does not include the Quota software, nor does it include ongoing maintenance costs.  Another question, as yet unresolved, involves whether we should target just DFS or support other systems (Muskrat, Crux, etc.) via NetApp (or whatever 3rd-party system we use) as well.

Mary shared a document relating to support for the various departmental Filemaker Pro databases being used.  There are essentially three options for supporting these: remain as is, move the database to Banner or another existing system currently being support, or possibly outsource support to a 3rd party.  LIS should work with the technical lead for the functional office that owns the database to make the decision.
ACTION: Mike Roy will send out a note about this to owners of FMP databases discussing the options.

Princeton is discontinuing their support of UChannel.  Terry confirmed that the Middlebury lectures posted there are also safely ensconced in the Digital Lecture Archive, as well as on physical media in the archives.  The Rohatyn Center page, which previously listed all of their lectures in the UChannel, is currently empty.
ACTION: Shel will redirect the Rohatyn go/link to redirect to DLA.

Brief discussion on how the various new procedures relating to projects that LIS has recently implemented — the project directory, change management process, etc. — interact, and also reminded everyone on the AD team to follow these new procedures.  ADs have discretion as to when a change management form needs to be filled out.  All new project proposals should be entered into the proj. directory.

Carol brought a few questions from the Space Team to the group.  The first dealt with their charge to consolidate server rooms.  Some of this has already been done – is it still a priority for the team?  The ADs asked the Space Team to focus on the Music move and looking at consolidating service points (ref/HD/circ) as their first priorities.  Consolidating and/or reviewing server room spaces can be part of phase 2 of the group, possibly with different composition of team if necessary.  The 2nd question had to do with responsibility for assigning office spaces in the short term for new hires.  The ADs asked the Space Team to make recommendations about office space for new hires.  Actual decisions rest with ADs, but this will keep everyone informed and is especially useful for the ADs since the Space Team has a big picture view about space needs and use in the building.

Shel volunteered to serve in a liaison-type role for the Schools Abroad, with a focus on providing consistent information to them and clarifying current software licensing information.  This will also have implication as the LMS project moves forward.  The ADs agreed and gratefully accepted Shel’s offer.

We discussed the status of the “printer reduction project,” which is on hold.  The idea is that LIS provides networked, shared departmental printers, not personal printers, but we are repeatedly pressed to provide personal printers for one reason or another.  Handbook policy does affirm LIS’s position on providing departmental printers only.  We also discussed the idea of having a mechanism for faculty/staff to request and exception to the policy, rather than making ad hoc decisions about this.
ACTION: Mike Roy will take the issue to President’s Staff, since the policy needs to be reaffirmed at that level.  No decision was made on mechanism for exceptions.

Mike Roy will be away for a couple of weeks – other ADs will be here.

Thanks for reading,
Terry

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