The 11th annual EDUCAUSE conference opened in Denver Nov. 4 with advice from best-selling author Jim Collins on how to take higher-education technology departments from good to great -- as well as lessons from Pepperdine University on how officials there saved nearly $18,000 with the help of virtualized computing.

When Thomas Hoover, Pepperdine's director of instructional technology, realized that replacing aging computers would cost $24,800--money that would strain the school's IT budget during tough fiscal times--he studied the costs of virtualization. Using equipment from NComputing, Hoover found that small devices that cost $70 apiece could trim the price of a computer


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