Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is “aspect ratio” and why should I care?
Aspect ratio refers to the ratio of a display screen’s width to height. Historically, video screens have been almost square with a ratio of 4:3. Recently, this has been replaced with 16:9 or 16:10 ratios, which show a much wider image when compared to height.
If you are showing presentations in any of the Discovery Commons or Mississauga Academy supported rooms, such as the lecture rooms: MSB 3153, MSB 3154, HSC 130, HSC 140 or the meeting rooms MSB 3174, MSB 3175, HSC 170, or HSC 210, you may be interested to know that they display in the 16:9 ratio. In MSB 3175, the 2 LCD displays are 16:9, while the Smart Screen display is 4:3.
The default ratio for creating Microsoft Powerpoint presentations is usually set to display in 4:3; changing this setting to create 16:9 presentations or changing your existing 4:3 presentations to 16:9 allows you to take advantage of all of the screen real estate and makes for a more visually appealing presentation.
Q: What kind of paper scanning, information processing do you do?
We do exam processing on Scantron (“bubble sheet”) and custom-designed forms, and evaluation processing usually on custom-designed forms. The information processing can be designed to suit your requirements. It would be best if you would come by to see the range of options available.
Q: What teaching tools or technological activities are currently available for Faculty to use in an "flipped" classroom teaching model?
Discovery Commons has a number of instructional technologies available such as software capture, web collaboration and presentation publishing programs. The department also has a permanent multimedia studio used for recording professional video and computer presentations to deliver as online lectures; see examples. Our knowledgeable staff can work with you on creating effective professional course material together.
Q: What type of web conferencing service does Discovery Commons offer (i.e. how can I share video, voice and digital content within a group)?
Discovery Commons supports the university’s portal webconferencing tool, Blackboard Collaborate. This is a robust web-based tool allowing for multiple participants to join a virtual meeting room for real-time communication with a personal web cam, microphone and desktop sharing. Students see a video feed of the seminar or meeting leader and (if enabled), feeds of other students. They can watch content, such as Powerpoint, shared desktops, or other documents, and can be allowed to contribute in any of a number of ways. Go here for more information:http://www.portalinfo.utoronto.ca/webinar
Q: When I plug my PC into a wall jack I have no internet access.
For network access you are required to contact the Service Desk and create a ticket requesting an IP address. Please state your full name, department, and room number where you would like to have network access. A technician will contact you and provide an assigned IP. The technician can assist with entering the IP address settings if need be. Do not guess at IP numbers as this may affect other users.
Q: Where is MSB room XXXX?
Yes, the room numbering system in the MSB is confusing! Look at the 4-digit number of the room in question. The first digit is the floor number, the basement being the first floor. The second digit represents north/south, starting with 1 for the north end of the building (towards King’s College Circle) to 3 for the south end (towards College Street). The third and fourth digits represent east/west, starting with 01 for the east end of the building (towards Queens Park) to 99 for the west end (towards Convocation Hall).
Q: Who do I call to unblock an IP address?
Call the Discovery Commons service desk to report the blocked IP. A network administrator will have the IP unblocked, once its been determined that the system is cleaned of viruses or issues with computer is resolved.
Q: Why can’t I use my own laptop for lectures?
Lectures usually are back to back which doesn’t give us much time to fix a laptop connection issue. We ask Professors to submit their presentations two weeks in advance so we can pretest presentations to minimize lecture loss of time.