After Katrina, Colleges Turned to Internet Technology to Stay in Touch With the World (Chron. of Higher Ed)

The Internet was designed for disaster, and in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the global computer network largely performed as planned, serving as a critical communication tool for colleges hit by the storm.

Though campus networks at many colleges in New Orleans and other areas of the Gulf Coast remained offline on Thursday because of storm damage, officials were able to activate off-campus Web sites that they had set up for emergency purposes and use those to keep students, faculty members, and others informed. Thanks to the distributed nature of the Internet — which was originally engineered to let leaders communicate in the event of a nuclear attack or other catastrophe — university officials easily routed visitors to the new emergency sites. (more…)