There are several exciting new developments from our Information Technology Departments on ways computing and technology on campus are improving. Here are some highlights:
The team of five MTSU upper-division Computer Science students—Jason Bandy, Matthew Houglum, Chris Johnson, Chelsea Rath, and Justin Tiffner—who gained significant attention for developing the MTSU application for both Android and Apple mobile platforms (that includes event calendars, campus maps, parking/bus routes, class schedules, and dining services) has remained busy at work on other projects. The team has since done the following:
• Developed an application for Geosciences to use in the field for survey and study guides
• Began developing applications for Disability Services, homework, and study aids
• Made plans to develop additional applications for departments across the University
• Presented at the 41st annual Tennessee Higher Education Information Technology Conference (THEITS)
• Presented at the TBR Android Mobility workshop
Working with the TBR, MTSU will host its first annual Mobility Summit, October 15–16, 2012. The summit will provide the Tennessee educational community from pre-K through college opportunities to explore how mobile technologies can be developed, utilized, and maintained to enhance learning.
C@M – Cloud at Middle
MTSU has built a private internal cloud called C@M–Cloud at Middle. The cloud delivers virtual access to desktop and classroom applications. The University has also moved student email, its campus-wide scheduling application, its learning management system, and its web content management system to the cloud.
The benefits of C@M are vast:
• It provides the user a consistent look and feel, no matter where they are on campus.
• It increases the performance and power of the PC for a better user experience.
• It provides the University the ability to move applications from one classroom to another without physically going to the rooms.
• It provides the University the ability to install applications without interfering with class schedules.
• It makes applications available in a fraction of the time it currently takes for PCs that aren’t virtualized.
• It diminishes wear and tear and down time of campus PCs.
• It minimizes the effect of malware on campus by isolating computer viruses to a virtual machine. (When the virtual machine is rebooted, the virus is deleted.)
• It extends PC life expectancy.
For the start of the fall, 2012 semester:
• more than 200 applications will be virtualized,
• more than 550 desktops will be virtualized, and
• more than 50 employee desktops in ITD and Business/
• Finance will be virtualized
The campus-wide digital signage system has made great strides over the past year. From an interactive Tennessee Teacher’s Hall of Fame and MTSU Information Board in the College of Education building to 15 digital signs in the new Student Union, which include 6×10– and 20×3– foot video walls, we now have additional tools in place to capture the attention of faculty, staff, students, and visitors with the MTSU message.
These signs will help showcase MTSU’s best activities, help people find their way around campus, and function as an additional way to communicate with the MTSU community and beyond (including emergency communications). As part of an overall messaging and marketing strategy, more interactive boards and information signs will pop up in other locations both on and off campus in the future.