ITS graphic


The Technology Newsletter for the University of Hawaii Community


October-December 1994, Volume 1 Number 3

In This Issue:


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UHINFO's Webbed Feat

The UHINFO information system that Information Technology Services (ITS) has been managing for the past year uses software called Gopher to view information and transfer files via the Internet. Gopher generally displays plain alphanumeric characters on your terminal or personal computer. It was selected when the vast majority of computer users did not have direct network access to the Internet. Most connections on campus were through serial lines to a Starmaster or telephone lines through a modem, so Gopher was deemed an appropriate choice for the University of Hawai`i's information system. Gopher is fine for information that can be explained in words, but it is not capable of handling graphics, video, or sound. For example, to provide an on-line campus map or picture of the University's mascot through Gopher, the item must be saved as a file on the host, downloaded to a personal computer, decoded, and imported into a browser to view the file. This is a very tedious process.

How Quickly Things Change

In a year's time, numerous office computers have been networked to the campus Ethernets. We have also added the capability to do SLIP or PPP connections from home by dialing into our new modem pool on O`ahu. Internet protocol clients such as Telnet, Gopher, and Mosaic are becoming common software names with the talk of the new "Information Superhighway." With World-Wide Web (WWW or Web) usage surpassing Gopher usage around the world, we made UHINFO available as a WWW information server as well as a Gopher server.

I, Browse

For those not familiar with WWW information servers, here's a quick bit of background. A World-Wide Web server's major function is to be able to work with HyperText links. That is, as you browse through a WWW server, you may come across a word or words in a screenful of information which are highlighted in a different color. By clicking on this highlighted text with your mouse (most browsers require a graphical interface, although some text-only browsers are available) a new page of related information would be displayed. This is convenient when simply browsing through WWW servers to find out what's out there and is especially useful for on-line documentation.

More recently, WWW browsers have proliferated which not only take advantage of the HyperText feature but also the ability to display graphics and video, and to output sound as well. The most popular of these browsers is called "Mosaic." There are versions of this program, written by the folks at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), for the X-Window System (XMosaic), the Macintosh (MacMosaic), and for Windows (WinMosaic). Obtainable also are browsers written by others , including one for VT-100 terminals called "Lynx." Although Lynx cannot display any visual or audio information, one is able to browse through all the text available on the information server.

Performance

WWW graphical browsers such as Mosaic perform best through a direct connection to the Internet because of the wealth of graphical information on these servers. These WWW graphical browsers can also be used through a modem and dialup programs such as SLIP or PPP but there is a noticeable degradation in performance. This is mainly attributable to the time that it takes to download the sizable graphical information from the servers. The text-based WWW browsers give modem users better performance and no special software is required.

For those with some familiarity with WWW browsers, the Uniform Resource Locator (URL) for the UHINFO Web Server is:

http://www.hawaii.edu/uhinfo.html

On the UHINFO Gopher (gopher.hawaii.edu), you may find some useful information in a back issue of the UH Computing Center Newsletter, October-December 1993, which talks about Mosaic. You can find it in:

UHINFO Gopher Tracks

What's on the Menu?

We arranged the information on our UHINFO Web Server to provide logical access to specific data. We decided on a menu-like "home page" (i.e., the first page you see when accessing the UHINFO Web Server) that is similar to the main menu in the UHINFO Gopher Server. Within the sub-levels are usually lists of items, each of which can be a HyperText link to another page. The UHINFO Gopher Server has not been abandoned (usage is still up!) and we actually share a good deal of the information between the two systems. Some information, like the weather reports and movie listings, are generated into separate files - a plain text file for the Gopher system and a HyperText Markup Language (HTML) file for WWW distribution.

Seen via a graphical browser, our UHINFO Web Server home page displays a "faux-stone" masthead with the UH seal, the name "University of Hawai`i," and the University's motto: Maluna a`e o na lahui a pau ke ola ke kanaka (which means "Above all nations is humanity"). Modernized "petroglyph- styled buttons," inspired by the ancient Hawaiian petroglyphs, convey visual clues as to what's available under the menu item. For example, Academic Information has a petroglyph of a mortarboard and the Technology section has a petroglyph of a computer.

