Welcome Incoming Freshman!

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Welcome to Harding University!
If you're a new student, you've probably already heard that forty times today and will hear it hundreds more before your first day. If you're a returning student, welcome back! It's almost time to begin another semester, and we at DormNet are here to help make that transition easier, whether this is your first time at school or you're back for your final semester.

Harding provides Internet access to all of the students, faculty, and even visitors on campus through wireless network coverage that blankets campus and optional wired connections in your dorm room. However, keeping such a large network operating and secure is not an easy task, so Harding has implemented several tools to help with it. These tools are in place to help protect you and your data.

SafeConnect and Antivirus
You might have been a little confused when you first connected your laptop to the network and were asked to install a small program called SafeConnect. This is simply a program to detect whether or not you are using antivirus software and that your operating system is up-to-date. We don't use it to monitor your activity or anything like that. It's just to help keep your data, as well as that of everyone else, safe from malware.

When it asks for a username/password, just input your Harding username and password.  This will also occur when connecting portable devices to Harding's network. When it asks for your username/password, just use your regular Harding username/password.  It will NOT download anything to your portable device; it will just register it with the network.

If you have any questions, just give us a call at the DormNet Help Desk at (501)279-4545.  We’re here to help!

Add Your Harding Email to a Mail App
So you've just been given a brand new email address and told to check it daily (which you absolutely should do. How else will you know if you're teacher has cancelled class or rescheduled a test?).

Just follow these instructions for setting up your Harding e-mail on your tablet/phone.  

If you have any questions, just give us a call at the DormNet Help Desk at (501)279-4545.  We’re here to help!

Wireless Access in the Dorms and Around Campus
If you are connecting to the wireless network in the dorms, you will see a wireless network with your dorm name.  Connect to that SSID in your dorm.  There will be posters in your dorm with the password. 

If you are in one of the other buildings around campus, you should connect to HUWA-SEC.  This is the secured wireless network for campus.  You do NOT want to use HUWA-GUEST if you are a student.  Here’s why:  HUWA-GUEST is designed for visitors to the campus.  It is NOT a secure network and should never be used for important business (like banking, etc.).  It is comparable to a network utilized by public places like McDonalds.  HUWA-GUEST has significantly less bandwidth allocated than HUWA-SEC. 

Both HUWA-SEC and HUWA-GUEST utilize Harding’s content filtering.  Using HUWA-GUEST will NOT get you more access than HUWA-SEC and will get you less bandwidth.

If you have any questions, just give us a call at the DormNet Help Desk at (501)279-4545.  We’re here to help!

M Drive: Network Storage on Campus
Harding offers each current student a gig of network storage space. Whenever you log into a campus computer, you'll have access to 1 gig of network storage under "Computer". This is an excellent place to store your work in labs or the library so you can access it on any computer. You can also access it from your personal computer by visiting hushares.harding.edu and logging in with your Harding info.

If you have any questions, just give us a call at the DormNet Help Desk at (501)279-4545.  We’re here to help!

Zuckerberg Plans to Connect the World

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Mark Zuckerberg, one of the first 5 co-founders and current CEO of Facebook, is undoubtedly one of the most successful man of his generation thus far. Though he only takes a one-dollar salary, his current wealth is estimated to be $31.5 billion. The best part is that he is only 30 years old. This American computer programmer and successful Internet entrepreneur already has a pretty boss resume, but he is looking to make it even better. Zuckerberg believes that connectivity to the World Wide Web is a human right. With the help of Facebook and some other major sponsors, Zuckerberg wants to connect the other two-thirds of the world that does not have Internet. Every detail about the project can be found on internet.org. Many believe this is just a huge Facebook marketing gimmick, and in some ways it might be, but others also believe that this initiative could completely change the world.

In today' s society, there are about 2.7 billion people that actually have access to the Internet. That is a little more than one-third of the world's population. Facebook alone connects more than 1.15 billion people to one another each month. Even though about 5 billion people have mobile phones, not everyone can afford data, and not everyone has access to it. They major issues they will face are technical, social, and economic. Zuckerberg says, "There is no guarantee that most people will ever have access to the internet. It is not going to happen by itself. But I believe connectivity is a human right, and that if we work together we can make it a reality."

So what's the big deal? Why does this matter so much? Not only does the Internet connect us to our friends, families, and communities, but it is also important to the global knowledge economy. The amount of things we can learn and share on the Internet is endless. Technology also account for about 25% of the GDP, and that is growing rapidly. Connecting everyone in the world is going to completely enable the knowledge economy, but their are gonna be some major obstacles.

