Thursday, 27 March 2014

One Form to Rule them All

If you go to www.shef.ac.uk/cics/forms you'll see a collection of service request and fault reporting forms.

Following a process improvement exercise, all forms relating to learning and teaching services provided by CiCS will be rationalised into a single 'intelligent' form that offers appropriate fields and options depending on which request a user selects on the initial screen. This means that users can for example make a request to the MOLE team or make an equipment loan request, without needing to know how our department or website is structured. One form to rule them all.

The new form has yet to be signed off but if approved it will go live 14th April to coincide with the red phones change. We will notify users in the news blog this week and it will be included in our staff email news next week. We will also put a reminder in our April email news a week after the form has gone live.

Future workstreams may involve adding more departmental service requests to this form, possibly extending beyond learning and teaching services. At some stage we may also recreate the functionality of this form into a new form powered directly by supportworks but at this stage it's too early to say.

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Red (teaching space) phones go to helpdesk from 14 Apr

From 14th April all calls made from pool teaching spaces will go to the CiCS Helpdesk rather than the AV team. The user experience will remain largely unchanged, in that they use the red (or black) phones in a teaching space to seek advice or help using the in-room technology, and they speak to a member of CiCS staff who is able to give advice or send someone out. However, the quality of services received will improve since calls will be answered from 8am-6pm, while ensuring calls aren't missed due to AV staff being called out in the event of multiple simultaneous incidents.
 
In parallel, all our advice will be changed on posters, user guides, and on web pages to encourage people who are having problems with technology in teaching spaces to call the Helpdesk rather than call AV directly.

This simplifies the service for users by reducing the number of contact points, being able to refer problems to the correct team and ensuring a consistent level of service with all calls being logged in Supportworks and moves us one step closer to a more consolidated Helpdesk.

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Full Programme Announced for Research Computing Event

Each year we run the HPC@Sheffield research computing event. This year's event takes place on Monday 31 March and is introduced by the Vice Chancellor . It has the theme 'High Performance Processing, Big Data and Visualisation'.
It will comprise of a series of presentations, poster competition, vendor exhibits and demonstration which will help to explain how researchers may take advantage of the e-infrastructure and the HPC facilities provided in order to enhance and advance their research.

The full programme is as follows:

10:00  Opening and Welcome - Prof. Sir Keith Burnett, Vice Chancellor, University of Sheffield
10:15  Making Progress with High Performance Computing, The Institute for Inisilico Medicine – Prof. D. Lacroix
10:45  What  is Big Data and How is it Managed? The Bioinformatics Hub – Prof. Roy Chaudhuri 
11:15  Coffee
11:45  A New Approach to Bringing Industry and The University Together, The Advanced Computing Research Centre - Prof. Mike Holcombe 
12:05  Solver Enhancements in Finite Element Analysis with Abaqus – Mr. Clint Davies-Taylor, Dassault Systemes
12:30  Poster Session and Lunch 
14:00  GPU Accelerated Computing – Mr. J. Purches NVIDIA Ltd.
14:30  Big Data Challenges in Particle Physics, Beyond the Higgs Boson – Dr Kerim Suriliz
14:50 Using the N8 Facility for the Simulation of Turbulent Flow Structures for Engineering Applications – Miss Wei Wang.
15:15  Coffee
16:00  Forthcoming Developments in Research Computing - Prof. John Harding,
                                                     Co. Chair of Research Computing Advisory Group
16:30  Close 

The event is free for Sheffield researchers to attend and places can be reserved using the following form:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/hpcsheffield2014-tickets-10644637397