Author Archives: Petar Mitrevski

Orientation session for new classroom technology

LIS is offering orientation sessions for the new audio/video technology that is scheduled to be installed in several Warner classrooms. We hope that these sessions will help make a smooth transition from the old technology to the new one. Anyone is welcome to attend and there is no need to sign up, you can just come to any of the sessions.

1. There will be two sessions on Wednesday, December 5th in Sunderland 123:
1:00pm – 1:30pm
1:30pm – 2:00pm
Note: The equipment installed in Sunderland 123 is identical to what will be installed in the Warner classrooms.

2. There will be two sessions on Friday, January 11th in Warner 202:
1:30pm – 2:00pm
2:00pm – 2:30pm

Please visit our previous blog post for more detail on the upgrades in Warner. If you cannot attend these sessions but would like an orientation (either before January or after), please contact the Helpdesk and we will schedule an appointment. If you have any questions about the workshops or the upgrades, please do not hesitate to contact me at x2833 or via email.

Smart Classroom Renovations in Warner this December & January

Lighting and audio/video renovations will take place between December 16 and January 6 in all Warner classrooms except the Hemicycle. LIS will offer orientation sessions prior to December in identical classrooms, as well as during the first week of winter 0term (orientation dates will be posted on the LIS blog, soon). As part of the renovation, Facilities Services will upgrade the lighting systems in Warner 202, 203, 207, 208, 506, and 507. The new lighting system will use LED lights which are more energy efficient and longer lasting. This upgrade will begin after the end of exams, on December 16. The lighting upgrade will be completed before J-term starts. As each room gets an upgraded lighting system, LIS will also upgrade the audio/video equipment. If there is a delay in any room, the upgrade will be rescheduled for the February recess and the existing lighting and A/V will remain in place and will be functional. As part of these renovations:
  • The VHS players from the classrooms will be removed. Please see our Analog Sunset Web page for more information on the future of VHS players.
  • A new Blu-ray/DVD combo player will be installed.
  • The option for connecting a laptop with a VGA cable will remain, and we will add an option for connecting a laptop digitally (via HDMI).
  • The podium computers will remain, as well.
  • The existing document cameras will remain and they can be moved from classroom to classroom as needed.
  • The existing screens will remain in place, so no chalkboard space will be lost.
Due to the extensive electrical work required for Warner Hemicycle, this space will not be part of the lighting or audio/video upgrade. We are working with Facilities Services to make this a project for 2013-2014.

New Smart Classrooms & Renovations – AXT 305, CHT 110, MBH 305 plus Carr 005 and LIB140

In June and July (and in time for the Language Schools!), LIS installed new audio/video projection systems in four classrooms that were lacking technology:
  • Twilight Hall 305 (AXT 305)
  • Chateau 110 (CHT 110)
  • McCardell Bicentennial Hall 305 (MBH 305)
  • Sunderland 123 (SDL 123)
Thanks to all the hard work from Facilities Services, Sherwin Electric and BTS, we were able to get the equipment installed and operational very quickly. The classrooms are HD-ready and provide both analog and digital computer connections, as well as Blu-ray and DVD/VHS players. The technology in all the classrooms is virtually the same, with AXT 305 being slightly different. The AXT 305 classroom features a 60″ energy efficient LED TV instead of the more traditional drop-down projection screen. This is our first LED TV classroom, a pilot project to examine the feasibility of using TVs instead of projection screens in smaller classrooms. Using a TV instead of a drop down projection screen saves time and money, while providing a brighter display. Moreover, LED TVs use less electricity than projectors. In addition to the new smart classrooms above, the technology system in Carr Hall 005 received an upgrade in July, as well. We completed this project in collaboration with UVM and thanks to the efforts of Bob Cluss. Carr 005 is one of our videoconferencing spaces. It now features a new high definition videoconferencing unit and the ability to share a computer screen or other content during a videoconference. The space can also be used as a regular classroom – the equipment supports computer projection as well as DVD and VHS playback. Last, but not least, Library 140 received a major renovation – it now has seating capacity for 36 people and features a dual projection system! The new audio/video system features two high definition projectors and provides full digital connectivity, as well as support for older analog formats. Instructions for using the technology in these space are available here: Here are some photos from a few of the classrooms (hover your mouse over each photo for a description): Twilight 305 Sunderland 123 Davis Family Library 140

