Computing Services

The department behind IT services at the University of Bath

Open event for staff to visit IT training suite, 6 West, Friday 5 May 2017

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📥  Computing Services, IT Literacy

Come and visit the new IT Training suite in 6 West, Friday 5 May 2017.  We are holding an open event for staff between 1pm and 3pm and invite you to join us. The new rooms are bright and modern and have the advantage of two different layouts, collaborative and classroom.

Come and meet the team, have a look around and find out about the services we offer.  They include:

  • Frequent tutor-led and self-paced courses in commonly used applications like Word, Excel, MindGenius and Endnote and University systems such as Agresso and Business Objects.
  • Bespoke training solutions that will fit the needs of your team.
  • IT trainers with a huge amount of knowledge that you can tap into by logging a query at go.bath.ac.uk/it-help-form.
  • One room is set up with Windows 10 so you can give it a try.
  • Contemporary, high-tech training rooms that staff at the University can book through us.

Tea, coffee and biscuits will be available.

There is no need to book, we look forward to seeing you, Friday 5 May 2017, any time between 1pm and 3pm.

 

 

 

Windows 10 is ready for launch.....

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📥  Software Delivery

Staff at the University can use our form to register interest in having Windows 10 installed on their work PC.

Why do I want Windows 10?

Based on the Anniversary update of Windows 10, the University deployment includes: great new enhancements to the Start Menu, a better way to organise the apps you're working with using Task View & Virtual Desktops, the Action Centre and Microsoft’s new modern, secure web browser, Microsoft Edge. We’re also bundling in the latest edition of Microsoft Office 2016.

Freedom to do more – with the new Software Center included as standard, you have the freedom to install apps you need and to schedule Windows updates for when you aren’t in the office.

  • It’s all about speed – Windows 10 has a much faster boot up time
  • Security is key – Windows 10 has improved security features across the whole system
  • Microsoft Office 2016 – use the latest version of Office to complete your tasks
  • Cutting edge - a sleek and modern design, Windows 10 is a cutting edge OS.

Training and Support

You can book onto our Windows 10 self-paced training course. These run from May.  Alternatively, you can download the manual from Moodle and work through at your own pace.

The Microsoft Windows 10 Getting Started index runs you through features Windows 10 has to offer complete with handy videos.

Key things to note

  • Before your upgrade you’ll need to make sure any files on the C drive are backed up to a safe place not on your PC.
  • The installation process from start to finish should take approximately one hour, so please allow time for that. You might wish to request an upgrade appointment with your IT Supporter near the end of the day.

 

Choosing your software for the next academic year

  

📥  Computing Services, Software Delivery

We are here to support the University in delivering world class teaching and a key part of this is our software consultancy. This process makes sure that our academic staff and students have the right software on the machines in the general teaching areas (GTAs) and public access computers across the Claverton campus and in the Virgil Building , and also for use through the remote Windows service (UniDesk) and our remote linux service (linux.bath).

One part of my role as an IT Service Manager is to review changes to ensure they are straightforward and efficient, and to address any delays or confusion within a process. Software consultancy is a complex process, so I wanted to give some insight to the changes we have made and the factors that we think about when deploying teaching software in the right areas and in good time for the new academic year. This is very much a combined effort, involving colleagues from Software Delivery, Supporters, Software Licensing and other teams.

We have completed our process review and are ready to go with the new one, so here are a few points that I would particularly like to draw to your attention.

A new form to complete

One area we noted last time was that we struggled to get the correct information at the start of a request, as we weren’t clear about what we wanted. We have created a new form to address this, which we hope will make it easier to understand what we need to know at the start of the process. We know that this might seem a bit unwieldy to begin with, which is why we will be working with you to ensure that we have the correct information collected. There is only one completely new question on this form, relating to testing procedures which I’ll explain in a bit more detail later – everything else has been asked before, but not in such a structured way.