Another Sunny Day in Paradise?

Suppose you want to see what the weather is like in Honolulu. If you're using Mosaic, you connect to UHINFO and as you look over the list you notice that the News section has weather information. Click on the button or the highlighted word "News" and you'll be taken to a submenu with items like current happenings, position vacancies, the University's new newsletter Ku Lama, and also Hawai`i weather and surf. Click on the link to the weather and you'll be presented with a list of forecasts for each of the islands, surf conditions for O`ahu, offshore conditions, and the latest infrared satellite photo of the Pacific. Select the item, Honolulu, O`ahu, to see today's weather.

Other featured items available on the UHINFO Web Server are the theater movie listings with show times for the various theaters, synopses of selected movies, and even some promotional pictures. We have a Virtual Walking Tour of the UH Manoa campus which you can follow along with a written narration and view different sights along the journey. There's information about Hawai`i golf courses with some course maps and scorecards thrown in. A UH Manoa campus map is coming soon. We also have some cute, just-for-fun pages that we use to help us test some of the more advanced WWW features as well. Note that throughout UHINFO, you'll find that oftentimes clicking on thumbnail representations of a graphic within a document will bring up a larger, more detailed, version for your perusal.

The UHINFO Web Server will likely continue to use our current "look and feel" where things appear as a list of menu items. This makes it easier to find what you want instead of simply browsing through pages of HyperText links and getting hopelessly lost in Cyberspace. However, much of the rest of UHINFO is undergoing continual change and many things will be added, modified, and removed as we try to get more comfortable. We hope that in due time, both the UHINFO Web and Gopher servers will become an indispensable information source for students and faculty and also showcase some of the University of Hawai`i's best features to the world.

Ward Takamiya
ward@hawaii.edu


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The Director's Corner

Reorg of ITS and the Impact on the IBM Mainframe

A number of members of the University community have asked about our reorganization into Information Technology Services and its impact on the IBM mainframe. While not a direct result of the reorganization, it's safe to say that we envision the movement of what is generally considered to be "academic computing" off the mainframe. This is based on a number of factors, including:

After our reorganization is complete we will begin a migration planning process for academic users, with academic users. We have had TSO available at UH since the 1970s, so this migration will not be fast or easy. But it is certainly possible. We will need to consider what our academic users are doing, what they would like to be doing, and make sure that appropriate facilities and support are available on another platform BEFORE beginning any moves. Until the collaborative planning process we will not know everything we will have to do, much less exactly how long it will take. But as a gauge, our past migration efforts (HP2000, HP3000, Harris, DEC-20) have taken at least a year from when we began, and none of these systems were used as long as TSO.

While nobody is being asked to move off the mainframe at this time, it would be prudent for those of you with large applications to begin thinking about other platforms. These might include our centralized facilities or, for smaller applications, your own desktop or departmental systems. It would also be prudent to consider other platforms for any new applications or major development efforts. Note that the mainframe will continue to be available through its lifetime here for Data Processing classes or others that must specifically teach use of the mainframe environment.

We look forward to working with you in this major effort to modernize our computing environment. Our goal will not be to just move applications from one system to another, but to take this opportunity to provide improved services on modern platforms that are more scaleable to meet your ever- growing needs.

David Lassner


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Letter From the Editor

It has only been a short time for this role for me, but I am changing responsibilities within the University system and will be handing over the editorship to Therese Nakadomari and a dedicated team of co-editors. You may continue to send comments and questions to:

editor@hawaii.edu

So long and happy reading,

Nancy Roth


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ITS Help Desk Coming Soon!

Spring '95 and the opening of a new Help Desk for information technology are just around the corner! The Help Desk will provide a central location to which questions can be directed and from which information can be obtained by all users of information technology in the University of Hawai`i system.

