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  OIT Home > Committees > ITPG > Meetings > ITPG Meeting Minutes 12/9/04
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ITPG Meeting Minutes December 9, 2004

 

Present: Executive Vice Chancellor Gene Lucas (guest); Mark Aldenderfer, Arlene Allen, Kevin Barron, Jeffrey Barteet, Lubo Bojilov, Ken Bowers, Clayton Burnham, Eric Brody, Larry Carver, Ken Dean, Doug Drury, Matthew Dunham, George Gregg, Bill Koseluk, Shea Lovan, Tom Marazita, Mark McGilvray, Elise Meyer, Alan Moses Linda Moskovits, Larry Murdock, Stan Nicholsen, Mike Oliva, Fuzzy Rogers, Glenn Schiferl, Deborah Scott, Jan Smith, Chris Sneathen, Jamie Sonsini, Chas Thompson, Paul Weakliem (ITPG members).

AuthPol

AuthPol is an ITPG subcommittee formed to identify and resolve policy issues related to the campus Identity Management System.

The committee reports that the IdM architecture has been successfully upgraded and the next step is to upgrade from Netpoint 6 to Netpoint 7.

Major decisions from AuthPol are as follows.

  • IS&C will develop authentication services for non-web-based applications (e.g., umail). This requires a change to the basic schema.
  • IS&C has hired contract help to develop a delegated administration tool to allow units to add their own guests to the directory.
  • The object structure design will have the primary criterion of extensibility and delegation to distributed computing organizations. Within the limits of the technology, we want to empower campus computing organizations to create their own authorization roles and rules. We continue to be engaged with Oblix, and now Price Waterhouse (PWC), in ascertaining the best possible design prior to moving forward.
  • The UC campuses have completed proof of concept testing of the Shibboleth technology for identity federation. It is being initially deployed and tested in the context of accessing employee benefits (UC for Yourself). It already has sufficient acceptance that a consortium of universities beyond the UC campuses are adopting it. Arlene Allen currently has a request from USC regarding when IS&C might support it on behalf of some UCSB students using their services. It is her intention to deploy as quickly as possible, and she is discussing this with David Walker at UCOP.

CMS

CMS is a working group formed from proposal proponents to make progress on the Course Management System issue prior to the proposal being funded. Group members are Alan Moses, Stan Nicholson, George Michaels, Elise Meyer, Linda Moskovits, and Dominic Clark.

Committee report items follow.

  • Twenty people have signed up for the discussion forum or mailing list.
  • The working group discussed the synergies between what IS&C needs to do and what CMS needs to do.
  • We would like to have a kickoff meeting with faculty but we need to know the timeline for implementation first.
  • We want to do an evaluation to determine whether SAKAI is the best solution for our campus, and whether there are architectural reasons why it should be. The EVC said that the CMS working group should work with the new Academic Technology Planning Group to make progress on this project.

DECAF

DECAF is an ITPG subcommittee that provides a forum for sharing plans for administrative computing systems, recommending protocols for electronic communications, and negotiating the format of common files and data elements.

The committee reports that a single sign-on working prototype for non-student applications has been developed. The current applications included are Transfer of Funds, Transfer of Expense, and Purchase Order Requisition System. The new Travel system will be added next. There will be a final functional demonstration on December 21 contact Doug if you want to attend.

Budget IT Subcommittee

The Budget IT Subcommittee, a subcommittee of the Budget Coordinating Committee, is looking at making delivery of IT services on campus more efficient and effective. The group is now looking at an IT reorganization.

Committee report items follow.

  • We are still waiting for UCOP to approve the senior level of the CIO position. Names have tentatively been proposed for a search committee. A Search Firm will be used for this recruitment.
  • The goal is to have the new planning groups begin in January.
  • We have finished our meetings with COE and are next going to meet with Life Sciences to look at the demarcation between local and central IT services (in fact our meeting will be right before the ITPG meeting).

ITPG Proposals

At the last ITPG meeting it was reported that the EVC was looking for funding for two of the six ITPG proposals that had been submitted (of which three were recommended for funding.) There was a lot of angst expressed on the ITPG mailing list about this situation and questions about the whole proposal process. There was later clarification that in fact the EVC was looking for funding for four of the six; specifically, Course Management, GUS, Software Depot, and Student Data in the Datawarehouse.

The EVC reiterated that he was looking for funding for these proposals, most of which require staffing (which in turn means permanent funding: harder to come by given the current budget situation). But he is looking for new funding sources, for opportunities to share the cost and, if all else fails, for ways to fund the one-time portion of the proposals. One possible source of funds is salary turnover savings.

