Live@edu – mixing software and online services

I wrote a little earlier about the LGFL decision to switch LondonMail to the Live@edu service. But I didn’t really explain the context behind the move that is going on for us, towards a range of cloud-based services (don’t ask me why everybody says “Cloud-based services” instead of “on the Internet”, but I guess it sounds trendier, so I’ll copy it too).

Within Microsoft we talk about “Software + Services”, and although you’ll find that phrase used externally too, I think it would be better to describe what it is we’re doing – which is basically moving from a model of software on computers, to a mix of software on computers and web-based services, and integrating them together to deliver a completely different experience. It leaves you free to build an IT system where your services are delivered partially from in-school IT and services from the web.

Fortunately, my colleague Steve Clayton, has worked with CommonCraft (the animations-on-paper-to-describe-complex-ideas people) to produce a video about what this all means. It’s not been written explicitly for education, but it all makes sense in the context of schools.

I’ve love Common Craft videos, because they take a complex idea and break it down into plain English. Some of my favourites are about podcasting, blogs, wikis and web search strategies.

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