The Help Desk will be located in the lobby of Keller Hall on the first floor and will replace the current Consulting Office. The hours of operation will be from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday. 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Friday, and is closed on holidays. Trained students will be available to provide assistance to those who walk in, call, or send email. These students will be able to answer general and frequently asked questions. Questions which are more complicated or require in-depth study will be referred to the appropriate staff for follow-up.

In the future, we plan to implement an automated help desk system to track calls, query past problems and their solutions, and provide management reports. Initially, the Help Desk will provide services currently handled through the Computing Center's Consulting Office and the Management Systems Office Helpline. The Help Desk will later be expanded to include the support services provided by the Office of Information Technology, Telecom Office, and Distance Education and Instructional Technology. Our long-term goal is to provide a single point-of-contact where information and assistance can be obtained. We know that this service will be beneficial to all users of information technology.

We are very excited about the Help Desk plans and future implementation. Come and visit us in Spring '95!

Help Desk phone number: 956-8883

The following HELP accounts will be activated beginning Spring '95.

Help Desk email addresses:

  • Send mail to HELP on any of the following systems:
    UHUNIX
    UHCCVX
    UHCCMVS
  • If you are on a different system, send mail to:
    help@hawaii.edu


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The Future of E-mail on our UNIX Systems

Use of our uhunix systems has rapidly risen over the past years, and is expected to increase even more with the implementation of the "Access for All" project, whereby any UH student, faculty or staff member can request an account. To handle the imminent increase of volumes of e-mail while maintaining reliability as much as possible, on July 20, 1994, we replaced sendmail with the more efficient Zmailer as the mailer of choice on almost all of our Sun UNIX systems, thus completing the first phase of this new e-mail system.

The remaining tasks in our plan include:

During Fall 1994,

During Spring 1995,

Julio Polo, 956-2405
julio@hawaii.edu


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Summer Session Touch-ToneTM Registration is a Success

The University of Hawai`i at Manoa (UH Manoa) Summer Session successfully instituted Phone-Assisted Enrollment (PA`E) or Touch-ToneTM Registration for its Summer 1994 terms. With the assistance of Admissions and Records and the Cashier's Office, Summer Session planned, developed, and installed its phone registration system.

UH Manoa students officially enrolled for Spring 1994 could use PA`E to register, add or drop a course, listen to a class schedule, check on the availability of a course, or make credit card tuition payments. The credit card subsystem enabled Summer Session staff to capture and prepare tuition financial data for mainframe batch processing, generate receipts and reports, and maintain audit trails of all transactions. Summer Session's Registrar was quite pleased by the performance of the PA`E registration system.

This project utilized EASE (a programmable voice processing development tool with telephony support by Expert Systems Corporation) installed on a Gateway 2000 computer (450MB hard drive with 16 MB of RAM),which is connected to a Novell Netware LAN (version 3.12). Both the phone registration and the cashiering systems shared the Novell LAN. Attachmate EXTRA tools provided connectivity between the Novell LAN and Information Technology Services' IBM mainframe, which stores the Integrated Student Information System (ISIS) data and student records.

With the success of PA`E this summer, some of its feature were used for the Fall 1994 registration. These features were further developed by Summer Session and the Cashier's Office computer support staff on a more robust program using Microsoft Visual Basic as the development language. Attachmate EXTRA provided the 3270 mainframe communication and Visual Voice from Stylus Innovation maintained Telephony support. PA`E now supports 24 concurrent and separate mainframe sessions.

The PA`E features used for Fall 1994 allowed students to listen to their class schedule and credit load total, check for open courses (open sections are given for closed courses), and make tuition payment by credit card (MasterCard or Visa). The phone system was available daily except 9 PM to midnight during the Fall registration period.

Technical computer questions concerning the PA`E system can be sent to

Questions about the cashiering or credit card system can be directed to

Ron Knowlton, 956-9246
Summer Session

Clark Grininger, 956-3171
UH Manoa Cashier's Office
clarkg@uhccmvs.uhcc.hawaii.edu


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Going! Going! Almost Gone!

Our CMS/HPO operating system on our IBM mainframe will be terminated on Sunday, Nov. 6, 1994. CMS/HPO is an out-dated system with only a sprinkling of users.

