Google unveils $199 tablet, challenges Kindle Fire

The Nexus 7 will ship in mid-July starting at $199

Google on June 27 said it will sell a 7-inch, $199 tablet computer bearing its brand in a challenge to Amazon’s Kindle Fire.

The Nexus 7 is designed specifically for Google Play, the online store that sells movies, music, books, apps, and other content—the things Amazon.com Inc. also sells for its tablet computer.

Google’s announcement that it’s putting its brand on a tablet comes a week after Microsoft Corp. said the same thing. Both moves risk alienating Google’s and Microsoft’s hardware partners. Those companies, in turn, could be less inclined to work closely with Google and Microsoft.

The Nexus 7 and the Kindle Fire both have screens that measure 7 inches diagonally, smaller than the nearly 10 inches on Apple Inc.’s popular iPad. The Nexus 7 also will be light—at about 0.75 pounds, compared with the Kindle Fire’s 0.9 pounds. The iPad weighs 1.44 pounds.

The Nexus 7 will ship in mid-July starting at $199—the same price as the Kindle Fire. By contrast, iPads start at $499. Customers in the U.S., Canada, and Australia can start ordering it now through Google.

Read more about tablets in higher education…

Professor starts eText company to electrify textbook field

Community colleges take a closer look at eBooks

Google’s price is aggressively low, considering that the Nexus 7 has more features than the Kindle, including a front-facing camera. The Kindle is believed to be roughly breaking even at $199. Samsung Electronics Co. sells a tablet similar to Google’s for $250.

Andrew Rassweiler, an analyst with IHS iSuppli, said he suspects Google will be subsidizing the tablet to sell it starting at $199.

Google has previously put its own brand on a flagship line of “Nexus” smart phones. But that market is more mature than the tablet market, and there was less risk of Google alienating partners, particularly because it didn’t price the phones lower than the norm.

Much like the Nexus phones, the Nexus 7 tablet will be a showcase for a new version of Google Inc.’s Android operating system, in this case one called “Jelly Bean.”

Although the tablet carries the Google brand, the machine will be made by AsusTek Computer Inc. Google recently expanded into the device-making business with its $12.5 billion purchase of Motorola Mobility, but the company has stressed that it intends to continue to rely on Asus and other manufacturers that have embraced Android.

Microsoft’s announcement of its Surface tablet last week and Google’s Nexus 7 add up to a “troubling” situation for tablet makers such as Samsung Electronics Co., said Jeff Orr, an analyst with ABI Research.

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Singularity End User Converts to Hyland Software’s OnBase Solution

San Juan College chooses OnBase, leverages added functionality in multiple departments

CLEVELAND – June 28, 2012 – Hyland Software’s purchase of web-based enterprise content management (ECM) software provider, Hershey Systems, created an opportunity to bolster Hyland’s expertise in delivering solutions specifically tailored for institutions of higher education. The acquisition also gave Singularity users the opportunity to broaden their ECM functionality with OnBase, Hyland’s end-to-end ECM solution. For this reason, San Juan College chose to convert from its Singularity system to OnBase.

“We recognized the need for a document management product that would be continually enhanced to meet our needs and provide our institution with the best functionality,” said Sherri Gaugh, registrar at San Juan College. “We also needed a solution that would integrate with our Ellucian (Formerly Datatel) Colleague system, to connect information and streamline processes.”

One key addition for San Juan College is new, sophisticated functionality that Singularity didn’t offer natively−the ability to capture line-level data from transcripts. “The biggest improvement has been in our workflow solution for our transcript evaluation process. With our old system it took thirty minutes to process a full page transcript. It wasn’t uncommon during times of high volume for us to have a backlog of four to six weeks. Now, using OnBase, it only takes five minutes to process the same transcript. We haven’t surpassed a two-week back log, even in our busy season,” Gaugh said.

San Juan College was able to leverage these enhanced capabilities quickly because the conversion to OnBase was completed in only three weeks. “Our conversion experts are well-versed in the Singularity product and converted 100% of San Juan College’s viable documents, more than a million pages, into OnBase,” said Tom von Gunden, Hyland’s higher education industry manager. “This validates our conversion expertise for the Singularity solution. It also shows current Singularity end users that we have a safe migration option to help them leverage the most comprehensive ECM solution in the industry,” von Gunden said.

