Tuesday, 28 August 2012

New Student Printing Solution

Following a competitive tendering process the University has selected Capital Solutions and Betasoft to provide its new student printing solution. The solution will provide a significantly enhanced printing experience for students with HP multi-functional devices (MFDs) located across the campus.

It is crucial that we provide the best range of service possible for our students and that these are fully supported and reliable.

This is a secure ‘pull’ print service – meaning a student can select print, then collect their print job at a time and location suitable to them (instead of their print job churning out at the nearest printer).   The service is ‘managed’, which means the Print Team are automatically alerted when toner cartridges need replaced or paper supplies are low,  therefore the students should experience very little or no downtime of the MFDs.  Students will, for the first time, have the option to scan (for free). 

We're looking forward to welcoming our new and returning students in less than 2 weeks - they will be sure to tell us what they think!  

Rohit from the Service Desk Team
using one of the MFDs

Monday, 27 August 2012

Super Hi-Vision Television Standard

Myself and some colleagues were recently invited by Janet UK to an event to experience the new TV standard - Super Hi-Vision - at BBC Scotland in Glasgow.  

NHK (the Japanese broadcasting giant) had recorded some footage of the London 2012 Olympics which was shown at the event. From my perspective it was very much like I was at the actual event with the picture quality and sound being unbelievable.  This pioneering technology transmits images 16 times sharper resolution than standard HD television. 

I'm pleased to see today that the UN's communication standards setting agency have approved the new standard.


location - BBC Scotland
centre - Prof Celia Duffy,
Director of Academic Development,
RSAMD (event chair)

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Energy Efficient Data Centre at St Andrews

Made by FutureTech UK in June 2011.

The BYOD challenge

Much of the headlines in the computer press over the past six months have been around the consumerisation of IT and the challenge of "Bring Your Own Device" (BYOD). This in essence is people bringing their own equipment into the workplace/classroom etc and connecting this to the organisations network. With devices such as smartphones and tablet computers being commonplace, corporates are being challenged with both policy and infrastructure to support such devices. 

In the higher education sector however, this is something we have been dealing with for more than 10 years and we can offer a huge amount of advice to the corporate sector. Speaking recently at an event in Edinburgh I stressed that the challenge is not about how to prevent devices being connected to the corporate network - its more about making it as easy as possible while still maintaining a secure environment. This requires a review of the network permiteter and a change in mindset to traditional network management. Here at the University we are seeing students (and staff!) connecting a number of devices to our wireless network with 4 or 5 not being unusual. 

The unknown posture of BYO devices creates additional challenges however these can be overcome by ensuring adequate controls are in place at a LAN and application level.