Friday, February 12, 2010

Journal 1 Computing in the Clouds Nets 5

Johnson, D. (2009). Computing in the clouds. Learning and Leading with Technology, 37(4), Retrieved from

In this article, Doug Johnson, argues that computing in the clouds is the direction we are heading toward.  Throughout the article, Johnson, shows us how information will become more and more accessible for students and staff.  It will also be cheaper to use information. We are no longer dependent on purchasing expensive computers with great hard drives to store our information on, neither do we have to purchase software programs so we can write up essays for school or create a nice power point presentation.  As long as we can access the internet, we can also access our own “work.”  He continues to talk about the Netbook and how this device can help lower the cost for schools that can’t afford to purchase computers.  He also brings up the security of working in the clouds. He responds to questions such as how safe is it to store your information anywhere else than on your own computer and who owns the information.  Finally, he touches on adequate knowledge for educators to transmit the technological advantages that seem to know no boundaries to their students.  
To work in the cloud takes on a whole new meaning to me after reading this article. First I would like to say that I feel very humbled when I read this article and realize just how little I know about the technological advantages you can utilize to your own benefit.  I had also never heard the term “to work in the cloud” till I read this article. But when I think about it, I do it all the time. When I want to make a pdf, I don’t go and purchase a software program to do it.  I rather go on the internet and search for free pdf converters.  It is absolutely fabulous.  I can also find many free trial programs and editing programs that I use for pictures, I just never thought about it as working in the cloud. Having the possibility to compute in the clouds opens the possibility to be completely virtual. I never have to be in one place to do my work.  Working “in the clouds” opens up the possibility to students to bring their school work anywhere as long as there is internet access. I can also work in any setting without worrying about my “information.” Everything just seems easier. Where is the catch? It just seems too good to be true.
Queston #1
Will the academic divide between the students in affluent areas and poorer neighborhoods increase even more if we start using Netbooks in the class room or is it possible to bridge some of the gap?
I have never used a Netbook, but from reading about it, it seems very useful and inexpensive. I believe the Netbook will serve as an inexpensive option for schools that can’t afford to purchase computers for their students.  But then again, there are many schools that probably will not be able to purchase the Netbooks either.  If schools move away from computers and expect their students to have Netbooks when they come to class, then I believe the gap will grow further.  There are many inexpensive computers on the market today, and still many people that don’t have a computer at home.  I do see how information is much more affordable to come by if using the Netbook and I believe that there are many schools that might be able to take advantage of this fact. Companies might also be more likely to donate Netbooks to a school than to give away an expensive computer. Overall, I believe that access to technology and information will always be a barrier between the students that have and the ones that don’t have and I don’t think the Netbook will help bridge the gap.
Question #2
What will the expectations be from the teachers in the class room and their knowledge about this technology?
It seems like if we use the Netbooks in the class rooms, the teachers are going to have to be much more technologically advanced in their knowledge. “Computing in the clouds” opens up the door to basically anywhere. Right now we have some sort of check and balance because we have the software on our computers in schools and the teachers for the most part know what the students are doing. Or at least should do. Once students” leave” their stationary class room computer, they will be able to access all and any type of information. They have to enter the internet to access their own files.  I don’t see how you can work securely if you are out in cyberspace where anybody can enter your data and you can enter others data. I thing this questions needs to be explored further.

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