Student Computer Ownership Committee Activities for AY 1999-2000


Members: Gregory Abowd (CoC), Linda Cabot (OIT), Eric Carlen (CoS), Bryan Carr (Bookstore), Dan Morrison (Student Housing), Matthew J. Realff (CoE), Marc Smith (CoE), Miles (Resnet), Kathy Tamajko (Library), Jonathan Rowe (UG)

The committee's main activity for the year was to update the hardware and software specifications for Fall 2000. These were:

For Recommended Software: 



Software Title

Operating System


Windows 98



Mac OS 8.5 or higher



Eudora Pro 4.2 (Win) or 4.2.1 (Mac)



Communicator 4.6 or higher



Telnet 2.7 (Mac)


Dartmouth C.

Fetch 3.0.3 (Mac)

Productivity & Education


Office 2000 Std (Win) or 98 (Mac)



Dreamweaaver 3.0


Waterloo Maple

Maple 6



Matlab 5.3 (Win or 5.2 (Mac) or higher



KaleidaGraph 3.5

For New Hardware Purchases:

Processor: At least Pentium III class or at least a Power Macintosh G3 processor

Memory: At least 128 MB

Hard Drive: 4 GB or larger

Monitor: 15 inch or larger CD-ROM Sound card (standard on Macintosh and some Windows models) Speakers 10Base-T ethernet port or modem


For existing Hardware, three compromises were allowed for "PC" machines.

Processor: is at least Pentium II class or faster

Memory: 64 MB of memory and a

Hard Drive: 4 GB hard drive.

Note that no minimum specifications were made on pre-owned Macs.

The committee had no other action than to make these specifications. The committee did discuss four other major items during the year.

  1. The mission of the committee. Included in the Statutes is the following:

This is very vague and the committee tried to define what this might mean and what we should DO about it. It was felt that the incoming classmen should be given more guidance on how to use their computers within the context of the campus.

2. The conversion of the library cluster from Mac to PC:

The committee received input from Jim Consuegra of OIT on the plans for the fourth campus cluster. The cluster was a Mac cluster and Jim presented data that showed it was under 50 percent utilized at peak, whereas the PC clusters were utilized closer to 80 percent at peak. The cluster was converted to a PC cluster by OIT.

3. The procedures by which software could be removed or added to the recommended suite of software:

The committee debated how this should be handled and felt that there ought to be a procedure in place for considering faculty requests for addition of software. The committee felt that there ought to be a way to disseminate to faculty any deletions that the committee felt should be made to the recommended suite. No action was taken, this issue remains open.

4. There is a significant issue with the way certain courses are now being offered. Some are web based and a survey of the students indicated that there was concern that NO information was available in the OSCAR as to what the format of given sections of the course were. The committee has requested that OIT look into changing the OSCAR format on the web to indicate the delivery mode of the section. We would like to include information about the software used in the course as well, but this appears infeasible at this time.