For the first time, we’re also hoping to take a more holistic approach to all of the GTA, public access and departmental PC lab areas, as we would like to use this single form and process to capture requests for installations in all of these different areas. This should allow for a greater consistency and efficiency.

Windows 10

Yes, we are planning to move the whole of the GTA/public access PC estate over to Windows 10 this summer, and as many of the Departmental PC lab areas as possible as well. As such we have started from a clean slate as far as the PCs are concerned, with only Microsoft Office 2016 being included by default. Please let us know of everything that you will need to support your teaching, and the activities of your students, beyond this.

Moving to Windows 10 brings other things for us to think about, and it’s worth mentioning that the experience that you will get on a PC in the GTA/public access estate won’t be identical to the experience on office PCs. This means that some of the functionality you may see elsewhere (such as being able to install software yourself through the Software Center) won’t be available here. The Windows update experience will also be different, as any updates requiring a reboot will take place outside of timetabled hours, and not impact on teaching activities.

Acceptance Criteria

We have certain criteria that software being requested has to pass in order to be accepted into the image for the next year. These are a series of questions that we need to answer to be able to process the request and provide the software:

  1. Has sufficient information been provided, to allow us to make this software available?
  2. Is the software licensed, or is funding in place to purchase, if required?
  3. Will the software work with the hardware specification that we have?
  4. Does the software provide the same functionality as another package being requested? (We aim not to have too much redundancy in the image, to save space and time)
  5. Is it technically possible to provide this software? i.e. Does it work on Windows 10, will it work in a shared environment, and similar considerations.
  6. Does the software work when installed in our environment?
  7. Can we deploy, and remove, the software in an automated manner?

Some of these questions we can only answer when we start testing.

Testing

Although we can see if a piece of software has installed, very often we don’t know how to test if it actually works. We have decided to improve that this year, and so the only really new field on our form relates to testing.

We would value any testing procedures that you can supply for the software that you are requesting, so that we can be reasonably certain that it is working before we start to deploy it. For some packages this could be quite simple, but for others we recognise that it’s more difficult. If you provide instructions for students showing how to use the package then we are happy to receive those to work through. We aim to be testing the software during August, so if you or someone else that knows the software can help us with that, please let us know on the form.

Although I can’t guarantee that it will be possible, I am hoping that we will be able to provide an area to test the new image as it is being created. If this does prove possible, we will be in touch to let you know where and when this will happen. This would also give a good opportunity to get some “hands on” experience with Windows 10, if you are not familiar with this.

Software Licensing

In many cases this isn’t an issue, but to be certain we have to check the licence condition of every piece of software being requested. For requests that would require the purchase of licences we need to know that funding is in place to enable these to be purchased and maintained throughout the period of the deployment. Obviously we would like to have funding to provide everything, but we don’t, so please keep this in mind when placing your requests.

Where to find the form to request your software

We have sent out an email to staff who may need to request software with a link to the new form.  You can link from the email or use the go.bath.ac.uk/software-consultation address to get to the form.

 

EPSRC launches six new Tier2 HPC Centres

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📥  Computing Services, High Performance Computing (HPC), Research

The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) has just launched six new High Performance Computational (HPC) Centres, worth a combined £20 million, at the Thinktank Science museum in Birmingham. These new Tier2 regional centres are aimed at supporting both academics and industry providing access to a diverse range of powerful supercomputers for scientific research and engineering.

These Tier2 systems will sit between the National Tier1 (e.g. ARCHER) and local campus Tier3 systems (e.g. Balena), addressing the gap in capability between these two levels. This new layer of Tier2 HPC will enable new discoveries and drive innovation, it will be open to any UK ESPRC researcher and provide easy local access, and be integrated with the HPC ecosystem across the UK, both vertically into Tier1 and Tier3 systems and horizontally to other Tier2 centres.  The Tier2 Centres will provide access to new and advanced technologies such as Intel’s Knights Landing (KNL) Xeon Phi, NVIDIAs Pascal, POWER8, 64-bit ARM and data burst buffers. To complement this minefield of diverse technologies, all six Centres will provide support though Research Software Engineers (RSEs) to assist with the training and skills development, porting and optimisation of applications and codes.

