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Office of Learning and Information Technology

UW System CIO Council

August 18, 2005
Madison, WI

D2L update
APBS status report
July 27th CSRG meeting
Procurement update
Network update
Hyperion Dashboard Builder
Fall ITMC meeting
Next meeting


CIOs and their Representatives


Mark Anderson
Dick Cleek
Nancy Crabb
David Dumke
Ann Marie Durso
Chip Eckhardt
Ron Kraemer
John Krogman
Ed Meachen
Kathy Pletcher
Elena Pokot
Carrie Regenstein
Gary Smith
Ken Splittgerber
David Stack
Annie Stunden
John Tillman
Doug Wahl

Judy Brickner
Brian Busby
Lorie Docken
Ken Ebbe
David Hart
Brian Hutchinson
David Lois
Beth Luchsinger
Don Mash
Leslie Perelman
Brian Remer
Michael Schlicht


Dick Cleek will serve as interim chair of the IAA governance group upon Carrie Regenstein's departure.

Carrie's vacant position will be posted today (see www.doit.wisc.edu/about/hr/pd.asp?filename=211)

Gary Smith has asked for an IT review at UW-River Falls.

WISC & IAA – Judy Brickner and Brian Busby

A pilot project at UW-Platteville has been using the Identification, Authentication and Authorization (IAA) service to authenticate students who want to purchase software from WISC, the Wisconsin Integrated Software Catalog (wiscsoftware.wisc.edu/wisc/). Currently students enter their last name and local campus student ID number when they make purchases from WISC. Instead, WISC would like to use each institution's "netid", to authorize the students and the students' names, addresses, and telephone numbers to populate the order forms. Students would be able to override the populated fields for the purpose of the order. The WISC website tells the students that they need to be enrolled either part time or full time. If a student is not eligible to purchase from WISC, they would be presented with a contact number at their home campus.

To accomplish this, WISC will need a one time conversion table from each campus that matches each student's ID number to their netid to bring forward the student's purchase history for contract compliance purposes. After that is accomplished, campuses will no longer need to ftp files of student IDs to WISC on a regular basis as they do now.

John Krogman reported that very little work was required on the part of UW–Platteville. Their pilot will be finished by October and the goal is to convert the remainder of the campuses, one at a time, by the start of the spring semester.

Carrie Regenstein reported that this project is strongly supported by the IAA governance group. The project was endorsed by the CIO Council.

Carrie also reported that yesterday's "IAA 101" presentation for auditors and others was very successful. It will be posted on the IAA website (www.uwsa.edu/olit/iaa/).

D2L Update – Kathy Pletcher

The organizational structure of the Desire2Learn common system was re-examined this summer by a group composed of Kathy Pletcher, Alan Foley, Kathy Christoph, Lorie Docken, Peter Mann, David Wirth and Lorna Wong. A proposed organizational structure will be reviewed by constituency groups in August and presented to the D2L Steering Committee in September in anticipation of a migration to a new service/support model during the fall.

Under the proposal, the Steering Committee would continue to have oversight over budget, service level agreements and relationships with the provosts. A strategic planning component would be added to their responsibilities. There would continue to be tactical working groups for functions such as:

  • archiving
  • functional enhancements
  • hosting/SLA
  • integration
  • synchronous tools
  • training

Alan Foley is taking over responsibility for D2L as David Wirth focuses on his responsibilities at the ADL CoLab. Some people have served on the Steering Committee for a long time. Perhaps it is time for some new faces.

The CIO Council members were encouraged to get feedback on the proposed structure from their LTDC representatives.

APBS Status Report - Don Mash

Don Mash is chairing the APBS Steering Committee at their biweekly meetings. The committee has been broadened, and there have been structural changes in the project apparatus and administration.

The UW–Madison campus is close to finishing the "Madison Assessment" which will determine what is required to make the APBS implementation work at their institution. This project was initiated at the April APBS Summit. The assessment is expected to be finished in September. A one page summary was forwarded to the CIOs a few days ago (see systemwide.uwsa.edu/apbs/uw_mad_lap.htm).

Remaining with the status quo is not an option. The decision regarding going forward will be made in a sensitive budget and political climate. We're not starting from scratch and much has been invested. Several weeks ago, the status of the project was reported on Madison television (see www.channel3000.com/news/4725884/detail.html). The reporter was invited to a Steering Committee meeting so she could see that the project was not over. The investigative report has led to others picking up the story, including today's Wisconsin Technology Network email briefing (see wistechnology.com/article.php?id=2137). A story appeared in Computerworld and the Chronicle of Higher Education has also called. The legislature's Colleges and University Committee has invited someone from UW System to come to a hearing on September 6 to discuss the project.

