January 2019

Welcome to the First Issue of Bits&Bytes

Welcome to the first issue of the new Clark ITS virtual newsletter, Bits&Bytes.

Bits&Bytes is a newsletter published by Information Technology Services that is emailed to faculty and staff throughout the year.

Each issue of Bits&Bytes contains articles, tips and tricks, and resource references to help you discover the breadth of tools and services available at Clark, and to help you navigate the ever changing world of information technology.

If there is a particular technology or IT resources you’d like to know more about, please click on the link on the right hand side to provide feedback or request a topic.

We look forward to hearing from you, and welcome to our newsletter!

Social Media Privacy

Happy Data Privacy Day!

Data Privacy Day is observed annually on January 28th to help bring greater awareness to privacy education. As the use of digital platforms for managing personal information, such as websites and social media, continues to grow, it is increasingly important that we understand what data we are sharing and how to protect that data. This can sometimes be a challenging task, especially since each website handles privacy and security a little bit differently. Data Privacy Day is used to help bring awareness to these growing challenges.

Maintaining your privacy on social media platforms can be complicated. Each social media site often has its own very specific settings and requirements that can make it difficult for you to really understand which portions of your data are private, and which are not.

This article, from www.experian.com, gives some insight into the realities of social media privacy and how it impacts users. It also provides specific guidelines on how to manage privacy settings on some of the most popular social sites (Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, etc.). It is important for users to be armed with the knowledge of where and how they have a voice with regards to their social media privacy, and this article sheds some light on that. Use the listed links on the right side of the article if you’d like to jump to a specific social media’s privacy settings instructions. Read more by clicking here…

Creating Strong Passwords

Creating and maintaining passwords can sometimes be frustrating. Each website and system we use, inside and outside of Clark, can often have different requirements when it comes to building a password. This can often make you wonder what actually makes a password safe, and what tools are available to help us make sure our passwords are really secure.

As you think about securing your online identity and data (it’s what passwords do for us); be it on social media, on personal accounts, or on Clark systems, it is important for you to create strong passwords. This article, from www.connectsafely.org, gives some instructions and information around what strong passwords are in general, details about how to create a strong password, and details about what tools some websites use to help you keep your passwords and data safe. Click here to read more.

Additionally, if you would like to learn more about the Clark ITS password policy and the recommendations we have for creating a secure password on campus, they can be viewed by clicking here.


Panopto is an easy-to-use, video creation and hosting platform that is available for all faculty and staff members to use. Panopto allows you to record a webcast style video, record your screen, or upload and convert an existing presentation (such as a PowerPoint slide deck) to share with others.

Panopto has been available on campus for a couple of years, and a few of the things that  people are currently doing with it at Clark include:

  • Recording videos that explain an assignment or concept.
  • Creating demonstrations of software and experiments by capturing anything you show on your screen.
  • Allowing students to create video presentations as part of an assignment.
  • Recording meetings or classes for review at a later date.

While Panopto is primarily used with courses and accessed via Moodle, it doesn’t have to be. If you are an office or student group on campus that would like to make video content available, turn a PowerPoint slide deck into a video, or talk about other ideas you may have for the platform please click here to contact the Academic Technology team.

To learn more about what Panopto can do, check out this support page, or click here to contact the Academic Technology team.

Using Video in Your Course

Using video in the classroom can allow you to offer your students a different way to learn, engage and be inspired. It is also a great resource to leverage on those days when students do not have a physical class on campus. With providers like TED, PBS, Khan Academy and many others, there are many options for quality videos that can help your student engage with your content and that can be linked into your Moodle course.

Clark faculty use videos in a variety of ways including:

  • as a starting point for a discussion.
  • performing a group critique of a movie/documentary.
  • showing a difficult-to-replicate demonstration, experiment or experience.
  • reiterating lecture or textbook concepts in new ways.
  • supplementing concepts from the lecture/textbook.

If you are interested in using videos in your classroom, consider some of the following providers:

  • TED Talks: inspiring & educational talks on a wide range of topics.
  • PBS: news, science and cultural documentaries.
  • Khan Academy: short clips explaining topics from a range of disciplines including math, science and economics.
  • CGP Grey: explanatory videos on varying subjects, including politics, geography and economics.
  • Crash Course: introductory videos on World History, Biology, Literature, Psychology, and more.

If you are interested in learning more about using video in your course, click here to contact the Academic Technology team.

Picking the Right Chart For Your Data

The data we collect and use every day is a valuable asset, but it is when we present our data so that it tells a story that the real value of our data stands out.

Choosing the right chart to represent your data can often be challenging. Presenting your data in ways that are appropriate and beneficial for the data type, and in ways that make your data easier to understand, takes knowledge and a little savvy. Spend a few minutes with this article to familiarize yourself with some of the different chart types, and to learn which type of data they are best suited for. Read more by clicking here…

Image with different chart types

How Much Data is Flowing at Clark?

Most of us rely heavily on Clark’s connection to the Internet to accomplish our daily activities. But just how much data is flowing over this connection?

Below are a few insights into the information flowing across our wires and through the air on campus.

On an average day during the semester:

  • Clark transmits over 20TB of data to/from the Internet. That’s about 7,000 hours of high definition Netflix video.
  • Over 40% of all wireless traffic on campus is to Netflix or Youtube.
  • There are over 4,000 unique wireless devices on our network, and over 10,000 total devices.
  • We send/receive over 160,000 emails messages; over 60,000 of these are from known malicious senders and never make it to your inbox.

Get to Know Us: Jim Cormier

“Get to Know Us” is a recurring column that introduces and highlights different ITS staff members. This issue we are highlighting Jim Cormier. Jim Cormier has been a part of the Clark community for over ten years, and is our Manager of Campus Media Services.

When describing his work to people outside IT, he often describes it as “I get to play with sound systems and projectors and they pay me for it.” His favorite part of the job is finding solutions that either improve office operations or enhances the production of an event; and loves it when people ask him to help solve challenges with technology.

Though he began his career in hotel management, he found himself increasingly drawn to the audio/visual (A/V) aspects of the work, and decided to change direction and focus on that for a career. He’s worked professionally in the A/V sector for 30 years and has been a hobby musician since the early 1970s.

If there’s only one thing people know about Jim’s life outside Clark, it’s that he is a Parrothead (a dedicated Jimmy Buffet fan). In fact, when asked if he could take a class from anyone in the world, he choose Jimmy Buffet, and hoped that he too could learn how to make a world-class business from a song that never made it to the Billboard charts! He spends many vacations chasing the Jimmy Buffet life and says his perfect day would be spent on a Caribbean beach, playing guitar for family, friends and anyone who wished to listen.

Jim Cormier

Interested in asking Jim for advice on A/V, event technology, or the best way to get to Margaritaville? Click here to find his contact information.