FTCs – Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Presenter:  Scott Cann, ITS


Topics (in order by number)

1.  Scott Cann – IT strategic planning of 2-3 years ago; faculty volunteers needed for another round of planning – revisiting strategic plan;  what is working, what isn’t.  Strategic Plan Version 1.1.  Barry is updating research component.  This will be an annual exercise.


How to involve faculty?  Focus groups or one-on-one?  This time around faculty need not be on committees at each level – time expectation much less than the first time around. 


M. Connolly – suggests topics within strategic plan - with topic and leader under each heading so that faculty (FTCs) can volunteer under each.  


Suggestion from the floor was for focus groups that do not only concern known problems but also include discussions more in depth. 


S. Cann – departments might be reached by FTCs with set of IT questions.


Q.  M. Connolly – ITS-specific issues?

A.  S. Cann (and Mike Bourque) – ITS takes the view that it embraces all BC problems – even Canvas and, extreme example, the stadium lighting issue;  ITS strategic plan is a BC strategic plan, not an ITS only plan.   ITS cultivates relationships with other groups – it is up to ITS to discern how technology might serve in dealing with any problem. 

Coming soon – topics, lead people, and schedules.


2.  S. Cann – Google -  two factor authentication for Google accounts;  not going well; “will not be coming soon to a department near you” – variety of ways in which people access email.   Second factor might be the device. 

Question and objection to two factor authentication – S. Cann - current strategy is to keep the security issue on the front burner.  

M. Connolly – can an ID card with a chip be usable for security logins?  Soon that will be the case in physical spaces.  ID cards could provide random number passwords.

S. Cann - Google – faculty input needed on decisions about enabling non-Core Google services;  YouTube, Blogger, Google Plus, Moderator, Bookmark; loud demand for these services has not been heard.  Brown University has Core services they have in their contract – the other services are called “consumer services” that one uses at one’s own risk.  “Hangouts” is a possible area of large interest, and may come along here – Google will consider this a “Core” for us, but requires us in turn to forego our US-data-location clause to make it available. 

Hangout is Google’s Facetime – video conferencing;  hangouts allow many-to-one.   Scott wants a small FTC group to run through all these services outside the Core contract. 


M. Connolly – suggestion to produce and make available something called “Beyond email”.  “Here are examples of some of the Google-based things you could do.”  S. Cann – for example, explain what Drive does – what a platform as a workspace can do; 


M. Connolly – Goodbye MyFiles session?  MyFiles still used for third category of data security records – human subject information.   MyFiles” will be going away soon (in process).  The restricted category above will be funneled into something NOT in the Cloud?  Or with encryption (look for this in January, 2015 minutes)?


3.  S. Cann – “Risk” associated with personal Mobile devices is under discussion.   A highest level concern is security of people using personal devices – do we need a policy requiring security steps on the part of personal device users – How to communicate “Best practices” for admins et al.  Will something come down from Pat Keating or some other VP “Thou shalt not…” instituting a security policy.  Pledge to FTCs that S. Cann will not allow this to happen “on my watch” without FTC and wider faculty discussion.


4.  OSX upgrade to “Yosemite” – upgrade from X.9.   ITS recommends that faculty and staff wait to upgrade.  If you need Yosemite, this can be done, but requires wiping OSX.9. 

But, OSX.10 – integrates Phone and computer.   TCs can do the fix for the upgrade, but expect one day’s down time (T. Duket, October 30, 2014).



Š      Dung Wei (out of country through Michael C.) woe is that he cannot use Google in China;  even old BC VPN could not be gotten to work.


Š      Higgins TC job replacement – BC having problems with retention and even more with recruiting new people – unemployment rate is 2% in IT!


Career path of a TC is that the good people immediately go from TC level to groups within university or to private industry.


Š      Student printing.  BC exploring outsourcing model for student printing.  Current model is confused mix of IT, library and other owners.  One owner system sought.   M. Connolly - gives students materials to print out, but students reluctant owing to long lines in the library,  old printers, etc..  Scott would like print centers in dorms – something outsourced (he did this when at Northeastern).  Students currently given 500 pages and pay for each page beyond this.


What is driving student printing?  3% increase this semester.  Why?  Materials are now in Canvas so that they can find them and print them.  Result of success with Canvas.

Putting textbooks in open access space advocated by the library and others;  printing demands will be much greater – eReserves increase printing demands exponentially (Wellesley case). 

Increase demand in spite of the trend towards students submitting papers electronically. 

Students print a lot – 11 million pages.   Wellesley (4-5 million).  GWU – 8 million.  BC is very high.


Adjourned.  Notes prepared and posted by T. Duket.