The conversation has broadened beyond APBS. The article in the Wisconsin Technology Network raises the issue of the UW System going away. It is true that the project has cost more and taken more time than anticipated, but these are complex projects and discussions with the California system have raised the question of whether the project was front-loaded sufficiently.

The CSRG has begun discussions of how to move forward after the Madison Assessment is complete. Meanwhile, PeopleSoft is being investigated as a contingency. Work will be needed to estimate the cost and effort of implementing interfaces to other systems beyond those covered in the Madison Assessment. Many interfaces are not optional for go-live, such as SFS. The total cost of ownership (TCO) tradeoffs of all options needs to be considered during this pause, not just the go-live costs.

Both ORACLE/PeopleSoft and Lawson are being questioned regarding their future plans for web services and business intelligence capabilities.

APBS is not the only project on the table. We need mechanisms for discussing policy issues, interfaces and business reengineering for all new systems. At Ed Meachen's request, the CSRG has been considering a project management function, perhaps located in the UWS Office of Learning and Information Technology. Given the financial realities, this will be difficult to start. Perhaps the CIOs and their staffs can help the Steering Committee with an analysis of the interface needs, etc.

Ron Kraemer reminded the group that, in retrospect, we should be proud that we gathered evidence and made a tough decision regarding APBS in April. If we had gone live, we'd have much larger issues before us than we do now.

July 27th CSRG meeting - Ed Meachen & CIOs present at CSRG

The Common Systems Review Group (CSRG) was especially concerned about projected cost overruns.

Two major requests came before the group.

  1. A plan to form a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) working group with a budget and pilot projects. CSRG requested additional information for presentation at a later date. Meanwhile, UW–Madison's middleware group is working on SOA.
  2. A recommendation to hire of a project director with initial assignment related to APBS, which was supported.

It was recommended that the next CSRG meeting be devoted solely to a discussion of a budget strategy.

Procurement update – Ruth Anderson

Beth Luchsinger is a UW–Madison procurement specialist who will be helping out in the UWSA purchasing office two days per week.

The Silver Oak initiative for consolidating purchasing contract is now being referred to as the Ace Initiative (Accountability, Consolidation and Efficiency, ace.wi.gov/). It is currently awarding contracts for wave 1, which focused on IT, and has now started wave 2, which includes food services, business consulting, apparel, etc.

DOA has started implementing their IBIS (Integrated Business Information System) ERP system (ibis.wi.gov/), which includes procurement as a first step. They are looking at a three way verification whereby a purchase order, packing slip and invoice must all match before a check is cut. The project is looking at flow charts of existing practices in preparation for an effort to define the best and issue an RFP in the fall.

UW System Administration is the pilot agency for entering detailed information for procurement card transactions. Overall monthly spending in the UW System is also reported to DOA.

Different pieces of the new travel guidelines are being implemented in a phased approach beginning in October. It is understood that the state will require that everyone use either the procurement card or the personal US Bank travel card for all travel expenses. In Platteville, local businesses are concerned about the impacts of these types of policies. Silver Oak is estimating the savings these contracts will generate and that amount of money has been taken out of the UWS budget.

The old copier and printer contracts have lapsed and there has been no direction from DOA as to how campuses should proceed. The vast majority of HP printers will not be available, even though most of the UWS institutions have standardized on HP. The new pricing has not yet been released.

Ken Splittgerber analyzed a printer than generated 4 million copies. The initial cost of the printer was less than 10 percent of the TCO. John Krogman would like to collect information from the campuses regarding their experiences with printers and the costs of switching.

Network update - Ron Kraemer, Ed Meachen, Brian Remer

The issues related to the Governor’s veto will be discussed at the WiscNet Board meeting tomorrow. Ed Meachen will brief the chancellors on their next conference call. Each CIO should talk with their Educational Media Technology Council representatives to see how they view the video service options. UW-Superior is scheduled to go live with the BadgerNet managed video service in September.

The earliest data connection dates for the UW System institutions will be in summer of 2006.

UW–Platteville is doing a small pilot of voice over IP with CenturyTel under the auspices of DOA.

Hyperion Dashboard Builder - David Hart

The Hyperion core team is doing a trial run of a product called Dashboard Builder that will display the results of a number of queries for easy access by an executive. There is a license to test the project, but the cost of each developer seat is high. Unless they need it immediately, campuses shouldn't buy individual licenses until the UW System finishes negotiations.

Fall ITMC meeting

The fall Information Technology Management Council meeting is scheduled for October 3 and 4 at UW–Stout. It was noted that this is during the Jewish New Year and the date may be reconsidered. There is a Board of Regents meeting later that same week. Network staff will be invited to have a breakout meeting. Each campus should email Doug Wahl an estimate of how many will attend.

Next meeting

The next meeting of the CIO Council will be on Thursday, September 15, 2005.