Since its birth in 1996, the GBS Physics web site has drawn considerable traffic from students and teachers from other high schools (and in some cases, colleges). While the site was designed for our own Glenbrook South students, it was always obvious to us that its usefulness could naturally extend beyond our classrooms. Much of the design of the site was done with this in mind, as we welcomed and encouraged the external traffic to such resources as The Physics Classroom, The Review Session, the Multimedia Physics Studios, and (most recently) the Minds On Physics Internet Modules.
As we ventured into the use of database-related pages at our site, we encountered a dilemma. Our database servers were quite capable of serving 500+ physics students in four courses within our own school. But how could they possibly support 1000+ or 10000+ students from other schools? As much as possible, we have attempted to hide these database-connected resources behind the scenes, placing the links to them on course pages instead of on the home page to the Glenbrook South Physics site. Our hope was to prevent a physics teacher from Timbuktu High School from bringing five classes to the computer lab on Tuesday and Thursday in order to access the problem set databases at the Glenbrook South Physics site. While Timbuktu High School was welcome to use The Physics Classroom, The Review Session, the Multimedia Physics Studios, the Minds On Physics Internet Modules, and other non-database related pages, we hoped that they would not indulge themselves in great numbers with our database-connected pages.
Simply put, it was our policy that database pages could be looked at but not touched by GBS web site visitors. If a teacher wished to look at the pages and see how they worked, they were welcome to do so. However, we asked that they refrain from bringing classloads of students to the computer lab to use them; this practice would place an undo burden upon our database servers and interfere with Glenbrook South teachers' ability to view database records.
The Audio Help files present a similar difficulty. The files are intended to support Glenbrook South students doing internet problems stored on database servers at our site. While the audio files and accompanying pages within the Audio Help section can be used without a connection to the database, we prefer to maintain a look and don't touch policy towards them. The actual audio files reside on a normal server and not on an audio server. They take several minutes to download and as such place a burden upon the Glenbrook South servers. For this reason, we have encouraged even our own students to access the files off a CD-ROM rather than from our web servers. If 25 students from Timbuktu High School made an effort to access the files during their third period physics class, the burden on our server could be considerable enough to bring it to a halt. Thus, we simply request that classloads of students from other schools refrain from accessing the files.
At a future date an audio server may be purchased by our school, thus facilitating the delivery of files to countless users. And at a future date, the Audio section of the site may be placed on a server external to GBS and made available to non-Glenbrook South students. At that time, the CD-ROM would be made available to students from other schools. Plans for these provisions have not been made. In fact, before ever making such plans, external funds would have to be secured to make them possible. So until otherwise noted on this page, we wish to maintain the look and don't touch policy towards these Audio files. We appreciate your cooperation.
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