Category Archives: Education

The Soft-Edged Cloud: A Security Challenge

The Soft-Edged Cloud: A Security Challenge

The Cloud Security Challenge

The use of the term “cloud” to describe global, offsite, computing and storage technology is apt for a number of reasons; not all of them good. The metaphor succeeds largely when people visualize their data hovering over their heads, no longer tied to a single location, and consequently easy to access from anywhere. But there are other parallels with actual meteorological clouds, specifically their soft, amorphous shape. This causes problems in perception and definition, which naturally lead to potential difficulties with security.

ISC 2 - CCSPDavid Shearer, CEO of cyber, information, software and infrastructure security certification and education body (ISC)2, points out that the enthusiasm or pressure that companies feel to build their businesses quickly into the cloud can potentially lead to a fundamental weakness. “The easier it becomes to purchase cloud solutions,” he says, “the easier it is for organizations to get ahead of themselves. Business lines within a company can easily acquire cloud-based services, and the fast time to acquire and provision cloud services is extremely attractive. Any organization would be crazy not to take advantage of that.” Shearer points out, however, that when a company elects to leverage cloud solutions and services, management needs to be smart about it; and part of that includes proper and continuous security measures:

As recently as a few years ago, security was looked at as a hindrance; something that got in the way. In these situations, sometimes bad things needed to happen for people to pay attention. In the C-suite, if nothing else, CEOs and CxOs are losing their jobs for a perceived lack of due diligence and lack of strategy to protect a corporation’s intellectual property or personally identifiable information – and that gets people’s attention. Increasingly, what is needed is better communication between those actually responsible for making security work, and the C-suite.

In addition to the lack of clear comprehension of cloud in the executive office, there is also a similar disconnect throughout other levels of business.

Defining The Cloud

Adam Gordon is an author, subject matter expert and instructor at (ISC)2. He illustrates a significant challenge to cloud security being the definition of cloud itself. There’s a great interest in anything and everything cloud,” he says, “but the problem is, as individuals and as businesses, we don’t always understand what cloud means. As a result, there tends to be a gap, where consumption is a lead indicator and security is an afterthought.” It is ill-defined in many people’s minds, Gordon adds. “Many people look at it as a marketing slogan or a marketing solution, but they don’t really get it. As a result, I think one of the biggest issues that we face, as security professionals in the cloud, is the idea of how to create a common ground in terms of what it is we are talking about and how we will frame conversation around risk, liability, security, and things that go with that.”

Yet a third challenge to effective understanding of the cloud is the change of mindset needed, especially among managers and decision makers who spent their early years in the company of mainframes, dumb terminals and internal networks. For many, there is a pervasive, almost instinctive sense that data and computing systems are physically safer when they exist inside the actual walls of a company where they can be seen and touched. The notion of storing data on someone else’s computer somewhere in the world just does not feel right. The truth is that data is generally safer when transferred to the vaults of a cloud organization whose sole mandate is secure storage, but adherence to ideas from an earlier age is a very human attribute; one that never fully disappears.

Mobile Employees

Mobile security

(Image Source: Shutterstock)

Finally, there is the relatively new phenomenon of mobile employees who see their smart devices as their office, and who expect to use them at home, at work, and in public spaces like coffee shops and transit terminals, accessing Wi-Fi connections with little thought as to security. This soft, boundary-less setting has a direct parallel to actual clouds. Where, after all, does work-related security begin and end, when the device being used shares storage space and connectivity with personal files and pursuits? Adam Gordon worries that enabling individuals to work productively in these non-traditional environments with equally non-traditional capabilities and platforms opens up a collection of unknowns in terms of security and the individualized approach to data.

The softness of the cloud reinforces the need for a new type of security specialist; someone with the experience and wisdom to stay on top of a fast changing environment, and with the skills to communicate the necessary directives to the executive as well as to the rest of the IT team. This is the reason behind the development of the CCSP designation. The cloud will only continue to grow in size and versatility. Successful usage must involve a sound and ongoing security strategy across all levels of operation.

For more on the CCSP certification from (ISC)2 please visit their website. Sponsored by (ISC)2.

