Computing and Information Technology [CIT]
Annual Report for FY 2001
This annual report for FY2001, CIT’s final year, chronicles the cumulative efforts to
provide computing and information technology support for faculty, staff, and University
students. Fourteen years after CIT’s formation, the entire campus community now has
access to a rich array of networking and computing resources. Members of the
University community have come to depend upon information technology for research,
teaching, learning, and administration.
CIT consists of the following departments:
Academic Services supports academic uses of information technology at the University, including support of classroom and web-based instruction, language instruction, and uses
Administrative Services provides support services for CIT (personnel, contract administration, facilities operation, and planning). The group also provides a range of
services to the University, including Printing and Mailing, ID Card, Software Sales,
Telecommunications, and Policy and Security.
Budget and Finance assists the operating units within CIT with all financial issues. The group consolidates budgets, acts as the financial representative on funding issues, sets
rates for CIT services, and ensures compliance with University rules and procedures.
Information Systems implements and supports core administrative applications and provides information services (Network, UNIX, NT, DBA, and mainframe) to the entire
IT Architecture works to define and document the present and future Information Technology infrastructure at the University.
Enterprise Services provides core middleware, e-mail, monitoring, and software and coordinates deployment of desktop computer systems for the campus community.
Support Services provides front line support for all members of the University community. In addition, the group installs and maintains the campus networking
The detailed nature of the annual reports from each group may obscure the overall depth
and breadth of CIT’s accomplishments during FY01. The following table illustrates
numerically the magnitude of the cumulative efforts of the organization. The
immediately following pages highlight the most significant accomplishments during the
year under review.
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CIT, by the numbers
32,000,000,000,000 Bytes of information backed up over the network for 7,000 users
5,000,000,000,000 Bytes of disk space on CIT’s 80 central systems
21,044,700 Copies made under the oversight of the Copier Center
6,546,485 Hits on the Help Desk web site from nearly 27,000 unique IP addresses
500,000 Average number of daily user e-mail connections to the University’s IMAP
server 500,000 Yearly logins on Windows machines in Campus Computer clusters
110,000 Average number of daily Webmail connections
17,000 Distinct network hosts on campus
8,000 IMAP e-mail accounts
5,275 ID Cards processed
5,000 Peak daily e-mail load of simultaneous connections
4,800 Changes to telephone service or equipment
4755 Campus events supported by Media Services
4,635 Subscribers to Dormnet
2,436 Requests in the Dorms for assistance from 32 students working as Residential
Computing Consultants (RCCs)
2,000 DeSC computers upgraded
1,785 New voice mailboxes
1,680 Users of the dial-in remote access service
1,600 Lists hosted by Princeton
1,538 Staff who enrolled in a CIT course
1,500 Simultaneous users of Streaming Media
1,086 Video connections installed by Hardware Support
1,000 Daily users of the OnTime Calendar
833 Computer systems ordered by students in the Student Computer Initiative 776 Course websites
629 Staff from 105 departments participated in DeSC training
400 Campus printers supported by CIT
172 Training classes offered to administrative staff
151 Number of UNIX and Windows systems monitored by the Tivoli Enterprise
96 Blackboard orientation visits by Graduate Students to faculty offices
37 37 Computer Clusters containing a total of 231 Windows machines, 59
Macintoshes, 56 UNIX workstations, more than 100 network drops, and 34
13 Administrative departments and 20 staff are participating in the new
Distributed Computing Support Program
1 New Vice President for Information Technology
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Highlights of the Year
New Administrative Systems
CIT implemented a new Human Resource Management System that integrates the
Human Resources, Benefits, and Payroll systems using PeopleSoft. This client/server
system replaces Tesseract, the University's former centralized mainframe system.
The new PeopleSoft system improves data integrity and data control because it shares
information among all central offices. For the first time, departmental managers are able to view critical job information online about all the employees in their departments. The system also provides new and improved ways to communicate changes to all authorized
parties via automated workflow.
Time Collection is a web application that serves as a front end to the PeopleSoft Human
Resources Management System. Time Collection enables the collection and approval of
time for biweekly, casual and student employees for both main campus and the Princeton
Plasma Physics Lab. Time Collection includes all the business rules regarding
pay,making the process of collecting and approving time both more efficient and accurate. Distributed Media Centers
During FY01, CIT increased the number of locations from which students can gain high
speed access to a centrally situated video server. The Graduate College, Lower Madison
Hall, McCosh B59, Frist Campus Center, and the LRC were added to Forbes and Wilson.
