Wednesday, May 30, 2007

VT continues to lead with WiFi

I was encouraged to hear that fall admissions for Virginia Tech look strong in light of this semester's tragedy. Having visited campus and worked with faculty, staff, and students, I can attest that VT continues to be an extremely engaging and exciting campus.

One area of VT expertise that interests me is wireless networking. In my role at DyKnow, I worked with our team this spring to roll out a software pilot to selected engineering courses using Tablet PCs. Our software has always worked well in a wireless environment due to our client-server architecture, but I had no idea how high the Hokies would raise the bar. After a couple weeks of use, I was elated to see 250+ active PCs using our software on an 802.11g network in a single lecture hall. This was the result of a perfect marriage of scalable lecture software with a special mix of access points, load balancing, and other incredible Internet infrastructure efficiencies, compliments of VT engineers.

But then I thought about the pedagogy of teaching and managing over 250 people taking notes and collaborating in one interactive lecturing space...and my mind started spinning. So this is what we are now tackling together. We are all reviewing how we are doing things because faculty and students should get the full benefit of interaction and feedback in large lecture as well as smaller courses. Look for updates this fall.

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