Four departments at San Juan College are currently using OnBase, including: Enrollment Services, Financial Aid, Human Resources and Student Advising and Counseling. San Juan College has plans to expand the solution into their Business Office and is looking to automate additional paper-based processes, such as grade change forms and graduation applications for students. “The possibilities are just endless of what we can accomplish with OnBase,” Gaugh said.

For more information about Hyland’s partnership with Singularity visit hyland.com/HigherEducation

About the Hyland Software
For more than 20 years, Hyland Software has been dedicated to meeting organizations’ needs for document and process management with OnBase, an enterprise content management (ECM) solution suite. OnBase has evolved through consistent and customer-driven product innovation and is focused on automating business processes that depend on documents, content and people to operate more effectively.

Hyland is one of the largest providers of ECM software for colleges and universities. To support the higher education enterprise, Hyland tailors its flexible, scalable and secure ECM solution to fit specific processes across institutions, from admissions processing and review, including transcript capture and transfer credit evaluation, to AP invoice processing. This end-to-end solution enables institutions to leverage existing hardware investments, integrate with student information systems and alleviate administrative burdens on IT. For more information about Hyland Software’s ECM solutions, please visit http://www.hyland.com/HigherEducation.

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Build Large-Scale, Highly-Functional Video Walls with Portwell’s New Mura-Powered Controller System

Portwell M9020B video wall controller validated with up to 10 Matrox Mura MPX boards to support up to 40 1080p HD inputs and 40 1080p HD outputs from a single system

Montreal, Canada, June 28, 2012 — Matrox Graphics Inc. today announced a partnership with American Portwell Technology Inc., a world-leading innovator in the embedded computing market, to launch the new Portwell M9020B 4U rackmount system for large-scale, highly-functional video walls. The Portwell M9020B has been jointly validated for use with up to 10 Matrox Mura™ MPX input/output display wall controller boards to support up to 40 full 1080p HD inputs and up to 40 full 1080p HD outputs from a single system. The Portwell system conveniently enables OEMs and system builders to create high-density video wall solutions for various markets including digital signage, mission critical control rooms, security & surveillance, and large public venues.

Using Matrox Mura video capture and display technology, the Portwell M9020B 4U rackmount system facilitates powerful, large-scale video wall designs. The system features a 10-slot, PCI Express® Gen 2 x16 Portwell backplane to house the high-performance Mura MPX PCIe x16 Gen2 boards, with each leveraging 64 Gbit/sec duplex data transfer for uncompromising Full HD performance. Mura MPX display controller boards are multi-functional solutions capable of capturing, scaling, positioning, and displaying a variety of input sources—including High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP)-compliant devices1—across an array of monitors, projectors, cubes, or tiles. The new Portwell system can also host other Mura solutions such as the Mura MPX-SDI video input/output board, and both the MPX-V16 and MPX-V8 analog capture SKUs, ensuring maximum I/O flexibility.

“American Portwell Technology is excited to partner with Matrox on developing the Portwell M9020B 4U rackmount video wall controller system,” said Jack Lam, Sr. Product Marketing Manager of American Portwell Technology, Inc. “Our customers will benefit from the Portwell M9020B 4U rackmount system’s outstanding performance in their high-end, greater-scale capture and display applications. Moreover, this integrated system solution will enable customers to speed up time-to-market by simplifying the implementation of their large-scale video display walls.”

“Matrox sees a tremendous amount of potential with Portwell’s latest video wall solution, as this provides OEMs and system integrators with a low-cost, high-performance value option to build truly amazing video wall systems,” says Helgi Sigurdsson, Product Manager, Matrox Graphics Inc. “Incorporating Matrox Mura technology promotes the delivery of visually appealing and highly functional installations that will readily meet any and all customer requirements.”

Availability
The Portwell M9020B video controller system is now available. For more information, contact American Portwell Technology.

