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Dare to Change: Gmail and Why it Matters to You Jonathan Schaeffer Vice Provost and Associate Vice President (IT) jonathan@ualberta.ca IT at WestVAC? Why should you care about IT? …under the covers …should just happen …out of sight, out of mind …someone else’s problem Wrong!

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dare to change gmail and why it matters to you

Dare to Change:Gmail and Why it Matters to You

Jonathan Schaeffer

Vice Provost and Associate Vice President (IT)

jonathan@ualberta.ca

it at westvac
IT at WestVAC?
  • Why should you care about IT?
    • …under the covers
    • …should just happen
    • …out of sight, out of mind
    • …someone else’s problem
  • Wrong!
  • IT, more than ever, requires your attention!
it world is changing
IT World is Changing
  • Fast network connections
  • Social networking
  • Cloud computing
  • Ubiquitous wireless access
  • Software as a service
  • Fundamental paradigm shifts that will dramatically impact how a modern university deploys IT
where are we today
Where Are We Today?
  • My generation
    • Desktop computers
    • Wired connections
    • Telephones
    • Local computing infrastructure
  • New generation
    • Laptops
    • Wireless connections
    • Cell phones
    • Non-local computing infrastructure
where do we want to be
Where Do We Want To Be?
  • IT world is changing rapidly but universities are usually slow to change
  • We run the risk of offering an antiquated IT environment to our faculty, staff and students
  • Universities are all about change; we should embrace it, not fear it
  • Can we change the way we think about IT, so that we can free up resources to change IT?
today s student
Today’s Student…
  • …is very different from the student of even five years ago
  • …is comfortable with and quick to adopt new IT technology
  • There is a significant (and growing) generation gap
philosophy
Philosophy
  • Core mandate of a university is research and teaching
  • IT is an enabler
  • Some IT components have become utility computing
  • Where appropriate, you should consider getting out of the utility computing business
typical situation
Typical Situation
  • Decentralized fragmented community
    • One large central IT department
    • Numerous mini IT groups on campus
  • Duplication of many services
  • Uneven quality of service
  • Non-uniform (even non-existent) policies
dare to change
Dare to Change?
  • Are we prepared to challenge the status quo?
  • Can we think about doing things differently?
  • Can we move towards deploying modern IT technology across the entire campus?
  • If not, we run the risk of providing core IT that is seen as irrelevant
case study asu 1
Case Study: ASU (1)
  • Outsourced student email
  • Outsourced learning management systems
  • Outsourced all computer networks
  • Outsourced help desk
  • Outsourced desktop support
  • Outsourced PeopleSoft infrastructure
  • Consolidating server rooms and then outsource

“If a service is core, then it should be out-sourced.”

Adrian Sannier (CIO, ASU)

case study asu 2
Case Study: ASU (2)
  • $15M in IT savings/year reinvested back into IT
    • Mobile computing
    • Application development
    • Using IT to improve student engagement
    • IT support for teaching
    • IT support for research
  • Brave new model that ASU claims reaps dividends
university of alberta
University of Alberta
  • Our mantra: don’t waste a good crisis
  • Over 30 independent IT groups on campus
  • Institutional cost of IT as a percent of the operating budget is disproportionately large
  • In general, student dissatisfaction with our IT offerings
  • We can’t make incremental changes; we need to leapfrog forward
email at the uofa
Email at the UofA
  • At least 47 independent email systems on campus
  • Each has their own hardware, software, and people resources
  • No central calendaring
  • At least 37 Blackberry servers on campus
  • Does this make sense?
centralize email because
Centralize Email Because:
  • Simplifies IT infrastructure
  • Enables university-wide calendaring
  • Addresses user concerns
  • Addresses auditor’s concerns
  • Improves security
  • Frees up valuable IT personnel time
  • Simplifies emergency response
  • Supports green computing
  • Enables cost savings by removing duplication
people
People
  • Centralization of email is NOT an excuse to eliminate jobs
  • IT personnel are generally overworked
  • Let’s get out of the mundane task of email
  • Free up precious people resources to further our research, teaching, and administration agenda
solutions
Solutions?
  • In-house?
    • Too expensive
  • Local provider?
    • Too expensive
  • Get out of the email business entirely

Google!

the google solution
The Google Solution
  • Gmail: Email provided by Google
    • Large default email box (7.4 GB)
    • Email integrated with calendaring
    • Google apps (including docs and tools)
    • Backups and disaster recovery
    • Cost is $0 for Google’s service, but there is a cost for increased network access
  • We will leapfrog forward in the quality of our service and the richness of our offerings
education edition
Education Edition
  • Education Gmail is not Public Gmail
  • We own the ualberta domain: CCID@ualberta.ca
  • We control CCIDs and passwords on campus
  • We own the data
  • No advertising
  • No data mining
  • All this is guaranteed in a contract with Google
privacy
Privacy
  • Gmail is hosted on servers around the world including the U.S.
  • The Patriot Act applies
  • COIPC and AOIPC have ruled that it is acceptable to have email housed in the US
status
Status
  • Gmail deployed for 250 pilot users
  • High user satisfaction
  • Legal contract with Google not complete
    • 99.9% compliance with Alberta privacy laws, but nothing less than 100% is acceptable
  • Nine Canadian institutions have indicated that if we jump, they will jump as soon as practical
dare to change22
Dare to Change?
  • These are difficult times for the university
  • The Google project is not about email
  • It is all about…
    • Opening the dialogue for centralization where it makes sense
    • Providing leading edge tools to faculty, staff and especially students
    • Changing the way people think about IT
want to know more
Want to Know More?

www.vpit.ualberta.ca/email