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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    IBM to teach new Internet system at UA

    IBM has partnered with the UA Management Information Systems Department to teach a class based on Web 2.0 technology, which has taken over as a means of programming and using Internet technology.

    Pasha Ray, a representative for IBM media relations, said IBM stands to gain from the program because the career pipeline will be filled with talented people from the UA.

    “”The life value is that students in this class are going to get jobs with local employers because they will have these skills,”” Ray said. “”We do not know any other school that is doing this in the nation.””

    The course management information systems 300, Designing and Maintaining Online Communities, was created with help from IBM’s academic initiative, a program that works with universities worldwide.

    The course has 37 students and is taught by Rawn Shah, an IBM community manager and visiting UA lecturer.

    “”I met with the department head; he wanted to find new ways to interest new students in the MIS program,”” Shah said. “”I created the course materials and I help coordinate industry speakers to come in and talk about new roles out there.””

    Shah said the program’s goal is to expand to other universities.

    “”For universities, it is also a way to work with high schools in their community,”” Shah said.

    Terence Rosen, a business administration junior, said the class teaches students how to manage Web communities.

    “”I love it, it is a great class,”” Rosen said. “”We are going to start a Web community in local high schools by interviewing students and seeing what subject they want the community to be on.””

    Web 2.0 is the successor to other revolutionary Web-based functions such as e-mail in the late 1990s and JavaScript – a form of Internet programming that was widely used before Web 2.0 took hold.

    Joe Becker, a public relations representative with IBM, said the conversion of most computers to cable modem has, in part, made Web 2.0 a possibility.

    “”Broadband is a major facilitator,”” Becker said. “”No one could use MySpace or Facebook if it weren’t for high-speed Internet because of all the streaming video and music.””

    Becker also said unlikely groups who use the technology have re-defined Internet use.

    “”What is interesting is that government facilities can use wikis and blogs,”” Becker said. “”Wikipedia, for example, is different because everyone can provide the definition for something. It provides contacts to other resources as opposed to a description being a one-man-show.””

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