Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Is Sharing Your Passwords Now Illegal?

It has always been a bad idea to give someone else your password, and it is against West Virginia University policy, yet we all know people who do it. Recent headlines have claimed that this is now a criminal act. In a decision last week, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decided that a person who had been given another person's password could be held liable for hacking under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. The court says that this decision only applies to this particular case and set of circumstances, but since our legal system is so often based on precedent, a number of panicked articles have appeared:
For a more even and informed analysis of this decision, you should read this article by Orin Kerr, a professor at George Washington University Law School, in The Washington Post.
This case provides a great opportunity to become more aware of the issues surrounding the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, but it also provides a great opportunity to review your own computer security practices. Do you give an assistant or colleague your password? Have you thought about whether this could make you liable for actions they make while using your account? Have you thought about whether this could make them a "hacker" in the eyes of the law? Have you considered how easily someone from outside your organization could "social engineer" or talk someone into giving away a credential?
For more about good security practices at West Virginia University, please visit the ITS informational website:

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Adobe's New LMS

Adobe has a relatively new program out called Captivate Prime.  Captivate Prime is a Learning Management System geared for corporate training.

Captivate Prime claims to be easy to set up and manage (typically in three steps) and conducive to a varied content integration (PPTX, Video, PDF, DOCX, AICC and SCORM packages).

The player works on desktop as well as in mobile/tablet (using the Prime app) environments using what Adobe terms as the Fluidic Player.  Learners will have their own dashboard where they can view their progress, skills attained, and even badges earned.  Further, the player will let users to bookmark their lessons as well as take and maintain notes.

Another interesting feature is how Captivate Prime apparently lets administrators tag and link learning modules together to create courses; which can be linked together into programs.  It sounds like object oriented  course design     

I look forward to seeing the program in action.  It could do well for corporate training due to it's ease of set up and use for even non-technical administrators.

To see more details visit Adobe's website on Captivate Prime at:

Friday, June 24, 2016

3D Printer Buying Guide

Although they have been around in some form since the 1980s, 3D printers - devices that create three-dimensional physical objects from digital design files - have been gaining popularity in recent years. There are now a multitude of 3D printers available to purchase ranging from affordable to expensive. Instructors in higher education are still finding new ways to use the printers to produce prototypes and models. An article on attempts to categorize some of the many printers on the market in its 3D Printer Buyer’s Guide
The guide currently covers 23 popular 3D printers and their capabilities in four categories:
  1. Category 1: Budget/Entry-Level 3D Printers ($300-$800)
  2. Category 2: Enthusiast/Mid-Range 3D Printers ($800-$2,000)
  3. Category 3: Enthusiast-to-Prosumer Premium 3D Printers ($2,000+)
  4. Category 4: SLA / DLP Resin 3D printers

It also includes considerations when choosing a 3D printer such as:
  • Technology used
  • Build volume
  • Printing materials needed
  • Speed
  • Resolution
  • and more

Take a look through the 3D Printer Buyer's Guide and see which one fits your needs in terms of functionality, materials needed, and cost effectiveness.