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September 9, 1997


NIIT begins course to train Webmasters

NIIT Limited, in partnership with Silicon Graphics India, has announced a new Internet-based programme of studies called the Webmaster Series, to provide training in Internet and intranet activities such as Web page building, designing and graphics.

The curriculum, which will be available at NIIT's Centre for Advanced Technology Studies in Madras, will impart training using Virtual Reality Modelling Language and Java. SGI will bring in the technology in the form of its VRML standard and O2 multimedia servers, while NIIT will leverage it with its IT training expertise.

"Our course is not targeted at any niche high-end graphics but looks at the mass user base from an IT professional to an end-user where one becomes Net-enabled," said Dhruv Nath, vice- president, NIIT. He also heads NIIT's Centres of Competence. "In the event of the entry of private ISPs there is going to be huge demand for Internet and intranet-related skills and the need to design and manage commercial Web sites," he pointed out.

The curriculum includes five courses ranging from one-day programmes for top management to a 20-week one for Web programmers. The cost of the courses, which will commence in mid-September, ranges from Rs 3,000 to Rs 18,000.

The CATS also has a Web studio which houses a O2 server provided by SGI where one can create and edit multimedia Web content on its intranet.

"We chose Madras for the programme as this is the base of our instruction R&D," said L Balasubramanian, who heads the southern India operations of NIIT. "The total developing and planning costs that have gone into this series as on date would be around Rs 3 million," he added.

Avinash Fotedar, general manager, SGI, said, "This is a synergistic relationship. Our contribution is in the form of technology and what we get out of it is the promotion of our VRML standard which is extremely bandwidth efficient."

VRML is the standard developed by Silicon Graphics and widely accepted now by many IT majors such as Microsoft, Intel, IBM and Netscape, which carries multimedia data in a compact file format. For instance, an image, which is otherwise transmitted or downloaded byte by byte in other standards such as JPEG and TIFF, will be carried with only its vector (parameters such as coordination, and colour) information which is plain ASCII text. This in turn gets assimilated at the user's end as the original image.

- Compiled from the Indian media

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