This Week in LIS - 13 June 2008

Weekly news and updates from Luther College Information Technology Services. To receive email updates, please sign up here.

Upcoming Dates

  • June 13 (Friday) Internal LIS Annual Reports Due
  • June 16 (Monday) Norse Apps Training Demo – 11:00 am
  • June 18 (Wednesday) Norse Apps Training – morning
  • June 23 (Monday) Windows Vista Demo – 11:00 am
  • June 25 (Wednesday) Windows Vista Training – 10:45 am
  • June 26 (Thursday) KATIE Moodle Open Workshop – 9:00 am
  • June 30 (Monday) Norse Apps Training Demo – 11:00 am
  • More information on upcoming training opportunities:

Headline of the Week: The Flood

It’s been a wet week here in LIS as with most other places in Iowa. Overall, we’ve been very fortunate to have suffered minor losses and damage compared to other areas of the college, city, county and state. With the flooding of the lower section of the Regent’s Center, we will need to likely replace some wiring, but all hardware (computers and networking equipment) stayed dry. Our biggest troubles in LIS actually were in one of our highest locations, the top floor of the library where a significant leak remerged showering several ranges of materials with water. A number of materials were damaged and will need to be removed from the collection and replaced if appropriate. Thanks to the work of many in LIS the most affected materials have been removed and many are drying out around the third floor. We’ve also been working with facilities to dry the carpeting and hopefully find the source of the leak so that additional damage will not occur. We know that it was still leaking significantly on Thursday morning during the storms and we hope that repairs will be made soon. We will likely also look at the arrangement of our stacks on the third floor and may relocate some ranges away from the chronically wet area to minimize future losses.

Of course, the flood wasn’t the only problem, as we had significant power issues in the Union, and the loss of our air conditioning unit for the machine room in Main, resulting in the unplanned downtime of all central services Monday evening into Tuesday morning. I guess it is true, when it rains, it pours. There is plenty of testimony to that here this week.

As part of the overall assessment of losses at Luther, we are collecting information on the hours spent by employees working to respond to flood-related issues, and equipment expenditures made by the college. Your supervisor in LIS should be collecting this information and we will submit a central report from LIS that details our equipment and personnel costs over the past week.

Thanks to everyone in LIS who spent time both helping maintain our services during the events of the past week, but who also helped the college and community prepare for and respond to the flooding. I know many hours have been spent in all of these areas, and there are many more yet to be spent as the recovery efforts continue.

LIS Blog Highlights from the Week

The following articles are sampled from those available on the LIS Blog:

LIS Website Changes

  • Minor site upgrades were made this week.

Notes from LIS Council

LIS Council did not meet this week.

NITLE Opportunities

As a member of NITLE (National Institute for Technology and Liberal Education), Luther has the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of developmental and training programs intended for faculty, librarians, and information technologists. Events listed at the link below are currently open for registration by Luther participants. LIS Staff who are interested in participating in an event should speak with Christopher Barth. Faculty who are interested in participating should speak with Lori Stanley. Participation is contingent upon available funding and program acceptance.

Complete List of NITLE Opportunities

Notable Internet Resource of the Week: National Weather Service: Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service & National Weather Service: Storm Prediction Center

If you’re interested in water, rivers, and floods (of high interest lately obviously), and you haven’t seen the data available directly from the National Weather Service, the Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service has a great amount of information available in near real-time on river flow and flooding. Many areas also include full predictions of water levels and flow rates. Color coded maps are available, along with good graphs and data tables of water statistics for meters on rivers nationwide.

The Storm Prediction Center is in many ways the website the pros go to when they want the most current analysis of severe weather predictions and reports. There is a fair amount of meteorological lingo on the site as it isn’t directly targeted at the general public, but there is a lot of information, particularly detailed storm reports that are updated as events occur. This helps paint the picture of exactly where damage may be occurring during severe weather. The convective outlooks also show in more general way where severe weather may occur short of actual watches and warnings.

On the web at and

Around the Web

Here are a few links to interesting developments over the past week:

  • Innovation
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  • Libraries and Librarians
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  • Mobility
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  • Security and Privacy
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  • Software and Operating Systems
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