There’s good news for IT nerds the world over – late-adopting industries like health care, government and education are finally catching up with the rest of the world. These industries in particular are often slow to adopt new tech because every major tech purchase is held hostage by stringent regulations. In most cases this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In health care there’s a lot of concern over privacy, in government the main concern is security, and in education the concern is data security and the safety of staff and faculty.
Solid State Storage (SSS) and Education
If you’ve ever sat in a college admissions office watching the receptionist tap her pen on the desk while giving you this look that says, “Sorry, it’s still loading,” you understand why educational institutions are in dire need of an infrastructural upgrade. While not a massive phenomenon, solid state storage brings something amazing to the education IT table: speed.
To put things in perspective, most of today’s education institutions use a lot of older, legacy computing systems. These servers are usually made up of racks of tape or hard disk drives. Tape has been a long-time friend of educational institutions, but it is among the most volatile and unstable storage mediums. While hard disk storage is a little more stable, they are made up of moving mechanical parts that eventually wear out – usually within three to five years.
Solid-state storage is a godsend in that it doesn’t rely on archaic tape or hard disk technology. In fact, there are no moving parts at all. All data is stored on silicon chips where it’s quickly retrieved and distributed.
Virtualization and Government
According to a recent article at GovernmentComputerNews.com, government agencies are cashing in on the virtualization trend in droves. In fact, all across the board government-sanctioned virtualization efforts are expected to save upwards of $30 billion by 2015. It all comes down implementing sever virtualization technology. Simply put, server virtualization is where multiple virtual servers and their resources are masked and shared on a single physical server. This means having the capability to provide a high-powered server environment without having to buy space in a data center, or pay high-energy bills that result in using traditional server technology – thus tens of billions of dollars in IT savings.
Cloud Computing and Health Care
In the tech industry, trends come and go and those non-nerds in the world – pretty much the majority of the known universe – never hear about those trends ever again. Cloud computing is not one of those trends. Actually, it can be argued that the cloud, while a tech buzzword, is no longer a trend, but what today’s web infrastructure is built on. In fact, there are very few industries that are completely unaffected by cloud computing technology. The term wildfire comes to mind, as it has spread all the way through the health care industry. Rackspace, a San Antonio-based cloud host, has already paired with NASA to create an open source cloud environment, allowing other government agencies and businesses to build their own clouds or develop hybrid clouds that work together seamlessly.
Unfortunately, concerns over security and privacy are preventing major overhauls in data management efficiency throughout each industry. Technological advances in computing will not only increase efficiency, but also reduce costs dramatically over the long and short term. Technologies like solid state storage, virtualization and cloud computing cut down on the need for high-cost, inefficient computing systems. As these high-demand industries incorporate new computing resources, there will likely be a dramatic shift in how their IT departments function on a large scale.The main benefit cloud computing provides for health care institutions is speed and flexibility. Using a cloud computing platform lets health care professionals easily upload and access patient files wherever they go. Patient transfers are a cinch, as file access isn’t location-dependent. Physicians and administrators can easily log in and access the needed files.