About American Portwell Technology
American Portwell Technology, Inc., is a world-leading innovator in the embedded computing market and a Premier member of the Intel® Intelligent Systems Alliance. American Portwell Technology designs, manufactures and markets a complete range of PICMG computer boards, embedded computer boards and systems, rackmount systems and network appliances for both OEMs and ODMs. American Portwell is an ISO 9001:2008, ISO 13485:2003 and ISO 14001:2004 certified company. The company is located in Fremont, California. For more information about American Portwell’s extensive turnkey solutions and private-label branding service, call 1-877-APT-8899, email info@portwell.com or visit us at http://www.portwell.com.

For more information, contact info@portwell.com or visit http://portwell.com/matrox_display_wall.asp.

About Matrox Graphics Inc.
Matrox Graphics is a leading manufacturer of graphics solutions for professional markets. In-house design expertise, top-to-bottom manufacturing, and dedicated customer support make our solutions the premier choice in industries that require stable, high-reliability products. Founded in 1976, Matrox is a privately held company headquartered in Montreal, Canada, with representation and offices in the Americas, Europe, and Asia.

For more information, visit www.matrox.com/graphics/portwell or contact graphics@matrox.com.

1Certain conditions apply. Contact Matrox to learn more about maximum scaling and cloning output capabilities and recommended connectivity with HDCP compliant displays.

Matrox and Matrox product names are registered trademarks and/or trademarks of Matrox Electronic Systems, Ltd. and/or Matrox Graphics Inc. in Canada and/or other countries.
All other company and product names are registered trademarks and/or trademarks of their respective owners.

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Tactical FLEX, Inc. Debuts Aanval SAS (Situational Awareness System)

An Unparalleled End-to-End SIEM-Based Snort and Suricata IDS Solution

SEATTLE, June 28, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Tactical FLEX, Inc., a global provider of information security, vulnerability and risk management software solutions, today announced the debut of Aanval SAS™, a powerful automated Situational Awareness System designed to raise the bar by providing complete end-to-end network visibility across physical and virtual environments, enhancing network defenses, thwarting advanced security threats, and identifying real threats and vulnerabilities before cyber criminals find them. Aanval SAS™ is the combination of the most advanced SIEM features coupled with the newly released Network Host Scanner, Rogue Host Detection, and Offensive Reconnaissance™ that take full advantage of Nmap, the industry’s most well-known and accomplished port scanning utility to perform both automated and on-request network reconnaissance. Network host availability, IP, and service scanning, as well as OS fingerprinting are now also available directly within Aanval®.

The new Aanval SAS™ solution ties in with the Responsible Security Package which provides enterprises of all sizes with a complete, scalable, and affordable end-to-end security solution for Snort and Suricata IDS that can adapt to the latest security threats, new vulnerabilities, BYOD implementations, and everyday network challenges. Tactical FLEX, Inc. understands that organizations cannot afford to have a blind spot in their network infrastructure as well as lack the capability to detect a potential or existing security breach and rogue devices. Tactical FLEX, Inc. is committed to ensuring our customers derive the greatest possible value from their Aanval SAS™ investment and have the opportunity to secure all of their company networks and security infrastructures across the board. With annual unlimited sensor capacity, organizations and businesses of all network sizes are no longer limited by sensor cost and can now monitor every aspect of their environment. The Responsible Security Package helps support our customers’ network security deployment initiatives while delivering substantial cost savings and enhancing overall security posture. SMBs and large enterprises can now easily deploy an effective market-leading end-to-end network security solution that can also store nearly an unlimited number of security events within the console.

Tactical FLEX, Inc. has been a growing force in transforming the threat management market with the development of Aanval®. Aanval® is the industry’s most comprehensive end-to-end SIEM-based Snort and Suricata IDS solution built with a unique situational awareness engine, distinct false positive protection technology, and a fully integrated event management and attack data correlation engine. Currently over 6,000 organizations around the globe use Aanval® because it provides a defense-in-depth security approach providing an unparalleled oversight of the networks it protects. “In today’s dangerous and evolving cyber battlefield, advanced threats are overpowering traditional security solutions and additional network visibility and situational awareness is now required to efficiently detect network vulnerabilities and combat the full realm of sophisticated threats facing today’s enterprises. Therefore, the ability to thoroughly analyze suspicious activity with advanced detection and identifying host operating systems to counter attacks can help thwart breaches,” stated Loyal Moses, CEO of Tactical FLEX, Inc. Tactical FLEX, Inc. also continues to support both the information security and open source Snort and Suricata community by providing users with a free non-commercial version of Aanval® that allows full functionality of a single-sensor device.

