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IT Trends for Thursday, May 6, 2004

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Thursday, May 06, 2004

In This Issue


Terry Calhoun, IT Trends Commentator
Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)
University of Michigan

A Damning Indictment

"Insecure and Unaware…"An indictment of higher-ed IT management that may well resonate across campus

Well, it looks like the insurance folks, the corporate defense attorneys, and the auditors finally got together and took a critical look at campus network security. Most of it is nothing we haven't already heard about, and talked about, but a recent article in The Chronicle of Higher Education presents it all in a fairly damning (alarmist) kind of way: ·

  • "[U]niversities are among the least secure places in the universe, as far as computing g'es."
  • "[M]any institutions do not properly maintain and test their strategies for recovering lost data . . . in the event of catastrophe."
  • "[I]t may be just a matter of time before colleges are hit with multimillion-dollar lawsuits accusing them of negligently operating their networks."

D'esn't that just make you want to curl up and, defensively, go to sleep? That's how I felt when I read the article the first time. The second time I kept thinking, "Hey, but they just don't understand higher education." The third time, I also thought, "Hmm, there are some useful insights here." The bottom line is that someone, somewhere on your campus is going to hand this article to your president, or worse, to a trustee. Ouch. What are you going to do then?
Read more


New Report: Colleges and Universities "Insecure and Unaware"

The Chronicle of Higher Education recently analyzed public college records and reports in California, Florida, New York, and concluding that, as one of the interviewees was quoted as saying, public institutions are "among the least secure places in the universe, as far as computing g'es." This is a must-read item, due to its depth and scope.
Read more

Top-Ten IT Issues Survey Results

EDUCAUSE has just published the results of its fifth annual Current IT Issues Survey in EDUCAUSE Quarterly identifying the issues that leaders in higher education information technology see as their most critical challenges. The survey gathered responses from 35 percent (571) of the 1,638 primary representatives of EDUCAUSE member institutions, representing public and private, associate- through doctorate-granting, and all sized institutions.
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Glitches Plague College Admissions

College admissions glitches and problems associated with the processes are brought together in a this comprehensive article which suggests that a too-fast, and not-well-prepared move to digitization and automation may be the culprit.
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University of Utah Well-Protected from Sasser

Sasser virus had hit only two machines on the University of Utah network. Steven Hess, associate academic vice president for information technology says that implementing lessons-learned from Blaster (last fall) was responsible for UU's current relative immunity.
Read more

i2Hub: File Swapping on Internet2

The i2Hub network is based on Direct Connect, but running on Internet2 it gives file sharers a previously unknown experience of speed - and raises fears of a faster shift from students illegally sharing music files to students illegally sharing movies.
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Providence College Network Experiences Slowing from Viruses

Students at Providence College are not at all apathetic when they can't access files over the network, but they appear to be quite capable of ignoring notices that their machines are infected and ignoring instructions on how to clean them up.
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Sasser Worm Spreading Swiftly . . . But How Swiftly?

Sasser emerged from cyberspace about three weeks after Microsoft shared a corrective-code software patch for yet another hole in the OS. It remains to be seen whether Sasser's impact will reach the level attained by Blaster, a similar worm from late last summer, which disrupted the start of classes at many institutions.
Read more

BASIC Turns 40

You pretty much have to *be* 50 or older to really appreciate this anniversary, but many who recall the earlier days of computing lament the change that has made people consumers of software rather than creators.
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Reactions Differ to Surveillance Cameras at Arizona State

The implementation of surveillance cameras on the ASU campus seems to be widespread (13 in the Hayden Library alone) and increasing, but opponents claim guidelines are not being followed, privacy is being violated, that there is no measure of effectiveness, and that there is a potential for misuse of the images.
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Outsourcing: Reforms Not Rhetoric

Gartner estimates that one out of every 20 jobs in internal IT departments will move overseas by the end of 2004. The causes of lost IT jobs are manifold and sometimes not easily understood. Many point fingers of blame at the education and training of computer workers (out of date, outmoded), among other causes.
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Macromedia Declares May Free Online Teaching Month For Higher-Ed

Macromedia announced that it will offer higher education faculty and staff a free Breeze account for the month of May. Macromedia Breeze allows educators and administrators to transform teaching, collaboration, and research by building online learning content in a rich media, Web communications system.
Learn more

Information Security Governance Report Addresses Higher Education

"Information Security Governance: A Call to Action" is a new report that urges corporations, nonprofit organizations, and higher education institutions to integrate effective information security governance (ISG) programs into their organizational processes. The report details the findings and recommendations of the Corporate Governance Task Force that was created by the National Cyber Security Summit held in December 2003.
Learn more


CICU and IBM Create New PC Discount Program

The Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities (CICU) and IBM announced today an innovative Personal Computer Discount Program. The agreement with IBM will enable CICU to offer its member campuses and their students, alumni, faculty, and staff the opportunity to purchase IBM personal computers at significant savings.
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Syllabus2004 July 18-22, San Francisco: Technologies to Connect the Campus

Events Calendar

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Ektron Unveils Newest Version of its Browser-Based XML Authoring Tool

Ektron introduced significant enhancements to its browser-based authoring tool, eWebEditPro+XML. eWebEditPro+XML Version 4.1 enhanced features include new data field types, mathematic functions and advanced validation options for designing "smart" forms for XML, making it a powerful tool for creating structured XML content.
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Proofpoint Education Program for Anti-Spam and Anti-Virus

Proofpoint offers a Proofpoint Education Program (PEP), a program designed to provide dedicated academic support, feature development, and pricing to fully protect academic institutions from the growing threat of SPAM and viruses.
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The Impact of Wireless Network on Instructional Computing

Howard Strauss, manager of technology outreach as Princeton University

Despite the popularity of the technology, wireless is only beginning to show its potential uses for instruction. Howard Strauss comments about the use of the technology, both in the classroom and remotely.

Click Here to Listen

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