Below is this month's status report for significant projects which LSA IT is leading or other Michigan IT initiatives that may be of interest to you.  Feedback and questions are always welcome.


LSA IT Connections Conference - Mark your calendar for October 14 (one of the Fall term study days). Building on previous years’ conferences, this conference will include sessions on a variety of topics related to IT research computing resources for faculty and students. There is no cost for participation.  The sessions will take place in the Michigan Union and will also be streamed live for those that can’t attend in-person. Click through for more information, the complete agenda, or to register  (Contacts: Nancy Herlocher, Erin Dietrich).


Local File Backup - Need free, unlimited backup storage for your workstation?  We can help.  We are pleased to announce the availability of a desktop backup solution to all LSA faculty and staff.  This service is made possible by ITS’ Desktop Backup Service (CrashPlan) and support to provide unlimited backup storage, support for up to 4 workstations, and compatibility on Linux, Mac and Windows.  This solution is only intended for individuals who need to need to have files stored on their local workstation.  If all your files are stored in M+Box, Google Drive, LSA shared network drives, or LSA research storage space, your data is already backed up and covered.  To request a desktop backup account or for more information, please send an email to  (Contact: Marissa Green, Ryan Bankston).


Seeking nominations for the LSA IT Innovation and Collaboration Award - The IT Innovation and Collaboration Award is a $1,000 monetary award to recognize the IT development that has the greatest overall impact on LSA over the previous year.  This could be something that impacts a lot of people by a small amount or something that has a large effect on a small number of people.  All LSA staff in good standing are eligible to be nominated.  Nomination deadline is September 27, 2013 and award recipient(s) are honored in December.  Click here for more information or to nominate (Contact: .


Data Visualization Hub -  We have a visualization hub in the Statistics Department in West Hall available for use by any interested faculty or staff in the College of LSA.  We have been working with faculty on specific ways that the machine can be used to advance research projects. We will include further information at the LSAIT Connections Conference in October and will also offer training opportunities in the coming months.  For information, please contact (Contacts: Seth Meyer, Tim Rolston).


Big Data Pilot - Big Data is a popular term for large data sets of mixed structured and unstructured data which is generated by the hard sciences, as well as the social sciences.  LSAIT has started a Big Data pilot in which LSAIT will work with select faculty to determine the correct solution for their needs. Potential options will include Amazon EMR, as well as the Hadoop cluster at CoE. If you have unmet big data needs or interests, please contact us so we can help you explore the options (Contacts: Seth Meyer, Erin Dietrich).


SCREMS - SCREMS is the NSF infrastructure grant for Scientific Computing Research Environments for the Mathematical Sciences. A new addition to the SCREMS infrastructure has been deployed by LSAIT. The hardware consists of three machines with 16 cores, 128 GB of RAM, and 2 xeon phi 5110P coprocessors. LSAIT will be hold personalized appointments with SCREMS PIs to discuss how they can make use of this hardware (Contacts: Seth Meyer, Erin Dietrich).


Large Scale Research Storage Space Still Available - As we announced earlier this year, we continue to offer each faculty member 2TB storage at no cost to the faculty member or requesting department. Additional storage, greater than 2TB, can be purchased at a cost of $30/year.  To request your free 2TB of storage, please fill out the request form here. If you have any questions regarding this offering, please free to contact (Contact: Marissa Green).


Computer Upgrade for Instructional Faculty (CUIF) Program - Earlier this month, we announced this year’s CUIF program.  This program is designed to provide the funding necessary to provide one computer (workstation or laptop) per instructional faculty member on a 4-year replacement cycle. For more information, see the program announcement, hardware recommendations, your unit’s allocation, and faculty on which the allocation was based (Contact: Greg Beyer).


Staff Computer Upgrade Program - The College also provides standard Windows desktop computers to all administrative staff with a 50% or more general fund appointment.  Computers are replaced on a four year cycle, with approximately one-fourth replaced each Spring. Program details are coordinated annually with department managers and IT support  (Contact: Greg Beyer).


MiWorkspace LSA Pilot Planning Continues -  Planning efforts are in full force for MiWorkspace LSA pilots with Comm Studies, DMC, and other Dean’s Office areas. In addition to preparing communication plans within each unit, we have begun the process of technical discovery, which ensures existing use of technology transitions smoothly.  We have also begun the process of thinking through planning for larger-scale implementations planned across LSA for next calendar year.  Click here to learn more about MiWorkspace (Contacts: Dennis Blay, Karen Wilson, David Sweetman).


IT in LSA cohesive service management implementation continues - The project for the new ServiceLink tool continues.  We are now focused on adding additional functionality to manage and share knowledge documentation (e.g., processes, solutions, service information) between all groups using ServiceLink.  The plan is for this new functionality to be available in the middle of October.  For more information about the ServiceLink project, visit the project site or read the FAQ (Contact: Erin Dietrich, Reid Paxton).


IT Advocacy Pilot - We continue to roll-out the IT Advocacy role to additional units across LSA. We are now participating with 12 units across the College. Phase 2 has begun and will continue through the Fall term.  For up-to-date information on the assignments and participating units, click here.  Do you have feedback on your advocate?  We are always looking for input on how we are doing and how we can improve.  Please take the feedback survey (Contact: Erin Dietrich, Nancy Herlocher).