Improvements, tech-friendly environment a must for students

Kara Gutormson

Kara Gutormson

Three years ago only 12 wireless access points existed across the entire SDSU campus. Outdated computers from the student computer labs were replaced with newer ones about every six years. Clearly, SDSU students and faculty needed wireless Internet, as well as more updated computers.

The technology upgrades dealt with many of these issues and are responsible for creating 120 wireless access points across campus, PHAROS printing stations in residence halls, a laptop checkout program at The Union and Briggs Library and also more computers that are easier for students to get to.

As enrollment at SDSU climbs each year and more students need to access the Internet, the Information Technology Office has been challenged to innovate and improve the speed and bandwidth capacity of the SDSU network.

Mike Adelaine, the vice president for information technology, said that the bandwidth capacity used to be 20 megabits; it is now 100 megabits. As a result, the quality of the SDSU Internet network has improved, and more data can be moved per second. Adelaine also said, “The increased bandwidth capacity has put SDSU ahead of its sister institutions.”

In addition to the Internet improvements, there are new computer labs on campus. The Wintrode Student Success Center, the Animal Science Complex and Wenona Hall all have new computer labs. The computers in these labs all feature lab submission software as well as Microsoft Office applications. Now every three years outdated computers are updated or replaced, which helps SDSU students to stay ahead of the times.

Also, the library and The Union each have 18 laptops that students are allowed to check out in four-hour time blocks. Students can use these laptops for free, as long as they use them within Briggs Library or The Union.

Zachary Plovanic, a senior computer science major at SDSU, feels that students should take advantage of the laptop checkout program. “For students who want to work in a comfortable setting like The Union, the info exchange laptops are a great tool to use,” he said.

When Adelaine became the vice president of information technology three years ago, he started formulating a plan to improve technology on campus.

Adelaine said the technology improvements are a must; students should be able to learn in a tech-friendly environment. “Students are always pressed for time,” he said, “so having this technology available helps them manage their time more effectively.”

Another exciting project set to be unveiled later this fall benefits graduate students. A new graduate student computer lab is being built in the Briggs Library. The graduate lab will feature new computers equipped with a cutting edge statistics program to help graduate students analyze data for research projects. It will be open to graduate students only, and identification will be required for use.

The team at the Office of Information Technology continues to innovate and enhance technology here at SDSU. In order to evaluate the technologies students use the most, SDSU participates in an ECAR study. ECAR is a survey given to college freshmen and seniors at 103 colleges across the nation.

The improvements made possible by the upgrade have made technology more student friendly at SDSU. The wireless accessible PHAROS printing stations, improved wireless access, updated computer labs and laptop checkout programs are all tools for SDSU students to use to maximize their educational experience.

Online storage offered to SDSU students

This November, SDSU will offer each student one gigabyte of storage as the very first web-interfaced storage solution emerges.

This technology will provide students with the opportunity to access pre-existing documents from the Internet. The main advantage of a web-interfaced network is that the user can access the storage network from any computer on or off campus.

WebCT makes course content readily available and promotes student and faculty communication but does not provide students or professors with a server in which to store documents. The new storage network could be used for students to save their finished assignment in designated folders, accessible by professors.

Mike Adelaine, vice president for information technology at SDSU, is always looking for ways to save students time.

“The storage network will give students a more convenient means of accessing homework,” Adelaine says.

It remains to be seen whether students will utilize this opportunity for their classes. Faculty participation will be crucial for this project.

SDSU senior Andrew Boerema, a computer science major, said that there are advantages to the system. “If the faculty and students can both use it to exchange documents it will be a really nice tool,” he said.