Several classrooms in McCosh and all of the classrooms in Frist were also connected to
the server. In the fall semester, in addition to language classes, 11 courses (788 students) accessed 45 films on the server. In the spring 85 additional films were digitized for 11
Course Web Sites
In August, 2000, the Provost’s Office funded an initiative with the aim of creating a web
site for every University course. CIT’s Academic Services created skeleton web sites for
every course. During the year, graduate students visited 96 faculty offices to provide
assistance in improving the web sites. The number of course web sites grew from 673 in
FY00 to 776 in FY01.
The installation of additional e-mail servers improved overall reliability of campus e-mail. The campus community connects to IMAP, POP, and webmail services nearly 13,000
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On the recommendation of the Priorities Committee to eliminate the direct, separate,
charge for student Dormnet access, the University combined the Dormnet fee with the
general housing fee for all undergraduates and most graduate students living in Dormnet-
capable housing. The action takes the campus much further forward toward a ubiquitous
computing environment. During FY01, Dormnet was extended to Lawrence Apartments
and the Grad College Annex. Dormnet subscriptions rose 2.3% from FY00, totaling
4,598 members (4,246 undergraduates, 352 graduate students). The University agreed
that all new student living spaces (including those for Graduate students) will be data
ID Card Project
During FY01, the University evaluated the current and future uses of the campus ID card.
A report proposes an expanded Campus Card Office to handle data administration for all
card uses. Beginning next year, students should be able to use their ID card as a debit
card on campus and with participating local vendors.
Funding network infrastructure
During FY01, the Provost established a building wiring upgrade project funded jointly by
CIT and the University. The funding will extend the campus’s fiber optic infrastructure
from the backbone to the desktop and permit CIT to provide the campus with networking
speeds in excess of 10MB. During FY01, CIT began to wire selected buildings and to
provide high-speed access as far as funds would permit. New procedures with Facilities
now ensure that planned renovations include an upgrade to the building wiring.
Towards the Future
The new Vice President for Information Technology, Betty Leydon, has established a
new organization, the Office of Information Technology [OIT] that joins the existing
groups within the former CIT with two new additional groups.
Partnership 2000 [P2K] brings improvement and innovation to administrative processes
through the replacement of all of the University’s administrative systems with client-
The Educational Technologies Center [ETC] develops and supports technology
applications in support of teaching and learning. The ETC also develops courseware for
alumni lifelong learning and enrichment.
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The mission of OIT will be to enable the effective use of information technology in
support of the University. In pursuit of this mission, OIT’s goals are to
? Deliver information technology products and services that meet the needs of the
University community and achieve the highest levels of customer satisfaction.
? Support the use and development of information technology to enable innovation
in teaching, learning, research, and scholarship.
? Provide leadership in planning for the effective use of technology.
? Provide a robust, reliable, and secure information technology infrastructure.
? Attract, develop, and retain quality information technology professionals.
? Enable communication and collaboration among information technology
professionals and users of information technology at the University.
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Academic Services supports Academic uses of Information Technology on campus,
principally in the form of instructional technology (IS). During FY01, Academic
Service’s second full year, AS shared this mission with the Educational Technologies
group [ETC]. ETC focused on supporting faculty who are developing relatively
sophisticated web-based instructional technology applications. AS focused on baseline IS support for faculty (media services, courseware) as well as support of student and staff use of IS.
Academic Services contains four groups:
? Academic Technology Services (the PLACE)
? Academic Applications
? Language Resource Center
? Media Services
During FY01, there was steady growth in the services supported by Academic Services,
particularly courseware services and media services. There were also some new
initiatives in the area of IS training and support for research computing, but these were limited. With new leadership in place, AS hopes that a number of new initiatives, both in research computing support, and in classroom use of video, will come to fruition, against a backdrop of ever-more robust and reliable courseware, language and media support.
Academic Technology Services (ATS)
Academic Technology Services aims to enhance the educational experience of Princeton
undergraduates and graduate students by encouraging the use of, and supporting, digital
? ATS operates a fully equipped New Media Lab that offers walk-in equipment
access and advice to Princeton students, faculty, and staff seeking to integrate
digital media into their work;
? ATS selects and supports general courseware tools;
? ATS offers non-credit lectures, workshops, and seminars in new media and IT;
? In coordination with other campus groups, ATS undertakes selected IT
During FY01, use of the Blackboard courseware tool grew dramatically. A new
instructional technology training series witnessed modest success, principally among staff and students.