By Steve Prentice

SaaS Growth Hacking Do’s And Don’t

SaaS Growth Hacking Do’s And Don’t

SaaS Growth Hacking

Thanks to a few phenomenally successful campaigns and visions of best case scenarios, growth hacking tactics have received a lot of positive attention in recent times. But as the techniques and their results are analyzed it’s becoming apparent that there’s a right and a wrong way to use these tools. Or, at least, there’s a time, a place, and an implementation. Cloud Based Software As A Service (SaaS) companies such as Dropbox, Pinterest, and Airbnb boast a few of the most wildly successful strategies contrived to date (Excellent 2015 Marketing Statistics List), but with the ever-evolving global tech and business climate, ‘old’ tactics aren’t likely to yield positive results without new twists on the invention.

marketing-growth-hacking

The Dos

Never again will we see massive success stories that are merely revamps of old hits – unless you’re writing teen vampire novels, in which case give it 10 to 15 years. Video marketing is a trend expected to flourish in 2016, and additionally ensuring your growth hacks account for the massive traffic routed by search engines and social networks could ramp up achievements.

  • A few key points to keep in mind: Match-make growth hacking and products/services: You’re going to need a synergy between the two, ideally with a key representative closely involved in the development of both.
  • Spot trends: All the information you could possibly need is flying about, but Big Data often results in a case of not seeing the wood for all the trees. Learn to extract pertinent points but also know when to back off. Just because you think something rocks, doesn’t mean anyone else is going to care, and a rework is likely to yield better results than soldiering on.
  • Change the way you think: Growth hacking comes into play when traditional marketing methods aren’t likely to succeed. This isn’t the time for crossing your ‘T’s and dotting your ‘I’s. Be creative, think outside of the box, and be willing to take calculated risks.
  • Communicate & Incentivize: Creative doesn’t mean disorganized. Ensure your communication is easily understood and followed by both your team and your potential customers. And then save money by getting your customers to market for you – a little freebie often goes a long way to positive word of mouth and heightened product uptake.

shutterstock_325151036

(Image Source: Shutterstock)

The Don’ts

  • Sadly, there is no growth hacking template or checklist. Strategies and tactics often work only once, and success usually boils down to the right attitude, genuine curiosity, and the ability to try, and fail, adapt, and invent.
  • Popularity alone only survives through high school: Simply creating a buzz isn’t enough. If you’re building products or services that don’t have the end users in mind, no amount of popularity will result in success. Unless you’ve built a pyramid scheme that is, at the very least, frowned upon in many countries, illegal in most. Back to the drawing board, please.
  • Don’t forget about loyalty: Many businesses focus on building up new users before ensuring the satisfaction of the loyal early adopters. Growth hacks that run roughshod over your faithful flock in an attempt to recruit new masses miss the success that personal referrals, word of mouth, and client satisfaction promise.
  • Don’t be aggressive: This isn’t telecanvassing. Aggressive, underhanded strategies trample on your reputation and miss the point of the clever loopholes that drive customer numbers as well as satisfaction.

Unless you’re selling thin in chocolate sauce, your product won’t sell itself: Don’t let the beauty of your growth hack so over-awe you that you forget to measure its success. Analyze your data, find out what’s working, and optimize it. Repeat…

By Jennifer Klostermann

The Growth of E-Learning and Its Benefits

The Growth of E-Learning and Its Benefits

The Growth of E-Learning

We often want to better ourselves when it comes to our education. It could be because we didn’t focus our attentions on the subjects that would better serve us in the future, or it could be due to the way the world has evolved. In either event, there comes a time when we need to update our skill set accordingly.

As well as the world becoming more evolved, it has also become a lot busier, with many of us searching for time that simply isn’t there. So when it comes to learning new skills, many simply don’t have the time to visit their local college.

Online Courses

Many companies are also keen to ensure that their employees have the necessary skills to help drive the company forward in a positive way, but again, there has to be a solution that doesn’t take away employees from their role for an extended amount of time.

Fortunately, many have reaped the benefits of e-learning, and many will continue to do so into 2016. How is this so? In 2010, the global e-Learning market managed to reach $32.1 billion in 2010, with an annual growth rate of around 9 percent, it is assumed that in 2015 alone, the e-Learning sector would pull in $49.9 billion.

Not only is this impressive from a monetary point-of-view, but it also shows how popular such a system has become. Depending on the persona accessing the training, there are plethora of benefits in adopting e-Learning.

These can include:

Savings on Business Expenses:

Sending colleagues off to a set location to learn new skills can not only be more time-consuming, but it can also be expensive when you factor in accommodation and food. E-learning means that businesses are able to schedule their own in-house training, partnered with the knowledge and convenience that e-Learning courses have to offer.

