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TECHtalk Fall 2017

Office of Information Technology
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TECHtalk Fall 2017

TECHtalk Fall 2017

 

TECHTalk Fall 2017

CONTENTS
2 LANdesk: Automated Security Updates TECHtalk Fall 2017
4 Fraud Prevention: Stopping Identity Theft TECHtalk Fall 2017
6 CUNY Excellence in Technology Winner, Kelli Crosby TECHtalk Fall 2017
7 Active classroom comes to CCNY TECHtalk Fall 2017
8 Meet our staff TECHtalk Fall 2017
9 Apps for fun and productivity TECHtalk Fall 2017
10 Disaster Relief – Apps to the rescue TECHtalk Fall 2017
11 Tech Fee at Work TECHtalk Fall 2017 Tech Fee at Work
12 E.L.U.D.E., Resources and Information TECHtalk Fall 2017

   

Message from Ken Ihrer, AVP and CIO

Ken Ihrer AVP/CIOWelcome back CCNY Community! You are now into the full swing of the fall semester and I’d like to update you on some of the things that took place over the summer. Construction is now wrapping up in the Tech Center, as our two state-of-the-art Active Learning Centers are almost at completion. I anticipate them being ready for use by mid October. Additionally, we have added even more Wi-Fi and have increased capacity in several critical areas. Keeping up with demand is an ongoing challenge and we will continue to keep improving Wi-Fi services as a top priority.

Our iMEDIA Reservation Desk has been moved from the 5th floor to the service window just inside the NAC main entrance in NAC 1/204. As part of an initiative to make things run more efficiently, iMedia has taken over the laptop loaner program from the Tech Center and you may now order all your loan equipment from this one place.

We have been concentrating on making our technology more accessible to all students. After meeting with Joseph LoGiudice, Director of the AccessAbility Center, we have provisioned over 10 percent of the computers in our Tech Center with accessibility software. We will be adding scanners in the Tech Center, which can be used to scan content to a file, which is compatible with accessibility software on the desktops. Speech-to-text software will be installed in some of our two-person Study Rooms (SR). Our goal is to make sure each and every student here at CCNY has access to the technology they need to achieve their educational goals.

Finally, don’t forget to take advantage of our study rooms and collaboration spaces in the Tech Center. Grab a few friends and enjoy working together using the technology provided by your Tech Fee dollars!

I wish each and every one of you a wonderful semester. ☐ top

TECHtalk Fall 2017 LANdesk

“The recent breach of Equifax – which exposed the personal data of nearly 150 million consumers nationwide – was caused by a simple failure to install a security patch.”

Every day, it seems, there is a new cyber-threat. In 2017 alone there's been viral, state-sponsored ransomware, leaks of spy tools from US intelligence agencies (not to mention full-on campaign hacking), and leaked TSA documents showing airport security lapses. There are even online training courses, purporting how to teach you to become a professional hacker. And it’s easier to be hacked than you think. The recent breach of Equifax – which exposed the personal data of nearly 150 million consumers nationwide – was caused by a simple failure to install a security patch, which left in place a vulnerability for hackers to exploit. Shockingly, by the way, it was also revealed that Equifax used “admin/admin” as the login/password for one of their servers, which could have given a nine-year-old child, let alone hackers, access to the financial data of millions of people – basically, anyone who has had a credit check, ever. If you’ve got a credit card, that means you.

Suffice to say, we in CCNY’s OIT division take the information security of every member of the college very seriously, and so should you. It is vital for us all to employ robust information security measures to safeguard the cyber-security of the entire college. And this requires only some simple tweaks to your day-to-day cyber hygiene. For example, those annoying software updates you keep being asked to do? You should be doing them. You may not realize that most software released by computer developers comes with vulnerabilities. Malicious attackers strive to exploit these vulnerabilities to gain remote access to your computer, intercept your keystrokes (especially passwords), to capture information on websites you browse, to snoop on your social media accounts and to access sensitive data stored on your hard drive.