If you need help in transferring your CMS files to another platform, please send e-mail or call.

Shirley Yee, 956-2388
syee@hawaii.edu


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New Replacement Telephone Sets for Manoa Campus

Due to manufacturer's discontinuation, the Meridian 2009, 2018 and 2112 telephone sets will be phased out and replaced only on an "as needed" basis by the Meridian 2008 (in place of the 2009) and Meridian 2616 (in place of the 2018 and 2112) telephone sets. This action will not affect current users of the Meridian 2009, 2018, and 2112 telephone sets until a replacement is needed due to repair and/or change in set types.

Some of the significant changes and/or features are:


FEATUREMERIDIAN 2009 (OLD) MERIDIAN 2008 (NEW)
Number of Programmable KeysNineEight
Message Waiting IndicatorUses a Programmable Key Uses Message Waiting Light and/or
Programmable Key
Handset Volume ControlNot AvailableAvailable Using Volume Control Bar Below Dialpad
Monthly Recurring Cost$6$6


FEATUREMERIDIAN 2018 (OLD) MERIDIAN 2616 (NEW)
Number of Programmable KeysEighteenSixteen
Message Waiting IndicatorUses a Programmable Key Uses Message Waiting Light and/or Programmable Key
Handset Volume ControlNot AvailableAvailable Using Volume Control Bar
Below Dialpad
Monthly Recurring Cost$7$7


FEATUREMERIDIAN 2112 HANDS FREE (OLD) MERIDIAN 2616S HANDS FREE (NEW)
Number of Programmable KeysTwelveSixteen
Message Waiting IndicatorUses a Programmable Key Uses Message Waiting Light and/or Programmable Key
Handset Volume ControlNot AvailableAvailable Using Volume Control Bar Below Dialpad
Monthly Recurring Cost$8$8


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Voice Mail Passwords

There are some concerns from users who have had their voice mail passwords changed without their knowledge. We recommend voice mail users to change their passwords from the default password (same as the line number) to their own unique password ranging from four to sixteen digits. When terminating or taking an extended leave from the University, please inform your Department Telecom Coordinator of your password. If not done, the department must submit a Telecom Request (applies to Manoa campus only) to change the voice mail password to the default password at a one-time charge of $50.

If additional information is required for any of the aforementioned items, please do not hesitate to call Telecommunications at 956-6033.

Ralph Yoshioka
ryoshioka@telecom.its.hawaii.edu


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Reminder on North American Numbering Plan Change

Due to a growing demand for telecommunication services combined with an increasing population, the North American Numbering Plan will change next year to accommodate additional area codes. Bellcore, the agency handling the numbering changes, has proposed an integrated numbering plan that will increase the available telephone numbers from approximately one billion to six billion.

In order to meet the change locally, GTE Hawaiian Tel has implemented a new dialing procedure for inter-island toll calls which became effective on July 1, 1994. Callers have to dial 0 or 1 + 808 and then the seven digit telephone number for operator-assisted, calling card and direct dial calls to the neighbor islands, just as you do today for calls requiring area codes. To familiarize everyone with the change, callers are able to use the new or the current method of dialing until October 31, 1994.

Thereafter, effective November 1, 1994 you must dial the 808 area code or you will get a recording requesting you to dial correctly.

We will continue to update you of any changes on the North American Numbering Plan as we receive more information.

Ralph Yoshioka
ryoshioka@telecom.its.hawaii.edu


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Maui High Performance Computing Center

(Note: Excerpts from the Maui High Performance Computing Center Mosaic Server are included in this article) Substantial activity over a period of less than one year culminated in the Grand Opening of the Maui High Performance Computing Center (MHPCC), located in the Maui Research and Technology Park, on August 19, 1994. During the public dedication ceremonies, Dr. Frank Gilfeather, one of three principal investigators of the project, noted that MHPCC is one of sixteen known supercomputing centers and with the addition of processors this Fall, MHPCC will become one of the top five supercomputing centers in the world. The good news is that the massively parallel computing capabilities of the IBM SP2 are already being used by University of Hawai`i researchers.