Reducing the Carbon Footprint:

While it may not stick in the forefront of everyone’s minds, many people and companies are keen to reduce the carbon footprint. As such, it will be usual for them to offer a number of paper-free methods in which they can be communicated with. This also applies to e-Learning, as students will learn everything from the screen directly, so there is no need for numerous printouts which only goes to add to the carbon footprint, as well as being costly

Flexibility:

Companies very rarely have time to spare, and as such, openly welcome a way that can help benefit their employees, without putting strain on the company itself. E-learning means that the training can be accessed at any time, so companies can schedule a number of employees for training, with the company feeling the pressure.

Scalable:

Many employees may find that they are a little behind with their skill set, or even just want to better themselves overall. E-learning means that both businesses and individuals can access the gateway as and when required to source teaching material relevant to their plight. This ‘top-up’ approach to knowledge and education means that individuals are learning more, but are not overwhelmed.

Of course, there are those who questioned as to whether e-Learning courses are viable, with many saying that such companies would fall at the first hurdle unless a disruptive idea was in place partnered with a structural advantage. But many companies and even single parents have helped instil e-Learning into our everyday online activities.

education-future

E-learning has been popular for a number of years, although many may not be aware as to how. Skype opened the door for communications across the globe, so it was only a matter of time before tutors took advantage of this new gateway. Tutors would offer their services over Skype for a set fee, planting the seeds for the e-Learning business model.

e-Learning continues to be a positive influence in the online world and gives people confidence that they can not only better themselves, but help better the company the work for, or the business they created. In the modern world, knowledge is power, and with the technological advancements being made on a daily basis, people and companies want to ensure they acquire this knowledge to better serve their business moving forward.

Access to a learning portal means that anyone with an internet connection has access to an education, something that may be taken for granted in the Western world, but something that Third World countries could adopt if a stable Internet connection is in place. Overall, e-Learning could not only help shape the education of today’s adults, but also tomorrow’s youth.

By Paul Jellicoe

Edutech Will Continue Strong Growth In 2016

Edutech Will Continue Strong Growth In 2016

Edutech Future

2016 already has a plethora of EduTech conferences and workshops lined up, with events such as the 36th annual national Future of Education Technology Conference 2016 kicking off in Orlando, Florida on the 12th of January, Bett in London from the 20th to 23rd of January, and the International Educational Technology Conference taking place in Dubai early on in February. Stated on Bett’s site, “To truly transform education through technology, we need to learn from experts, solution providers and each other.”

2016 Predictions & Possibilities

Technology is equipping both educators and learners with a variety of new tools and learning methods, revolutionizing how and what people learn. In 2016, some emerging trends could provide even greater progress in this sector as the cloud, mobile learning, augmented reality, and game-based learning possibilities are explored.

Cloud Computing & Education

Enabling network access to a shared store of resources, cloud computing is still in its initial stages, used primarily for storage.

cloud_172

Mobile cloud learning combines the cloud computing with mobile learning, and it’s expected that cloud technology will soon be playing a greater role in education, particularly with regards to how groups contribute to collaborative work product. Cloud computing additionally reduces IT costs while providing easily accessible services from a range of devices.

Mobile Learning

E-readers, tablets, and mobile devices are quickly becoming more widely available and accessible with better distribution and reduced costs. Easily portable, and with access to the internet and networks, these multimedia capable devices are ideal for learning. 2016 will see a better range of educational apps supporting mobile devices with seamless support for online and distance learning.

Augmented Reality & Gesture-Based Learning

Providing direct relation to physical instances and environments, augmented reality combines with gesture-based learning to redefine how students are taught. Conventional input devices such as mice, keyboards, game controllers, and microphones encourage a three-dimensional, active, and intuitive learning style. Coupled with augmented reality rendering digital images onto our real-world surroundings, gesture-based learning technologies create a play-like learning situation that may ignite both student and teacher enthusiasm.

Game-Based Learning

Teachers and students collaborate as game-based learning apps encourage exploration into virtual environments that work towards specific goals. Learners make choices and experience consequences as they make mistakes in risk-free settings, and students are further able to experiment with and practice correct methods. The highly engaging nature of gaming encourages student participation, and practiced behaviors can be transferred into the real world. Game-based learning has been found to help students with experimentation and collaboration while improving their problem-solving skills and raising IQ levels.

the-neurology-of-gaming

Education and technology solutions continue to merge in telepresence opportunities, visual data analysis, student response systems, and learning record stores, to name only a few partnerships, and educational experts and enthusiasts are fast embracing the benefits of technology in the sector.

