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Internet FAQ's

Index

  1. How do I connect to my web space at USF to upload files?
  2. What is a podcast and how do I create one?
  3. Why can't I access sections of Blackboard using Safari?
  4. How widespread is wireless internet access at USF?
  5. How can I create websites using my Mac?
  6. How do I change my buddy icon in iChat?
  7. I have an iSight camera, but my friend doesn't, can I still do a video chat?
  8. What is RSS?
  9. What is a blog?
  10. How do I send a file using iChat?
  11. How do I add a buddy in iChat?
  12. How do I chat with more than one buddy at a time in iChat?

1. How do I connect to my web space at USF to upload files?

First, you must download Fugu, an application that will allow you to establish a secure connection with the USF web server. Once you have installed Fugu on your computer, open it by clicking on its icon in the dock and proceed as follows:

  1. A connection window will appear on the right pane. Enter the following information:
  2. Connect to: myweb.usf.edu
    User Name: your NetID (the same user name you use to access Blackboard and your USF email account)
    Port: 22

  3. Click on Connect. You will prompted to enter your password. This is the same password you use to access Blackboard and your USF email.


    Click on the thumbnail to see a larger version.

  4. Once you connect, you will see a folder on the right called public. This is your web space on the USF web server. Any files you place on this folder will be accessible by other people over the Web. To add a file to your web space, drag and drop from the left pane to the public folder in the right pane.


    Click on the thumbnail to see a larger version.

This short movie (QuickTime, 13.3 MB) takes you through the steps involved in connecting to your web server to upload files.

You can access files placed on your web space by using the following format when you type the address in your browser:

http://myweb.usf.edu/~YourNetID/filename

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2. What is a podcast and how do I create one?

Podcasting means making digital audio files available on the internet in such a way that others can set their computers to automatically download new episodes in a series as you post them. For example, someone could publish a podcast about fly fishing - or gardening, or politics, or polka music. You might find a listing describing this podcast on iTunes and you might enjoy listening to it. Subscribe to that podcast (for free) and your computer will automatically download a new episode whenever it is available. In that way, it's like Tivo for your computer; you tell it what you want to listen to, it records all of the episodes and you listen to them at your convenience - on your computer, on your iPod, or any other device that plays digital music files.

If you are interested in producing a podcast, you can find assistance in the Laptop Lounge. Everything you need is already on your iBook, or can be installed for free.


If you are interested in creating a podcast, here are the general steps:

  1. Create the audio content. You can use GarageBand, which is included on your Laptop Initiative computer. Training sessions for GarageBand are held in the Lounge. There are a number of other programs and devices that you CAN use, but you don't need anything else.

  2. Put the audio content on the internet. A free program called Fugu allows you to transfer files easily from your iBook to your USF web server space.

  3. Create a blog that supports podcasting. All faculty and students have free blog accounts already, courtesy of the fine folks at Academic Computing. You can set yours up by logging in to blog.usf.edu. There are many free blog sites available on the internet. Whatever you use, make sure that it supports audio attachments.

  4. Attach the audio content to a blog posting. You'll create a new post and add a very specific line of text to the bottom that references the location of your audio file on the internet.

    Once you've done all of that, you are podcasting. The USF blog site generates a software tag with information about your show. You can give others the address of your podcast feed to subscribe. Add new episodes anytime by posting a new blog entry with a reference to another audio file. If you want your podcast listed on the iTunes directory so that others can find it easily, you'll want to complete one more step.

  5. Submit the address of your feed to iTunes. Click on a link in the iTunes Music Store and enter the address of your feed. After they review your show for copyright and adult content, your show will be listed under Podcasts in the iTunes Music Store.

Our software guides for iTunes and GarageBand (both are in PDF format and can be printed out) also have more information on this topic.

3. Why can't I access sections of Blackboard using Safari?

We are aware that some sections of the Blackboard website will not work when accessed using the Safari browser that comes installed with OS X on your Mac laptop. One work around for this issue is to download and install the Firefox browser.

