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­Universities Pilot 'Tools as a Service' Cloud Computing Initiative

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The Tools as a Service (TaaS) cloud computing pilot program involving the IBM Canada Software Lab and the Ontario Centres of Excellence is up and running at participating Canadian research institutions. TaaS is being deployed through the Centre of Excellence for Research in Adaptive Systems and is running on virtualized IBM BladeCenter servers on some of the pilot campuses. TaaS will provide researchers and students with access to business software and software development tools and is expected to lead to savings in energy and financial costs and also help to improve productivity. Users will be able to access the software and other tools through a Web portal. "Besides being very convenient for the end users, Tools as a Service enables better use of university resources, as the same cloud infrastructure can be used for teaching and research, and by many users," says York University professor Marin Litoiu. Other participants in the program include the University of Waterloo, Queen's University, University of Toronto, Carleton University, and the Ontario Cancer Institute.

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