By Jennifer Klostermann

Breaking Down The Big Data – Top Job Skills

Breaking Down The Big Data – Top Job Skills

Big Data – Top Job Skills

For those in the tech arena – and let’s face it, we’re all in the tech arena somehow – a few abilities are topping all of the must-have skills lists. Inc. points to the growth of Big Data, Cloud Computing, and Data Virtualization as three of the six major trends we should all be keeping up with, supported by countless other industry analysts. Data and Cloud technologies have effectively transformed both our personal and business landscapes, so skilling up in these areas is a necessity.

Cloud Computing: What You Need to Know

IoT-Cloud

This year, the Cloud will become the “new normal”, reports TechRadar. Dramatically cutting cost by digitizing information-intensive processes, it’s been predicted that the end of 2015 will see a world of hybrid deployments. By utilizing the flexibility of the Cloud, organizations are improving everything from collaboration to data security.

Following are a few of the top skills needed to adequately exploit the Cloud.

  • The Technical Stuff: A good knowledge of Internet capabilities is a must have, and skills in Java and .NET framework are invaluable, as well as an understanding of virtualization. Open source tools and languages are also beneficial.
  • Basic Business: Ensuring efficient use of Cloud Computing requires business-savvy leaders who recognize the need (or lack thereof) for cloud deployment; the Cloud is vital, but it’s not going to build a return on your investment without good business management.
  • Project Management: Are there any fields that don’t benefit from great project management? IT certainly does and always has. Marshaling resources, both human and technical; establishing goals and timelines; achieving milestones on schedule; and delivering value. Cloud Computing offers and encourages the use of an extreme range of new tools and directions, but without effective project management, this wild ride could end up costing far more than a basic on-premises system.
  • Data Analysis & Integration: Considered more valuable in today’s economy than oil, Big Data is only as beneficial as its practical extraction and application. Meshing cloud-based systems and data with on-premises warehouses and systems ensures effective analytical environments.

Big Data: In-Demand Skills

python-bigdata

Partly thanks to the rise of the Internet of Things, Big Data is ever-expanding, as are its uses and power. With volumes increasing exponentially, knowing how to collect and analyze data keeps you in touch with customer needs as well as critical business processes. Although Big Data is a broad area, a few programming languages stand out as prerequisites:

  • Java: The general-purpose programming language designed with as few implementation dependencies as possible. Many companies have been adding this tool to their platforms, including IBM to its cloud, Bluemix.
  • Hadoop: Covering numerous enterprises and tools such as Spark and Map Reduce, Hadoop is an extremely broad area that offers Big Data computing at scale with demand growing even faster than Java.
  • Python: An interpreted, object-oriented programming language with dynamic semantics, Python is attractive for its rapid application development and as a scripting language to connect existing components.

Though a little daunting at first glance, all of these skills are at your fingertips. A little online exploration offers a satisfying foundation, and the numerous free courses existing provide all of the in-depth education you might want or need.

By Jennifer Klostermann

The Fundamental Uses Of Cloud Computing

The Fundamental Uses Of Cloud Computing

Cloud Computing Fundamentals

Cloud Computing covers a range of IT entities working together: Hardware such as servers, PCs, tablets and mobile phones; Infrastructure including networks and block storage; Platforms handling object storage, databases, identities and runtime; and Applications for providing content, monitoring, collaboration, and communication. To fully understand Cloud Computing, you’ll need a grasp of its core characteristics, the different service and deployment models, and also realise that mitigating glitches and complications is part of the Cloud Computing process. There’s a lot to learn, including Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), but once you’ve done the groundwork you’ll be able to experiment with Cloud software from major providers such as Amazon’s AWS, Google AppEngine, and Windows Azure.

Fundamentals: Practical Examples

cloud-fundementals

All of the elaborate Cloud Computing tools available work according to the same principles as simplistic, and often free, tools already at your fingertips.

