IT Newsletter for teachers
October 2007
Newsletter Index
News from Us  
| |
News From Us

Environmental Detection System and Server Checking System
Voyage Io , Computer Service Centre, MPI
CSC has recently installed an Environmental Detection System in four server rooms located at Campus Headquarters. This system will monitor the environmental conditions (e.g. room temperature, humidity, etc.) inside the server room automatically and continuously.
In addition, CSC has also implemented a Server Checking System for checking the health (CPU loading, memory utilization, disk capacity, etc.) and the availability of the servers periodically.

The Environmental Detection System and Server Checking System provides centralized monitoring, reporting and alerting on the availability of systems. Whenever an abnormal condition or situation is detected (such as room temperature higher than 35ºC or a server did not response in last polling request), the system will send an alert email or SMS message to the system administrator for follow-up actions. The implementation of these two systems can greatly reduce the time and manpower in maintaining the servers and server rooms operate normally.

Teaching with IT

WiZiQ is an online platform for teaching and learning. "With a virtual classroom, educational content and a session scheduler, WiZiQ works best for anyone’s online teaching and learning needs". Registered users can upload presentations, create sessions in the virtual classroom and "communicate with each other on one-to-one basis using microphone, chat and share whiteboard (similar to blackboard in the classroom), presentation and documents."

Institute for Learning and Research Technology (ILRT), University of Bristol
"The Intute: Virtual Training Suite provides free Internet tutorials to help you learn how to get the best from the Web for your education and research". The Virtual Training Suite includes tutorials regarding Internet search and research skills on several areas - Science Engineering and Technology, Arts and Humanities, Social Sciences and Health and Life Sciences and it is maintained by a group of subject specialists. The site also includes a tutorial about "the critical thinking required when using the Internet for research", the Internet Detective. "The service is aimed at students, lecturers and researchers in UK higher and further education, but is freely available for anyone to use."

Business English for Chinese Learners
by Justin Palmer
A free e-book on Business English aimed primarily at Chinese students.
The book has a total of 20 chapters. They are structured around an article
and include "definitions of 10 general words (highlighted in bold in the text) and 10 business words (underlined in the text), as well as five general information words (italicised in the text). (...) Following the new words are 20 discussion questions. A model answer is also provided for one of the 20 questions to give students an idea of how to answer questions, from both an English perspective, as well as an argumentative one." The texts are real business articles, they are the "ones that business people are interested in reading" from a variety of sources (such as BusinessWeek and Fortune magazine).

INNOV8 - Business Process Management Simulation
"INNOV8 is an interactive, 3-D business simulator designed to teach the fundamentals of business process management.
Join IBM’s Academic Initiative and download INNOV8 today." Innov8 is available free of charge to universities around the world. System requirements: Windows 2000, XP, or Vista , 800 MHz Pentium III or Athlon, or better, 128 MB RAM or more, 250 MB hard-disk, video and sound cards•

Human Capital Theory
Barry Richards, Dr. Joanna Cullinane, Catherine Naamani, University of Glamorgan
This is a simulation activity regarding the human capital management theory. This activity highlights the importance of human resources in organisations. You will need to take decisions regarding training requests and staff development managing a budget of £5,000. The activity may be used in or outside class, as a self training resource, or as a base for further discussion.

Learning with IT

Open Learning Initiative at Carnegie Mellon
The Open Learning Initiative (OLI) project provides "a collection of openly available and free online courses and course materials that enact instruction for an entire course in an online format". Individual learners have free access to the courses; moreover, instructors throughout the world may apply to use the courses with their own class.

English, Baby!
"English, Baby!" is a web site for learning English. It provides free daily lessons, vocabulary, quizzes, forums and chat rooms. Each English lesson has listening, vocabulary, grammar sections and a quiz. The forums message boards contain English questions and answers. Registration is required to access all the site features.

A very useful web site for English learners. If you have an online article with words you don't know, you enter the url into Lingro and choose the "English dictionary" or translation. Then, you may click on the words you don't know to get its definition and sound. This will also work with your own computer files (.txt, .doc, .pdf). Registered users have access to other features, such as word games based on their own clicked words list.

EDUMAX (Free Tutorials)
Edumax provides free “guides” on several subjects. The majority of the guides concerns computers and programming knowledge (Microsoft Office, Programming, Computer Basics, Database Basics, Photoshop, Web Development), but some other topics such as Internet Business or Personal Development are also covered. Each guides is a a series of " lessons prepared by experts that can be grasped by any learning pace. (...) Our “virtual classrooms” are step-by-step guides so that you can understand the topics from the most basic concept to the advanced theories".

IT Usage Tips

A Better Way to Read News and Blogs
Open Culture
"This instructive, even amusing, video uses simple language and images to demonstrate how to use feeds and feed readers. In a matter of minutes, all of this will be demystified, and you’ll discover a much quicker, more efficient and powerful way to access news and blog content."


Have some ideas and comments to share with us or the rest of the Campus on IT facilities and services. You can use the Computer Service Centre Weblog.

You are also welcome to send us contributions and suggestions about subjects you would like to see here, links to websites, small articles, reviews of books or websites, or any reports of educational experience you may want to share with others.

Credits will be given to the contributors in any section of this newsletter.

To send your contributions please, contact:

Campus IT Newsletter Production/Editing Team
Chief Editor: Conceição Carvalho
Voyage Io
Technical Advisors: Simon Fong, Joe Poon, Joey Fong


Macau Polytechnic Institute Computer Service Centre