Shawn Beattie, editor
Augie Techknowledge from ITS is a once-a-term e-newsletter to share "what's new" in ITS and provide useful tips and articles on Information Technology and Educational Technology at Augustana. We hope you like it and find it useful. The newsletter will be archived on the ITS web site at http://its.augustana.edu/techknowledge. Enjoy!
In this issue:
Optical Imaging on Campus
ITS Student Techs to the Rescue
What's a Wiki?
Personal E-mail Folders in Outlook
Infections and annoyances defined
Upcoming classes in ITS
Diane Heist, Technical Coordinator, ITS
Augustana is making a move toward paperless. ITS has implemented an Optical Imaging system. The Human Resources department agreed to be our testing team. We are working with RK Dixon and using Stellent Image Management software. This system allows its users to access available online information. Our goal in Human Resources is to scan in and be able to retrieve the personnel files of Augustana employees online instead of having to locate the actual file folder.
|We began the project with training from RK Dixon. Beth Weber and Diane Heist are the ITS contacts. Tammy Showers, Kelly Hall and Sheila Scott are the users in HR. In addition, Ken Johnson and Mary Doonan have the software installed for access to online documents they need to retrieve. We started by scanning in the paperwork from the personnel files. After the scanning, the information is indexed. Indexing is the management of the forms in each of the files. For example, W4 forms are all saved in the Tax Forms index. Other indexes include Insurance, Pension, Salary letters, etc. There are different ways to look up information once the employee file is scanned into the system: last name, SS #, first name, document name. Once you open the form you need to see; you can then print it, email it, fax it, and even make annotations.|
While we are still in the beginning
stages, the ease of the system is already noticed as well as the quickness of
information retrieval. In time, we see this software as a great addition to
other departments on campus. For now, the Human Resources department is kind
enough to be our “startup headquarters”. We will follow their progress and learn
how to make this Optical imaging system the most it can be.
ITS Student Technicians to the Rescue
Dennis Hurd, ITS
Augie students who work for the ITS Desktop Support group provide a valuable resource for the entire Augie community. They may work from three to six hours a week according to the time they have available and the needs of the department. Usually seven to ten students work each term, often continuing until they graduate. Our purpose is to provide students with real life experiences in the computer world while they earn some money.
These students assist the three full time hardware technicians in setting up computers for new users and making sure they are functioning. They also pick up broken PC items such as keyboards, monitors, mice and printers, and deliver new or repaired items.
But student technicians do many more things than just pickup and deliver. They also learn the latest tools and techniques for in depth analysis of computer problems, both hardware and software. They often travel with the full time technicians, and learn how to complete a work order from beginning to end.
ITS receives work orders that vary from just a user seeking help with a program to a complete failure of their PC and/or other equipment. Technicians try first to solve the work order on site, but will pick up equipment and bring it to our Olin technical lab if it is a more difficult problem. Then the equipment can be tested in more depth and any mechanical problems or difficult software problems can be fixed. Here we can install a new hard drive with new software, perform a hardware upgrade or remove viruses or other problematic programs. Student techs can do these things by themselves if they are very experienced or under the help and supervision of a full time tech if they need some additional help or skills.
Students who are working this term are Jeff Anderson, Randy Haeflinger, Aaron Holbrook, Valerie Hughes, Cori Raney, and Adam Rhodes.
Thank you, student techs, for all of your help in supporting the Augie staff, faculty, and administration!!
Shawn Beattie, ITS
A Wiki, as defined at wiki.org is:
The simplest online database that could possibly work.
Wiki is a piece of server software that allows users to freely create and edit Web page content using any Web browser. Wiki supports hyperlinks and has a simple text syntax for creating new pages and crosslinks between internal pages on the fly.
Wiki is unusual among group communication mechanisms in that it allows the organization of contributions to be edited in addition to the content itself.
Like many simple concepts, "open editing" has some profound and subtle effects on Wiki usage. Allowing everyday users to create and edit any page in a Web site is exciting in that it encourages democratic use of the Web and promotes content composition by nontechnical users.
The most well-known implementation of a Wiki is the Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia that anyone can edit. For example, you could browse and immediately edit the entry on Augustana College. Many entries, such as the entry on Augustana, started as "stub" entries that were preloaded from public domain information sources. While users may be tempted to post propoganda or inaccurate information, changes are immediately logged and monitored by an active community and such a posting would be short-lived and therefore futile. Wiki seems to be an experiment in group communication that is -- for the most part -- working pretty well so far. Wikis are also popular as an alternative or a supplement to the venerable FAQ (Frequently Asked Question) pages on many sites. In the educational setting, a Wiki could be a great way for a group-crafted document to take shape.
E-mail Folders in Outlook
Beth Weber, ITS
Lately we have been having occasional storage crunches on our e-mail server due to people storing too much on the e-mail server in their Outlook Folders. Here are a couple solutions to this problem:
Personal Folders are files located on your local hard drive that have the .PST extension. You should use personal folders to offload messages from the mail server when your mailbox is reaching its disk quota. But Personal Folders are not well designed for collaborative sharing. Items that you need to share with someone else should be kept in a folder on the server. And if you are likely to need items in Outlook Web Access, keep them on the server – Personal Folders are not accessible from Augie’s Web Mail. Personal folders give you more storage space than you have on the server.
If you would like to set up Personal Folders you can go to S:\Documentation\OFFICE XP\Outlook\PersonalFolders.pdf or click here for step-by-step instructions. If you have any questions you can call Beth Weber in ITS at 7476.
Once you have your Personal
Folders created you can create subfolders in your Personal Folders to help you
organize your messages. Right-click on the folder where you would like to create
the subfolder and select "New Folder". When you want to move messages from your
Exchange Mailbox to your personal folders, just click and drag them to your
Since personal folders are kept on your hard drive and not on the server, it is important that you back up your folder from time to time. You can do this by copying the file to a zip disk, a CD, or to any other device. If you would like help doing so, just contact ITS.
Infections and annoyances defined
Shawn Beattie, ITS
Many people, including even the most technically advanced users, are completely confused by the wide variety of threats now facing users on the Internet -- viruses, worms, adware, spyware ...what does it all mean? The differences can sometimes be subtle. The following definitions are courtesy of howstuffworks.com:
Anti-virus and anti-spam software is very helpful, but even that does not always provide 100% coverage. Recently, Augustana witnessed firsthand that virus definitions -- even released daily -- can't always keep up with the threats. In some ways, the Internet, in particular e-mail, is quickly becoming a case study in the "Tragedy of the Commons" where the few spoil it for the many. In the long run, a technological solution must resolve these issues, just as new threats will develop.
Beth Weber, ITS
The following classes will be offered during the remainder of Spring Term for Faculty, Staff and Administration:
Excel Basics Brief instructions on entering data, formulas, formatting and printing
Excel Advanced VLookup, 3D formulas, linking formulas, outlining and more!
Outlook How to send, receive and forward emails. Also, maintaining your mailbox and more!
Access Basics Creating and editing table and how to create relationships between the tables.
Access Queries and Reports Build basic select queries and create reports
PowerPoint Basics Working with slides, themes and organizing your presentation
To view the schedule and class descriptions click on this link: http://www.augustana.edu/users/bethweber/index.htm
Enjoy your Spring!
-Your friends at ITS