Present: L. Cominsky, J. Fry, C. Hearty, S. Hertzbach, R. Jacobsen (connected by telephone), J. Johnson, T. Mattison, U. Nauenberg, T. Schalk, T. Usher, S. Willocq, and R. Dufresne.
The minutes of the previous meeting on August 9, 1996, were approved with one amendment: L. Cominsky noted the omission of an action item, to invite members of the GLAST collaboration to join SLUO.
Nauenberg reported that about 85 SLUO members had informed Ree Dufresne that they had written letters to President Clinton expressing concern over projected deep cuts in funding for basic research. Fry reported that about 30 letters had been contributed from Europe. It was said that a total of about 2000 letters were sent and may have had an impact, as the OMB suggested guidelines to DoE for the FY98 budget no longer include the cuts.
Ree Dufresne suggested that it might be helpful if there were a couple of spaces near her desk (with networked computers) available for temporary assignment to users under a variety of circumstances. It was agreed to pursue this, and that Ree should also inform arriving users of existing public terminal areas such as B182 in Central Lab Annex.
John Fry sent a letter 8/21/96 to Bob Woods of DoE, regarding the need to improve the quality of wide-area networks linking users to SLAC. He had not yet received a response, and Nauenberg agreed to telephone Woods about this matter.
Tom Mattison reviewed recent discussion of the accessibility of the SLUO home page. Ree Dufresne had spoken to Edgar Whipple, who agreed change is needed and encouraged a detailed request from SLUO. Mattison will respond to this (with help from Hertzbach, Schalk, and others) and also work on expanding and updating the contents.
Jacobsen said the SLAC desktop computing committee had not met, but he hoped to bring news for the December SLUO meeting.
Hertzbach discussed the problem of participation, and how to make the meeting more interesting. It was agreed to continue to focus on news and the future, and that if outstanding speakers are to be scheduled it will be necessary to make contact soon. It was also agreed to try for a date in mid-May in conjunction with the BaBar collaboration meeting.
L. Cottrell, R. Cowan, D. Kreitz, and S. Minton joined the meeting to discuss the status of SLIP/PPP access to SLAC through Stanford Campus. Cottrell reported that existing accounts had been extended to the end of the year, but that as of 1/1/97 Stanford would start charging for accounts held by people without Stanford ID's, and such accounts would have to be sponsored by some person or entity with a Stanford financial account. Commercial alternatives were presented: Stanford recommends Netcom, with whom they have arranged a discount price of $15/month. Discussion ensued as to whether SLAC could consolidate sponsorship of SLIP accounts for interested users so that separate financial accounts at Stanford would not be required. Cottrell noted that the accounts were limited to a baud rate of 14.4K with no plans to upgrade, so that interest may diminish with time.
Steve Williams joined the meeting to discuss a draft of a use agreement to be executed by users and Stanford. A proposed patent agreement had been circulated earlier, but many users found it in conflict with their home institutions and it will not be required. The language of the draft use agreement was discussed, and objections were raised to several sentences, so Williams will attempt another iteration with the lawyers.
Steve Williams remained for further discussions over lunch. He agreed to check on providing desks and computers as short-term user space near the SLUO office, and on replacing older terminals in the nearby public area (B182) with X-terminals.
It was pointed out by Fry and Hearty that SLAC uses a private delivery service for mail outside the USA, that such mail apparently goes through Rotterdam (even for Canada) and often takes as much as a month to arrive. (This caused many problems for the recent SLUO election, for example). Williams agreed to investigate the relative costs of using the Postal Service.
Williams reported that the new user database software still had a few bugs, but he, Ree Dufresne and Karen Heidenreich are working with it. A half-time position is being filled to help Ree with data entry. Discussion centered on the use others could make of this database once it is stable.
On the issue of SLIP accounts at Stanford, Williams agreed to investigate whether SLAC could make a consolidated arrangement for users, and perhaps pay the associated charges at the beginning.
Rick Yeager, head of security at SLAC, joined the meeting. He reported that the issuing of dosimeters and photo ID badges is now centralized at the security offices in the trailers at the corner near the Warehouse, and that in the future it may be possible to issue keys for users there as well. Renewal badges and dosimeters for users will go to the SLUO office for distribution. New automobile stickers for users (SLAC employees get a different color) are on order and will come to the SLUO office for distribution. For rental cars, there will be cards to hang from the rearview mirror. Security maintains a list of users provided by the SLUO office, and people arriving at off hours without an ID badge should make sure ahead of time that Ree Dufresne has placed them on this list. Rick was asked if it were possible to get an ID badge without having passed the ES&H exam, and he will try to clarify the policy on this question.
Tom Glanzman of BaBar joined the meeting to discuss how Ree Dufresne can be made aware of new users through requests for computer accounts. It was suggested that eventually there could be a request form on WWW with a link to SLUO, but for the moment the best hope is to add a couple of new lines of information to the current SCS form and arrange for Ree to get copies. This will be pursued further with SCS.
It was noted that the "Supersymmetry Workshop" lectures by Michael Peskin have been very successful and well-attended. The Executive Committee wishes to thank Prof. Peskin for organizing the workshop.
The next SLUO Executive Committee meeting will be on Dec. 13, and a SLUO Social will be hosted beginning at 5 PM that day. The following meeting was set for Feb. 14.
Minutes submitted by Jim Johnson (Secretary/Treasurer Users Executive Committee)