In Beginning

In September 1993, the U.S. Air Force's Philips Laboratory awarded a cooperative agreement to a team from the University of New Mexico. This team was led by three principal investigators (Drs. Frank Gilfeather, John Sobolewski and Brian Smith) whose objective was to establish, direct and manage a state-of-the-art high performance computing center on Maui. With approval by the U.S. Senate Armed Forces Appropriations Committee, the agreement is funded by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) High Performance Computing Modernization Program. Project partners -- Advanced Network Systems, Carnegie Melon University Imaging Group, Cornell Theory Center, Environmental Research Institute of Michigan, IBM Corporation, Maui Economic Development Board, and SETS Technology Incorporated of Hawai`i - are continuing to contribute to the success of MHPCC . The University of New Mexico is seeking and developing local and national working partnerships in education, research, technology transfer, business and industry. These partnerships will play an important role in MHPCC's future activities.

Goals

In addition to providing research and development supercomputing resources for the Air Force and Department of Defense (DoD), MHPCC plans to engage in technology exchange with U.S. industry, establish educational programs in high performance computing, stimulate economic development in Hawai`i, promote research and development in software for scaleable parallel processors, and foster collaboration to address Grand Challenge problems. Approximately half of the center's resources are reserved for DoD use. Educational, academic, other government and commercial work will be able to utilize the remaining resources.

Hardware

MHPCC's initial 32 node 4 gigaflop, 4 Gflop, (1 Gflop = 1 billion floating point operations per second) IBM Scaleable POWERparallel SP1 system became operational early this year. The system was subsequently replaced by an 80 node 20 Gflop SP2 computer system. Two other SP2s, a 16 node 4 Gflop system and a 64 node 16 Gflop system, was installed this past Summer. These latter systems are being used for classified work while the 80 node SP2 is used for unclassified work. An upgrade of the 80 node system to a 400 node SP2 is planned this Fall (1994) and will result in a system with peak performance of 100 gigaflops. A Silicon Graphics Onyx Reality machine and SGI Indigos and Indys for visualization are also available. MHPCC is also adding IBM RS/6000 workstations and other visualization workstations as needed.

Software

All of the standard IBM POWERparallel environment software is available for developing, executing, debugging, profiling, and tuning parallel programs. A wide range of supplemental software is also available for use. These supplemental software are libraries and compilers from Numerical Algorithms Group (NAG), Parallel Virtual Machine (PVM) from Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Scientific Computing Associate's Linda (a parallel programming language based on C and FORTRAN), and Applied Parallel Research's FORGE90 (a pre-compiler analysis program that can be used to automatically develop parallelization from existing FORTRAN 77 code).

Communications

A fiber optic, T3 (45 megabits per second) link has been established between MHPCC, Honolulu, and Los Angeles which connects into the NSFNET (National Science Foundation Network) T3 backbone. The NSFNET connects to other international networks around the world. The University of Hawai`i is currently making efforts to directly connect to MHPCC's T3 link in Honolulu.

Access to MHPCC Information

MHPCC maintains a World Wide Web (WWW) server that includes general and technical information about the Center. For those that have the ability to run the Mosaic software on their PCs, Macs, or workstations, you can access information on obtaining a user account, technical tutorials, availability of center resources, and enrolling in upcoming technical workshops. The Universal Resource Locator (URL) for MHPCC is

http://www.mhpcc.edu/

A MHPCC listserv forum is also available and you can subscribe to the service by sending email to listserv@uhccvm.bitnet. The body of the message must contain a single line as follows: subscribe mhpcc-l Yourfirstname Yourlastname.

Alternately, information requests may be sent to the author.

Walter Yee, 956-7351
walter@hawaii.edu


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Eye on UH Site License Programs

The ITS Newsletter is one way we will provide information about all of the site licenses offered to the University community. New information will be provided here, and we will maintain current status of all licenses on-line through UHINFO.

Lotus Multiple Choice Program

The Lotus Multiple Choice Bulletin will no longer be distributed.

Updates

Lotus has updated the following products:
* The manual for this version will be $25.00.