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The Provost decided in August, 2000 to have AS create a skeleton Blackboard course
web site for every Princeton course. To assist this effort, a faculty outreach program involving graduate students involved 96 in-office Blackboard orientation visits totaling 174 hours.
As a result, the number of course websites grew to 776, an increase of 78.4% over FY00. 87% (673) of these websites used Blackboard.
During FY01, ATS staff provided special Blackboard training and orientation sessions to the following Princeton students, faculty and staff:
? Help Desk demo
? New facilitators (fall and spring)
? Politics academic departmental staff
? WWS academic departmental staff
? History academic departmental staff
? ELE academic departmental staff
? EAS Studies academic departmental staff
? Office of Population Research
? History faculty demo
? Library Staff (originally 2 sessions; 4 more added by popular demand!)
? Molecular Biology academic departmental staff
? WWS301-POL308_S2001 student drop box demo (300+ lecture course)
? WWS301-POL308_S2001 instructor drop box demo
? WWS JCI faculty demo
? WWS JCI student demo
During FY01, ATS staff responded to 511 phone calls to the Blackboard hotline. Staff actively maintained the Blackboard knowledge base in order to assist Help Desk
consultants in responding to questions. ATS staff spent many hours beta-testing the new Blackboard version 5.5.
During FY01, ATS staff contributed to the following courses and courseware
Online Music Reserves Pilot: AS staff have worked with the Library and ETC on this
project. ATS defined and documented the process by which audio tracks are located on Library CDs, converted into RealMedia format, and moved to the NT streaming media
server machine operated by CIT Web Services. Courses served include FRS159w,
MUS103, MUS106, MUS204, MUS209, and POR101.
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Online Foreign Language Poetry follow-up projects: These course tools use synchronized text/audio presented over the web using Flash. Staff developed the
prototype for Classics Language Instruction Project (CLIP):
http://www.princeton.edu/~clip. Prof Wildberg took over project production and
completed it on his own.
Professor Coffin served as content provider for Online Arabic Poetry.
http://www.princeton.edu/~arabic/poetry and for the Musical Tour of the Arab World: http://www.princeton.edu/~arabic/music. ATS staff built the modules.
VIS315 class based in ATS New Media Lab: As in previous terms, this course had regular meetings in the lab. ATS hourly employees actively participated in the training of
VIS315 students in Photoshop, Illustrator, Freehand, and Flash.
Web authoring training for Princeton classes: At the request of the professor in charge of the following courses, ATS staff and hourly employees held special “Intro to the Web”
POL230 (F2000). Professor Tucker
CHM333 (S2001). Professor Spiro
CEE393 (S2001). Professor Peters
ENG574 (S2001). Professor Hayles
CHM202 online lectures: ATS and ETC staff collaborated to produce web-based
streaming lectures for CHM202.
MUS105 Practica Musica: Working with CIT’s Clusters group, ATS provided file-
hosting services for Practica Musica software and student projects for Professor Koonce.
Project Eclips: Supporting Professor Dworkin’s effort to digitize small publications, ATS
student workers scanned these materials and delivered the digital media to ETC.
New Media Lab consulting and equipment access
AS’s New Media Lab offers year round walk-in consulting and equipment. Members of the University community with questions about new media and instructional technologies
come to ask questions, to use equipment not generally available such as slide scanners or
digital video, and to get help in assembling courses. Overall, faculty and student walk-in
visits declined by approximately 3% from FY00 (see separate graphic, below) but visits
by University staff increased by more than 50%.
During FY01, a new ID-card-based guest register captured lab usage as well as counting
visitors. The top four usages were: video capture/editing (26%), flatbed scanning (23%),
non-Blackboard web design advice (20%), and slide scanning (13%). As in prior years,
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ATS staff continue to provide hardware and software support for the Language Resource
Center [LRC] and to a number of clusters dedicated to high-bandwidth video applications.
ATS Education Series
During Spring, 2001, ATS offered eleven non-credit mini-courses on topics related to
new media and instructional technology. The courses were particularly well attended by
Princeton employees. The titles of these courses were as follows:
? Intro to digital images
? Pixels v. vectors
? Intro to Photoshop
? Intro to Freehand and Illustrator
? Intro to Blackboard CourseInfo
? Enhance your course with CourseInfo's online assessments
? How to have a successful CourseInfo site
? Using Blackboard CourseInfo's communication tools
? Intro to web publishing at Princeton
? Finding things on the web
? Final Cut Pro / Media Cleaner 5
ATS New Media Lab Walk-in Visits, by customer type
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Princeton University Course Websites, by term
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