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IBM to build cloud computing platform for seven N.S. post-secondary schools

IBM Canada Ltd. is contributing a “multi-million dollar” private cloud to a consortium of post-secondary institutions in Nova Scotia. The system, the first of its kind in Atlantic Canada, will form a shared computing platform...


November 29, 2013  


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IBM Canada Ltd. is contributing a “multi-million dollar” private cloud to a consortium of post-secondary institutions in Nova Scotia. The system, the first of its kind in Atlantic Canada, will form a shared computing platform enabling the schools to together create new curriculum and conduct research aimed at better equipping graduates with high-demand analytics skills to drive Nova Scotia’s economy, the company said in a release.

The system, operational in early 2014, is being hosted at Dalhousie University, but will also be accessible through a single log-on process to faculty and students at Acadia University, Cape Breton University, Mount Saint Vincent University, Nova Scotia Community College, Saint Mary’s University and St. Francis Xavier University.

“A collaboration involving seven post-secondary institutes in Nova Scotia is unprecedented in this region,” said Michael Shepherd, dean of the Faculty of Computer Science at Dalhousie University.

“The ability to share a common system among all schools enhances our ability to collaborate as educators and researchers. There are always benefits to working together and this shared infrastructure will really allow the consortium to leverage each institution’s unique programming, resulting in highly skilled students ready to enter the workforce.”  

The cloud platform, based on IBM Flex System and IBM Storwize hardware, will run the Apache Software Foundation Virtual Computing Lab (VCL) software, providing each school with scalable on-demand access to servers, storage, applications and services. 

The open source cloud platform is designed specifically for the education and research community and will also include access to a range of IBM analytics software products.

“Cloud is now providing incredible opportunities for collaborative research across Canada,” said Dan Fortin, president of IBM Canada. “This shared computing platform in Nova Scotia will support advanced research today, and will be used to build the much-needed analytics skills for tomorrow.”