Present: Debbie Anglin, Art Battson, Ken Bowers, Glenn Davis (co-chair) Bill Doering, George Gregg, Bill Koseluk, Tom Marazita, Bill McTague, Ed Mehlschau, Elise Meyer (co-chair), Alan Moses, Joan Murdoch, Larry Murdock, Kevin Schmidt, Bob Sugar, John Vasi, Pamela Webb
Not Present: Kevin Barron, Phil Handley, Pam Lombardo, Vince Sefcik, Jamie Sonsini
To kick off the first meeting of the ITPG, Bob Sugar, chair of the Campus Networking Committee (CNC), provided an introduction to the role of the CNC and its subcommittees. The CNC is charged with providing advice to the Executive Vice Chancellor (EVC) on matters pertaining to networking and related topics. Bob also reviewed the operational responsibilities of the CNC in coordination with the Campus Network Programmers and Communications Services and listed previous projects and ongoing activities of these groups. Among these are the campus fiber backbone, the campus web pages, undergraduate email system, campus scheduling/calendaring standard and CalREN-2 network design.
Bob noted that most of the work of CNC is accomplished though its subcommittees and that these committees often include people who are not officially members of CNC. Further, CNC itself is not an exclusive committee and welcomes the active participation of people who were not originally appointed by the EVC. The goal has been to include campus experts wherever they are found.
During the last academic year a CNC subcommittee discussed possible organizational changes for the management of information technology and presented a set of recommendations to EVC Crawford shortly before he left campus. During those discussions the subcommittee recognized the need for a group to look ahead and define issues that would need study rather than waiting until events generated a need to react. All of the organizational models presented to the EVC included a planning group, named the Information Technology Planning Group, consisting of technical experts from around campus. Although some recommendations did not achieve unanimous agreement and remain for the new EVC to address, it makes sense to go ahead and form the ITPG now as a subcommittee of CNC. Later the ITPG might become part of whatever new organization emerges.
The ITPG is charged with looking ahead, articulating IT issues and making recommendations to the full CNC. The recommendations may take several forms: 1) issues may be discussed and presented as recommendations from the ITPG directly to the CNC, 2) issues may be referred to a standing subcommittee of the CNC or, 3) the ITPG may recommend that CNC form a new subcommittee to study an issue.
Following a round of self-introductions, Co-chair Elise Meyer reviewed a proposed set of process issues and protocols. Elise noted that the co-chairs were open to other ideas on how to proceed and that our intent was to make maximum use of the electronic communications tools available. However, all decision-making would take place in face-to-face meetings. Elise further noted that we had attempted to gather representatives of the major computing units on campus.
Upon reviewing the proposed process plan the group suggested that:
- Votes should not be held without a quorum of twelve members present.
- The formation of the ITPG should be announced to the full CNC and the existence of an ITPG web page should be advertised.
- We include a provision to change the process if it did not seem to work well. (The group agreed that the process should be an agenda item after working with it for the next two meetings.)
Members of the committee also posed the following questions:
- Should the ITPG consider issues of resources (because so many IT issues come down to questions of funding)? Bob Sugar responded that the CNC makes recommendations to the EVC regarding priorities and that sometimes the CNC’s job is to convince the administration that things requiring resources should be done. Further, both Communications Services and the Campus Network Programmers have budgets that can be applied to some projects and the CNC has been successful in obtaining additional funding in the past. Thus, the ITPG’s role is to consider IT issues somewhat independently of funding.
- Larry Murdock asked if ITPG was a "staff only" committee. Bob responded that was not necessary, but that’s how it turned out when people were selected on the basis of their job duties and their expertise.
The group agreed to try the process outlined with the additions of suggestions made by members during the discussion.
Co-chair Glenn Davis then facilitated an exercise in which urgent IT issues were listed on the blackboard. Each member was invited to contribute one issue that they thought was of prime urgency in requiring study and/or action. As we went around the table each person either contributed a new issue or elaborated on one that had already been contributed. Next, a tally was made in which each member voted for the three issues that they deemed to be most urgent. Following are the issues that emerged:
- Security: possible areas to address are organizing security response by operating system and reconciling the broad spectrum of protection schemes that exist on campus (Elise Meyer, Ed Mehlschau)
- Directory Services: there is already a version 1 LDAP server on campus. The administrators need input from the rest of campus regarding what information and fields should be supported. A Directory Service is the building block for other campus services. (Glenn Davis, Kevin Schmidt)
- Planning & Funding: We need dedicated staff responsible for planning (Alan Moses). We also need more IT resources available for classroom support and decisions on what should be centralized or decentralized. (Art Battson). There needs to be a tremendous increase in permanent funding for permanent functions e.g., staffing, S&E, hardware renewal. (Bill Koseluk)
- Creation of a unified data network group (vs. the current split NOC) which needs some level of funding (Larry Murdock)
- Student Access to computing resources (and definition of what are the resources available) (Joan Murdoch, Bill McTague, Ken Bowers). What are the plans in addition to the Library Open Access systems? (John Vasi)
- Dial-up access to campus. (Joan Murdoch)
- Umbrella organization or structure for Administrative Systems and functions: how these systems can best interface to other resources, use datawarehousing, etc. (Pamela Webb, Debbie Anglin)
- UCSB participation in the UC authentication project including the determination of what protocols and site licenses are required. (Tom Marazita)
- New campus backbone planning, e.g., how will new groups join (Bill Doering)
- Fragmentation of Campus IT support and decision making (George Gregg)
Security emerged, by a narrow margin, as the most urgent issue. Kevin Schmidt articulated some of the concerns related to security and agreed to make a posting to the list to begin the discussion.
The meeting adjourned with an agreement to meet again at 10:00 a.m. on October 20 in the same room (Broida 3033).
Glenn Davis & Elise Meyer, Co-chairs
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