FSMPI goes Digital - Student Council Work continues during Coronacrisis

Posted on April 23, 2020 by Viktoria Kirchleitner ‐ 4 min read

FSMPI goes Digital - Student Council  Work continues during Coronacrisis

In the current situation - I can no longer hear this opening - things are somehow different. TUM is in lockdown, exams are cancelled, home office for the staff and corona holidays for the students. But don’t think that your student council is sitting around twiddling their thumbs all day long. Our work goes on! We are in constant contact with the university regarding the summer semester. Presence teaching will probably not be possible for the time being, so we want to support the transition to a digital semester as much as possible. For this purpose, we exchange information with lecturers and tutors of the major courses and are involved in the conceptual design of the course in order to be able to introduce student interests into the planning process as early as possible. To give you another example where things are happening: our Compref is currently working at full speed. Within a few days we have added three tools to our internal student council infrastructure, which have proven to be very useful for our work and communication. Here are a few words about these tools, as they may also be used in teaching in the coming semester.

Matrix If you don’t know Matrix, you can learn more here: https://matrix.org/ The student council now has its own Matrix server. There, besides memes and corona diary entries, work is actually getting done. By the way, there is also a TUM Matrix Server at matrix.tum.de (but unfortunately it’s pretty dead there) Alternatively, I can recommend the TUM Rocket Chat: chat.tum.de. A small best-of from our Matrix-“Random”-channel can be found here:

Meme about Zoom Meme about Zoom

BigBlueButton The name should especially be remembered by the Informatics and Mathematics Studis! This Videoconf-Platform is Open-Source and now self-hosted. No zoom privacy issues. With the goal to serve the educational users, BBB will hopefully be used in the SoSe at our faculties (hosted at RBG). We are currently working hard to achieve this goal. By the way, we have successfully used BBB several times for our SC meetings with 25+ participants and made good experiences with it.

Server usage by time Can you spot the starting point of the 2 meetings?

We are fortunate to have some very IT-affine students in our student body (thanks, Compref!), which is why we had solutions for digital meetings and student council work available quite early on. However, at an exchange meeting with some representatives from other student councils a few days ago, we had to realize that not all student councils are in such a privileged position as we are. Therefore we made our BBB servers available to other student councils for their meetings as well. Thus, our BBB instance is used by the Chemistry SC, MSE SC, Engineering CS, the student representation and of course by us. Everything is still running quite stable, but last Monday the first meeting was held in parallel to the Engineering student council’s meeting. You can see the server load below. So in the future slots might have to be distributed…

Jisti Also a Videoconf System. We were not completely satisfied with meet.lrz.de (also Jitsi) and hosted our own version. It is more suitable for spontaneous meetings.

What else is on the agenda? As you can see, a lot has already happened, but we are far from being finished. It’s not easy to make our work digital from now on. A lot of our work depends on being physically present and exchanging ideas over a coffee in the kitchen. Some units have already converted their daily business to digital, others are still working on the implementation. Here is a small to-do list on topics concerning our services. Digital ToDo List (in no particular order):

  • Digital board game night: Our board game night, which takes place every Monday evening in the MI-Magistrale, lives from social contact, so it won’t exist in normal form again for a while. It is questionable whether we should/can offer another kind of ‘virtual game night’ (P.S.: Do you already know dominion.games?)

  • Digital LAN-Party: The LAN party, as it usually takes place every semester, is cancelled for now. However, our event unit is currently working on the possibility of setting up something similar with HGM (Hochschulgaming).

  • Digital script sale: The Enggineering SC has set up an online script sale (Impressive!). The scripts can be ordered and will be sent by mail. It is questionable whether we should also aim at an online sale. The Faculty of Mathematics, for example, has paid the costs for 2 scripts of the math second semesters, which were sent to all math second semesters last Monday. If there is great interest, we can work on it. What do you think about this? Let us know!

  • Digital Coffee: ☕

If you have any ideas or additions, just drop us a line, and until then, stay healthy and use the time!