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CT at the Show

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Data is Focus at TDWI Series

CT at the show
Deep discussions

On Microsoft’s Redmond campus this past summer, the invitation-only summit “Computing: The Next Decade,” provided a forum for more than 375 research faculty from higher ed to discuss security, mobility, software engineering, languages, humancomputer interaction, embedded computing, and other research challenges they’re pursuing on their campuses, with financial and technical support from Microsoft Corp. ( In an open session moderated by Princeton University’s Dean of Engineering Maria Klawe (far right), the group discussed issues and directions about computing research with Microsoft Chairperson Bill Gates.

CT at the show
Campus research initiatives

MIT, a continuing participant with Microsoft Research, demonstrated the results of recent years’ research efforts. Hal Abelson, Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT, and Principal Investigator of the MIT iCampus project (, described one of innovative educational technology projects now being freely disseminated by MIT to promote the adoption, evaluation, and continued evolution of technology-enabled teaching. MIT iCampus (a prime example of the research model being promoted by Microsoft Research) is supported by Microsoft and conducted in collaboration with Microsoft Research.

CT at the show
Exhibitors clean up

In late July, 107 exhibitors displayed and demo’d their wares at the 34th ACUTA (Association for Communications Technology Professionals in Higher Education; in Kissimmee, FL. Beast Cabling System (, demonstrated “The Claw,” the company’s product for “clean” cabling.

SCUP's 40th International Conference


The key focus at the 40th International Conference and Idea Marketplace of the Society for College and University Planning ( in Washington, DC this past summer was on "Planning, Linking, Learning," which reflects the idea and ideal that planning is about linking all of the individuals and activities in the academic enterprise to advance learning. Planning should be viewed as a double helix connecting every part of the academic enterprise, with learning as the common purpose, regardless of titles, departments, and disciplines.

CT at the show
High-level Planners

US Senator Lamar Alexander (above, right; pictured with SCUP-40 Conference Committee Chair Sal Rinella of STRATUS, at left) gave a keynote address. Educause ( VP Diana G. Oblinger's plenary session, "Listening to What We're Seeing," (what our students are really like and what they want) was among the other enthusiastically received sessions.

CT at the show
ALOHA, 2006

The "local hosts" from Honolulu had a great display booth in anticipation of next year's combined APPA/NACUBO/SCUP conference--"The Campus of the Future: A Meeting of the Minds." (

CT at the show

CT visited the LinuxWorld Conference & Expo in San Francisco this past August and scoured the show floor for Linux applications that might be useful in higher education. While most of the show was geared toward the corporate world, we did uncover some nice surprises:

JamboWorks (, a company that has created a content management system called Mambo for the open source environment, will begin a push to acquire higher education customers. CTO Mitch Pirtle says that from its office in New York City, the company has developed an affordable option to Windows-based systems that cost a hefty sum. "Schools have low budgets, high turnover and no time to train people," he explains. "Mambo solves all those problems by being cheap and incredibly easy to use."

Kaspersky Labs (, a Linux-oriented anti-virus company in Woburn, Mass. plans to roll out a suite of new products tailored for higher education to help schools secure their networks. Steve Orenberg, the company's president, notes that currently, schools like Adams State College (OR) already are using Kaspersky Anti-Virus Mail Server 5.0 for Linux to help fight attacks. "Our security is great security at a fraction of the cost of what you might pay elsewhere," Orenberg asserts. "What network administrator d'esn't want that?"

Finally, SWSoft (, a Herndon, Va., company that helps customers create virtual private servers, points to its success in higher education so far. Carla Safigan, senior product marketing manager, says the company's Virtuozzo product already has had a major impact on 20 different academic environments, enabling students to have individual partitions on the network. "It gives students technical resources without having to buy hardware," says Safigan.

There were other interesting finds at the show. Splunk (, a start-up company in San Francisco, offers a new Linux-based search engine for security log files so network administrators can keep track of attempted intrusions on the network. Kerio (, a security company based in Santa Clara, Calif., has an entire line of open source security products, including the Kerio MailServer 6.1, which can be coupled with anti-virus protection from McAfee ( for even better protection at the server level.

Visit for more on the LinuxWorld conferences.

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