Four major obstacles:
"First, most people in the world don’t have much disposable income to spend on data access."
"Second, the global infrastructure required to deliver the internet is extremely expensive and costs tens of billions of dollars every year."
"Third, even when they can afford it, many people who have never experienced the internet don’t know what a data plan is or why they’d want one."
"Fourth, a lot of people don’t have phones. Many are either very young or old, but many just cannot afford one."

Here is the plan and the major steps Zuckerberg plans to take:

Here is a pdf to all of Zuckerbergs ideas and steps he will take to make this project come to life.

I hope this video inspires you.

Looking Back

Posted Posted by Sam Tripp in Comments 0 comments

As graduation day approaches, I can't help but look back on my last few years here at Harding and reflecting on all the memories that have come during that time. I have worked here at DormNet for the past three years and have learned a lot since my first day. Since this is my last day working here, I figured it would be appropriate to share what I have learned and recount some stories I experienced as well.

  • Dorm wireless internet is fantastic. So I know it doesn't always work perfectly and sometimes causes trouble (shout-out to Village), but seriously having wifi in the dorm makes everything worlds easier. When I first came to Harding and started working for DormNet, if someone wanted to be able to connect wirelessly in the dorm they needed to purchase/bring their own router. However, each router would have to be set up a certain way to play nicely with Harding's network, and so we at DormNet had to set up each and every router that was brought to campus. We would get really good and efficient at setting these up -- I got to the point where I could set one up in under a minute -- but having to do this for the thousands of routers on campus was a pretty big task. Some students would try to set up the routers themselves and try to get internet that way. Not only did that not work, but it caused many other people in the dorm to get cut off from the internet! Then we at DormNet had to form 'router hunting' teams to find the problem router and get it set up properly. Now, all one has to do to connect to the dorm wireless is essentially sign in. So much easier!
  • The people in Harding's IS&T department are amazing and genuinely care for students. You may not get this because of some small frustrations with the internet being down for a little bit, or because you don't want to download an antivirus program on your Mac that can't get viruses (absolutely not true, and the viruses are so much worse to deal with). However, these people work their hardest to make sure that something we all take for granted here, having internet, is easy to use and as consistently available as possible. Problems do arrive from time to time from unforeseen places that hamper our ability to use the internet. But know that when these problems occur, the staff here at Harding (including us at DormNet!) are willing to work into the night to make sure that everything gets fixed as quickly as possible. And you may not enjoy having to install programs to be compliant with Harding's policies, but those policies are there to make sure you and everyone on campus are protected from all the crap on the internet that could harm us. Everything they do is intended to make using the internet here on campus easier and more reliable, and so please thank them for the awesome work they are continually doing for us!
  • God can be glorified in every situation. When I applied for DormNet, I wasn't initially thinking that it would be a great way to serve God. I was just looking for a job, and this one was highly recommended to me by my friends. However, in working here these last three years I have seen that we can be giving glory to God in every situation. Every time students come to us seeking help with their computer issues, we have an opportunity to be servants of Him and show everyone His love. Computers can be frustrating to deal with, but to be able to be friendly and loving in the face of the frustrations they can bring I think can be a great Christian thing to do. We interact with students from all different walks of life, and the way we act and serve gives us an opportunity to reflect Christ in our interactions and give glory to Him. He can use us to improve other students' lives through this service that we have learned how to do. Through this job, I have learned that it really doesn't matter what service or job we're doing, anything and everything we do can be used to glorify Him. I hope that whatever you are doing and wherever you are in life, you can remember this and use your skills for Him.

Selfie Central

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At this point, everyone knows what a selfie is. Most people know what a selfie stick is (a stick you attach your camera/phone to so that more people/background can get into a picture). But here at Harding, where single people tend to feel left out, there is a new alternative for people that feel like their selfies need a little extra pizzazz.

Introducing the Selfie Arm.

The Selfie Arm, designed by artists Aric Snee and Justin Crowe, gives the impression that the person in the selfie is holding hands with someone. The hand and forearm are designed to be in the photo, making this very different from a traditional selfie stick.

This is perfect for all the single people or people without friends to take selfies with. Unfortunately, the Selfie Arm is only a prototype for right now, as the design (namely, the grey, zombie-esque skin tone) is in need of some updating.

Hopefully, the finished version will be released soon for mass production and many more selfies appear on my Instagram feed.

EnChroma - Bringing Color to the Color-Blind

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Although the technology has been out for a few years now, awareness of EnChroma's remarkable color-blindness correcting glasses is on the rise. This is mainly thanks to a recent collaborative YouTube video by Valspar Paint and EnChroma Inc. In the testimonial video, several color-blind people are given the ability to see distinct colors for the first time in their lives; in a particularly touching scene, a father is able to see the Crayon drawings of his young child in color for the first time.

