(For those new to the column, Forward Migration is our term for companies moving from Wintel machines to Macs — or at least adding or increasing the number of Macs they use. A Forward Migration Kit is an overview of Mac OS products for a particular occupation, such as photography, optometry, etc.)
Bowling Green State university (BGSU) in Ohio is rolling out a new program to provide 150 free laptops — iBooks, no less — to freshman. The laptops go mainly to students who haven’t yet decided on a major or who have below-average standardized test scores. Students get them for three years at no cost. After this time, they can either return them or purchase at a reduced price.
“The whole point is, we’re trying to get the students a greater and more immediate access to technology on campus,” Paul Cesarini, Bowling Green project manager, said in an AP story. “We’re hoping it will not only help grades, but it will boost retention. The only thing you can do is keep throwing technology at these students and hope it sticks.”
Funding for the program comes from Ohio’s “Success Challenge” program, an initiative that rewards colleges that graduate a relatively large number of students on time. BGSU has over 19,300 students, including 2,700 graduate students, on the main campus, plus 1,350 at Firelands College in Huron, Ohio. Seventy-eight percent of new freshmen return for the sophomore year. Who knows? Maybe that percentage will be even higher with the added lure of iBooks.
Thanks to MacCentral reader George Wagner for the heads-up on this one. Wagner also noted that clothing store chain The Gap gave away a free CD for the holidays.
“I was pleased to find that it was a Mac/Windows hybrid CD,” he adds. “Given that The Gap’s CEO [Millard Drexler] is on Apple’s [board of directors], I would hope so, but given Intuit’s history, that is not a given. Since I would be the first to complain if it had NOT been available for the Macintosh, I think it is only fair to let them know how much we appreciate their support of the Mac. I sent my comments via
their e-mail form.”
Finally, an original Bondi Blue iMac being used professionally in the arts. Erik Carstensen, chief audio engineer at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego, uses an iMac running Opcode Studio Vision DSP.
“The Mac is being utilized to play back all of the recorded sound cues in this year’s live stage production of the musical, ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas,'” says Rusty Ross, who sent the photos our way. “The audio samples are triggered with MIDI program change commands generated by the mixing console, making it possible for Erik to operate the entire show without taking his hands off the console or his eyes off the stage. The computer has operated flawlessly for the entire 72-performance run.”
With a current operating budget of approximately US$8.5 million, the Old Globe Theatre is San Diego’s largest arts institution, its leading arts employer, and among the nation’s top-ranked regional theatres. More than 300,000 people annually attend Globe productions and participate in the theatre’s education programs and outreach services.