It is therefore imperative that you follow this simplest of fixes by installing these vital security patches and updates to your software when prompted. And to make it even easier for you, this summer OIT began testing and deploying LANdesk In our continuing efforts to improve CCNY’s information technology services. LANDdesk automates the distribution of software updates for Microsoft, Macintosh, and some versions of Linux operating systems. It also provides a systematic method to update most popular commercial and open source products, including Adobe Acrobat and Flash, Java, and popular web browsers. And, as an added bonus, it actually checks to make sure these updates have been implemented.

As well as ensuring that we achieve the required compliance with the mandated CUNY¬¬ Information Technology Security policies and Procedures, LANdesk makes life a lot simpler all round – for you, as well as the OIT staff who are helping taking care of your security. “LANdesk allows us to scan all the computers that have the agent installed from the one [LANdesk] console,” says systems administrator, Chris Urena. “Scans occur automatically every two or three days and the results are reported back to the OIT team,” adds Senior It Specialist, Muhammad Ahmad. “If we find a vulnerability we go through the available patches and test them out in a testing environment before deploying them to the vulnerable machines.”

Is LANdesk mandatory?

No. But in order to maintain software functionality and security, it is imperative for critical software patches to be applied in an orderly and timely manner. LANDesk functions as a software update aggregator, conveniently collecting and applying software updates in a relatively simple and comprehensive manner. Controlled distribution of updates will allow us to be more proactive in reducing security threats while adopting and enforcing standards to make management of our computer environment more effective. Furthermore, LANDesk’s inventory and reporting capabilities will help make allocating and maintaining computer resources more efficient. “Ultimately, LANdesk saves a lot of hassle for the end users who will no longer have to put in tickets asking us to update their machines. All software and security updates are automated and in the background in order not to disrupt your work flow,” says Muhammad. “We have started deploying machines in OIT and Client Support Services, to work out any kinks before we deploy it campus-wide,” says Muhammad. “For years we’ve wanted a solution which would allow us to automate updates without having to do those installations manually. And LANdesk is exactly what we needed.,” says Vern Ballard, Chief Information Security Officer. TS ☐ top

TECHtalk Fall 2017 Fraud Prevention

No amount of virus protection is going to completely prevent the worst from happening. There are so many ways you can be compromised – from dumpster diving, where thieves go through your trash to find discarded billing statements or receipts and then use your account information to buy things, to a retail bank website being hacked, to a dishonest waiter or clerk making a copy of your credit card and using it to go shopping. The best way to combat these dangers is to use multiple approaches. Here, below, we outline a few of the most effective

1. Sign up for a credit monitoring service

This can protect you from new account fraud – when a criminal opens a new account in your name. Make sure the service is checking all three credit bureaus – Equifax, Experian and TransUnion, not just one. The disadvantage is that it’s not free. Prices start at around $8 per month. It also won’t protect you from fraud on your current credit accounts.

2. Request a security freeze

If the monthly fee is too much for you, a low cost and more complete alternative is a security freeze, which locks your credit files at the three reporting agencies until you unlock your file with a password or PIN. This will stop imposters opening new credit lines using your name and social security number. Unless you have been a victim of identity theft and actual fraud (a security breach alone is not enough), credit freezes are not free, but cost a one-time fee of anywhere between $8 and $10. Check the individual credit bureau’s websites for state-specific instructions and fees. You will need to put the freeze on all three credit bureaus. The downside is that the alert may delay or interfere with or even prohibit the timely approval of any subsequent requests or application you make regarding a new loan, credit, mortgage, insurance, rental housing, employment, investment, license, cellular phone, utilities, digital signature, internet credit card transactions or other services, including extension of credit or services at point of sale. Lifting your credit freeze temporarily in advance of making an application is the only way around it. If you can find out from that creditor which bureau they get reporting from you can target the specific one. Otherwise, you’ll have to do it on all three and there’s a fee. The credit freeze option really works best for people who are not planning to apply for anymore credit or a new apartment or anything other service that involves a credit check. Visit this link to check out state specific rules for creating a security freeze. State Specific Processes

