Wed, March 11, 2020: Communication and Collaboration Tools

Chancellor Blank has just announced that face-to-face instruction has been suspended, starting March 23rd. Instructors will be contacted about other methods of instruction by the University. (See also the Instructional Continuity site.)

For non-instructional collaboration within research labs, here are a few suggestions.

First, UW supports Microsoft Teams with your UW NetID as a logon. Anyone can create a new team. It has both native desktop applications for Windows and macOS, and a web client.

Again, using your UW NetID to logon, Google Hangouts is an option that is a bit less feature-rich than Teams, but is generally good for video conversations. Webex Meetings is also very widely used on campus. Both have robust web clients.

Slack is very popular, but is not supported by UW.

We recommend that if your group plans to use one of these tools heavily that you set things up sooner rather than later. Also, because of large-scale social distancing and remote work use in the coming weeks, it is possible some of these services will come under a strain. So, we recommend you consider setting up several – have a primary and select an alternative for a backup, and ensure that information is communicated to your group and tested before, rather than during, the possible need for it.