News Update April 12, 2005

CT News Update:
An Online Newsletter from Campus Technology


* We’re getting technology to the people who shape the future.
(We’re keeping our fingers crossed, too.)

* Responding to Technology Challenges with Innovation

* The latest AV technologies for Education are at InfoComm 05!

News for Tuesday, April 12, 2005

* Wi-Fi Firms to Launch First Nationwide Inter-Campus Network
* Duke Puts Restrictions on iPod Give-Away Program
* Florida, S.C., Schools Lead Best Digital Community Colleges List
* Shanghai Students Bring Home Top ACM Programming Honors
* California State Students Take New Tech ‘Literacy’ Assessment
* Venerated Kurzweil Assistive Tech Firm Acquired by Cambrium


We’re getting technology to the people who shape the future.
(We’re keeping our fingers crossed, too.)

So give us a call and find out first hand how we make it happen.
CDW·G. The Right Technology. Right Away.


Wi-Fi Firms to Launch First Nationwide Inter-Campus Network

A joint venture of wireless companies is being formed
to build the Education First Network, described as the
nation’s first coast-to-coast, inter-campus Wi-Fi
network linking schools and universities. Via
Education First, students and faculty at colleges
as well as K-12 schools with existing Wi-Fi access
will be able to log into any other member’s educational
wireless network.

The Broadband Alliance, which is spearheading the
effort, said Airpath Wireless Inc., will provide the
roaming platform to enable authentication and
connectivity between campus WiFi systems. Bluesocket,
which specializes in wireless security and management
solutions, is also joining the Education First as a
technology partner.

As a school joins the Education First Network, it will
receive roaming revenue from commercial carriers. Funds
will be dispersed through the National Joint Powers
Alliance (NJPA), a cooperative purchasing alliance,
and the Broadband Alliance directly back to the institution.

The Broadband Alliance's role will include marketing,
promotion, and business development for Education First.

Stuart Dankers, CEO of the Broadband Alliance, said
Education First would “reward educational institutions
that are investing in this emerging communications


Responding to Technology Challenges with Innovation

As unique as one campus is from another, so are their computing needs.
Whether the issues are mobile and wireless computing or the next
generation of desktop, innovations in technologies are sparking big
changes—and challenges--for institutions. Read how six colleges and
universities met their needs and found solutions for their computing
programs in a new article on the CT micro site: “Computing Innovations
on Campus,” sponsored by Gateway. You’ll also find an extensive library
of white papers, case studies, product information, and resources to
help your search for higher ed technology information.


Duke Puts Restrictions on iPod Give-Away Program

Duke University students will be able to get a free
iPod next year, but only if they enroll in certain
courses, CNET News reported. Last Fall Duke handed
out the Apple music players to all 1,600 incoming
first-year students. Next year, however, the school
plans to hand them out only to students who enroll
in classes that use the iPod as part of the curriculum.

Duke said it made the decision to offer the iPods
"in a more targeted manner" after a preliminary
review of the program. The school said it will also
look at other technologies that might assist classroom
learning, including wireless devices.

"We weren't sure what to expect when we launched this
project, but we've been pleased by how it's succeeded
in encouraging many faculty and students to consider
new ways of using the technology in fields from
engineering to foreign languages," said provost Peter
Lange in a memo to school faculty. "We've been
focusing on iPods and other mobile computing, but our
wider goal is to integrate technology broadly into the
teaching and learning process. The iPods have helped
jump-start this process, and we plan to keep pushing

Duke found that less than 40 percent of first-year
students had enrolled in a class that used the iPod.
Music and language classes are among the most frequent
educational uses for the devices. Other students have
used iPods for gathering field notes, recording classes
or as portable hard drives. In one of the more esoteric
examples, the devices were used as signal generators in
an engineering class.


The latest AV technologies for Education are at InfoComm 05!

If you work with AV and IT systems, you’ll find everything you
need at InfoComm, including the latest in audio, display,
projection, conferencing, video production, streaming media,
and distance learning. InfoComm Academy offers educational
choices for every interest. Las Vegas: Conference: June 4-10;
Exhibition: June 8-10.


