MIT researchers hoping to make cloud computing more efficient

More than half of colleges use the cloud because it increases institutional efficiency.

Cloud computing can use about 20 times as much hardware as it needs to function properly, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers believe an algorithm could be the key to more efficiency.

Many cloud-based services – once taboo in many college and university IT offices – partition servers into virtual machines that are asked to process millions of operations per second on the server’s central processing unit. This has made cloud-based servers easier to handle for schools and companies alike, but applications that require the most data-intensive functions usually means much more hardware is used.

MIT researchers presented a more efficient cloud computing system called DBSeer at the Biennial Conference on Innovative Data Systems Research, proposing solutions that could bring down the cost of cloud computing – which is often passed down to customers, including colleges – and diagnosing application slowdowns.…Read More

Campus IT’s No. 1 worry: Protecting student, faculty data

College campuses have seen a major increase in the number of mobile devices since 2009.

Eight in 10 colleges and universities allow students to access the school network with any mobile device they bring to campus, but less than half have an official policy for enforcing certain security standards before a smart phone or computer tablet can use the school’s internet connection.

Those findings – along with a range of others showing campus technologists fret over student and faculty data security – were detailed in an April 16 report from CDW-G that listed higher education’s most persistent IT concerns.

Most college and university IT officials surveyed said their campus had taken basic information protection measures like installing web security filters, or using encrypted storage and data loss prevention programs as the number of people who access college networks has increased by 41 percent since 2009.…Read More

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