  • Google Docs: Access to a free Google Docs account is available to everyone, and provides you with free sharing and real-time editing tools. Set up your account and create and share documents with others to experience real-time collaboration the Cloud offers.
  • Box.net: Providing many connectors to extend storage functionality, Box accounts can also be tied to your LinkedIn account, allowing those viewing your profile to download documents from your store. Moreover, its fax connectors connect the Cloud to your physical machinery at home or in the office.
  • Salesforce for Intuit QuickBooks: For an experience of business management in the Cloud, set up a free account and upload your own customer lists to connect customer relationship Salesforce with QuickBooks accounting software.
  • Windows Live Mesh: Remotely control Windows and Mac desktops, synchronise files between computers, and standardize your bookmarks and favourites. This hybrid application provides you with insight into where Microsoft is moving with some of its live cloud-based services.
  • Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2): Once you’re a little more confident, try setting up a server on Amazon’s EC2. Though initial setup can be somewhat cumbersome, a wide range of features are available.
  • Cloudshare: For a simpler experience try setting up two Windows machines on Cloudshare. The free trial period and easy setup allow the connection of two machines via their own cloud networks, also offering access to them via remote desktop connections.

Free Cloud Computing Courses
cloud-classes

For those preferring a more structured course of learning, a range of free online courses are on offer:

  • edX & UC BerkeleyX: Take part in a series of courses on Engineering Software as a Service. Topics covered include engineering solid high-performance cloud applications using agile technique, Software as a Service (SaaS) application using Ruby on Rails, deploying applications in the cloud, and enhancing performance using JavaScript.
  • Coursera and Vanderbilt University: Programming Cloud Services for Android Handheld Systems includes instruction on applying patterns and frameworks to develop scalable and secure cloud services, and covers mobile and cloud communication, concurrency and synchronization, data persistence, synchronous and asynchronous event handling, and security.
  • Google Developer Academy: This e-learning site offers a solid overview of Google AppEngine, Python App Engine and Google+ APIs.
  • Microsoft Research Windows Azure for Research Training: Aimed at academicians and researchers, this learning platform targets the Microsoft Windows Azure Platform.
  • MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW) : OCW is a web-based publication of virtually all MIT course content, a comprehensive collections of courseware available globally.

By Jennifer Klostermann

What I Have Learned: Cloud Security Insights From CCSP Pros

What I Have Learned: Cloud Security Insights From CCSP Pros

Cloud Security Insights From CCSP Pros

The age of cloud security gives rise to the somewhat mixed metaphor of a cat and mouse game played out on shifting sands. Cloud security professionals face a multidimensional conundrum as they try to keep pace with changing technologies, upgrades, internal political pressures, and of course external infiltration attempts. Danger can come from the outside or within. It can be mechanical, software driven, or the fault of human beings. And answering the call at the end of this long list of stresses and priorities is a hugely busy, often overworked security team.

So what do they have to say about it? We asked the CEO of (ISC)², a global leader in information, cyber, software and infrastructure security certifications, including the Certified Cloud Security Professional (CCSP℠), and two CCSP-certified security experts to share some of their knowledge and observations. What have they seen? What worries them, and what advice would they offer? Here are a few of their revelations.

Connecting Devices To The Cloud

Everyone is migrating to the cloud,” says Adam Gordon, CCSP, and author and instructor for (ISC)². Through organizations, large and small, public sector and private, as well as millions of individual consumers, every device is connecting and interrelating with every other in ways that no one can accurately map. “The problem is, we don’t always understand what cloud means as we start to consume. As a result, there tends to be a gap where consumption is a lead indicator and security is an afterthought.” Gordon points out that the causes of major breaches can often be tracked to lax behavior on the part of individuals. “Do they understand the implications of allowing an application on their phone, to use the phone’s location services to provide location information to a cloud service? How is that being used? How is it being archived? How is it being tracked?” he asks.

ccsp

People place a great degree of trust in their systems and their providers and, for Adam, this is not enough. “I think the mistake we make today, or that we have made historically, is we put faith into the provider and say, “they’re going to take care of it…” and we don’t verify. Adam prefers to embrace the phrase used by President Reagan during the 1987 arms control negotiations, and taken from a traditional Russian proverb: trust but verify. “If you take the trust but verify approach, we come up with a solution that actually leads to cloud security. If we just trust, but don’t verify, I think we’re in for some nasty surprises along the way.

