Apple CEO Steve Jobs demoted the personal computer to “just a device” when he announced the launch of iCloud computing at the recent Worldwide Developers Conference. Jobs might be correct, but a March 2011 study commissioned by Qwest Software suggests that while higher education leaders see cloud computing in their future, they aren’t as certain of how to make it happen.
In Pulse on Public Sector Virtualization and Cloud Computing, potential cost savings were cited as the biggest incentive for adopting cloud computing to a third of the participating institutions. However, a third also said security breaches were the biggest obstacle. All told, about half of the schools surveyed were optimistic about the prospects of cloud computing.
“There are some challenges around security, funding, and around access, but all those things can be tackled," Paul Christman, vice president of sales for Qwest’s Public Sector division told Campus Technology. “Of the three market segments in this survey, the feds are driven by mandates, the states by cost savings. But education is really driven by what this can do, what this can accomplish, and what this can’t accomplish in some other way. The search for the positive [aspects of cloud computing] is really borne out in the academic side.”