Chaqueroot (chaqueroot) wrote in smitties,

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Bandwidth for Education

One of the things that annoys me from time to time is how some people seem to forget that first and foremost, Paul Smith's is an educational facility. Recently, a group of students formed a gaming club on campus and now they're protesting that games like Everquest are now blocked by the firewall.

I personally think that is a good thing...

I, upon hearing about the new gaming club thought traditional RPGs like Dungeons&Dragons, maybe Magic the Gathering (like the one I was Prez of for a time after Dragonfire resigned). I've heard that recently their focus has turned more towards online games like Everquest and whatnot. That's cool. But what's not cool is how their gaming has been eating up the bandwidth, and making the connections that much slower for students who are trying to do research. As I understand it, the college recently programmed the firewall to block their games (just as it did with P2P and music downloads way back -- which annoyed me, but I lived with it). The gamers protested haphazardly.

I think that is silly.

IMhumbleO, the bandwidth should be used for educational purposes primarily. Other uses are okay as long as they don't cause a problem for everyone else. A friend and I had gotten the okay from IT two years ago to set up a small dorm-based LAN for our gaming. (NeverWinter Nights *taps a vein*) We wanted to set it up that way so as not to eat bandwidth.

The college has mused about getting a different server setup: one for the dorms, and one for the library. The problem there is that information from one would not be readily accessable on the other... like getting a new car rather than putting a bigger engine in the old one.

Another problem is the phone lines in the area are a bit dated. Even with a top-end connection (I belive the college currently opperates on a T1, please correct me if I'm wrong) there would still be the same lag as the limited main-lines created a bottleneck.

I completely support the college's decision in this matter. I supported their block on P2P sites, even though I downloaded a lot of music in my day. Eventually I rented a cable modem from Adelphia.

As the majority of sites the gamers play are pay-to-use (like Ever'crack'), I believe that if they can afford to pay to game on-line, they should pay for their own internet access. These games are doggingthe servers, and making it harder for everyone else -- students, staff, faculty -- who rely on these systems for academic pursuits.

And that's my two cents on the issue.

Educational resources are part of our tuition fees and something all students have a right to.

Games are not.
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