Yesterday a press release snuck out with several announcements regarding virtualization.  For full detail, link to Kevin's post and then to the press announcement after the jump.

Kevinsul's Management Blog : Announcing the 'Windows Installer Utility for MSFT Application Virtualization' (and why you should care)

This is a major opportunity for Education because we live in an environment where many machines go relatively unmanaged.  So if you want to push out an application, there is an unknown probability that it could negatively impact something else on their machine since imageyou have no way of collecting an inventory of all those workstations and then testing application to application compatibility issues.  Application virtualization resolves that issue by creating a virtual bubble for that application to live in, but still uses local machine resources.

In the past, for this technology to function it required a back end server to deliver the application and determine to who and how long it should be available.  This announcement makes public the ability to deliver the virtualized application independently using Windows Installer, which means if that machine is going off-campus for a long period of time or may never come back at all, you can still provision to it safely.