Constant Monitoring Critical

These concerns are echoed by Pat (a pseudonym), a CCSP-certified cyber strategist with a federal government department, who points out that a disturbing lack of cohesive policy makes security efforts much harder. “There is very little foundation for cloud environments right now,” Pat says, “the best things out there actually come from the vendors (as opposed to internal), but each vendor has different kinds of priorities. This makes it hard to determine what the threats are, as well as identifying what you don’t know about this environment.” Pat mentions that although external hacking gets the lion’s share of media attention, sometimes the problems come from more day-to-day maintenance activities. “Every time there is an update to your operating system, and you are running software, they can change your actual security configurations. You have to be constantly going back and reviewing what’s going on, and scanning your systems, and seeing what vulnerabilities that previously had been closed have been reopened again; and that is a constant battle.”

security watch

(Image Source: Shutterstock)

Pat’s main recommendations for striving toward a more secure cloud-connected IT system are a common nomenclature and a wider vision. “In the CCSP training class, I found it highly beneficial to address the naming conventions of how we talk about the cloud-based environments,” Pat says. “You have to understand all those terms and work them through your head in order to have meaningful conversations.” In addition, there is a need for a defined set of policies, and dependable and thorough processes. For example, when an organization performs an internal audit, they should not simply audit the outcomes of a system’s configuration, but rather they should also audit the process to make sure that people are doing things in a way that consistently reaches management’s expected outcomes. Once again, this means understanding the actions of people, along with the technology.

ISC 2 - CCSP

Compounding the challenges for organizations and their security specialists is convergence, says David Shearer, CEO, (ISC)². People often see expansion, in terms of the increasing numbers of devices and technologies connecting to the global Internet. But at the same time, there is “convergence of literally every engineering discipline on the planet, such as mechanical, electrical, software, biomedical, and chemical,” resulting in a cross pollination of protocols and systems through which abuse and contagion have the potential to run rampant.

All three experts agree that the establishment of a common lexicon and culture of clear, proactive communications, paired with both mechanical and corporate awareness, is essential for helping to maintain secure systems, both locally and globally. This commonality and vision must be embraced throughout all managerial levels, reaching right to the top.

For more on the CCSP certification from (ISC)² please visit their website. Sponsored by (ISC)².

By Steve Prentice

 

The Google Virtual Reality Expedition Program

The Google Virtual Reality Expedition Program

Virtual Reality Expedition – From Antarctica To Mars

Google’s Expeditions Pioneer Program was launched earlier this year, providing students with the use of virtual reality in their classrooms through Google’s Cardboard VR viewer. The rollout of expeditions kits, complete with ASUS smartphones, a tablet for teachers, a router for device connection, and either Google Cardboard or Mattel View-Master VR viewers began in September, targeting select schools in the U.S., and the program is now being expanded to more cities and countries.

Explore

To date, over 100,000 students have used Expeditions to explore more than 120 locations ranging from Antarctica to rainforests, Mars to the Acropolis, and the Great Barrier Reef to the Great Wall of China. The virtual reality platform developed and designed specifically for the classroom immerses students in new experiences through guided tours to places their school buses couldn’t navigate. And annotated points of interest and ambient sound provide additional cues for a broad range of lesson integration. Says Jennifer Holland, program manager for Google’s education apps, “These teachers can bring abstract concepts to life. Imagine learning math by calculating the number of bricks it took to build the Great Wall of China.”

Additionally, Expeditions encourages inclusion, allowing many students who might not otherwise have shared in a field trip due to financial or physical constraints the chance to take part. It’s hoped that in time users will be able to further immerse themselves in these virtual realities, manipulating and exploring new environments for a greater learning experience, though at the outset it’s primarily necessary to build teachers’ understanding of how to effectively include the tool in daily lesson plans for enriched learning experiences.

The Package

Starting at around $20, Google’s cardboard viewing boxes wrap around a smartphone which users hold to their faces for an immersive experience that integrates images from Google Earth, Street View, and 360° footage from Jump cameras. At this stage, developers are gathering feedback from students and teachers before releasing the Expedition app that will be available on all devices purchased by schools. States Holland, “One of the key things we’ve heard from teachers is they really wanted to find a way to engage their students meaningfully and find that hook to inspire and get kids excited about learning.

