Saturday, August 28, 2010

Fred prepares Christen's Classroom at Nellie Stone Johnson

Thanks to Fred, NSJ science teacher is ready again to welcome her students with computers in place--all hardware working.  Following are most of Fred's notes.  One thing that I appreciate about these notes is that they are so thorough; it's easy to forget the detailed nature of technology in education:

Other problems found and fixed were:
  • The main problem was that most of the balls and rings from ball mice were missing.  In the closet with the server there were extra mice so now there are only 4 of 16 computers without working mice.
  • server needed to be rebooted - (done)
  • one keyboard with stuck space bar (replaced)
  • various power, video, keyboard etc (not ethernet) connectors disconnected - (reconnected)
  • One DC monitor power connector (with hollow barrel) was disconnected and filled with gum (?) and pencil lead. I was able to clean it and get it working.
  • One computer case was partly open. The computers at this table had never been secured with screws.
  • Computer at another table was no longer secure with screws. (repositioned)
  • I was surprised at how few problems there were with network connections. (Only one connector and to be reseated; and that is all. It just worked when the computers were started.
  • One computer needed the date restored.
  • The floors and been re-waxed and the carpet pads on the table legs are now stuck in the wax.  The row of computers near the windows were stuck in a position from which the power strip cords would not quite reach the outlets on the lab island. I did not see a way to get any slack on the cord from the furthest strip except by removing the final strain relief screw which I did.  This  allows the cords to "cut the corner" and barely reach to be plugged in.
 Left to be done:
  • acquire and install 4 mice on table 6 & 7
  • further investigate power strip cords on row by window
  • Secure computers to back middle table
  • server upgrade
Possible improvements:
  • replacing mice by optical mice would be great solution to missing balls.
  • Ponder further the idea of cutting about an inch off corners of tables where the stick into aisles.
  • a better way of securing excess cable length in middle of table would be an improvement
As soon as Doug Roberts, the senior MPS internet dude, gets the LDAP authentication running on the thin client (LTSP 5) server for Eddie's and my room, I'll clone the server, copy it onto the other server that Ben and Cody supplied me with, and she will be on line.  I'm excited to see how Christen develops these resources in her classroom, how she 'grows a community of scientists'.  Here's a pict of Fred in the drop room we're using at NSJ...

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