Panther Bytes Blog | Information Technology | University of Pittsburgh

Panther Bytes Blog

December 02, 2020

Techies are a unique bunch. They love their acronyms—and they couldn’t care less if their alphabet soup means something totally different to everyone else. When they talk about WAPs, they’re talking about something that’s the gateway to much of the knowledge you gain and entertainment you consume.

November 25, 2020

As with nearly everything else this year, Pitt’s academic calendar is different for 2020-21. Students are facing an extended staycation, with lots of free time on their hands. Many faculty and staff will also have a slower pace of work between semesters. So what’s a Panther to do with so much downtime until the new term begins? Pitt IT has some great ideas:

2020-2021 Course Catalog
November 04, 2020

It’s time to select your courses for next term. Scheduling can be crazy complicated. You have a ton of choices and trying to fit all your classes into a reasonable schedule is no easy task. But fear not—Pitt PS Mobile (PeopleSoft Mobile) will help you get it all done.

October 28, 2020

It’s the Year of Engagement here at Pitt. With the pandemic, most is taking place online these days. That’s a double-edged sword. On one hand, the internet makes it easier to connect to all kinds of people, all across the world.

Calling Contacts Screen Image
October 21, 2020

Over the weekend, Microsoft Teams became the official unified communication platform for faculty and staff at the University—except for those still using Skype for Business phones. Pitt IT implemented the proactive move in response to Microsoft’s plans to retire Skype for Business.

October 07, 2020

Microsoft is retiring Skype for Business, with Teams becoming the default chat, calling, and meeting app for Office 365. But the power of Microsoft Teams is that it is far more than a communications app—it is a shared workspace that facilitates organization and collaboration.

September 30, 2020

The basics of chatting in Microsoft Teams is pretty simple. (Check out the Anything Skype Can Do, Teams Can Do Better blog or Teams Learning Resources page for help.) But Teams takes messaging to a whole new level, with features that make it a vital collaboration tool.

September 23, 2020

In July, I wrote a blog comparing Skype and Teams for chatting, calling, and meetings. That was just a taste. Now that Microsoft is getting ready to retire Skype for Business, it’s time for a whole serving of Teams hacks. Here are my top tips for going from basic to pro with Teams meetings.

September 16, 2020

COVID-19 sure has made me appreciate technology that I admit previously taking for granted—particularly Microsoft Teams and Zoom. But let’s face it, as great as it is to have options, connecting with our colleagues or classmates over videocalls each day just isn’t the same as IRL.

September 01, 2020

Wi-Fi is a necessity for modern working, learning, communication, and entertainment. During a pandemic, it’s even more critical! Here’s how to figure out what you need and where to get it, no matter where you are living or connecting.

August 26, 2020

Teaching and learning at Pitt is going to be a new world this fall. You’ll be using new technologies; virtual services will replace many in-person opportunities; and new health procedures will be in effect. Here are the top 10 IT support resources that Pitt IT provides to help you navigate whatever COVID-19 throws in your path.

August 18, 2020

I’m not going to pretend to be a hip Gen-Z (as evidenced by the fact that I just said “hip Gen-Z”). But I have some insider information about why your parents may struggle to treat you as an adult and how technology can make it easier.

August 05, 2020

Students will start moving onto campus next week! Where did the summer go? You’ve been preparing to take classes and participate in college life in the midst of a pandemic. It will be a challenge, but your resilience makes Panther Nation proud—#H2P!

August 05, 2020

Students will start moving onto campus next week—one of whom will be my own son, an incoming Pitt freshman. So believe me when I say that I could not be more appreciative of all of your hard work in preparing to teach in the midst of a pandemic! I figured the least I could do is provide a few helpful tips for getting started with Canvas.

July 29, 2020

It has been a wild few months, to say the least, but Pitt's campus is reopening! Get ready to return to Oakland—the fall semester will be here before you know it. Because moving onto campus is hectic enough under normal circumstances, why not try to make things a bit less hectic by completing some IT tasks before you arrive? Here are my top tech to-do's: