December holidays across culturesOne of the best parts of the winter season is reflecting on the past year and thanking those who have made University IT successful. Our readers are a special part of our department and we extend our gratitude to you for your continued support.
Wishing you peace, happiness and prosperity throughout the new year!

Campus Computing: Faculty and IT

Network Connection: It's Not Paranoia...

By Philip Baczewski, executive director, University IT
A recent report I saw claims that over 70 percent of internet use worldwide happens on smartphones. By 2019, that figure could rise to 80 percent of all internet access. It goes without saying that, for many of us, a large portion of our lives is centered around our phones. It's our primary method of communication, with the telephone aspect of the device likely subsidiary to texting, email, or social media. Read more.

Research Matters: Linear Mixed Models Revisited

By Jonathan Starkweather, Research and Statistical Support, Research IT Services, UIT
There are a great many ways to do linear (and non-linear) mixed-effects modeling in R. The following article discusses the use of the lme4 package, because it has been developed thoroughly over time and provides reliable, easy to interpret output for mixed-effect models. Read more.

Help Desk FYI: Hardware Discounts

For gift-buying and -giving occasions, remember that discounts for UNT students and employees are available and a lot of software you will use is provided by the university at no additional cost. The University of North Texas has partnered with several manufacturers to provide discounted hardware. Read more.

Cartoon: Humor in IT


UIT is on the move again

The University IT team will be packing in December and moving more of its offices to the General Academic Building during the second week of January. The UIT Help Desk, Microcomputer Maintenance Services, the Adaptive Computing and Learning Lab and the Computer-Based Testing Center will remain in Sage Hall. Karen Snyder, senior administrative coordinator, is overseeing the move. Read more.

UNT implements new technology for efficient cluster management

UNT is using groundbreaking technology from Bright Computing, a global leader in cluster and cloud infrastructure automation software, to further its research and to optimize efficiency for researchers working on groundbreaking discoveries in a variety of domains including material science, engineering, chemistry and physics. Read more.

The Section 508 refresh and what it means for higher education

By Martin LaGrow, Senior Academic Consultant, Ellucian
When originally drafted, Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 mandated that "all electronic and information technology used by the federal government be accessible to people with disabilities." Over the course of time, both the scope and the specificity of Section 508 have changed through revisions and court interpretations. On Jan.18, 2017, the United States Access Board published its most recent final rule updating requirements for information and communication technology, ICT, covered by Section 508. These requirements are set to go into effect on Jan. 18, 2018. Read more.

What is an air gap or an air wall? Click for the answer.NIST seeks comments on proposed cybersecurity framework update

The National Institute of Standards and Technology published its second draft of the proposed update to the Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity. Public comments on the latest draft of Cybersecurity Framework version 1.1 and the draft Roadmap are due to NIST by 11:59 p.m. on Jan.19, 2018. Read more.

Cool: Microsoft’s Q# quantum programming language out now in preview.


Editor's Note: Please note that information in each edition of Benchmarks Online is likely to change or degrade over time, especially the links to various websites. For current information on a specific topic, search the UNT website, UNT's UIT Help Desk or the world wide web. Email your questions and comments to the UNT University Information Technology Department or call 940-565-2324.