System to drive analytics curriculum, research and development
MARKHAM, ON & HALIFAX, NS, Nov. 27, 2013 /CNW/ - IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced it is contributing a multi-million dollar private
cloud to a consortium of post-secondary institutions in Nova Scotia.
The system, the first of its kind in Atlantic Canada, will form a
shared computing platform enabling the schools to together create new
curriculum and conduct research, all aimed at better equipping
graduates with high-demand analytics skills to drive Nova Scotia's
The system, operational in early 2014, is being hosted at Dalhousie
University but will also be accessible through a simple, single log-on
process to faculty and students at Acadia University, Cape Breton
University, Mount Saint Vincent University, Nova Scotia Community
College, Saint Mary's University and St. Francis Xavier University.
"A collaboration involving seven post-secondary institutes in Nova
Scotia is unprecedented in this region. The ability to share a common
system among all schools enhances our ability to collaborate as
educators and researchers. There are always benefits to working
together and this shared infrastructure will really allow the
consortium to leverage each institution's unique programming, resulting
in highly skilled students ready to enter the workforce," says Michael
Shepherd, dean of the Faculty of Computer Science at Dalhousie
The cloud platform, based on IBM Flex System and IBM Storwize hardware, will run
the Apache Software Foundation Virtual Computing Lab (VCL) software,
providing each school with scalable on-demand access to servers,
storage, applications and services. This open source cloud platform is
designed specifically for the education and research community and will
also include access to a wide range of IBM analytics software products.
"Cloud is now providing incredible opportunities for collaborative
research across Canada," says Dan Fortin, president of IBM Canada.
"This shared computing platform in Nova Scotia will support advanced
research today, and will be used to build the much-needed analytics
skills for tomorrow."
The schools will use the system to deliver curriculum that reflects the
mix of technical and problem-solving skills necessary to prepare
students for high-demand careers in analytics. This need is being
fueled by the explosion of Big Data -- the 2.5 quintillion bytes of information generated daily from a
growing list of sources such as smartphones, social networks,
instrumentation, GPS, audio or video files, emails and sensors. New
insights are found when analyzing these data types together.
IBM's contribution of this cloud infrastructure is part of a November, 2012 agreement between IBM, the Government of Nova Scotia, Nova Scotia Business Inc.
and the consortium of post-secondary education institutions to seed
analytics skills in Nova Scotia, locate an IBM services delivery centre
in the province and create up to 500 new highly skilled jobs by 2020.
The technology contribution is under the auspices of two IBM programs
which facilitate collaboration with educators to teach students the
information technology skills they need to be competitive and keep pace
with changes in the workplace. IBM's Shared University Research and the
Academic Initiatives programs provide hardware and access to analytics
software, curriculum materials, case study projects and IBM data
scientists and other researchers.
Join in a discussion Friday, November 29, 12 pm EST, to find out more about how IBM,
governments and more than a dozen leading Canadian universities are
collaborating to apply cloud and analytics technologies to accelerate
research, nurture "economy of tomorrow" skills and drive innovation.
Post your questions on Twitter using #Convo4Change, or DM @smarterplanetca
SOURCE: IBM Canada Ltd.
For further information:
IBM Media Relations, Canada