File Sharing Education Event Roundup

In Winter Quarter 2015, the Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) Help Desk attended two events to educate UC San Diego students about the facts on file sharing. Student technicians were at the Revelle Judicial Board’s “Is What I’m Doing Illegal?” event, Revelle College Council’s international student education fair, and the Keeling Apartments to talk about file sharing. Technicians spoke with over 250 students over the course of the events.

Topics covered included copyright law like the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), the rights of students, ResNet’s role in the copyright violation process, and specific file sharing programs. Help Desk technician Justin Kelly was at these events and said that, “The students were very interested in what we had to say and asked a lot of good questions.” At the February 18 event for international students, technicians specifically emphasized topics that were of greater interest to those students, like explaining how DMCA applies to foreign works.

Students had the opportunity to pick up a ResNet guide if they had lost theirs and get a ResNet cup. Justin hopes that interacting with so many students means that ResNet will see fewer file sharing violations in the future.

Contact the Help Desk if you are interested in having the Help Desk present to a campus group or attend an event to talk about file sharing. For information about file sharing, visit the Help Desk’s file sharing information center or watch this brief video.

Updated Acceptable Use Policies

Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) has updated the Acceptable Use Policies that govern use of computing, networking, and information resources that the department makes available to the University community.

The April 2015 revision added language addressing the storage or possession of sensitive data within ACMS systems.

If you use ACMS services like student email or Ted, we strongly recommend that you familiarize yourself with all the Acceptable Use Policies.

ICP Stories: WeBWorK

An example problem in WeBWorK

The Instructional Computing Plan (ICP) lets departments request new computing and technology resources to support courses. Last year in the ICP the Department of Mathematics suggested a UC San Diego implementation of WeBWorK. First developed in 1994 by the Mathematical Association of America (MAA), WeBWorK is an open-source online homework system ideal for use in math and physical science courses. It supports a wide range of problems for lower division undergraduate courses. Examples include:

  • University-level algebra
  • Discrete mathematics
  • Probability and statistics
  • Single and multivariable calculus
  • Differential equations
  • Linear algebra

The Department of Mathematics initially hosted WeBWorK through MAA. As more courses began using the system, MAA was unable to keep up with the demand. To address this issue, the WeBWorK was requested in the ICP and ACMS stepped in to host it on campus.

ACMS’ implementation not only leveraged existing computing resources on campus, but also allowed ACMS programmers to integrate WeBWorK’s rosters in the student account setup process, which saves time when setting students up in their courses. They also arranged for WeBWorK to export grades in a format compatible with Ted, the UC San Diego learning management system.

Professor Adam Bowers in the Department of Mathematics is one of the faculty who has benefitted from having WeBWorK at UC San Diego. “Before we began using WeBWorK in the calculus sequence, it was very difficult to effectively assess every student. The large number of students made it impractical to assign and grade all homework by hand for each student. With WeBWorK,” Professor Bowers explained, “every problem gets graded and counts towards the final grade, thus incentivizing each student to do every problem.”

“Not only does this mean the students do every problem, they also do them by the due date, which means the students do not fall behind. The tools WeBWorK provides make it possible to keep track of how the students are doing, which problems are giving them difficulties, and it also makes it very easy for me to provide individual feedback to each student, even if I am physically located far from the student. I was also able to write my own questions for WeBWorK, including a Syllabus Quiz for the course and supplementary questions related to topics that are covered in the class, but not in our textbook.”

Academic Computing & Media Services is currently reviewing ideas submitted through the 2015 ICP.

GoVirtual Is Back Up

UPDATE, March 25, 2015 – GoVirtual is now back up and ready for use. Thanks for your patience!

Starting Monday, March 23, 2015 at 8:00 a.m., the GoVirtual computing lab will be unavailable. The service is expected to be available later in the week. Our current best estimate is that it will be available in the middle of the week.

We appreciate your understanding and patience.

Ansys Software Leaving GoVirtual

On March 24, 2015, the Ansys Electromagnetics software suite will no longer be available in the GoVirtual online computing lab. This includes:

  • Ansys Maxwell
  • Ansys Simplorer Advanced
  • Ansys RMxprt
  • Ansys PExprt
  • Ansys Optimetrics
  • Ansys HFSS
  • Ansys Q3D Extractor
  • Designer
  • Nexxim

GoVirtual is a virtual computing lab that allows UC San Diego students to access popular software like MATLAB, ChemBioOffice, ArcGIS, Solidworks, and Adobe Photoshop. Students can register for access online. Faculty can also request their students automatically get access to GoVirtual based on course enrollment. Instructions for setting up GoVirtual are available for several operating systems, including iOS version 5 and higher.