 

Great Western 4 (GW4) HPC Centre for Advanced Architectures: Isambard
Isambard, after Victorian engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel, will be the first of its kind 64-bit ARM-based supercomputer providing multiple advanced architectures within the same system to enable evaluation and comparison across a diverse range of hardware platforms in a production environment. This is a joint project between the GW4 Alliance (universities of Bath, Bristol, Cardiff and Exeter) together with Cray Inc. and the Met Office. The service will provide over 10,000 high performance ARMv8 cores, as well as NVIDIA P100 and Intel Xeon Phi (KNL) accelerators cards.
http://gw4.ac.uk/isambard/

A National Facility for Peta-scale Data Intensive Computation and Analytics: Peta-5
Peta-5, a multi-disciplinary facility providing large-scale data simulation and high performance data analytics designed to enable advances in material science, computational chemistry, computational engineering and health informatics. This project, led by University of Cambridge, will provide peta-flop performance across Intel’s KNL, GPU, x86 computational architectures and peta-scale storage on spinning disk and tape storage.

Hub in Materials and Molecule Modelling: Thomas
Thomas, after the polymath Thomas Young, a Materials and Molecular Modelling (MMM) Hub will have applications in energy, healthcare and the environment. The project is led by UCL, with partners in the Materials Chemistry Consortium (MCC) and UKCP, and will provide a large x86-64 based system.
https://www.ucl.ac.uk/news/news-articles/1116/021116-ucl-hpc-hub-materials-science

Joint Academic Data science Endeavour: JADE
JADE, led by the University of Oxford, will provide the largest GPU-based system in the UK. Working with NVIDIA, will provide around 3.7 Petaflops of performance using NVIDIA’s latest DGX-1 platform, which makes use of the new NVlink technology.  This centre will be optimised for Deep Learning which will greatly benefit research applications involved in machine learning, image/video/audio analysis and molecular dynamics.
http://www.ox.ac.uk/news/2017-03-30-£3m-awarded-oxford-led-consortium-national-computing-facility-support-machine

HPC Midlands Plus
HPC Midlands Plus will primarily focus on data-intensive applications in fields ranging from engineering, manufacturing, healthcare and energy. Led by Loughborough University, the Centre will provide a large x86 based system, to accompany this will be a modest sized component of POWER8 systems each with 1TB memory.
http://www.lboro.ac.uk/media-centre/press-releases/2017/february/32m-funding-for-midlands-based-high-performance-computing-centre.html

Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre (EPCC): Cirrus
Cirrus, will be hosted by the Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre (EPCC). It will offer over 10,000 x86 cores to both science and industry. This will nicely complement EPSRC’s National HPC service, ARCHER. As part of this project, EPCC will host a mini-RDF (Research Data Facility) to provide common object-based data store to the Tier2 ecosystem and other supercomputers.
https://www.epcc.ed.ac.uk/facilities/cirrus

 

Recent press releases about the launch:

  1. https://www.epsrc.ac.uk/newsevents/news/sixhpccentresofficiallylaunch
  2. https://www.top500.org/news/uk-antes-up-20-million-for-six-new-supercomputer-centers
  3. http://www.bath.ac.uk/news/2017/03/30/gw4-world-first-supercomputer-launched-at-national-exhibition

 

 

Phishing email with your name as the subject line

📥  Computing Services

We have been made aware that staff and students have been sent a phishing email that has the recipient name as the subject and asks them to open an attachment to see what information scammers may have on them.  Please be aware that this is a phishing attempt.  The attachment is malware. Please delete the email.

