CHEM W 142A: Biochemistry

Course Details

Chemistry W 142A: Biochemistry
Kalju Kahn
For more information contact via email: Kalju Kahn kalju_at_chem.ucsb.edu

Course Requirements
Students in CHEM W 142A are expected to be active learners who participate in the course via a variety of modern technologies. As outlined in the course syllabus (draft available at http://www.chem.ucsb.edu/~kalju/chem142A/public/Chem142A_Syllabus_13.pdf, one component of the course is a synchronous (real-time) interactive discussion. This will take place at a time that is convenient to all course participants. The discussions are not mandatory, but offer a chance to earn points, so it is best if your schedule allows you to participate in these discussions.
CHEM W 142A online course takes advantage of several powerful technologies, such as Moodle2-based delivery of lessons and quizzes, Java- and HTML5-based interactive activities, and Adobe ConnectPro- based synchronous discussion sessions.

In order to fully participate, students need a computer and operating system that supports the-above-mentioned technologies. The master list above indicates the key components that you need to have in order to enjoy the course content rather than wrestle with an un-cooperative computer.

For the best experience, your computer should be equipped with:

  • If not running a Windows PC or a Mac, RedHat Linux 6 or CentOS 6 computer with at least 2.2 GHz Dual Core processor and 1 GB RAM will also work. You need to have root access, and be comfortable with installing software under RHEL or CentOS. I can provide the basic guidance on software install but are unable to help you to get your computer up and running.

  • A display of least 1024×768 (XGA). I strongly recommend display at least 1280 pixels wide (WXGA) to avoid horizontal scrolling. Please note that your experience on many smaller netbooks will be sub-optimal.

  • Working speakers, a microphone, and a webcam. A camcorder, connected via the FireWire port, may also work as a webcam.

  • Highly recommended - GPU accelerated Flash video decoding. For smooth Flash video playback, I recommend that your video card is NVIDIA 8400 GS or newer, or AMD 4000-series or newer, or Intel HD 2500 or higher

  • An official version of Sun Java. Test at http://www.java.com/en/download/testjava.jsp

  • Additional software that you may find useful, such as Skype, PyMOL, SymyxDraw...

Tablets and smartphones are not supported; most such devices lack in screen resolutions.  However, you may be able to access lecture graphics and lessons (quizzes will not work) on some recent devices.  Tablets such as iPad (3rdGen and newer), Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 (7.7” or larger) or Google Nexus 10, and smartphones such as HTC Droid DNA, Lenovo IdeaPhone K900 have suitable screens for lecture slides.  Smartphones with WXGA (1280×800) resolution (e.g. Samsung Galaxy S III, Motorola Droid RAZM MAXX HD) need to be in full screen mode.  Firefox seems most cooperative.  In any case, expect “Aw, Snap!”, or “Safari has encountered a problem …” when using such devices.