Everyone seems to have different definitions of, experiences with, and concerns about cloud computing. The authors in this special issue of EQ specify their definitions, share their varied experiences in moving higher ed IT to the cloud, and warn of the issues that complicate reliance on cloud computing. They explain how they use the cloud at their home institutions, how to negotiate cloud contracts for better support and security, which metrics best suit cloud services, an initiative that provides cloud infrastructure for digital preservation, and the importance of federated identity. The authors in this issue keep an alert eye on the risks and benefits of cloud computing while sharing their sometimes hard-earned advice on how to safely move IT functions to the cloud.
In addition, this issue of EQ aligns with the May/June 2010 issue of EDUCAUSE Review, whose authors provide a strategic view of cloud computing and report on the top 10 IT issues for 2010.
Still to come in 2010 are special issues on learning environments and student retention. If you have ideas to share on these or other topics relevant to IT practitioners in higher education, I am happy to talk through the options with you, whether peer-reviewed feature articles or thoughtful opinions, short case studies, or good advice you want to share with peers. Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to begin the discussion. Suggestions for topics or ways to improve EQ are always welcome, as are volunteers to join the EQ Review Committee. Whether you would like to publish your work in EQ, help review submissions for value to your peers, or comment on published articles to start conversations in the community, your participation is welcomed and appreciated.
Now, into the cloud!