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4. How widespread is wireless internet access at USF?

There is wireless internet access throughout much of the USF campus. The College of Education is a wireless access area where students can easily connect to the internet using the airport card installed on their Mac laptops. We also have an airport wireless station in the Laptop Lounge which will allow students to connect to the USF wireless network with a very strong signal. This map shows the wireless areas throughout the USF campus.

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5. How do I create websites using my Mac?

There are a number of options for creating a website on the Mac. You can use a commercial application such as Macromedia Dreamweaver, which is considered by many to be the industry leading website authoring application. A student version of Dreamweaver can be purchased from the USF Computer Store at a reduced price. If you have already used Dreamweaver on Windows, you should find it easy to get started with it on the Mac side. The program looks and behaves very much the same on both platforms.

Another option if you don't want to purchase Dreamweaver is to download Nvu, a free open source application with similar functionality. USF Academic Computing has an exccellent introduction to the program on their website. Once you have created your website using Nvu, which is a visual editing program, you can upload the files you have created to your USF webspace using Fugu. For your website to be accessible on the Web, you will need to create and upload at least one page which should be named index.html. This file needs to be placed inside the public folder which you will see in the right hand window after you log in with Fugu.

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6. How do I change my buddy icon in iChat?

Changing the picture used to identify you to other users in iChat is easy. You can use any picture you have saved on your hard drive, but better yet, you can take a snapshot with your iSight camera and use that as your buddy icon. To use an iSight snapshot as your buddy icon:

  1. Make sure you have your iSight camera connected to your computer and open iChat by clicking on its icon in the dock.

  2. Click on the picture icon in the upper right. A small window will open showing you all the photos you can choose from for your buddy icon. You can add pictures to the list by dragging them in from a Finder window. To use an iSight snapshot, choose Edit Picture. You can also choose Buddies > Change My Picture from the application menu.

  3. Click on the Take Video Snapshot button (it has a picture of a camera on it). Your new snapshot will appear in the window above the button. You can then use the zoom slider to zoom in or out on your picture. If you zoom in on the picture, you can move the picture to change what part of it appears in the window. When you hover your pointer over the picture it will change to a hand icon to let you know you can move the picture.

  4. Once you are happy with your picture, click on Set to make it your buddy icon.

Another way to add a snapshot is by opening the video window then choosing Video > Take Snapshot (Shortcut: Command + Option + S). The snapshot will be saved to your desktop as a TIFF file you can then drag into the buddy icon area to set a new buddy icon.

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7. I have an iSight camera, but my friend doesn't, can I still do a video chat?

Yes, iChat supports a feature called one-way video chat. This feature will allow you to have a video chat even if the person on the other end does not have an iSight camera connected. To start a one-way video chat, control click (or right click) on the person's name in your buddy list and choose Invite to One-Way Video Chat. A video chat window will open showing you a preview of the image your friend will see on the other end. Once they accept your invitation, they will be able to see and hear you.

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8. What is RSS?

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication, and refers to a format used to provide frequently updated content on the Web. An RSS feed is a file that provides summaries of recently updated web content together with links to the full versions of the content. RSS is often used by news websites to provide headlines for the latest news. Each headline includes a brief summary of the corresponding news story, along with a link that can be used by the reader to view the full version of each story. RSS can also be used to list the most recent updates to any website. To see an example of an RSS feed, visit our News section and click on the orange XML icon at the top of the page. This icon is often used to let visitors know that the webpage they are viewing has an RSS feed which they can view by clicking on the icon.

RSS feed files are formatted using a special language called XML. The Safari web browser that comes installed with OS X has a built in RSS reader that allows users to view RSS feeds without the need to installl additional software. To view the feeds included by default with Safari, choose Bookmarks > Show All Bookmarks and then click on the All RSS Feeds link on the left hand column. You will see a list of feeds on the right hand side. Most of these feeds are for news websites such ABC News or BBC News. You can also use Safari subscribe to other feeds. Whenever you visit a site that has an RSS feed, an RSS icon will appear to the right of the website's address in the address bar. To view the feed, double click on that icon and the feed will be displayed in the browser. You can then bookmark that page to subscribe to the feed.

