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Syllabus News for Tuesday, August 19, 2003

Syllabus News Update: An Online Newsletter from Syllabus Press


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* U. California Wins $521 Million Judgment Against Microsoft

* For Profit Becomes First to Offer E-Signatures for All Documents

* Singapore's Nanyang Technological U. Unveils Reality Theater

* Northeastern U. to Support Tablets for Fall B-School Students

* Dept. of Ed Signs "Transformative" Outsourcing Deal with IBM


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U. California Wins $521 Million Judgment Against Microsoft

A federal jury in Chicago last week decided that Microsoft Corp. improperly put technology owned by the University of California and licensed by Eolas Technologies, Inc., into its Internet Explorer browser, helping the computer giant win critical market share. Eolas president Michael Doyle, a former UC researcher, co-invented technology to allow interactive applications in Web pages. In 1995, the patented technology's features began appearing in commercial Web browser programs; and interactivity has become a hallmark of the Internet ever since. UC and Eolas claimed Microsoft infringed on a patent awarded to the researchers for the Web technology.

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For Profit Becomes First to Offer E-Signatures for All Documents

AIU Online, a for-profit university specializing in adult education, said it is the first U.S. University or college to offer secure electronic signature capabilities on all legal documents required for a student to apply and enroll in an online degree program. The school gained approval to implement an expanded secured Personal Identification Numbers (PIN) system in place of ink signatures from its state authorizing agencies, the Nonpublic Postsecondary Education For more information visit: Northeastern U. to Support Tablets for Fall B-School Students

Through one of the first educational relationships of its kind, Northeastern University and Toshiba's Computer Systems Group will make available to its incoming business school students Toshiba's Portege 3500 convertible Tablet PC running Microsoft's Windows XP Tablet PC Edition. Les Ball, senior executive professor in Northeastern's College of Business Administration, said, "the faculty and staff are currently learning about the tablet's features in order to gear up to teach this to students entering Northeastern in the fall."

Singapore's Nanyang Technological U. Unveils Reality Theater

Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore opened the NTU Reality Theater, Southeast Asia's first virtual reality center for higher ed institutions. A joint project between NTU and SGI, the facility will support collaborative research in biological and medical science, scientific visualization, virtual engineering, civil contingency planning, education, and digital media, the partners said. The Reality Theater will be made available to all NTU faculties for teaching and research. The theater will provide seating for up to 91 participants and will be powered by a 16-processor SGI Onyx 3800 visualization system. Users will be able to engage in such activities as interactive, real-time engineering and design review, data analysis, critical training or command-and-control operations.

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IBM Announces Business Transformation Outsourcing Agreements With UTC, Avnet, and U.S. Department of Education

IBM has signed a "business transformation" outsourcing agreement with the U.S. Department of Education. to modernize its procurement, accounting and financial management systems under a single, integrated platform called "EDCAPS" (Education Central Automated Processing System). Under the agreement, IBM will manage software maintenance, enhancements and technical infrastructure. The agreement covers the department's financial management systems, which include accounting, budgeting, procurement, grants management, travel, and payment collection and processing.

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