4. Put fraud alerts on your credit reports

You are entitled to place a free fraud alert on your credit reports. This notifies lenders and creditors who pull your report that they will need to take additional steps before they extend a credit line or loan in your name. You only need to order one credit bureau, who is then required to notify the others for you. Contact alerts.equifax.com or call

Unless you have already been a victim of fraud/ID theft the fraud alert only lasts for 90 days and you have to make a note to renew it. If you have been a victim, however, the fraud alert lasts seven years and includes two free credit reports from all three bureaus in the first 12 months and your name is removed from the prescreened offer list (those pesky credit card offers you get in the mail) for five years'.

5. Stagger your annual free credit reports

You are entitled to one free credit report per h from all three credit bureaus. If you stagger them (one report per bureau) you can get a report every four months – although bear in mind that a tell‐tale sign that there were inquiries on your account may only show up on one credit reporting agency. Hackers rarely target all three at once. If you live in Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Jersey, Vermont and Georgia, you are entitled to receive an extra report per year – one under federal law and one under state law.

6. Opt out of prescreened credit card offers

Credit card companies regularly send offers of new credit and insurance via postal mail. ID thieves love to intercept these and apply for credit in your name. If you don’t opt out, at least shred these applications before you put them in the trash. But better still to opt out. You can choose to opt out for five years or permanently. Call 1-888-567-8688 or visit Opt-Out Prescreen.com.

TIPS

  • Order your free annual credit report regularly. 877-322-8228. If you stagger your reports, you can get a report every four months. Bear in mind that not all the credit check agencies are the same
  • Do not use debit cards to make online purchases since you are more liable to replay the funds in the event that they are stolen
  • Don’t carry all your credit cards in your wallet. Leave some at home
  • Never give out your SSN, credit or debit card number over the phone or on the internet unless you already have a trusted business relationship with the company and you have initiated the call
  • Never throw credit card receipts in the trash where they can be fished by thieves and hackers – especially public trash
  • Beware of people stealing your mail or completing change of address forms to divert your mail to another location
  • Be aware of "shoulder surfing"—watching or listening as you punch in your password or PIN or say your credit card number
  • Never respond to "phishing" emails, which attempt to trick you into revealing your confidential information. Phishers often send emails that appear to be from a real bank, credit card company or online merchant—just to trick you into going online and typing in your private information such as account numbers, usernames, PINs and passwords, which the crooks then use to withdraw money from your bank account or make fraudulent charges on your credit cards
  • Watch out for "voice phishing," or "vishing". You are sent an email, but instead of being asked to click on a link, you are asked to call a phone number and enter your personal information.
  • Be vigilant. Keep an eye on all your bank and credit card accounts online.

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Equifax: Phone: (888) 766-0008 Website: http://www.equifax.com
Experian: Phone: (888) EXPERIAN (397-3742) Website: http://www.experian.com
TransUnion: Phone: (800) 680-7289 Website: http://www.transunion.com

TECHtalk 8 CUNY Excellence in Technology Winner, Kelli Crosby

Congratulations to Kelli Crosby! Winner of the CUNY Excellence in Technology Award

Kelli Crosby The OIT is very proud to announce that another team member has been awarded the CUNY Excellence in Service Award. Kelli Crosby, an exemplary member of the City College of New York Office of Information Technology since 2008, has progressed from a College Assistant, orchestrating the day-to-day operations of the Instructional Media (iMedia) department, to the Manager of the iMedia Reservation Desk, where she epitomizes an indefatigable work ethic, professionalism, and initiative. This vital campus operation accommodates faculty, staff, and student use of everything from media players and projectors to laptops. Kelli also oversees the day-to-day operations involved in maintaining audiovisual and digital equipment in many smart classrooms and conference rooms throughout the college. And she is responsible for training and overseeing a team of IT administrators, College Assistants, and Federal Work Study students.