If you have opened the attachment please visit the Service Desk on Level 2 of the Library, or log a help ticket for further advice.

Here is an example of the phishing email.

From: Random Address

To: Forename Surname <Initial.Surname@bath.ac.uk>

Subject: Recipient Name

Hello, xxxx!

I am disturbing you for a very critical matter. Allhough we are not familiar, but I have large ammount of information concerning you. The thing is that, most probably mistakenly, the information of your account has been emailed to me.

For example, your address is:

Xxxxx xxxxxx xxxxxx

Xxxxxx xxxx

xxxxx

Postcode: xxxxx

I am a law-obedient citizen, so I decided to personal details may have been hacked. I attached the file - Harvey.dot that I received, that you could find out what info has become obtainable for scammers. Document password is - xxxx

I look forward to hearing from you,

xxxxxxx

 

CIS and tell

  

📥  Computing Services

ICYMI acronyms and initialisms are everywhere. Yes, I'm inviting comments to help me learn a few more that I could have included - and why not! Sharing knowledge and information is a critical part of our community.

This is my first blog post at the University of Bath: I started in January 2017 and I've been to 3 conferences/events already, so I need to catch up with blogging my notes if I'm to be allowed out to any future events. The first event was cryptically entitled CISG-UCISA-HESA-SLC and was my first opportunity to be involved with the Corporate Information Systems Group (CISG), which is a sub-group of Universities and Colleges Information Services Association (UCISA). Speakers included the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) and the Student Loans Company (SLC). They also included the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), Universities & Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) although I'm not sure why they didn't make it onto the event title; perhaps CISG-UCISA-HESA-SLC-ICO-UCAS just didn't trip off the tongue quite so easily...

Andy Youell (HESA) is always an entertaining speaker and despite having heard him give this talk before, it was still delightful to learn about "The Changing Information Landscape". Andy reminded us that the Higher Education (HE) sector has been doing data collections since 1965 (through UCCA at the time) and there are now over 500 HE data collections across 90 organisations. The Data Landscape Steering Group has been set up to ensure collective governance for these collections, to seek a better way, more efficient and joined up. There's also the potential for HESA to become the statutory data collection body for HE with a duty to reduce burden on the sector - more about that in the later Data Futures talk (keep reading). There is a twin agenda - standardisation and rationalisation - and a standard is a 'specification that is adopted'. The data landscape requires the development of a common language, through HECoS and the widening adoption of a Unique Learner Number (ULN) for students. The changing landscape also encompasses emerging data capabilities: did you know that an Excel worksheet has 17 billion cells - and that 88% of workbooks have errors (Panko, 2008)? Andy closed his talk with a call to action, referring to the HEDIIP research on Data Capability (2015) which identified a maturity model comprising 5 levels: chaotic, reactive, stable, proactive and predictive.

Sam Stokell and Graeme Lindsay (SLC) informed us of Current and Future Developments at the Student Loans Company. As of 20 Oct 2016, they had received 1.45m full-time (FT) undergraduate (UG) applications and processed 1.37m of these. Additionally they had received 81,000 post-graduate (PG) loan applications, processing payments for 56,000, with a total of £4.2bn in maintenance & tuition fees being administered through the company. Astonishing! They provided updates on a number of policy changes coming in 2017/18 and encouraged HEIs to provide course information in a timely manner (at the time, 50% had been collected).