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9. What is a blog and how do I create one?

Short for web log, a blog is a Web page that serves as a publicly accessible personal journal. New content is published by the blog's author on a regular basis, often daily. Most blogs are a mixture of what is happening in a person's life and what is happening on the Web, but there are as many unique types of blogs as there are people. In recent years, blogs have played an important role in the delivery of real time commentary on important events, such as the presidential elections or the aftermath of hurricane Katrina in New Orleans.

Blogs differ from traditional sites in that rather than being composed of individual web pages connected by hyperlinks, they consist of a template into which content is fed from a database. Each new item submitted to the blog is known as a post, and may include hyperlinks to other sites on the Web. A key feature of a blog is that visitors to the blog can submit comments on any of the posts using a simple form. Each post on a blog will have a link at the bottom that will allow the person visiting the blog to view any comments submitted by others. Blogs also support the use of tags to place posts into categories. The tags can be used later to search for posts that refer to a specific topic.

Blogs allow for the easy creation of new content, which is usually entered into a simple form and then submitted to a blogging system. The blogging system takes care of adding the content to the blog's main page, applying the formatting specified in the template chosen by the blog's author, and creating any links to other sites referenced in the post. The blogging system will also automatically move older items to an archive page. There are several free blogging systems that can be used to host blogging content. One of the most popular is Blogger, which is owned by the search company Google. In addition to providing a system for creating blogs, Blogger provides free space to host the blog on their servers.

USF also provides access to a blogging system for faculty and students. This blogging system is called blog@USF. To get started setting up your own blog at USF, go to the home page for blog@USF and click on the "Create a blog" link at the top of the page. Note that blog@USF is a public blogging systesm. Any posts submitted to blog@USF will be listed in a section named PlanetUSF for others to see.

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10. How do I send a file using iChat?

To send a file using iChat, select a contact from your Buddy List, control-click (or right-click on it if you have a two-button mouse), and select Send File... This will open up a window so that you can locate the file you want to send. Once you have the file selected, click on the Send button and the file will be on its way.

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11. How do I add a buddy in iChat?

Your Buddy List allows you to see which of your contacts are online so you can start a chat with them. iChat can display a different buddy list for each service it supports. To switch through the different buddy lists, you can use the Window menu. There will be an option for the default buddy list (which has your .Mac/AIM contacts), the Bonjour buddy list (for contacts on your local area network), or the Jabber buddy list (for GoogleTalk contacts).

To add someone to your Buddy List:

  1. Choose Add Buddy from the Buddies menu.

  2. In the dialog box that opens, you can either select a person you have in Address Book and click Select Buddy, or click New Person.

  3. Choose .Mac or AIM from the Account Type pop-up menu to indicate your buddy's account type.

  4. Type your buddy's account name in the Account Name field
    and click Add.

Your new buddy should appear in your Buddy List. If he or she is online, a green dot will appear next to their name. If a buddy's name appears dimmed, he or she isn't currently available to chat.

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12. How do I chat with more than one buddy at a time with iChat?

If you want to text, audio, or video chat with more than one buddy, you can connect an unlimited number of people in one text conference, up to 10 total people in an audio conference, and up to four total people in a video conference, as long as your system supports it (the person initiating the conference has to have a G5 or dual G4 processor).

To start a conference:

  1. Select the buddies that you want to participate in your conference (hold down the Command key to select more than one buddy).

  2. Click the "A" button to start a text conference, the phone button to start an audio conference, or the movie camera conference. As your participants accept your invitation, they will be able to send text, talk, or visually interact with everyone who joins.

You or anyone else can end the conference at anytime by closing the chat window; the chat will continue as long as there are still active participants.

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