In the nine years she has served in CCNY’s Office of Information Technology, Kelli has devoted herself to making iMedia a top-notch operation. She was instrumental in transitioning its antiquated paper-based reservation system into a modern web-based system, using WebCheckout. This change required conducting a comprehensive assessment of inventory and chaotic operations -- distributing and collecting audio-visual equipment (from ancient overhead transparency projectors to state-of-the-art digital projectors) and laptops; VHS, CD, and DVD duplication equipment; laptops; microphones and amplifiers.

Kelli’s duties also require some proficiency in configuring, using and teaching the operation of all this equipment. She is adept at the nuances of ordering complex supplies and overseeing new technology acquisitions and professional services – such as Blue Jeans video conferencing, which she adapted for use by pioneering scientists who are now able to combine simultaneous in-classroom and distance learning teaching – and single-handedly integrating them to in a heterogeneous, campus-wide environment. The iMedia environment is now not only a more efficient operation, but a place where faculty and staff feel her operation is both intuitive and warm.

During the Summer of 2017, Kelli orchestrated two monumental changes: moving the iMedia Center from the 5th floor to the 1st floor in less than two months, at the same time as integrating the new Student Laptop Loaner program into its operations. This new iMEDIA Reservation Desk, located in a more centralized and convenient location, continues to provide high quality service to faculty and staff, while simultaneously distributing hundreds of student laptops each day. Given the overlapping logistical challenges, it was nothing less than a miracle that she was able to accomplish this feat in less than two months.

Kelli routinely collaborates with other OIT units (e.g. the Tech Center, Networking, iMedia, Help Desk, and Desktop Support) to pilot new technologies before they are deployed throughout the City College campus, including Blue Jeans, Via Connect wireless audiovisual connectivity, testing new generations of projectors, integrating video-conference and audio technologies to provide online lecture broadcasts. Kelli’s remarkable skills and commitment to shepherding a project from inception to completion and then to provide long-term support for it have fostered a technologically robust environment that provides innovative services – from classrooms and conference rooms, to virtual online teaching.

Kelli takes great pride in her work. We rely upon her diligence and excellent judgment to keep iMedia running smoothly. Faced with a challenge to provide new, quality services to the CCNY community, she routinely harnesses limited resources to provide innovative high-quality, personalized services to the faculty, staff and students, with whom she works hand-in-hand and who routinely speak highly of her. City College is very fortunate to have her in its service. And so are we.   top ☐

TECHtalk Fall 2017 Active classroom technology comes to City College

“Not only does the shared screen involve everyone, it has the added advantage of showing the instructor that the student is engaged and not just using the internet for their own non-classroom purposes.”

Research has shown that in order for students to fully understand and retain knowledge, it really helps for them to be active participants in the learning process. In contrast to regular classes, where teachers are in “talking mode” and students are in “listening mode,” active classrooms encourage movement in the classroom (with mobile, configurable furniture), nurture discussion and interdependent learning and create an interactive learning environment by incorporating visuals, group discussion, and technology, such as video and websites. “Students need to hear it, touch it, see it, talk it over, grapple with it, confront it, question it, experience it, and reflect on it in a structured format if learning is to have any meaning and permanence,” says Ronald Nash in his book The Active Classroom: Practical Strategies for Involving Students in the Learning Process.

We in OIT are well aware of the advantages of technology in the classroom and are constantly looking into new ways to bring it to you. We are very excited to announce that, in collaboration with DASNY and the Facilities office, we have built two new state-of-the-art Active Learning Classrooms (ALCs) in the Tech Center. These brand new enhanced-technology classrooms house seven interactive smartboards, which students can connect to wirelessly, using provided laptops/tablets, which also have Via Connect Pro installed. Via Connect Pro connects wirelessly to the AV system and allows users to play video content and display material directly to the class from anywhere in the room. Via Connect Pro also enables faculty and students to annotate (using a finger or a stylus) on top of any displayed content – even video.