Victoria Cetinkaya (ICO) presented an informative (and only slightly scary) talk titled "Information Rights in a Changing Landscape". The Information Commissioner's Office is an independent organisation whose remit is to uphold information rights and they have a new Commissioner, Elizabeth Denham. The ICO is often asked to consider cases arising from the challenges of Freedom of Information (FOI): the duty to document versus transparency in outsourcing (report due to Parliament in 2017). They also respond to incidents resulting from cyber security attacks, analysing trends such as exfiltration, DDoS, system misconfiguration and other cyber incidents. She also reminded us of the forthcoming General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which will be in force 25 May 2018 (despite Brexit) and applies to universities as Data Controllers. Anonymisation and pseudonomysation of data are good options, and GDPR will cover 'special categories' such as genetic and biometric data. It encompasses the existing 8 Data Protection principles and adds Accountability. Further guidance on GDPR is on the ICO website at: https://ico.org.uk/dpreform. Organisations will need implement technical measures to comply and demonstrate compliance; universities may need to appoint a dedicated Data Protection Officer. There will be a requirement to report a data breach within 72 hours of detection, and maximum fines will increase from £500,000 to €20,000,000. Individuals will have 8 new rights: to be informed; to have access; to rectification; to erasure (the right to be forgotten); to restrict processing; to data portability; to object; rights related to automated decision making & profiling. Consent will only be considered relevant if people have a genuine choice.

Fatuma Mahad (UCAS) took us on a journey "From Clearing House to Digital Ecosystem", where she reminded us that UCAS is the world's only national centralised organisation processing applications to HE. They receive 800,000 applications each year, have 6,000 regional centres and cover 388 universities & colleges, and 1,200 schools. Their peak processing times include A-level results day where the website receives 5.5m pageviews and 239 logins/sec on Track (where applicants go to review and update their choices). In 2014, UCAS focused on a journey to adopt cloud technologies, outsourcing their work to Infosys while retaining in-house development. In 2015, their orientation was around a broader learner journey with enterprise-wide adoption of Agile methodology and thinking. This focused on value flow, quality, releasing products early and often, and organised around 5 Rs (review, refine, resize, reprioritise, regular cadence). This programme resulted in ~40% reduction of their on-premise technology footprint along with an investment in data science capability. In 2016, their theme was Digital Acceleration, focusing on SOA, ESB, IAM, CRM (Salesforce), mobile and cloud first. They instilled a digital workplace using Microsoft Office365 and SharePoint, with a 2020 technology strategy that is 'evolutionary, not revolutionary'. Looking forward, UCAS will focus on collection and search tools, application management and operational reporting for peer benchmarking. Their roadmap includes: iterative, continuous improvement after go-live; beta services for users to try out; and managing the results embargo to promote a 'zero-breach culture' (more on this in a later post from UCISA17).

Rob Phillpotts (HESA) closed the day with an update on "HESA Data Futures", which aims to make data better - while noting that "there will be pain before we get better data...." This programme involves more frequent data collection and aligned to business process, more timely with better data - in year and with a new data model (yay!) HESA will act as a data hub with a new, more agile system, with the potential to connect to existing data for time series reporting. The aim of this is to transform the 2019/20 student data collection, which requires a new software platform - Rob's looking for volunteers to help with the resource challenge of this work. Collection design v2 was out at the time and v3 out by end January 2017. The programme is working with alpha/beta groups and software suppliers. Data will be submitted in segments not a single file (S0-S6).

data-futures-segments-outputs

2017/18 will involve alpha pilots from 12 HE providers (HEPs) UK wide, looking at pilot concepts and prototypes. 2018/19 will be beta pilots of 500-100 HEPs self-selected and end-to-end testing. 2019/20 will be live for institution including changes to student records software (e.g. Tribal SITS - 'Samis' at UoB) and a data submission 'crunch point' moving to much better data from there on. Rob urged us to speak to our Registrars to give feedback on the programme.

All in all, it was a super day: I met many new people and afterwards 'linked-up' so as many as I could - it's the only way I remember people these days (via LinkedIn). Let me know if you have any questions about the talks - I'm happy to meet up over tea/coffee or just a stroll around campus!

 

Simon's off to Sierra Leone

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📥  Audio Visual Unit (AV)

Fresh from being nominated for a Learning On Screen award Dr Roy Maconachie from the Department of Social Policy and Science and Simon Wharf from our Audio Visual team are heading out on a new research trip.They will be following diamond mining in Sierra Leone.