According to the How it Works section on EnChroma's website, the problem of color-blindness exists entirely in the eyes themselves. There are three types of cone cells for detecting colors in our eyes - cones which detect red light, green light, and blue light. The problem is that, in color-blind eyes, there is a bit of color overlap going on. Red cells pick up too much green light, or green cells pick up too much red light, which muddles and confuses the colors. Everyone's brain is capable of detecting colors correctly, but color-blind eyes send incorrect data to the brain!

To fix this, EnChroma developed a clever solution. In order to allow color-blind people to see more color, they developed lenses which allow less fields of light to reach the eyes. This may sound confusing, but basically, there is a certain range of red/green light which is so similar that color-blind eyes cannot differentiate the colors. EnChroma lenses effectively "drive a wedge" into this range of light, making slightly-green colors very green and slightly-red colors very red. The diagram below may make this process a bit more clear.

The grayed-out regions represent overlapping colors which are difficult for color-blind people to see. EnChroma lenses separate colors into distinct red, green, and blue categories without overlap!

Before you rush to EnChroma's website to buy a pair for your color-blind friends or family members, please keep in mind that the glasses will not work for everyone! Some people have so much color-overlap in their cone cells that these glasses simply cannot help them. Please take an official color-blindness test (not just the one on EnChroma's website) before committing to purchasing a pair.

That said, if it looks like EnChroma glasses may work for someone you love, definitely look into purchasing a pair! EnChroma glasses typically sell from $350 and up, so it is a bit of an investment, though it is definitely worth it to live in a world of color!

Why Do I Keep My Old I iPod Around?

Posted Posted by Erin Hasler in Comments 0 comments

When I was in high school, I think it was my freshman year, I got my first iPod. It was a blue 4th generation iPod Nano. I finally felt like a cool kid (because that's what I measured coolness by back then). It has a memory of 8GB and I only use 6.95 and have 1233 songs. In all honesty, I could take a large amount of that off and I need to add a lot from CDs that I have that I haven't put on there, but basically what I'm saying is that I don't own that much music.

This is what my iPod looks like. Isn't it cool and so retro?

You might be asking, "Erin, don't you have a smartphone that you can listen to music on?" The answer to that is, yes. In fact, all my music is currently on my phone and I do use it to listen to music. Why then do I keep my old iPod?

One reason is sentimentality. It was the very first Apple product that I owned. It's also the only Apple product I have ever owned. Something about that fact just stops me from being able to get rid of it. We have a bond. All the music that I'm slightly ashamed to own (countless songs performed on Glee) is on it. I just can't dismiss that.

The other reason is practicality. I can keep it in my car for easy access without having to drain my phone batter by playing music from it on a long trip. Plus, it's a whole lot smaller than my phone. My phone, with its case, is 2.5 inches wide and 5 inches tall. That's big. My iPod is 1.5 inches wide and 3.6 inches tall. Not to mention the fact that my phone and wallet case weigh a substantial amount more. I once dropped my phone on my foot and developed a bruise. When I go running (which, let's be real, is not often) I don't want to have to carry a huge phone around in order to listen to music. My iPod is small and is so much easier to carry.

It may seem like I'm keeping hold of an "obsolete" piece of technology, but that iPod and I have a bond and I'll be keeping it around for awhile.

Netflix Aids the Visually Impaired

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Those of us who are well versed in all things Netflix may have heard of the newly released Netflix original series, Daredevil. Based off of the Marvel comic book, Daredevil details the life of Matt Murdock, a common pedestrian who spends his evenings fighting crime in his beloved city. The twist? He's blind.

When this series was first released, Netflix received a lot of criticism for not including audio visual aid to its visually impaired viewers. Pretty ironic that a show glorifying the abilities of a blind person could not be enjoyed by people with similar challenges. Netflix listened to the criticism, and made quick moves to rectify the situation.

Beginning April 14th, Netflix added an audio visual track to its original series, Daredevil, so that even more members could enjoy the show. The new feature "is a narration track that describes what is happening on-screen, including physical actions, facial expressions, costumes, settings, and scene changes." Choosing this option is just as easy as turning on subtitles.

Netflix recently made the statement that they are continually working hard to improve the viewing experience of all the shows and movies available to their members. That being said, they plan to include audio visual tracks for all of their original series (including House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, and Marco Polo). Once they reach that point, Netflix hopes to expand to most/all of the other shows and movies offered on their service. They even hope to eventually offer the audio track in other popular languages. Way to go Netflix!

To give you an example of how the audio visual track works, here is an example of what you would hear as the Netflix logo appears across the screen: "Letters pop out from a white background, then turn red. Netlix," a voice says.

Next time you find yourself on Netflix... check it out!