Associate Professor and Director of the CCNY First Year Writing program, Tom Peele, has been using computer technology in his teaching for the past 20 years and following the scholarship on the value of technology in a writing classroom for even longer. “When I first came here in 2014 I tried to get City College to have active classroom technology, but we didn’t have the money to do it,” he says. “So I was really excited when I heard we were bringing it in.” To encourage new collaborative teaching-learning paradigms, the rooms are also outfitted with Steelcase Node desks that roll on castors so that they can be configured effortlessly in multiple ways according to individual needs.” The student technology centers are very good, and it’s nice to have new equipment, but the problem still remained that the classrooms are set up in rows and instructors can’t see the students’ screens without walking around. In these new classrooms, active learning students can form physical groups of circles and triangles and everyone sees the work on the screen. Not only does the shared screen involve everyone, it has the added advantage of showing the instructor that the student is engaged and not just using the internet for their own non-classroom purposes.”

“Being able to see and show the work on the screen, just makes for more involvement. In lecture-based classrooms, students are just passive recipients. The new active learning classrooms allow students to share their work, do revisions, do the writing and project it on shared screens in groups. This also helps when they are collaborating on writing projects. It really enlivens the sense of audience because students can give feedback and respond to each other’s writing in writing. Face-to-face it is a conversation, but in writing people have to write, which is very useful in a writing class. And as an instructor, being able to share their screens allows me to oversee and evaluate their work as peer reviewers,” says Tom. And, perhaps providing extra impetus to work hard in class. “Being more visible makes the stakes higher for every student.” ☐ top
Mary Pena, Assistant Manager, Service Desk at CCNY 10 years

What’s your favorite geeky gadget?
My Galaxy s8 cellphone. This is by far the best phone I have ever had. Everything is within reach.

What did you want to be when you grew up when you were a child?
A Doctor. I always wanted to help people.

What did you major in?
Psychology.

What is the most useful thing you learned as a student?
Don’t judge a course by its description. Some courses sound dull on paper but are completely interesting and entertaining while you are taking the course.

What do you like most about this job?
The camaraderie.

How did you get into working in the IT division?
I began as an assistant, answering phones, taking messages, simple things. Slowly I began learning more and more in the field, and here I am.

CDs, downloads or vinyl?
Most of the time I use Spotify.

What is your favorite App?
Instagram and WhatsApp.

What about working in IT has surprised you the most?
How much there is to learn. Just when you think you have mastered a skill, something new comes out.

 

What don’t people know about you that they might be surprised to hear?
I used to be a singer and a songwriter.

What do you like to do outside of work?
Spend time with my husband, family and friends. I am also OK being home and just watching a movie on the television.

What gadget do you wish someone would hurry up and invent?
The latest MacBook Pro.

If you could choose to do any job you want, what would it be?
Travel photographer - to share the beauty of the world at the same time as being able to travel experiencing different cultures.

What do you think people will use to communicate with each other ten years from now?
More advanced cellphones, probably integrated on a watch.

What is your idea of a perfect holiday?
By the beach, with family, just having fun.

If you could choose a talent you don’t have, what would it be?
Be a great painter/artist.

If you could live in another country for two years, where would you go?
Travel more. TStop

Beth Schneiderman, Web & Lyris Support, Application Services, At CCNY 11 years

What is your favorite geeky gadget? And why
My computer at home – an Intel NUC - it takes up just 8”x 8” x 2” of space, doesn’t make a sound (it’s solid state), and it runs cool to the touch!

What did you want to be when you grew up when you were a child? and why 
Artist and sculptor. Thinking / working in 3D and using light came naturally to me.