Simon is going to create a series of vlogs for us to document his trip and we are really excited to see the outcome of this.

Watch the first of these where he talks about the background to the research and the kit he needs to decide on for the 8 days of filming.

 

Digifest 2017

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📥  Computing Services, IT Literacy

This week I went to the Digifest conference which is run annually by Jisc. This year it was held in the ICC in Birmingham and theme for the conference was “the power of digital” and the potential of transforming the student experience particularly with regard to learning and teaching.

There were a number of talks I was interested in so, as I wasn’t able to clone myself (maybe look at that for next year’s theme, Jisc?), I had to choose wisely. Talks were wide-ranging and included available and future technology , best practices and case studies. A very interesting mix indeed.

The conference opened with a plenary which had members of the Jisc team talking about what was to come. It was very inspirational and made me look forward to the next two days.

I won’t go in to every session I attended as this will end up as an inordinately long blog post but I will probably follow up with further posts as I consider how it would be relevant to us here in Bath.

A quieter part of the day in Digifest 2017

A quieter part of the day in Digifest 2017

Building digital capabilities within your organisation

There were three teams from different universities talking about how to build digital capabilities and their approaches to this. It turns out that there is a lot of good work going on out there surrounding this and a common theme was the use of the Jisc Digital Capabilities Discovery Tool as a base to work on. In fact, this seemed to be a common theme throughout the conference.

Ross Anderson from the University of Hull talked mainly about staff engagement. One thing I found really fascinating was the gamification of learning and how it fitted in to their blended learning approach – having teams compete with each other to get to the next digital level. He also talked about having student and staff Elearning champions and peer training sessions in each department so that different groups of learners could get on board. I also thought that having a set of blended learning standards could ensure the consistency and quality of the material.

The University of Brighton looked at having a two lists of competencies – core (essential for everyone) and further (role-specific) which was an interesting approach. They also used strong visual resources to promote the digital literacies framework.

Nottingham Trent University went further to talk about how training could be taken one stage further – not just teaching people how to use a product such as Outlook but how they can use it in their particular role (such as managing your inbox). This is one thing that I think I will definitely be looking at taking forward.

Digital Capability Model

Digital Capability Model

Staff digital skills capabilities

Deborah Kellsey Millar, Digital and IT Director for Salford City College talked about using a step by step model towards organisational digital capability and the use of the discovery tool to achieve this. She also explained about their use of the Learning Wheel to model digital pedagogy and the introduction of the DigiPals service. This is where learners and Educational Technologists can provide tricks and tips for people who use digital resources in their learning in a friendly and approachable way using a web site and social media. I believe that having these accessible and readily available resources in a variety of formats increases uptake and buy in from a wide variety of providers.

Next, implementation of Lynda.com by Steve Rowett from UCL. They embedded Lynda.com packages within courses by using playlists which provided some context for the topics that academic staff taught. It also meant that students could learn what they want, when they want. They have had a big uptake from both staff and students for this but he said that marketing in the right way, at the right time is key and to get a marketing plan together before you even think about launching it to maximum effect.

Students’ expectations and experiences of digital technology

For me, this was one of the most relevant talks as one of the biggest issues I face being in charge of IT communications and training is student engagement and communications reach. There were students from different institutions talking about what worked for their organisation.

The University of Northampton surveyed their students and one of the most important things that came out of that was access to devices and WiFi. I think this is probably important to a majority of institutions as more and more students bring their own devices. They also asked students to complete the statement “When digital technology is used on my course…”. Apparently, it gave some interesting answers and they will be providing further detail on this soon.

Epping Forest College said that they engaged more when they linked in to other general events such as Safer Internet Day. I think that collating a list of events such as these would help with planning communications and improve reach. They also had students who were Digital Voice Experts and they were given specific training in topics such as video production as an incentive. They would also have access to a social media account to tweet to other students on behalf of the college which meant it was more relevant and students didn’t feel like they were being talked down to. Zac, one of the students who was responsible for the social media aspect, managed to get Epping to number one in the Edurank league table for social media. Something we could definitely work on.

