Glow, the Scottish Intranet for Schools, as it has been dubbed, has come in for a lot of criticism recently.
It is often suggested that the 40 odd million UKpounds spent on it was a huge amount of money. Glow cater’s for a user base of about 1.5 million. The UK National Health Service IT Strategy is budgeted at 12 billion UKpounds for about 60 million records. Comparing the two figures which admittedly is not like for like suggests that the Glow budget should have been 300 million UKpounds. In other words it is not an extravagant amount of money that is actually being spent.
But it does help to put into context one of the oft heard complaints about the slowness of Glow for users. The Glow infrastructure relies for its final connection to the school user on the Local Authority networks. When first designed, it was never envisaged that these networks would need to carry the sort of traffic that Glow requires, quite apart from the inherent problems of external connections to the Glow feed. Given another two hundred million or so the Glow network could have terminated at each and every individual school building.
I agree that there are many things in Glow which could be improved, but one has to start somewhere and Glow is constantly moving forward with a lot of dedicated people driving it.