What did you major in?
At CCNY I majored in Electronic Design and Multi-Media, before that I was a sculpture major.

What is the most useful thing you learned as a student?
Before editing any files, save a copy of the original files, whether they are text, graphics, or photos.

How did you get into working in the IT division?
 I started out when I was a student designing and developing CCNY’s first structured website interface.

What do you like most about this job?
 Working with dedicated, talented people who always try to make ‘it’ work –finding solutions and it is never boring.

CDs, music downloads or vinyl?
Love vinyl best because of the sound quality - but there are limitations because vinyl is not as accessible as downloads.

What is your favorite app? Why
Lately it’s been Waze - it’s been faster and more accurate for NYC traffic than my Garmin.

What about working in IT has surprised you the most?
 How differently each person approaches technology.

 

What don’t people know about you that they might be surprised to hear?
That I design neon lighting and signage plus I know a bit about cars.

What do you like to do outside of work?
I like to get outdoors and just walk – there are plenty to see and it is the best way to decompress.

What gadget do you wish someone would hurry up and invent?
A soft, flexible, stretchable touch screen that can fit in a pocket to access the Cloud.

What do you think people will use to communicate with each other 10 years from now?
Hopefully, we can use that soft, flexible, stretchable touch screen for everything.

What gadget that you don’t already own would you like to have?
A big gadget - Surface Studio - 2TB / Intel Core i7.

If you could choose to do any job you want, what would it be?
 To design more architectural lighting.

What is your idea of a perfect holiday?
Go to a new place with people you enjoy being with, it’s the journey that makes for a good holiday.

If you could choose a talent you don’t have, what would it be?
A good singing voice!

If you could live in any other country for two years, where would you go?
New Zealand.

What is the hardest thing you’ve ever done?
Being a landlord.

Is there anything you have wanted to do but haven’t?​​
Get a boat and explore America’s rivers- starting with the Hudson. ☐ top

 
TECHtalk Fall 2017 Apps for fun and productivity
 

Chegg AppChegg Lets you find rentals of the text books (both physical and digital) you need for substantially less than anywhere else. You can also buy them. And it lets you instantly add eTextBooks for seven-days free viewing while you wait for your physical books to arrive. There’s a 21-day free returns policy, and you can get a one-month free trial of Chegg Study – which offers instant online homework help and tutoring for $14.95 a month.

 

iStudieziStudiez Spend around 30 minutes, just one time, inputting all your schedule and teachers information and get notifications, saving your grades and tracking your progress for the rest of the semester. The free version lets you manage one semester, five courses, 15 classes/exam per course, five instructors and two holiday periods.

MyScans MyScans This app is a great way to scan paper documents, books, receipts, magazine articles, notes, pictures, charts, tables, even street billboards. It captures text as well as photographs and lets you annotate, name, sign and stamp your documents so you can easily search for them later. You can view files from a computer and share them with a team. Upgrade to Pro for only $3.99 to do even more – including password protect scans and documents and copy documents to and from your computer via Wi-Fi.

 

Todoist Todoist This is a super simple to-do list app which lets you put all your to-dos in order. You can use it to plan your day/week/month/year ahead. The blog includes tips on how to organize tasks – like start with the hardest task first to get it out of the way. You can drag and drop tasks and put them under different ‘Project’ headings. It’s fabulous on your computer and updates across all platforms, including your phone. For full features, such as reminders, you need to pay.

Adobe Acrobat Adobe Acrobat Reader Lets you open PDF documents from email and the web; search, scroll, highlight and mark up; use sticky notes; scan documents and whiteboards; scan multiple documents and reorder them as desired; fill out PDF forms by typing text into fields; print and save documents as Word or Excel files. All from your phone. Best of all, it does all this for free.

