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Computer facilities in Geography, the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, the Department of Computer Science and the Faculty of Social Sciences would be the primary facilities used by the IGERT participants. These laboratories are located in different buildings and complexes on the SUNY Buffalo campus, facilitating access by students from different home departments.

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  • Project Outline
  • Vision & Impact
  • Thematic Basis: GIS
  • Faculty & Mentors
  • Major Research Efforts
  • Education and Training
  • Recruit & Retain
  • Org. and Management
  • Advisory Board
  • Performance Assessment
  • Facilities & Equipment
  • All students would also be able to use facilities maintained by the university's central Computing and Information Technology (CIT) staff, and software residing on CIT hosts. University-wide site licenses for the GIS software packages ARC/INFO and related products (such as ArcView and ArcCad) are held, as are licenses for the remote sensing software ERDAS Imagine. Other GIS packages, such as MapInfo, Idrisi, AtlasPro, AtlasGIS, Maptitude and TransCad are available in individual laboratories. The Geographic Information and Analysis Laboratory (GIAL) has a 3-Dimensional GIS software program, Voxel Analyst, on extended loan from Intergraph Corporation. Statistical, engineering, scientific and general purpose software applications are also available in the various laboratories. The University has an FDDI link to a SprintNet's T3 connection to the Internet.

    1 Geographic Information and Analysis Laboratory, Wilkeson Quad

    IGERT students in the Departments of Anthropology and Geography would primarily use the Geographic Information and Analysis Laboratory (GIAL). The GIAL is a shared facility of the Department of Geography, National Center for Geographic Information and Analysis (NCGIA), and Canada-US Trade Center. The lab supports the research and teaching needs of the units' faculty, staff and students. The GIAL is staffed by two full-time technicians. The computers in the GIAL are fully networked via fiberoptics with computer facilities on campus. Currently, there are three computer platforms in use: a SUN network, which is used primarily for geographic information systems; a Novell network, which supports studies in location analysis and decision support systems, and a Macintosh platform which supports instruction and research on cartography and scientific visualization. A recent acquisition is a Windows NT 4.0 server with8 gigabytes of disk space and 64 megabytes of RAM, which will eventually phase out the Novell server. The SUN Platform includes a SPARCserver 10 with 1 CPU with 1 mg cache, and 21 SPARCstation clients. Total file server disk capacity is 20 gigabytes, and an additional 9 gigabytes of disk space is available on client machines. A SPARCstation 5 hosts the units' World Wide Web site, and an Anonymous FTP site is supported by a SPARCstation 1. Peripherals available include color and laser printers, a large format pen plotter and a digitizing table. The GIAL's Novell network includes a Novell file server, with 1 Gigabyte disk capacity, and approximately 25 PC machines which are based on 80486 or Pentium processors. Peripherals available under the Novell network include several printers, and a stand-alone color printer can also be accessed.

    NSF funding is requested to support the acquisition of two Dell 6300 PII/MT workstations (128 MB RAM). These computers would become the hosts for the Voxel Analyst software, and will be used in GIS/Environmental research and three-dimensional GIS modeling by IGERT student researchers in Geography, Anthropology and other units. NT-based machines are preferred to run Voxel Analyst, and the current set of Pentium machines in the GIAL are (with only one exception) all Windows `95 based. The proposed computer would enable easy operation of this high-powered three dimensional modeling package. It would be located within a limited access area of the GIAL, and its primary use would be to support IGERT student research. The purchase price has been quoted at approximately $5,150 each.

    2 Faculty of Social Sciences Laboratory, Park Hall

    The Park 450 Computer Lab provides computing services to faculty and students who are affiliated with the Faculty of Social Sciences. IGERT students in the Departments of Philosophy and Political Science would likely use this laboratory. The Park Hall Lab contains 17 Gateway 2000 200 Mhz. MMX Pentium Workstations running Windows NT 4.0. Each machine is configured with a 17 inch SVGA color monitor, 64 MB RAM, 1.44 MB Floppy drive, 3.2 GB hard drive, 12X CDROM drive, Ensoniq PCI Soundcard and 10/100 3Com ethernet card. In addition to these 17 workstations, the lab contains an HP color printer and 2 HP laserjet printers. There is also a digital scanner and digital film recorder. These 17 workstations are connected to 2 dual processor Pentium Pro servers. Each of these servers contains 256 MB Ram and 8 GB of hard drive space. The lab provides researchers with a wide variety of software for their research needs. This includes ArcInfo and ArcView GIS software, SAS and SPSS statistical software as well as general productivity software such as Microsoft Office Professional and Internet software.

    3 School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

    The computing needs of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) and the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics (FNSM) are maintained and supported by Science & Engineering Node Services (SENS). The departments supported by this node include the Departments of Industrial Engineering, Civil/Environmental Engineering and Computer Science. A staff of fourteen programmers, analysts and technicians provide full support for a community of over 6400 full time faculty, students and staff. The UNIX component of SENS supports approximately 500 SUN and SGI workstations. A full complement of scientific and engineering software including Maple, Matlab, ProEngineer, ANSYS, ARC/INFO, FIDAP, Microstation and VLSI Tools are supported. SENS also supports and maintains over 1,000 PCs and Macintosh machines, the majority of which are networked to the campus ethernet system. In addition, SENS supports both Novell LAN, NT and PCNFS environments. Supported PC software includes the majority of word processors, Matlab, Maple, Microstation, Spice, Microsoft Offfice, Novell Office, and many others. SENS also supports and maintains the Enginet Distance Learning Facilities. This includes: studios, classrooms, and production facilities. SENS also provides and maintains a full array of instructional communications and multimedia resources.

    NSF funds are requested to support the purchase of a Silicon Graphics O2 Workstation. This workstation would be made available to IGERT students, and would be exclusively used in this project. It would support 3-dimensional visualization and animation of data and model output, especially the projects of the students in Industrial and Civil/Environmental Engineering. It would be housed in the Department of Civil/Environmental Engineering.

    4 Department of Computer Science and Engineering

    Computer Science faculty and staff use a network of SPARCstations and a server for their research, teaching and document preparation computing. Computer Science instructional computing is done on a variety of systems, some owned and administered by the department, and some by Computing and Information Technology (CIT). The department's instructional systems include a graduate lab with 13 Sun SPARCstations and 9 X terminals; an undergraduate lab with 6 Sun SPARCstations and 23 Sun X terminals; and a lab for introductory courses with 24 Sun X terminals. The servers for these labs include an Ultra2/2300, an Ultra1/140, 3 SS20/712s, a SS10/512, a SS10/51, a SS10/514, and a Sun4/670-612; with a total of about 70 GB of disk space. For compute-intensive processing, we have a Sun Ultra Enterprise 4000 with 8 CPUs and 1 Gigabyte of memory. The lower division service courses are taught in a Macintosh lab and a Windows NT lab. Most labs have laser printers available. The graduate lab and servers are also used for graduate student and faculty research computing. In addition to the graduate lab, some graduate students have X terminals on the desks in their offices. The department's systems are connected to the university backbone by a 100Mbps ethernet port directly on an FDDI (Fiber Distributed Data Interface) router. The department's internal networking is a mix of 100BaseT, switched 10BaseT and regular 10BaseT ethernet.

    This project is supported by IGERT award DGE-9870668 from the National Science Foundation and by the University at Buffalo. Support from NSF is gratefully acknowledged.

    Copyright © 2000 John Kavanagh, NCGIA