Don’t be Pwnd ! Own Your Data

Being Pwnd means being beaten, or owned. It means losing. Making mistakes. And ultimately being embarrassed. In fact if you are publicly embarrassed we could say “Uber Pwnage”.

When I refer to the term “system” I am referring to Content Management Systems, Learning Management Systems, School Management Systems, and other record management systems

School IT Departments need to have standards for all software that the school uses. There should be standards for what format data gets archived in, and how that data can be moved to other systems. You must consider that in case of a major systems failure, you will need more than one method for getting to your critical information. This means implementing on-sight and off-sight backup solutions; and simulating a disaster recovery scenario a few times a year.

Finally, there is always the possibility that the company you are licensing software from will go out of business and leave you with archives of data that no other product can import. Most people assume that as long as they have a working installation available to them, that proprietary backup is not an issue. This is true, unless there is a major disaster which renders your local systems useless.

So do you own your data?

Here is a test. If you own your data you should be able to accomplish the following:

  1. Archive your data onto a computer somewhere within your network.
  2. Open that archive using software that is free or open source.
  3. Use that data in another system/ database assuming someone with database skills is involved.

More times than not, people cannot accomplish all 3 without breaking their licensing agreement or hacking their data, which can be costly.

I think it is clear you want to be categorized as owning your data. If not you are probably going to get Pwnd.

I would like to know if you feel like you actually have control of your data and could recover it in the event of a disaster that critically damages your campus.

 

Tony DePrato
tonydeprato.com

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About Tony DePrato

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One Response to Don’t be Pwnd ! Own Your Data

  1. Pingback: Podcast Episode 18 – January 25, 2012 | Technology in the Classroom

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