UNC School of Information and Library Science to Benefit from $2.4 Million Intel Gift

Release date: 
April 1, 1998

Chapel Hill, NC — This fall, students and faculty at UNC's School of Information and Library Science (SILS) will benefit from a new computer laboratory equipped with the latest Intel-based workstations. The Laboratory for Networking and Internet Technologies will be funded as part of a $2.4 million award given to the university by Intel Corporation, the company that makes the Pentium® and Pentium® II microprocessors that power the majority of the world’s personal computers.

On the UNC campus, the Department of Computer Science will coordinate projects with nine other departments, including SILS, under the three-year award. The university was one of 25 schools nationwide to receive funding last fall as part of Intel’s highly competitive "Technology for Education 2000" program. Under this initiative, the company will donate $90 million in high-speed, multimedia computers, workstations, servers and networking hardware and software to U.S. universities over the next three years.

Funded with more than $375,000 in equipment, the Laboratory for Networking and Internet Technologies will provide a high-performance computing infrastructure to enhance several technology-oriented courses at SILS. These classes range from introductory classes about the Internet to classes in advanced systems topics. Physically distributed between Manning Hall (SILS) and Sitterson Hall (Computer Science), the computing lab will be connected through the campus backbone network.

Bert Dempsey, an assistant professor at SILS and adjunct faculty member with the Department of Computer Science, developed the new laboratory concept in conjunction with colleagues in Computer Science. "We are excited by the possibilities that this award opens up for our School and our students," Dempsey remarked. "This new computing infrastructure will be a critical resource as we continue to update our curricular focus on leading-edge information technology and to expand our research in the digital library arena."

In addition to the distributed lab project, the Intel award to UNC will provide computing equipment for a number of research projects across campus that blend applied and basic research to solve real-world problems. Research projects include the nanoManipulator, a virtual-environment interface to scanned-probed microscopes; multimedia networking; large-area, high-resolution computer displays; three-dimensional, image-based medical treatment for cancer; computer-simulated studies of the structure, dynamics and interactions of proteins; modeling, interactive display and virtual prototyping; and hardware and software for rendering computer-generated environments taken from images of the real world.

Tim Quigg, associate chairman of the Department of Computer Science, commented, "This $2.4 million award from Intel marks the beginning of what we hope will be a long and fruitful relationship between Intel and UNC."

The School of Information and Library Science is home to approximately 250 graduate students, 70 undergraduates and 19 full-time faculty members. It prepares students to work with computer information systems and networks or for careers in library administration, acquisitions, collections management and other aspects of library work. The school offers master's degrees in information science and library science, a certificate of advanced study, a doctor of philosophy in information and library science and an undergraduate minor in information systems.

Intel, the world's largest chip maker, is also a leading manufacturer of personal computer, networking and communications products. Additional information about Intel is available at http://www.intel.com/pressroom.