Industry Briefs

:: NEWS

STUDENTS LACK WEB SAVVY. The Educational Testing Service, a nonprofit assessment organization, has released preliminary results of its 2006 Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Literacy Assessment, concluding that many college students lack the critical thinking skills to perform information management and research tasks necessary for academic success. Among the most striking findings: Only 52 percent of test takers could correctly judge a website’s objectivity, and only 65 percent could judge the site’s authoritativeness. More results are available here.

SUPPORT FOR SAKAI. Unicon, a provider of enterprise portals, applications, and professional services for the online campus, has announced the new Sakai Cooperative Support Program for higher ed, establishing a dedicated technical team of Sakai development and support specialists that will provide direct support and assistance to member institutions in the program. The resulting enhancements will be shared with the open source community.

NEC REWARDS PROGRAM. NEC Corporation of America, a provider of IT, visual display, and network solutions, is launching a rewards program called NEC Star Student, offering EDUwards (rewarding education customers for frequent NEC purchases), free third- and fourth-year warranties for select projector purchases, the PowerUp projector trade-in program, and lamp protection for up to three years from a projector’s purchase date.

MEDIASITE PATENTED. Automated rich media communications vendor Sonic Foundry has received a patent for its Mediasite system. The patent covers the production method and system involving the capture, indexing, and synchronization of RGB-based content.

:: M&A, ETC.

AMX EXPANDS INTO AV. As part of a strategic plan to extend its product portfolio into the areas of content delivery and retrieval, control and automation technology vendor AMX has acquired Endeleo, a manufacturer of TV and multiformat media distribution technologies.

:: PEOPLE

Kim Jones

HALL OF FAMER: Jones grabs WITI honors.

NOBLE TO CTO. AMX has promoted Robert Noble to chief technology officer. Noble previously served as the company’s VP of product management.

NEW LEADERSHIP AT ST. BERNARD. Security solutions provider St. Bernard Software has announced the appointment of Vincent Rossi as CEO and a director of the company. Rossi will also retain his position as president. Rossi succeeds John Jones, who has retired from his position as CEO and also relinquished his director seat.

NEW SALES VP. Blackboard veteran Leonard Napolitano has joined Regent, a provider of financial aid management software, as VP of sales.

TO CMS WATCH. CMS Watch, a vendor-neutral analyst firm that evaluates content management, enterprise search, and portal technologies, has announced the appointment of Alan Pelz-Sharpe as principal. Previously, Pelz-Sharpe was principal strategist and practice lead for Wipro Consulting Services.

WITI HONORS JONES. Sun Microsystems’ VP of Global Government, Education, and Healthcare Kim Jones was inducted into the 11th annual Women in Technology International Hall of Fame at an Oct. 30, 2006, awards dinner in Santa Clara, CA. Each year, WITI honors women who have made significant contributions to science and technology worldwide.

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