Outlook Calendar Best Practices (or How to Avoid Scheduling Mishaps with Outlook)

To help resolve issues with scheduling meetings using Outlook, LIS has created a document called Outlook Calendar Best Practices. The document is available on our Helpdesk Documentation website but it’s also pasted below for easy access. Please contact the Helpdesk if you have any further questions.

Microsoft and other institutions that have encountered issues with calendaring in Outlook (such as disappearing appointments) recommend the calendaring best practices that are outlined below. Please note that these best practices should be used by delegates but also by all mailbox owners (with and without delegates).

  1. Use the same version of Outlook: Mailbox owners (and any delegates) should be using the same version of Outlook on any computers that are used for calendaring. This should be at least Outlook 2007 with the latest updates from Microsoft. If you are a delegate and you have a different version of Outlook than the owner of the mailbox, please contact the Helpdesk to start an installation of the appropriate version of Outlook (see How do I find Outlook version information?)
  2. Keep the number of delegates to a minimum. This will help prevent unintended changes to a calendar.
  3. Do not delete a meeting invite without checking that the meeting is already accepted on the calendar. If an invite is deleted before the mailbox owner or the delegate has had a chance to accept it, then the meeting will disappear from the calendar. If you are not sure the meeting is on your calendar, do not delete it. In addition, when a meeting request is received, Outlook will automatically insert a placeholder for that meeting in your calendar, even before you’ve had a chance to accept or decline. A picture of this placeholder appears below compared with a picture of an appointment that’s been properly accepted. If you see this placeholder, it means that the meeting has not been firmly accepted. If there is still a meeting invite for this meeting in your mailbox, you should accept it.
    Outlook Unaccepted Meeting vs
    Outlook Accepted Meeting
    Note how the placeholder on the left is faded in appearance and has a stripe on the left with alternating colors. The properly accepted meeting on the right has a solid color line and is not faded in appearance.
  4. Action should always be taken on a calendar event: Accept, Accept as Tentative or Decline.
    Have an agreed-upon procedure for handling meeting invites – especially if there’s more than one person with access to a calendar. Only one person should be accepting and declining meeting invites – either the mailbox owner or a single delegate. If the delegate will be performing this, then the mailbox owner may choose to instruct Outlook to send meeting requests only to the delegate. Instructions for this (caveats included) are listed at the end of this document.
  5. Take action only from the Inbox: accept or decline invites from the Inbox, not from the Calendar.
  6. Don’t delete a meeting request from one device if it has been accepted from another. Accept it again, instead. In general, if you are not attending a meeting, do not delete an invite, but click the Decline button, instead.
    Schedule End Dates on recurring meetings.
  7. Don’t forward meeting requests – new attendees should be added to the original attendee list by the organizer.

Other sites offering Calendaring Best Practices

Further Information for Delegates
Delegates (those who have access to another person’s mailbox), may find the following resources useful, as well:

Configuring Outlook to only send meeting requests to a delegate and no meeting requests to the mailbox owner
It is possible to configure Outlook to only send meeting invites to a delegate and no invites to the mailbox owner. We cannot recommend this for everyone, as it may cause complications when the delegate is unavailable to process meeting requests. However, instructions for configuring this feature of Outlook are available below.

  • For Outlook 2007: Select the Send meeting requests and responses only to my delegates, not to me check box on the Delegates tab (Tools menu, Options command).
  • For Outlook 2010: Click the File tab. Click Account Settings, and then click Delegate Access. Select the check box My delegates only.