One Teacher’s Experience

Cathy Chau, an educational technology specialist at Trevor Day School in New York, NY, blogged about her experience of Google’s Expeditions Pioneer Program. Says Chau, “Classes took field trips to Athens, the Galapagos Islands, the Great Barrier Reef, Spain, Brazil, Dubai, visited six biomes in a single day, the Moon, Mars, and even experienced what it would be like to be a Museum Photographer!” Of the tech, Chau explains that the Teacher Dashboard provides facts about each panorama, points of interest, and questions about the current landscape, and a smiley face shows the teacher what each student is viewing. She comments, “I think it’s going to provide so many opportunities for students and teachers, and will really ignite teachers’ creativity in lesson design!

Teachers interested in taking advantage of the Expeditions Pioneer Program can sign up here.

By Jennifer Klostermann

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Using Private Cloud Architecture For Multi-Tier Applications

Using Private Cloud Architecture For Multi-Tier Applications

Cloud Architecture These days, Multi-Tier Applications are the norm. From SharePoint’s front-end/back-end configuration, to LAMP-based websites using multiple servers to handle different functions, a multitude of apps require public and private-facing components to work in tandem. Placing these apps in entirely public-facing platforms and networks simplifies the process, but at the cost of security vulnerabilities. Locating everything…

Three Challenges of Network Deployment in Hyperconverged Infrastructure for Private Cloud

Three Challenges of Network Deployment in Hyperconverged Infrastructure for Private Cloud

Hyperconverged Infrastructure In this article, we’ll explore three challenges that are associated with network deployment in a hyperconverged private cloud environment, and then we’ll consider several methods to overcome those challenges. The Main Challenge: Bring Your Own (Physical) Network Some of the main challenges of deploying a hyperconverged infrastructure software solution in a data center are the diverse physical…

Cost of the Cloud: Is It Really Worth It?

Cost of the Cloud: Is It Really Worth It?

Cost of the Cloud Cloud computing is more than just another storage tier. Imagine if you’re able to scale up 10x just to handle seasonal volumes or rely on a true disaster-recovery solution without upfront capital. Although the pay-as-you-go pricing model of cloud computing makes it a noticeable expense, it’s the only solution for many…

Protecting Devices From Data Breach: Identity of Things (IDoT)

Protecting Devices From Data Breach: Identity of Things (IDoT)

How to Identify and Authenticate in the Expanding IoT Ecosystem It is a necessity to protect IoT devices and their associated data. As the IoT ecosystem continues to expand, the need to create an identity to newly-connected things is becoming increasingly crucial. These ‘things’ can include anything from basic sensors and gateways to industrial controls…

Do Not Rely On Passwords To Protect Your Online Information

Do Not Rely On Passwords To Protect Your Online Information

Password Challenges  Simple passwords are no longer safe to use online. John Barco, vice president of Global Product Marketing at ForgeRock, explains why it’s time the industry embraced more advanced identity-centric solutions that improve the customer experience while also providing stronger security. Since the beginning of logins, consumers have used a simple username and password to…

Moving Your Email To The Cloud? Beware Of Unintentional Data Spoliation!

Moving Your Email To The Cloud? Beware Of Unintentional Data Spoliation!

Cloud Email Migration In today’s litigious society, preserving your company’s data is a must if you (and your legal team) want to avoid hefty fines for data spoliation. But what about when you move to the cloud? Of course, you’ve probably thought of this already. You’ll have a migration strategy in place and you’ll carefully…

The Fully Aware, Hybrid-Cloud Approach

The Fully Aware, Hybrid-Cloud Approach

Hybrid-Cloud Approach For over 20 years, organizations have been attempting to secure their networks and protect their data. However, have any of their efforts really improved security? Today we hear journalists and industry experts talk about the erosion of the perimeter. Some say it’s squishy, others say it’s spongy, and yet another claims it crunchy.…

Three Tips To Simplify Governance, Risk and Compliance

Three Tips To Simplify Governance, Risk and Compliance

Governance, Risk and Compliance Businesses are under pressure to deliver against a backdrop of evolving regulations and security threats. In the face of such challenges they strive to perform better, be leaner, cut costs and be more efficient. Effective governance, risk and compliance (GRC) can help preserve the business’ corporate integrity and protect the brand,…

Is Machine Learning Making Your Data Scientists Obsolete?

Is Machine Learning Making Your Data Scientists Obsolete?

Machine Learning and Data Scientists In a recent study, almost all the businesses surveyed stated that big data analytics were fundamental to their business strategies. Although the field of computer and information research scientists is growing faster than any other occupation, the increasing applicability of data science across business sectors is leading to an exponential…