 

Wholesome Wholesome This healthy eating app collects healthy recipes from the web, identifies gaps in your nutrition and gives personal recommendations to plug them. Recipes, such as quinoa burgers with chickpea buns, Chia Parfait and Apple Crunch and more, are scored out of 10 for nutritional density. points are deducted for too much sugar). It’s kind of like having a helicopter parent but without the embarrassment. TS ☐ top

TECHtalk Fall 2017 Disaster Relief Apps
 

ZelloZello This walkie-talkie-like app took over when hurricanes knocked out the regular communications infrastructure, enabling rescue workers to continue to communicate with each other via the Wi-Fi or data plan (assuming that is still working). Once users create an account, they explore a variety of channels to join and chat. In the case of Harvey rescue efforts, channels such as the Cajun Navy Dispatch and Harvey Animal Rescue appeared where users could quickly push a button to talk and seek help.

Ice Medical StandardIce Medical Standard Puts your vital health info and emergency medical contacts on your lock screen, so first responders can see it all immediately, whether you're dazed, confused, or unconscious.

Adobe Acrobat FEMA This Federal Emergency Management Agency app keeps you updated before, after, and during disasters with weather-related alerts from the US National Weather Service. You can upload and share your disaster photos to help out emergency workers with Disaster Reporter and save a custom list of your family’s emergency kit, as well as the places you will meet in the event of an emergency.

LyftLyft Opt in to the Round Up & Donate option via the settings tab of your Lyft app to donate to various charitable causes – including Hurricane relief. Since Lyft provides upwards of three million rides per month, that’s a lot of relief!

 

iStudieziTunes Since Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Texas, hotly followed by Irma, the earthquakes in Mexico and Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, as of this month, iTunes had raised over $13 million for relief and recovery efforts. You can donate directly to the Red Cross through the App Store and iTunes via this link goo.gl/4mfN.

Trusted Contacts Trusted Contacts Add your trusted contacts and allow them to request your location. If you are unable to respond to requests then your last known location is shared automatically after a custom time-frame, even if you are offline or out of battery. You can also proactively share your location if you find yourself in an emergency. Check out also Red Panic Button which will email or text your GPS coordinates and a link to a Google map of exactly where you are to people on your list. So many good reasons to have this one.

Disaster ResponseDisaster Response This app helps in distributing information on earthquake and storm disasters before, druing and after the even, and provides information about the organizations helping in affected areas. There is a news section, a safety section, a FAQs section and even a rumors section. It helps others to actively participate in the events and help the affected.

Check out CCNY’s own relief efforts to support the victims here We Are One CCNY ☐ top

 
TECHtalk 9 Resources and information


Thanks to the support of the Tech Fee Advisory Committee members at CCNY and the Tech fee funding this fiscal year (FY 2017), OIT has completed key projects, which have improved student life on campus. Here are just a few of them.

1. Print Management Software
The printing software for the student computer labs was replaced to allow for improved management of print quotas, better reporting, and a simpler and more stable interface.

2. Student Teaching Computer Lab Upgrades
Several student computer labs have been upgraded during the last several months:
•  One of the two School of Architecture CAD labs has been upgraded to a state-of-the-art “Sustainable Building Performance Lab” with 20 high-end workstation computers and a cutting edge thermal imaging infrared camera. This lab also supports Capstone student projects for graduate sustainability programs.  The new lab will benefit research and teaching, and consolidate NYC’s leadership role in the area of energy at CCNY. 
• In the Artino General Mathematics Computer Lab Upgrade NAC 1/506 we replaced 24 obsolete computers, whiteboards, and the classroom projector and added the computers to the Active Directory.

In Mechanical Engineering ST 226 and ST B39 computer labs, 10 new Dell OptiPlex 7040 MT desktops and two Dell Latitude E5470. The obsolete 10- year-old network switches and the network cabling (with Cat 6) in Lab ST 226 was upgraded. 50 licenses of SolidWorks have been upgraded and an additional 150 licenses have been added.