Screenshots and details of Aanval SAS™ are available at www.aanval.com and Aanval® products and services may be purchased from Tactical FLEX, Inc. at www.aanval.com/purchase. Aanval® may be downloaded for testing and evaluation. Follow Aanval® on Twitter @Aanval.

About Tactical FLEX, Inc.
Tactical FLEX, Inc. is a privately owned software development firm based in Seattle, specializing in information security research, engineering, technology design, and production. With the technological development of Aanval®, Tactical FLEX, Inc. has become a global provider of information security vulnerability and risk management software solutions that protect businesses of all sizes. Aanval® currently has over 6,000 customers worldwide including government security, defense organizations, technology corporations, financial services organizations, energy companies, educational institutions, healthcare organizations, biotechnology manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies, law firms, utility providers, and many others. Please visit www.aanval.com for more information. Follow Tactical FLEX, Inc. on Twitter @Tacticalflex.

CONTACT: Jennifer Manguino, 1-800-921-2584, Ext. 2151, jmanguino@tacticalflex.com

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YouTube develops a secret weapon against the web’s worst commenters

Long considered home to the worst commenters on the internet — racist, cruel, idiotic, nonsensical, and barely literate — YouTube is in the process of upgrading its comment system in order to better tame its most loathsome members, Wired reports.

Word of the overhaul slipped out during the Q&A portion of a YouTube developer session at Google I/O, the annual developers conference from the video-upload hub’s owner, Google.

A member of the audience, which was stocked heavily with online video publishers, asked for advice on handling negative comments within his YouTube channel. Dror Shimshowitz, a YouTube “head of product,” replied that “comments are kind of the Wild West of video” and can be turned off. But Google doesn’t like it when people do that, he said, because it cuts off the community. So the company is working on fixing the system.

“We’re working on some improvements to the comment system, so hopefully we’ll have an update on that in the next few months,” Shimshowitz said.

Click here for the full story

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Student loan bill gets vote in Congress before deadline

After being derided as a “do-nothing” Congress, the House and Senate were poised to vote on a massive legislative package that overhauls highway and transit programs, salvages an estimated 3 million jobs and spares millions of students from higher interest rates on college loans, the Associated Press reports.

Congressional leaders were pushing for quick action Friday on the package, which also would financially shore up the federal flood insurance program. Two deadlines are looming: Federal highway and transit aid programs and the government’s authority to levy federal fuel taxes expire on Saturday, and interest rates on new student loans are set to double on Sunday. Lawmakers also were anxious to begin a weeklong recess.

The burst of legislating comes just four months before the November elections, giving lawmakers achievements to show off to voters who have increasingly held Congress in low esteem.

“It’s a jobs bill,” said Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., who led Senate negotiations on the transportation portion of the package.

Click here for the full story

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Reducing Your Total Cost of IT Ownership

Campus IT leaders know they should weigh not just the initial cost of new technologies, but also the ongoing and related expenses—such as maintenance, support, training, energy use, annual licensing fees, and more—when evaluating products and services. But understanding the total cost of ownership (TCO) of technology often can be a challenge.

That’s why, with the generous support of HP, we’ve assembled this collection of stories from the eCampus News archives, as well as additional resources, to help you reduce your TCO and make smarter IT decisions.

—The Editors

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Durbin says for-profit colleges “own every lobbyist” in D.C.

On June 27, 20 state attorneys general announced a court settlement with QuinStreet Inc., a marketing company working for for-profit colleges, that will shut down the deceptive website GIBill.com and turn that web address over to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, The Huffington Post reports.

