March 16, 2020
To access zoom as the member of the university go to https://uchicago.zoom.us/
You should be able to log in with your cnetid/password there. Incidentally, if the device of your two factor authentication is not your cell phone that you always have with you, you may need to print a set of bypass codes for two factor authentication, and have that with you.
It is set or will be set shortly that all faculty and all students have free zoom accounts through University.
Faculty have accounts that allow them to host meeting (probably one at a time). You can give anyone link to join meeting, one does not need zoom account for that. The main advantage that students have accounts as I understand is the ability of professor to extend the ability of hosting meeting to TAs (here is where free student's zoom accounts are a must).
Everyone who explored zoom for some time noticed that when you share some medium (can be anything, like browser or powerpoint running on your computer), you can "annotate" in zoom, i.e. write, underline, circle, etc. You can let participants annotate, and you can disable their ability of that (in case things become messy).
Some lecturers in their real classes use both presentation, and blackboard/whiteboard. For online class one can just leave spaces in presentation for writing, as zoom does not allow you to share two sources of medium simultaneously. If you have tablet and pen for that, writing is easy, using just mouse for writing is tricky.
Taking notes. Students do take notes, but during remote learning it may be more awkward due to their equipment arrangements, sometimes their bandwidth may affect that as well. It is possible to record and transcribe from zoom, which may help students who usually take notes if they have access to transcripts. Transcribing is possible in zoom if you record to zoom "cloud". If you choose to record locally on your computer, you will not be able to upload it to zoom for transcribing. University has very notably finite space on zoom cloud, it is suggested that you pull off zoom your recordings once you have transcribed them.
Equipment. Whether you will teach or will attend classes remotely, you may need screen of decent size. Even if your laptop is 15 inch, something of the size of 24 inch will be great improvement. You may want to borrow monitor from your office for that (check that you have proper adapter and/or cable as well).
Graduate students who never had/used external screens may want to ask those who has two screens to let them borrow one. It will help to diminish confusion if you also leave a note that you borrowed screen in its place, even though you already got permission of screen owner.
Workaround: home TV may be a workaround, but being oversized it may be a bit awkward.
Video camera/audio set. Everybody has those, or uses built-in ones. Brent Barker ordered sufficient amount of external audio/video sets, you will hear from him directly.
Connection speed. As everything will be based on teleconferencing, connection speed may be a bottleneck. You may want to test your connection now to see of the bandwidth is sufficient. If you were thinking of upgrading your bandwidth, now may be the time.
2 Mbps per screen should be sufficient. For giving lecture upload speed is of concern, for listening - download. Valeri Galtsev's cell phone (t-mobile service) gives download: 13 Mbps; upload 5 Mbps in good environment, but in bad environment drops down to 0.8/0.8 Mbps. The worst cases will be in densely populated areas if everyone works from home. Cell providers oversell bandwidth (pretty much like ground phone providers were overselling it in the past). DSL and cable should not be of similar concern. One of the ways to check your network speed is: https://www.speedtest.net/