3. New Laptops for the newly-created online Clinical Intake Form
Three clinical support areas – AccessAbility, Counseling and Health – now have a unified online demographic and clinical form to ensure that accurate data on a wide range of issues affecting students, from chronic medical and disability issues to alcohol and drug use, mental health, homelessness and more is securely collected. It also provides the ability to track student outcomes based on their GPA.

4. Campus-Wide Digital Signage
Eight large digital displays have been replaced throughout campus in collaboration with the Offices of Facilities and Marketing & Communications. These can be remotely programmed to broadcast pertinent information regarding campus events, deadlines, weather, alerts, class scheduling changes and cancelations, and campus bus schedules.

5. Computing and Printing Infrastructure for Students in the Division of Science
We have provided a new HP Designjet 36” poster plotter T790 to replace the 15-year-old printer in the EAS department, as well as a Dell OptiPlex Desktop 7040 SFF. We have also purchased and installed 20 software licenses for use by students performing assignments in several EAS courses involving the mapping and analysis of geospatial datasets.  

6. Improved Computer Service for ChE Department Students – Citrix Server Upgrade
The Citrix virtual server assigned to the Chemical Engineering (ChE) students has been upgraded with additional hard drives and extra memory to minimize downtime and provide adequate resources during peak demand. These additional resources also provide a fail-over   backup server to minimize downtime.

7. Symplicity Career Services Management System
OIT renewed the Symplicity contract from the Tech Fee budget. The Career Services Management System is the primary web-based operating system for the Career and Professional Development Institute, which enables CCNY students to access job and internship opportunities online. Users are now able to view and apply for employment and internship opportunities, regularly communicate with over 5,000 potential employers, host and deliver the Senior Graduation and six-month post-Graduation surveys, track student internship experiences, notify students, faculty and administration of any new opportunities, and receive career coaching.

8. Art and Media and Communication Arts Departments Student Checkout Equipment
The Art and MCA departments received 30 iPads with accessories, two pocket projectors, one 360-degree camera to implement an equipment checkout system for all Art and MCA majors and minors (affecting a total of 1,175 students). This new equipment loan program operates on a first-come, first-served basis to students who use this equipment for assignments and presentations both in and out of class (e.g., for future employment). MCA also installed a FileMaker-based web checkout system to be shared and jointly administered by Art and MCA.

9. Computer Lab Accessibility for Social Science SH – 105
The OIT has brought the Social Science Lab into compliance with accessibility laws by adding two new wheelchair accessible computer workstations (four new seats each workstation). To improve the quality of classroom instruction, and increase the class size capability from 27 to 35, obsolete seven-year-old computers were replaced with 36 new Dell OptiPlex 9030 SFF computers. Additionally, a smart podium with a workstation was installed to accommodate the instructor’s needs.  This has significantly alleviated the waiting lists for students taking required courses, allowing more of them to stay on track for graduation.

10. NAC 6/325 Social Science AV Enhancement
With the support of the Office of Facilities and OIT, NAC 6/235 was reconfigured to install a new projection system, readily visible from all parts of angles of the room and equipped with the latest technology lamps, providing sharper images and more energy efficiency. In addition, video and recording equipment were installed in order to enable remote learning and conferencing capabilities.

11. School of Education Smartboard Upgrade
The School of Education has a proud history of leading the way on using emerging technology in classrooms and preparing students to use these tools effectively in the classrooms in which they are employed.   In collaboration with OIT, six of the current 11 smart classrooms in the School of Education were upgraded with the newest smartboards technology, a faster desktop computers and the latest software version of Notebook uses with these smartboards.
  
12. Writing Center  Collaborative Learning Initiative Upgrade
Four 65-inch digital displays have been installed in the Writing Center to allow students to share their laptop screens with other students.  In addition, OIT deployed four VIA Connect Pros allowing students to wirelessly collaborate and make presentations from any laptop of mobile device to the displays. ☐ top

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