Florida, S.C., Schools Lead Top Digital Community Colleges List

St. Petersburg College, St. Petersburg, Fla., and York Technical
College, Rock Hill, S.C., shared first place in a ranking of the
top 10 most “digitally savvy” community colleges for 2005 the
American Association of Community Colleges (AACC). The list is
based on the second Digital Community Colleges Survey, which
examined how colleges are using technology to streamline
operations and better serve students, faculty and staff.

More than 200 community colleges participated in the survey.
Colleges were grouped into three categories based on city and
student population. In the large/urban category, St.
Petersburg and York shared first place. In the mid/suburban
category, Indian River Community College in Florida earned
the top position. Tompkins Cortland Community College in New
York was named first place in the small/rural category.

The survey addressed online capabilities, such as admission,
registration, bookstores, and grades. Other questions focused
on the availability of technology tools and training for
teachers and faculty, along with strategic plans across
departments and within curriculum planning.

For more information, visit

Shanghai Students Take Home ACM Programming Honors

Students from host school Shanghai Jiaotong University
in Shanghai, China, took first place in the Association
for Computing Machinery's International Collegiate
Programming Contest. The "battle of the brains," held in
Shanghai and sponsored by IBM, challenged students to
tackle a semester's worth of computer programming under
a grueling five-hour deadline, in a battle of logic,
strategy, and mental endurance.

The ACM-ICPC World Finals champions walk away with
bragging rights to the “world's smartest” trophy.

Shanghai Jiaotong University was the only team to
correctly solve eight of the 10 problems in this year's
contest. Moscow State University, St. Petersburg Institute
of Fine Mechanics and Optics, and University of Waterloo
finished the competition in second, third, and fourth
places, respectively, and all won Gold medals.

Regional champions are: University of Waterloo,
Canada; Moscow State University, Russia; University
of Cape Town, South Africa; Instituto Tecnologico de
Aeronautica, Brazil; Shanghai Jiaotong University,
China; and University of New South Wales, Australia.
There were no American students or schools in the
top 12 awards made.

For more information visit:

California State Students Take New Tech “Literacy” Assessment

The Educational Testing Services said last week that
3,000 students at all 23 California State University
campuses took its new Information and Communication
Technology (ICT) Literacy Assessment as part of a
large-scale assessment project. The simulation-based
test measures university and college students'abilities
to “define, access, manage, integrate, evaluate, create
and communicate information in a technological environment.”

The CSU students are among about 8,000 students nationwide
who will take the test by April 15th. ETS will use their
scores to provide institutional-level aggregate score
reports measuring the performance of particular groups.

"The ICT Literacy Assessment is the first tool that
integrates and tests for both cognitive and technological
competencies," said Dr. Ilene F. Rockman, manager of the
Information Competence Initiative at CSU. and an authority
on ICT literacy. "Many students can use technology to send
an e-mail message, surf the Web, or download music, but
that d'es not necessarily mean that they are ICT literate.

“The ICT Literacy Assessment is an interactive and
performance-based tool that allows students to demonstrate
that they can find, use, evaluate and communicate information
ethically and legally . . . that they are critical consumers
and ethical producers of information."

For more information on the test, visit:

Venerated Kurzweil Assistive Tech Firm Acquired by Cambrium

Cambium Learning, Inc., which focuses on at-risk, minority
and special student populations, signed an agreement to
acquire Kurzweil Educational Systems, Inc., a firm that
has pioneered reading technology for people with learning
or visual disabilities.

Kurzweil 3000, the company's flagship product, is an
integrated reading, writing and learning software for
assisting students with learning and language difficulties
such as dyslexia and Attention Deficit Disorder. Another
company product, Kurzweil 1000, fosters greater independence
in students who are blind or visually impaired, enabling
them to read, write and study along side their sighted peers.

The Kurzweill purchase is Cambrium’s third acquisition
in the last 16 months.
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