The University of Stirling made use of “Happy or Not” consoles which you may have seen in airports and train stations where students could press the relevant “face” depending on how they found the digital learning spaces on campus. This was used in a business case to get these refurbished. They also had “WiFi wizards” - students who were able to help others with WiFi issues and report any common issues to the Service Desk.

Augmented and virtual reality

Now the exciting bit! During the conference, there were a number of organisations who showcased the latest products they had on offer. Personally, I found the most exciting products on show were:

  • HoloLens made by Microsoft - This is a pair of glasses that uses augmented reality. They were demonstrating anatomy and it was really weird having a transparent “person” standing in front of you with organs that you could “tap” on to find out more and walk around the “person” as if they were actually standing there. I think this could be really useful in applications such as mechanical engineering research where you would not need to build expensive physical models to see how they would look and interact but build it “virtually” instead. In fact, we have one of these available to loan, so let us know if you wish to utilise it!Hololens demonstration
  •  Samsung Gear VR – they demonstrated this using a lab safety scenario where you could walk around a lab and interact with items there and find out how to keep the environment in a lab safe such as storing chemicals and wearing protective clothing. This is a good idea as you can ensure students are aware of lab safety before they even step into a physical lab.

Dundee and Angus College gave a very good presentation on the work they have been doing in creating a Learning Lab where they provided a space for staff and students to drop in and have hands on experience of the different technologies out there including VR headsets, 3D printers and augmented reality.

Closing plenary

Lauren Seger Weinstein, chief data officer at TFL gave the closing talk on how they were using data to improve the efficiency and customer experience of the public transport network in London. She talked about creating trust whilst giving an excellent customer experience with innovation whilst providing excellent value for money. They are very data rich and provide a lot of open data for use by academic institutions. This could really be useful for researchers looking at transport issues across the city.

One initiative they have implemented is to let customers know the busiest times in their underground stations. This means that if you are an occasional user of a particular station and you are flexible with your travel times, you could travel at a quieter time for a more enjoyable experience. They gathered data from the number of devices connecting to their WiFi service together with the footfall through the automatic gates to produce this information. I think this is possibly something we could be using in our Library and other PC spaces so that students know when the best times are to access a PC.

closing-plenary-and-keynote-from-lauren-sager-weinstein-15-1024

Final thoughts

All things considered, it was a very enjoyable and informative event. It was useful to hear from other institutions, particularly with regard to the initiatives they have carried out and how it was received. If you do get a chance to go, I would thoroughly recommend it and if you did miss this year’s conference, then you can find slides from some of the talks on the Digifest website. And you never know, you could also win one of their competitions - I can't wait to try it out...

Bean Boozled game

Twitter Counter App hacked

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📥  Computing Services, Security

The Twitter Counter App used with Twitter accounts appears to have been compromised and has been used to post spam messages to users' feeds. The messages are written in Turkish and appear to target Holland. Twitter accounts for Amnesty International, Forbes and any other users with high post and follower counts seem to have been targeted. The company Twitter Counter have acknowledged the breach of their service and taken steps to secure it, however the breach appears to mirror an earlier one from November 2016.

Twitter account holders who made use of Twitter Counter should revoke access for it in line with Twitters instructions.

https://support.twitter.com/articles/76052#

Whilst Twitter account details should not have been compromised, in the event of any connected breach it is good practice to review the security of all Twitter accounts and make sure they:

  • have a new strong password
  • ensure that any mobile phone numbers associated with the account are current
  • use login verification where possible
  • review the access for third party Apps and revoke those that aren’t needed

More advice is available from Twitter on Account Security tips - https://support.twitter.com/articles/76036#