Most software on Athena is divided into storage bins called lockers. Before you can use the software in a locker, you need to add that locker:
If you don't know which locker contains the software you want, you can use the whichlocker command (in the outland locker) to find out which locker you need to add:
athena% add maple
athena% add outland
athena% whichlocker mathematica
Locker software on Athena is maintained by many different people.
Don't run this unless you know the maintainer can be trusted.
"mathematica" is in "math" for linux and sun4
A small number of workstations in select Athena clusters run Windows or Mac-based variants of Athena, which come with a different selection of software. The New Media Center, in 26-139, is a cluster of iMacs and G5 Power Macs running a variety of multimedia software. The NMC also has a color scanner and computer hookups for MiniDV and S-VHS tapes. There are also two clusters of Windows machines in the "WIN.MIT.EDU" domain — one cluster is in the back room of the W20-575 cluster, and the other is in 37-312. (Note that 37-312 requires an MIT card as well as the cluster combo for access.) Both the Windows and Mac systems can access your regular Athena home directory, but it is not your home directory on those systems. These systems have locally-installed software that is not available on generic Athena machines, including Adobe Photoshop.
You can find a list of Athena clusters on the back of an Athena Pocket Reference Card, or by typing:
There is also a scanner available in the SIPB office, W20-557, along with other useful office tools and computer advice.
That would probably be a zephyr. Zephyr is Athena's instant messaging system, which displays both official Athena notifications and messages from friends. To send someone a zephyr, type the "zwrite" command followed by their username:
athena% zwrite joeuser
Type your message now. End with control-D or a dot on a line by itself.
Hi, what's up?
Message queued for joeuser... sent
We'll cover Zephyr in more detail in a later column, but there are a few quick tips we can give:
One of Zephyr's most compelling features is its multi-user chat support. In addition to sending messages to individuals, you can send messages to a particular "class" and "instance". In general, a class is like a chatroom, and an instance is a particular topic within that room. For example, if you want to know if there exists a polynomial p(x) with real coefficients so that p^2 has fewer nonzero terms than p does, you could ask the math whizzes on class help:
athena% zctl sub help math "*"
athena% zwrite -c help -i math
(Replace math with * to indicate that you want to subscribe to all instances of class help; the last * indicates this is a group chat. If you want to stay subscribed the next time you log in, use "add" instead of "sub".) To find out more about zephyr, you can check out SIPB's "Inessential Zephyr", also available in hardcopy form at the SIPB office (W20-557).
You'll need to visit the friendly folks at Accounts. Bring your ID to N42 during business hours and ask for a password reset. Alternately, if you have personal certificates on your computer, you can reset your password through the web at wserv.mit.edu/cpw.
You can come ask SIPB in person or via email. Our office is W20-557, right next to the Athena cluster. Any time the office is open (typically from afternoon to late evening) you should feel free to ask us questions. You can check if the office is open using our door sensor at http://sipb-door.scripts.mit.edu. You can also call us at (617) 253-7788 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
OLC, short for On-line Consulting, is MIT's official support group for
Athena-related questions. OLC has a set of stock answers for
Athena-related questions on the web at web.mit.edu/answers; this
list is also available from Athena by typing
To ask OLC a question, first make sure the question isn't already answered in the Stock Answers, then type at an Athena prompt:
Alternately, you can visit their office in N42, open for walk-in support 9:15am to 4:45pm M-F. You can also call (617) 253-4435 or e-mail email@example.com. Online support is available 9:30am to 5:30pm. Consultants are also occasionally on duty on weekends or holidays.If your question relates to Windows or Macintosh systems, you can contact the Computing Help Desk. The Help Desk phone lines are open Monday-Friday from 8 am to 6 pm; walk-ins are welcome in the office in N42 from 9:15 am to 5 pm. For help, call (617) 253-1101, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or drop by N42. The Computing Help Desk also maintains a set of stock answers for common Macintosh and Windows questions encountered by MIT community members, at itinfo.mit.edu/answer.
If you are having trouble getting your computer onto your dorm network, you can ask an RCC for help. RCCs are fellow dorm residents who can do everything from assigning IP addresses, to providing network cables, to helping you configure networking on your computer. To get in contact with your RCC, ask around your dorm or visit rcc.mit.edu to submit a request. You can also message screenname rccbot on AIM with any quick RCC request (such as a printing issue).
3down.mit.edu provides information about both scheduled and unscheduled network and service outages. If you can't even access the web, x3-DOWN (253-3696) often provides information about major outages. If you suspect an outage, 3-DOWN can tell you whether it's been reported already, and often when it's expected to be over.
Throughout term, there are a number of ways you can learn more about computing or computing specifically at MIT. IS&T provides some documentation on various components of Athena at web.mit.edu/olh; we'll cover some of those topics in the next several issues. In addition SIPB will be offering weekly Cluedumps, a series of short, informal technical talks throughout the term. Check cluedumps.mit.edu for the schedule and locations, and updates.
Of course, stay tuned for upcoming Ask SIPB columns; future columns will cover email, printing, Zephyr, version control, more details of Athena, and more.