C-Level View :: August 9, 2006

Executive View

A Milestone in the Higher Ed Software Market?

By Scott Siddall, Denison University (OH)

We are at an important milestone for technology in higher education. I urge you to take stock of your campus’ position on the cost of licensing software and ask if we all couldn’t do better for our students – more choices, better outcomes, and lower cost.

In the past month, several major software vendors have taken steps to increase their “footprint” on our campuses. Wrapped in positive verbiage, these strategies seek to capture more of our budgets in exchange for the perception of comfort and safety of commercial software from large firms. For instance, on July 26, Blackboard announced their patent on many of the methods used in course management systems that we recognize today as crucial tools for online services. At the same time, Blackboard filed suit against Desire2Learn, a progressive competitor, asking for an injunction only a month or two before classes resume. Good business strategies? Yes, certainly, but many of us hoped for a more defensive patent strategy that recognizes the high value higher education puts on collegiality and collaboration...

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Worth Noting

Oracle and Unicon Partner on Open Source Integration

In a strategic alliance announced August 1, Oracle and Unicon Inc. will work to create a more comprehensive academic enterprise environment by integrating Sakai’s community source collaboration and learning environment with Oracle education solutions, including student administration, grade management, ePortfolio applications, and analysis tools...

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Online Learning Environment to Launch with 1,000 Seats Free Offer

Digication Inc., a company founded by two Rhode Island School of Design faculty, is planning to make its Digication Campus online learning environment publicly available on August 14...

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From the Personnel Office

Educause Leadership Awards Announced

Educause has announced that this year’s two Leadership Awards will go to Dan Updegrove, and posthumously to Howard Strauss. The Leadership Awards, which will be formally presented at the Educause annual conference in Dallas, October 9-12, recognize excellence in IT leadership in higher education...

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