Open Ordering Period

There will be an open ordering period from October 3, 1994 to January 25, 1995. During this time, members* may purchase more permitted installations and/or manuals.
*If you would like to become a member, please refer to the "New Members" section below.

Existing Members

If you are currently enrolled in the this program, please submit the following two items:
  1. Requisition for the proper amount
  2. Order form
    You do not need to sign another agreement form.

New Members

If you would like to enroll in the Lotus Multiple Choice Program, please submit the following three items:
  1. Requisition for the proper amount
  2. Signed agreement form
  3. Order form

There are two ways to retrieve the agreement and order forms:
  1. UHINFO Gopher Tracks (gopher.hawaii.edu 70), select:
  2. If you do not have access to UHINFO, call Therese Nakadomari for a copy.

Renewals for 1995

The renewal packets for the Lotus Multiple Choice Program will be sent out October 5, 1994. The renewal packets will also contain the new tracking log forms as well as your renewal fee total.

For further assistance, please contact Therese Nakadomari.

Therese Nakadomari, 956-5783
therese@hawaii.edu


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WordPerfect Software and Support

Since WordPerfect (the WordPerfect Application Division of Novell) is limiting support on their older WordPerfect 5.1 DOS word-processing software, now is the time to upgrade! WordPerfect 6.0 DOS has many new features and can perform very much like the Windows version. For those who are reluctant to give up WP 5.1, WP 6.0 also supports the traditional editing mode of the 5.1 version. WordPerfect 5.1+ DOS is the upgrade to 5.1 for systems that don't have the capability to support the new 6.0 DOS or Windows versions. WP 5.1+ has some new features and supports the same file structure as 6.0 DOS and Windows. Upgrades for departments are available if they join the WordPerfect Customer Advantage Program (CAP) Maintenance Agreement, or as an individual, from the UH Bookstore, local vendors or directly from WordPerfect.

WordPerfect's free 800 technical support number is now limited to registered users with an assigned Personal Identification Number (PIN). Call 800-861- 2513 to get a PIN valid for up to six months of support on a majority of WordPerfect products. A few products, like Office, have 90 days. If you have multiple legal copies, applying for one PIN every six months will prolong the free technical support. If a department joins the WordPerfect CAP Maintenance Agreement, priority 800 technical support is a benefit.

WordPerfect has a special offering for ANY user who upgrades to WP Windows 6.0a or gets a new WP Windows license by September 30, 1994. Within 90 days and with "proof of purchase" one can purchase Quattro Pro, Borland's popular spreadsheet software, for $20.00 from WordPerfect (800-321-3220). It comes with a "Guide" and supplemental documentation can be purchased separately for $14.95. Departments who participate in the CAP Maintenance Agreement and purchase a WP Windows license can purchase Quattro Pro for $10.00.

If you want more details on a particular WordPerfect product you can call educational pricing and orders at 800-321-3220. For any questions about the WordPerfect CAP Agreement, please contact Sandi McGinnes or on UHINFO (gopher.hawaii.edu 70) select:

UHINFO Gopher Tracks

Sandi McGinnes, 956-2406
sandi@hawaii.edu


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Quattro Pro

Borland's spreadsheet software has speedbar access to frequently used commands, intelligent graphs (with zoom and pan) perform extended analysis without changing data, complete graph capabilities (bubble graphs; 3-D area, bar, step and ribbon; area, line, XY, pie, bar, rotated bar, stacked bar, column, hi-low/open close, text), Novell Netware support that includes automatic logon and drive mapping from Quattro Pro, Optimizer for solving "what if" problems with multiple variables, Audit displays underlying structure, Print Manager support, Bitstream Font Scaling, Custom Styles, Annotator drawing package with clip art to enhance graphs, slide creation, freehand drawing, powerful presentation tools and electronic slide show production, import/export database information, compatibility with many other spreadsheet file formats, @Function Library, multiple spreadsheet viewing, macros, spreadsheet link and consolidation.

Sandi McGinnes, 956-2406
sandi@hawaii.edu


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