[Micronet] Berkeley Explains Why Google Trumps Microsoft (from _Wired_)

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[Micronet] Berkeley Explains Why Google Trumps Microsoft (from _Wired_)

John McChesney-Young
With thanks to Lance Knobel/@lknobel, who retweeted a note of this
brief article.


A couple of excerpts:

<< But Google’s victory wasn’t completely one-sided. Microsoft scored
well on calendar tools, with the University arguing that a move to
Office 365 would cause fewer problems for calendar “power users” —
those who “may schedule dozens of meetings a day for several
administrators and keep track of one to two dozen calendars minute by
minute.” The report says that only about 5 percent of the people on
campus are power users, but they account for about fifty percent of
calendar use. “The lessened functionality in Google would be a
detriment to these power users’ productivity going forward,” the
report says.

<< Microsoft also came out ahead on security. After examining such
security issues as authentication, encryption of stored email, and
guarantee on where data will be stored, the university feels that
Microsoft has a clear edge. “Google is inferior on all fronts,” the
report says, “but only by a small margin.” >>


I found the latter point interesting in light of the news a couple of
days ago about LAPD's decision not to use Google Apps for Government:


<< After more than two years of trying, the City of Los Angeles has
abandoned plans to migrate its police department to Google's hosted
email and office application platform saying the service cannot meet
certain FBI security requirements. >>

Cf. http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Messaging-and-Collaboration/Google-Loses-13K-LAPD-Seats-in-Google-Apps-Deal-779735/

Two paragraphs on the future role of email conclude the Wired article:

<< ...Why do schools even provide an email account anyway? Gmail and
most web-based clients are free. Schools — especially state school
strapped for funding — could save on huge infrastructure costs by
cutting the email systems and just letting student use their own
accounts. An email address would just be one more data point gathered
during registration, like a phone or social security number.

<< Waggener’s office is considering the question, and he notes that
campus surveys find that many students prefer to receive information
via text messages and Facebook rather than email. “It’s fair to say
that email is for old people,” he says with a laugh. But Waggener is
also serving the university’s entire staff and faculty. The university
still believes in a unified infrastructure, and all things considered,
email and calendars are still a very important part of that. Waggener
says that if Berkeley changed technologies with the arrival of each
new thing, it would still be using MySpace. “You have to be prepared
to move, but you can’t be schizophrenic about it,” he says. “I would
rather build the tools to let students choose.” >>

Although the comments start off - and continue for a surprisingly long
time - as useless for anything but a possible giggle - think Slashdot
- there are a few more substantial contributions.

Happy holidays to all!



John McChesney-Young, Administrative Assistant
History of Art Department, U. C. Berkeley
[hidden email] ~ 1-510-642-5511

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