Latest News

Are you cooking your pet fish to save money on textbooks?

March 31, 2000
What do frying your pet fish, staring into a lava lamp and burping the alphabet have to do with the beginning of each quarter? All of these are television ads designed to get us students interested in the savings online textbook stores can offer. But is buying textbooks online ready for prime time?

Apartment shopping online

March 03, 2000
I have a problem that I think most of you probably share. You see, I'm trying to find a place to live next year and things aren't going that well. It doesn't help that the vacancy rate among Davis apartments has sunk to a new decade-low 0.3 percent. Plus, I'm a bit on the lazy side and don't want to visit every single one of the places I'm thinking about living. Happily, this year I can do a lot of my preliminary research on the World Wide Web and save a lot of time.

More Options for Mobile Computer Users Scheduled for Fall

March 01, 2000
Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) allows users to dynamically configure desktop computers and laptops to access the campus network. This means that UC Davis faculty, staff, and students can connect to the network from any port at UC Davis. In the past, most of the campus was comprised of many small Local Area Networks (LANs), which required that LAN administrators assign a specific number (called an IP address) to each person authorized to use that local network. If this person then left that physical location (for a meeting or to teach a class, for example) and wished to connect somewhere else on campus, he/she was required to find the network administrator for that area, obtain another IP address, and reconfigure his/her computer. General Campus Network Access Ports Available in public areas throughout the campus, these ports allow registered individuals to connect their laptops to the campus network. While convenient for the mobile computer user, these ports are few in number (34) and in high demand. This project will greatly increase the number of these ports on campus (an additional 220), while improving accessibility to the campus network. Campus High-Speed Wireless The third project, Campus High-Speed Wireless, will test the feasibility, support issues, and costs of supporting a new type of wireless access that is limited by proximity (~200 foot radius) to the main transceivers in a given location.

"MyUCDavis" - A New Window on the Aggie World

March 01, 2000
For faculty and students, the workday is governed by course schedules and the constant quest for information. We maneuver through a maze of commitments with the aid of many "tools": planners, scheduling software, Web sites, email, and administrative computing systems, like Banner and DaFIS. Wouldn't it be great to have just one place where we could manage all of our UC Davis-related business, communications, and coursework? Well, the wait is almost over. By this fall, UC Davis faculty and students will have their own, custom-made Web portal called MyUCDavis. Plans to create a portal for staff are also on the drawing board. MyUCDavis (formerly known as Project Gateway) will integrate existing UC Davis online applications together with new services into one convenient Web portal, a site that functions like a doorway to many other sites and that each visitor can personalize to reflect his or her interests and needs (see "Web Portals Explained").

IT Tackles Shortage of Technical Staff with Innovative Program

March 01, 2000
The demand for highly skilled technical personnel has never been higher, both in the corporate world and in higher education. UC Davis is no exception. Over the years, the campus has grown increasingly reliant on technology, calling on IT services to meet the needs of instructional technology, business, application development, and general computing. However, in a technology environment, quality service depends on the ability to recruit and retain highly technical staff, which has become an increasingly difficult proposition.

UC Davis Gets Wireless Data Service

March 01, 2000
Mobile computer users throughout the country routinely use Palm? devices for email and scheduling. Police officers use laptops and other specialized devices to transmit and retrieve information instantly. Researchers access live Web pages while on trains. How? Through wireless Internet access. This service (a.k.a. Wireless IP or Wireless Mobile Data) is now available to UC Davis affiliates along with other voice and data services offered through IT-Communications Resources. How does this service work? When you sign up for this service (offered at UC Davis via AT&T), your wireless modem is assigned an IP address. (IP addresses are a series of numbers assigned by the National Information Center that uniquely identify computers on the Internet.) It is through this IP address that the wireless network recognizes you as authorized user. The Internet connection is instantaneous: no need to plug in, find a phone jack, or change your IP address to access the campus network. All it takes is firing up the "IP Stack" software that comes with the wireless modem. However, be aware that Wireless IP does not work at the speeds to which we have grown accustomed (typically 28 to 56 kilobits per second over a modem line). This network transmits data at a speed of up to 19.2 kilobits per second.

Is Windows 2000 for me? Probably not

February 18, 2000
With Microsoft ready to release its latest operating system onto the market with great fanfare, many students may be asking whether Windows 2000 is right for them. The short answer: unless you're a computer guru and enjoy a challenge, or are currently using Windows NT 4.0, the answer is probably no.

How I searched for search engines...

February 04, 2000
World Wide Web-based search engines drive me crazy. With UC Davis being a place where everybody is researching something all the time, a good search engine seems like it would be every student's best friend. However, it seems like there are hundreds of engines out there, each claiming it is bigger, faster and more accurate than the rest. How am I, one little student with no extra time on my hands, supposed to figure out which one I should use?

Windows 2000: W2K Replaces Y2K as Campus Issue

February 01, 2000
Windows 2000, set for release to the general public on February 17, has several components designed to replace Windows NT 4.0 Workstation, Server, and Enterprise Server. Contrary to what you may have heard, Windows 2000 is not intended to be a replacement for Windows 95 or 98 for the home or small office user. "Windows Me" (short for Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition) is the new version of the OS for the home/small office market and is scheduled for release later this year.

Beauty and the Beast: Mp3s and Napster

January 21, 2000
First of all, I have a confession to make, and it's a bit embarrassing. As a young kid, I was an inveterate shoplifter. Clothes, toys, baseball cards - sure, these meant a lot to me as a 10-year-old, but not enough to steal them. Not nearly as much as the one precious commodity of my pre-pubescent years, the source of my early temptation, corruption, and ultimate lasting shame: supermarket candy. Not just any old candy, mind you, but the shining light of Safeway's third aisle - Brach's butterscotch disks. I worshipped the things (still do, actually). Sadly, a cavity-filled dentist visit led to my mother's hasty, ill-formed decision that candy no longer occupied a place in little J's food pyramid. I was thereafter emotionally destroyed, and desperate to find a path to my favorite thing on earth (besides my blanket Spike).

Look what I got for Christmas: A virus!

January 07, 2000
So it's January 2000, and hey, we're all still here in Davis. The New Year party hats have just recently been tossed aside, and now, as you unpack and figure out which garbage can to donate that "kinda sorta new millennium" clock your Uncle Lefty gave you for Christmas, your computer stares at you like a long lost friend.

Holiday checklist- family, gifts, email

December 03, 1999
You've been bruising it through midterms and papers all quarter long, and all that's left to hurdle are finals. Winter break, the oasis from mid- quarter stress, finally seems within reach, and none too soon.

Y2K Tiger Teams Spring Into Action

December 01, 1999
Although most agree the Year 2000 (Y2K) Problem is not going to be the end of civilization as we know it, UC Davis is preparing for Y2K as it would for any other potential emergency, as defined in the Campus Emergency Policy (UCD Policy & Procedure Manual, Section 290-05) and the campus emergency management program ( howto/index.html). Starting on Wednesday, December 15, all individuals affiliated with UC Davis will be able to call (530) 752-1727, 24 hours a day, for assistance with campus-related Year 2000 issues. This number will remain active through January 14 (or as needed) and will provide a centralized Year 2000 communication hub for the UC Davis community.