to the remote user. A simple filtering of access using this IP
address can suffice to assure limited access to licensed ma-
terials. With users increasingly depending on Internet serv-
ice providers for Internet access from home, when such a
user tries to access campus-licensed materials, he or she
would be rejected as coming from an off-campus address.
Thus, license management will require a more sophisti-
cated authorization mechanism than IP address filtering.
Ironically, the various networking trends described in
this section are putting campuses in a surprising situation.
The institutions that have long been fully networked may
now find that they have the poorest cable plant and are
struggling to maintain capabilities demanded by a univer-
sity community. On the other hand, the institutions that
have struggled to fully network their campuses may
now have the “latest and greatest.” Similarly, institutions
that have kept their telecommunications switch current
may find they cannot justify the risks inherent in con-
verged technologies for several years, but an institution
that has to now replace its outdated switch during this tran-
sition period may find that it is effective in the long run to
invest now in voice-over IP, the fully converged model.
Data Management
In addition to physical networks, the other com-
monly accepted component of infrastructure is that of
Chapter 6 Where the Rubber Meets the Road
163
institutional data and the enterprise applications used to
manage that data. The new applications that manage the
enterprise information and access to that information are
generally termed enterprise resource planning (ERP) ap-
plications. These complex systems can be distributed
across multiple servers. Although this approach is much
more flexible and convenient, it has significant implica-
tions in terms of security, implementation approaches,
and support.
Traditionally, major software applications were imple-
mented and run on central hardware, but access tended to
be via direct connection, limited as a result to a relatively
small number of administrators and data entry personnel.
With the coming of the network, the design stayed the
same, but computers replaced terminals. With truly perva-
sive campus networking and Web browsers widely under-
stood and universally available, the newest generation of
applications is built around a self-service model that em-
powers each member of the campus community to access
his or her own personal information. This, in turn, has im-
plications in terms of uses of data and support. Addition-
ally, by interfacing this data with a wide range of services,
such as communication (e.g., email and asynchronous con-
ferencing), library (electronic information resources), and
learning (online course management environments), this
enterprise data can manage authentication and authoriza-
tion capabilities to such services. Such an integrated
The Wired Tower
164

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