GIBill.com, until recently, looked a lot like a government website. But people who went there seeking advice on higher education options were always steered to a for-profit college that paid for the privilege. Deceptive marketing like this, along with coercive recruiting tactics, push thousands of our troops and veterans to shoddy for-profit colleges that have high prices, low-quality educations, high dropout rates, and overwhelming loan debts for students.

Since these bad practices have now been widely exposed, why are even the worst actors in the for-profit college industry still sharing in the $32 billion in federal financial aid that goes to this sector every year? One word: lobbying.

“It’s reached a point now when you get little or nothing done when you take on the for-profit schools in Congress,” Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said at a Washington press conference announcing the settlement.  “Why? They own every lobbyist in town.”

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Colleges taking a team approach to eTextbooks

Six in 10 students said in a recent survey that they forgo buying required books because textbooks are too pricey.

Reining in exorbitant textbook costs is no longer a campus-by-campus venture: A unified approach, powered by EDUCAUSE and the Internet2 consortium’s NET+ cloud-based collaborative purchasing program, could make low-cost electronic textbooks available now, ed-tech leaders hope.

Colleges experimenting with digital textbooks can take months—sometimes years—to negotiate with publishers before their school’s modest eBook program is introduced to students now paying upwards of $1,100 a year for books.

This fall, campus technology leaders will closely track the results of an expansive eTextbook pilot program ranging across 28 campuses, creating what many in higher education believe could be a model for quickly bringing low-cost textbook options to students who, in some cases, have stopped buying required texts because they cannot afford the books.

The participating schools will receive deep discounts on textbook orders, because the colleges will ensure that every student uses the textbook’s free electronic version. Guaranteed participation in the digital textbook effort makes this program different from myriad others tried on campuses across the country.

The pilot is run through Internet2’s NET+ Services, which negotiates with companies on behalf of its member campuses. Students and faculty will use McGraw-Hill Education eBooks along with an eReader and annotation software program made by Courseload, allowing class content to be viewed through a college’s learning management system.

Nik Osborne, head of Indiana University’s eText initiative, said roping many colleges and universities into one pilot program would accelerate the adoption of electronic textbooks, a decidedly slow process that has frustrated advocates of low-cost textbook alternatives.

“There’s no need for each institution to go figure it out on their own,” Osborne said during an Internet2 member meeting, adding that it took IU seven months to negotiate with publishers before the university could unveil its eText push. “Why not learn from other schools rather than reinventing the wheel? … We don’t have that much time in higher education as a whole. We have a very perishable window right now.”

Campus IT chiefs said joining Internet2’s established eText infrastructure would bring a functional eBook pilot program to a campus in less than two months—a fraction of the time many colleges have spent working out the legal ins and outs of transitioning from traditional texts to electronic versions.

“Efficient markets have informed buyers and sellers, and this multi-university pilot is a big leap forward for institutions to better understand how they can shape the market during the transition to digital,” said Brad Wheeler, vice president for information technology and chief information officer at Indiana University.

James Hilton, vice president and chief information officer at the University of Virginia, said the national eTextbook pilot initiative has drawn interest from faculty members at his university.

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How college towns could lead the way to gigabit broadband

Until recently, America’s major telecommunications firms always had plans on the drawing board for the next generation of internet connectivity. In the 1990s, when most people connected to the internet using modems with speeds of 56kbps or slower, phone and cable incumbents were working on cable and DSL services that would offer connectivity measured in megabits, Ars Technica reports.

As households upgraded to those first-generation broadband services during the aughts, incumbents were hard at work on technologies like FiOS, U-Verse, and DOCSIS 3.0 that would offer broadband connections in the tens of megabits.

But now, for the first time since the dawn of the commercial internet, there are few plans in the works for major network upgrades. Most American households have no reason to expect that they’ll see another order-of-magnitude increase in broadband speeds any time soon.

One man who is trying to change that is Blair Levin, an architect of the Obama Administration’s National Broadband Plan and now the executive director of a consortium of universities called Gig.U. Levin hopes to demonstrate the potential of high-speed internet service by promoting the construction of privately financed fiber networks in American college towns.

Click here for the full story

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