Minutes of IT Task Force Meeting of 11/25/97

The meeting was not particular well attended, but Keith, Deborah, Pat, Roger, and Dave Howell (the day's Scribe) were there, and Professor Parke eventually drifted in.

The meeting started by asking the simple question of whether we should be moving toward using more central file servers, rather than having individual departments run their own. We expanded on this to include Software, Machines, and Lab support. These questions get at the general problem of centralization of information technology on campus, and have a number of political, as well as technical, considerations.

We suggested that perhaps we should identify a few departments (administrative and academic) and try out the more centralized route as a test case. We could supply the server and work on setting up lease arrangements for the department. We could then introduce central implementation of software, and work out the associated bugs. This would at least give us a way to understand the issues involved and to start to bring along faculty and staff.

We discussed the issue of instructional development. The draft report can be seen in terms of bricks and mortar, or in terms of function. Some of us were thinking of it one way, while others were thinking of it the other. Until we get a new library facility, which is not going to happen in the very near future, how would we go about implementing the ideas behind instructional development? This can be an issue discussed at our next meeting on 12/4/97.

The issue of the web team came up. Is there any reason why it couldn't be established now? It would need a budget, but perhaps we could steal (a nice way of saying "freeze and seize") from existing resources in CIT, Public Relations, and perhaps Continuing Education (no one heard an objection from Ed Twardy, so presumably that is OK.) Keith will try to flesh this out a bit.

Keith will also try to work out something about a data warehouse and put together a tentative budget. It sounded as if he would plan to steal from FAB, AIS, and CIT.

We discussed whether there is a distinction between CLIO and the Director of CIT, and at least one of those in attendance expressed his disbelief that anyone would think that there wasn't. If CLIO is running CIT, then she wouldn't have any time to do all the rest of the things that we want her to do. We don't have any strong views on whether this should be a new or a retread position, but we feel that the position will be totally ineffective unless information/learning technology is that person's main responsibility for which she will be held responsible. (The protestor was coaxed down off his soapbox.)

We talked about classroom technical support, but my notes don't indicate that we got very far. We need to give more thought to this issue, and we need some coordination between CIT and Media Services. Unfortunately, both Roger and Rebecca will be off on a junket at University expense next week, so we'll have to put that one off.

The meeting adjourned when everyone left.