Get a Job with the Help Desk

A Help Desk technician assisting a customerDo you like helping people? Enjoy troubleshooting computer problems? Looking for a campus job next year? If that’s you, apply to be an ACMS Help Desk/ResNet technician!

Academic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) is hiring new technicians for 2015-2016. We’re looking for UC San Diego students with great customer service skills. If you’re interested, fill out our online application today!

Worried that you might not know enough about computers and networks to apply? Some of our best technicians started with little technical knowledge, but great customer service skills, and learned their technical skills on the job. Our current technicians come from a variety of majors and backgrounds.

Want to know what it’s like to work for ResNet? Listen to some of our current technicians talk about their experience:

Many Help Desk/ResNet technicians get jobs almost immediately after graduation thanks to their training and experience—and not just with technology companies. Some of them are now working with well-known companies like Titleist and FICO. Others were accepted to great graduate schools, including law school and pharmacy school. Read about some of our former technicians and what they’re doing now.

So what are you waiting for? Apply today!

Student Scoop: Maria Andrade

maria-andradeAcademic Computing & Media Services (ACMS) employs more than 30 students as Help Desk/ResNet Technicians who help students, faculty, and staff troubleshoot a wide range of computing, networking, and account issues. Maria Andrade is in her first year as a Help Desk/ResNet Technician.

A Computer Engineering major from Sixth College, Maria applied to become a technician because she was looking for a campus job that allowed her to work in a very technical field. Not having a lot of experience diagnosing and fixing computer issues did not put her at a disadvantage when applying for the position. She received extensive training after being hired. “[The Help Desk has] tons and tons of tutorials and step-by-step instructions [for technician training] and everything’s at your disposal,” Maria said. “If there’s something I don’t know they’re able to teach it to me and better my skills.”

Maria’s favorite part of being a technician is working at the front desk in Applied Physics & Mathematics 1313, which takes students, faculty, and staff who walk in with computing issues. She frequently helps her fellow students with the campus Wifi network and computing accounts. “I like [the] front desk because you’re able to interact with the user and it’s less explaining or trying to navigate without being able to see what the user sees,” Maria explained. “Once you fix the problem it’s nice to see their face light up and the sense of relief and I definitely love that satisfaction.”

Being a Help Desk technician means that Maria has learned awesome tricks that she can share with other students. One of her favorites is the “lost and found” folder on computers in ACMS-managed computer labs. “A user’s computer crashed at Geisel and she lost her file. She hadn’t saved it recently so she was in panic mode,” Maria related. “We have a lost and found folder in all the computers so when a computer crashes you go into the lost and found folder [on that computer] and there’ll be a folder with your name and anything that was recovered during the crash…. She was able to recover the majority of her work and only a few paragraphs versus pages were missing.”

To other students considering becoming a Help Desk/ResNet technician, Maria encourages them to apply. “It’s definitely a challenging process, but once you make it through the training’s amazing and the work is amazing.It’s very rewarding. A few calls will be different so something exciting happens every day.” When you work at the Help Desk, “you gain a lot of knowledge, you meet awesome people, [and] the environment’s great.”

The next time you have a computing issue, visit the Help Desk where Maria and her fellow technicians will assist you. Keep up the great work Maria!

The Student Scoop features UC San Diego students and explores how technology provided by Academic Computing & Media Services intersects with their lives on campus. Keep checking back for more interviews to find out what students really think about technology at UC San Diego inside and outside of the classroom!

Spring 2015 Instructional Technology Training

Laptop with i>clicker and TedFaculty can enhance their teaching in Spring Quarter 2015 by signing up for instructional technology training. Academic Computing & Media Services’ Instructional Technology team is offering training sessions for Ted, UC San Diego’s learning management system, and the i>clicker student response system.

New this quarter is the Camtasia class, which shows faculty how to create, edit, and share engaging videos for use in their courses.

Several classes on Ted will be held throughout the quarter:

  • Ted Overview – how to navigate Ted and set up a new course (designed for beginners)
  • Ted Groups – how to create groups and use group tools
  • Ted Grade Center – how to customize the grade center and set up weighted columns
  • Blackboard Collaborate – how to use video conferencing for virtual office hours and remote meetings

i>clicker training is also available throughout the term:

  • i>clicker Overview – how to install the software and set up the equipment for your course
  • Ted / i>clicker Integration – how to sync i>clicker with Ted and upload scores (for Ted users only)

Visit the training webpage to see all session dates and register. Space is limited, so reserve your spot today! Faculty can also request one-on-one training.

Proper Cable Wrapping Technique

All UC San Diego classrooms and lecture halls are equipped with audiovisual cables to connect your devices to the projector. However, these cables can become permanently damaged if not wrapped properly. Help keep our classrooms and lecture halls in excellent condition by watching our short video to show you how to wrap these cables. Trust us—it’s really easy!