Cloud computing is the technology du jour. Last week Google released its open source Chrome OS. Microsoft's Windows Azure is scheduled to launch on Jan. 1. Today, Sun Microsystems, Inc. announced the availability of their "Education in the Sun" cloud computing solution for K-12 schools and community colleges.
Sun partnered with Ashbourne Technology Group to deliver a full-functioning desktop computing environment available anywhere via Internet and a thin client. All major operating systems are available: Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. Sun Solaris is also an option.
"Schools can escape from the desktop replacement cycle, saving thousands of dollars per year while providing better access to need-to-know information," Ashbourne CEO Ivan Segal said.
According to Sun, the system is priced to serve K-12 schools and community colleges at only $1 per concurrent user. Some schools may even be able to pay for the system with money from the American Recovery and Reinvestment program.
"This is a full-function solution with no compromises to what students, teachers and administrators are used to today," said Joe Hartley. Hartley, Sun's vice president of government, education and healthcare sales, added: "With this new offering, they can easily and quickly access a common and familiar desktop environment on thin clients via the Internetin the classroom, library, at home, or virtually anywherewithout the management and maintenance costs and hassles of OS upgrades, security patches, bug fixes, or storage backups."