Q&A with the EVC

Q: The ITPG ranks the proposals and sends them forward, but what finally gets funded may or may not be the same proposals. Is there value in all of the time that the ITPG spends on the proposal process?

A: The effort that the ITPG provides through this process is very important for the EVC's prioritization process, however we are not the only source of information for the EVC. E.g., GUS was not ranked at the top by the ITPG, but it is extremely important to the units that represent a majority of the extramural grants on campus, which is why it moved up in the EVC's priorities.

Q: Is promoting your proposal through the ITPG process sufficient, or do you also need to get your control point to lobby the EVC?

A: Many people try to lobby the EVC directly, but he directs them back through their control points to follow protocol. The EVC considers IT requests that come through the ITPG or OIT, and others are redirected to those sources.

Q: What is your vision for the CIO selection process?

A: This search will be similar to other VC-level searches. The executive search firm will interview both the campus search committee as well as other key campus constituents (who could be nominated by the search committee) to try and determine what we are looking for and to help write the job advertisement. We want to go with an executive search firm that is experienced in this type of recruitment because they should then have a good list of possible candidates and their availability. The executive search firm will provide a winnowed list of applicants to the campus search committee. The campus search committee will further winnow the list either based on the applications, or on brief campus interviews. The final pool of candidates will come to campus for two days of interviews where they will meet a significant number of people. This may or may not include a presentation of their IT vision. The campus search committee will then base their evaluation on their own experience as well as input from the campus constituents and forward a couple of names to the Chancellor. The Chancellor will do his own due diligence and talk with campus constituents.

Comment: Several of the proposals that were submitted but not recommended proposed funding for services for functional units that were not part of the proposal process, e.g., having Accounting take on campus-wide credit card processing. It was discouraging to not have these service ideas picked up by anyone.

A: The new CIO will greatly help the situation that you describe. The ITPG proposal process is a good process. It is very impressive that so many people at this level can get together, discuss the issues and come to agreement on a few proposals to bring forward.

Q: Would there be value in seeing the discussion of the proposals so that you get the entire context?

A: Having a distilled version would be useful. (NB: See ITPG meeting minutes for January 20, 2004-May 10, 2004.

Comment: IT staff wonder whether they are making the correct functional decision. Often they become proxies for proxies of proxies of functional leaders.

Q: Where does UCSB want to be positioned with respect to IT, do we want to be at the bleeding edge, middle of the road, or trailing edge?

A: We want to be between the middle of the road and the bleeding edge, but we are currently at the trailing edge.

Q: Twenty years ago, a VC came back from the Olympics saying that he used a new technology called email and he wondered if it could be done at UCSB. Now initiatives come from the bottom up. How can IT staff better communicate with campus strategic planners?

A: The campus needs to do more strategic planning, and the new CIO and committees will be involved. However, campuses often work better when plans are developed by listening to everyone because there are a lot of smart people on campus, rather than having the plans come from above. He'll continue to rely on the expertise of the ITPG to bring forward projects that need to be considered.

Comment: It would be useful for there to be some general statements such as "Self-service is important," or "There should be a campus-wide calendaring system used by everyone."

Comment: The CMS working group is trying to get the cutting edge faculty interested in our efforts. The timing of funding this project could really make a substantial difference.

A: Make your pitch to the ATPG.

Q: Will the new CIO really have the authority and resources to do strategic planning for the campus?

A: How much clout the CIO has depends on the backing of the top administrators. Based on our subcommittee's interviews with CIOs who have come into new positions, the new CIO should have the latitude to consult for a year and then form the new IT organization. Regarding resources, the current resources for IT across the campus is not insignificant (although it lags behind many other campuses). But we will also need additional sources of revenue. The budgets of CIOs that we've investigated range from $1M $100M.

Comment: The KITP has several issues. We have 1500 visitors/year and some of the biggest issues are visitors with infected laptops and inclusion in the directory for authentication. We are on the cutting edge of VOIP, and that has been difficult to support. The campus needs to look outward.

Comment: One Physics Department at Educause reported that half of their faculty have homes in Switzerland. We may be moving toward a situation where faculty intersect rather than reside on campus.

Comment: A major issue facing IT staffing on campus is the effect of the cost of housing on the South Coast. The more senior staff generally own their own homes and the newer staff don't. The newer staff are finding that they need to move somewhere else when they want to "start a life." When the senior staff retire, the campus will have a majority of staff that is relatively transitory and thus require a greater degree of management. The campus needs to get involved with the community to address this issue.

A: The Campus Housing Master Plan is looking at building on University-owned land. The current plan includes 3,500 units (a combination of apartments, condos, and single-family homes) that could be available for faculty, staff, and students. Senior officers are involved with a variety of community organizations looking at this issue.

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