George Washington is testing two pilot networks that will “address the increasing use of mobile computing devices on campus while enhancing network security measures,” including iPads and other eReaders like the Amazon Kindle, the school said.
Princeton University IT decision makers, meanwhile, have reported that the Apple eReader disrupts the campus network because the iPad uses an expired IP address.
“When a customer’s device malfunctions this way repeatedly, Princeton blocks that particular device from using those campus network services,” the university said in a press release explaining a “workaround” technique for students who want to use an iPad on campus. “Because the problems were so common and began as soon as the iPads arrived, we felt it unlikely that the problem was due to customer misconfiguration. It seemed more likely to be an issue common to the iPad/iPhone OS 3.2 platform.”
Cornell University on April 23 countered media reports claiming the iPad was banned on the Ithaca, N.Y., campus because officials feared that too many iPads would overload the school’s web network. The reports surfaced after iPad users were blocked from internet service on the Cornell campus.
School officials said that, much like Princeton, they found iPads’ IP addresses caused disruptions on the network. Cornell now sells the Apple device on campus and has created a web page with directions telling students how to connect university eMail accounts to Apple’s newest mobile device.
Most U.S. colleges and universities haven’t reported any problems with the iPad connecting to campus networks, and IT and library officials at some schools are promoting the use of Apple’s eReader. George Fox University, which has given a new computer to incoming freshmen for 20 years, will offer iPads to freshmen before the fall 2010 semester.
Greg Smith, the university’s chief information officer, said the portable eReader will accommodate students accustomed to accessing the internet and doing school work anywhere, not just the school library or their dormitory.
“With this, we’re basically asking students: ‘What computing system will work best for you?’” Smith said in an announcement. “The trend in higher-education computing is this concept of mobility, and this fits right in with that trend. … At the same time, we realize there are a number of uncertainties. Will students struggle with a virtual keyboard? Can the iPad do everything students need it to do when it comes to their college education? These are the kinds of questions we really won’t know the answer to until we get started.”
Apple’s Jobs says ‘no’ to Adobe Flash
Apple CEO Steve Jobs made it more difficult for college students to play popular online video games and watch web-based videos via their iPads when he said April 29 that the company’s eReader would not support the widely-used Flash technology.
In a detailed offensive against the technology owned by Adobe Systems Inc., Jobs wrote on April 29 that Flash has too many bugs, drains batteries too quickly, and is too oriented to personal computers to work on the iPhone and iPad.