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Baker College of Flint, MI, Texas A&M University, and the University of Louisville, KY, took first, second, and third places, respectively, in the third annual National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (CCDC) held in April 2008 in San Antonio, TX. The competition, hosted by the University of Texas at San Antonio's Center for Infrastructure Assurance and Security (CIAS), a nationally recognized leader in cyber security education and research, featured six teams with eight members each who were scored on their ability to operate and maintain a business network while under hostile cyber attack.


The CCDC program has grown from five participating schools in 2005 to 56 schools in 2008, with six regional competitions taking place nationwide. Participants in the 2008 competition advanced to the National CCDC after winning regional competitions against opposing teams in the Southwest, Midwest, Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, and West Coast regions. The CCDC program is the first cyber defense competition that allows teams of full-time college students from across the country to apply their information assurance and information technology (IT) education in a competitive environment. Although similar to other cyber defense competitions, the CCDCs are unique because they focus on business operations and incorporate the operational aspect of managing and protecting an existing network infrastructure.


The teams inherited an "operational" network from a fictional business, complete with e-mail, Web sites, data files, and users. Each team was required to correct problems on its network, perform typical business tasks, and defend its networks from a red team that generated live, hostile activity throughout the competition. The teams were scored on their performance in those three areas, and the team with the highest score at the end of the competition, Baker College, was crowned the National Collegiate Cyber Defense Champion. The CCDC program was sponsored in part through donations from leading businesses in the communications and IT industries. Donated hardware and software from leaders in the IT industry were used during the competition to provide students with the opportunity to work with technologies that they would never see in a typical classroom environment.


The National CCDC is being sponsored in part through donations and volunteer support from the AT&T Foundation (, Department of Homeland Security (, Cisco Systems (, Acronis (, Northrop Grumman (, Accenture (, the Information Systems Security Association (, Core Security (, G-C Partners (, SecureLogix (, ThinkGeek (, Code Magazine (, and Pepsi ( For more information, please visit or contact CIAS at 210-458- 2118 or via e-mail at



TeamViewer remote maintenance software, available only for Windows platforms, has announced that a beta version for Apple OS X is available for download from the supplier's Web site at Apple users will be able to remotely access other computers via the Internet using TeamViewer, even through firewalls. The new version runs from Mac OS X 10.4 and offers cross-platform support so that not only other Macs but also Windows systems can be remotely controlled. Following the establishment of a connection to the remote computer by means of a Partner ID, changes and maintenance work can be carried out or programs can be installed and executed, files can be transferred between computers, and support can be provided without installation on the remotely controlled computer. A practical special feature of the license model is that customers do not need to decide on one system but can use the software within the context of their license on both Windows and Mac systems. The German TeamViewer GmbH was founded in 2005 and is fully focused on the development and distribution of high-end solutions for remote support. TeamViewer is used by more than 6 million people in 50 countries worldwide.



The state of writing among teens today is marked by an interesting paradox. Although teens are heavily embedded in a technology-rich world and craft a significant amount of electronic text, they see a fundamental distinction between their electronic social communications and the more formal writing they do for school or for personal reasons. Teens are utilitarian in their approach to technology and writing, using both computers and longhand, depending on circumstances. Their use of computers for school and personal writing is often tied to the convenience of being able to edit easily, and although they do not think that their use of computers or their text-based communications with friends influences their formal writing, many do admit that the informal styles that characterize their e-communications do occasionally bleed into their schoolwork.


All of this matters more than ever because teenagers and their parents uniformly believe that good writing is a bedrock for future success. Eight in 10 parents believe that good writing skills are more important now than they were 20 years ago, and 86% of teens believe that good writing ability is an important component of guaranteeing success later in life. These are among the key findings in a national phone survey of 700 youth aged 12 to 17 years and their parents conducted by the Pew Internet & American Life Project and the National Commission on Writing. The survey was completed in November 2007 and has a margin of error of plus or minus five percentage points. The report also contains findings from eight focus groups in four US cities conducted in the summer of 2007.


Some of the findings include the following:


* Eighty-seven percent of youth aged 12 to 17 years engage at least occasionally in some form of electronic personal communication, which includes sending text messages, sending e-mail or instant messages, or posting comments on social networking sites.


* Sixty percent of teens do not think of these electronic texts as "writing."


* Fifty-seven percent of teens say that they revise and edit more when they write using a computer.


* Sixty-three percent of teens say that using computers to write makes no difference in the quality of the writing they produce.


* Seventy-three percent of teens say that their personal electronic communications (e-mail, instant messaging, text messaging) have no impact on the writing they do for school, and 77% say that these have no impact on the writing they do for themselves.


* Sixty-four percent of teens admit that they incorporate, often accidentally, at least some informal writing styles used in personal electronic communication into their writing for school; 25% have used emoticons in their school writing.


* Fifty percent have used informal punctuation and grammar; 38% have used text shortcuts such as "LOL," meaning "laugh out loud."



For the full report, please visit: