The past two weeks have kept me nearly constantly busy at work. At 4:30 this afternoon, though, I realized I was essentially caught up. The BCRC is good. I have the intro labs up and running. The plant physiology lab is good. My classes are up-to-date. The only things I know I need to do, I have to wait on other people: Kate for preferences and Tom for winxp. Yeah. WinXP in the new Super Deluxe lab. Sigh...
I met with folks in CMPSCI yesterday to talk about doing cross-platform computer labs. They've been running their ed-lab in triple boot mode for a year or so. They approach running labs differently than we do, so I'm not sure how much I learned. They set up their labs before the semester and then, essentially, they don't touch them -- or if they do, they do it by touching each workstation. They also do cross-platform by letting people reboot into different OSes. We do it by supporting the workstations with radmind and I'm planning to do virtualization to support the other platforms we need.
The virtualization stuff is cool. I downloaded virtualbox and played with it using Ubuntu yesterday and today. It's pretty seamless. You can let it take over the display and you're using Ubuntu. Of course, its like a little parasite, sucking up all your RAM and computational cycles. Once I get the winxp licenses, I'm going to try vmware fusion. I'm sure it'll be loads of fun.
The intro labs were more work than I had expected. I replaced the teaching stations and found four machines that one sort of problem or another that needed to be fixed. In two cases, it was a hard-drive that was corrupted or failing. We swapped in the spare workstations until we get the others fixed up.
By the end of the day, I was exhausted. Thank goodness its Friday.