Re: U Waterloo nets $2.3 million Microsoft investment (Aug. 14)

It is a complete outrage to see one of Canada’s most respected engineering universities sell to Microsoft the right

to decide what should be in the curriculum or not.

I am a University of Waterloo computer engineering graduate and it makes me sick to see the university forcing electrical and compute engineering applicants to pass a Microsoft-specific course just to be considered for admission. UW just lost any credibility it once had for its engineering program. It is such a shame now that I have a degree from there.</P.

Carlos Bazzarella

Re: Do the smart card shuffle (Aug. 12)

I believe there is another cautionary argument against smart cards, separate from the civil liberties point of view: we may become complacent because we believe the technology cannot be broken into. We expect the technology to protect us.

If the world has humans smart enough to build a smart card in the first place, then you have to believe there are other humans smart enough to be able to create a forgery. The ability to make a forgery is taken away from the corner print shop and moved to organizations like the CIA and foreign national governments.

We will be putting so much trust in them that people with forged cards will be able to move about freely, making us even more vulnerable to major attacks those on Sept. 11.

Vic Neglia

Re: Despite the odds, tape libraries endure (Aug. 8)

Another critical point in favour of tape systems is that they can easily be attached to a group of computers which have a layered security architecture. By eliminating external communication links, security is substantially enhanced and off-site critical data storage is trivial.

Kim Rowe
RoweBots , Inc.

Re: Despite the odds, tape libraries endure (Aug. 8)

That article is a load of crap. While the tapes may only cost $100, the enabling drive units cost several thousand dollars. This is compared to 100GB external USB hard drives ($300 each), which are not linear in nature, offer faster backup and restore, can easily be carried off-site, and are natively compatible with virtually any computer. There is no comparison. The trend we see is to move to external hard drives.

Drives get dirty; tapes break, are not “”sealed,”” and are rarely compatible with multiple drive units. Archaic is the only word I can think of to describe this type of backup method.

Doug Geary
GearyTech Technology Services

Re: Mainframes: cheaper than you think (Aug. 8)

My, my, how the dinosaur has evolved into a cost-effective platform! I watched how my old shop became a server farm, and marveled how anyone could keep it under control. The most elegant transformation, though, was the replacement of the monolithic IBM 9100 and its towering DASDIs with a R13 box. A third of the size with twice the horsepower, hot-swappable, TCP/IP enabled, and a slick backup package that cut our nightlies to minutes. I do have to credit the client/server push, though, because it made the dinosaur turn away from the tar pit and decide to compete. Hope everyone kept their CICS/Cobol/JCL manuals.

Mark N. Bonham
Senior data analyst, transfer payments and financial reporting
Ministry of Education

Re: Meet Canada’s first privacy plaintiff (Aug. 6)

I think what’s done with my personal information should be my decision. I think that people should be given the option of whether or not their phone entry should be published, to who, and under what alias (barring fraudulent use).

Rick Renison

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