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SIGNAL Blogs

Cyber Mission Force Under Construction

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The U.S. Cyber Command's Cyber Mission Force is generating teams and assigning them to combatant commands, but they are still in the learning phase for their missions. Half the teams will focus on defense, and the other half will focus on initiating activities.

Power in the Pacific Brings New Challenges, Responsibilities

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

As the only trusted major power in the Asia-Pacific region, the United States literally finds itself at the heart of all coalition networking activities. Amid the pivot to the Pacific, the nation also is striving to modernize the force while it confronts budgetary uncertainties domestically and abroad.

Achieving Mission Partner Environment Poses Complex Challenges

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Creating an effective mission partner environment (MPE) is a daunting task entwined with that of the Joint Information Environment.

New Defense Secretary Needs Better White House Access

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Defense Secretary nominee Ashton Carter will need better access to the White House than that experienced by his predecessor, Chuck Hagel. That is the conclusion of John Grimes, the former assistant secretary of defense for networks and information integration, who called Carter an excellent choice for the department.

U.S. Defense Department to Aim for Intercollaborability

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The new word for the Defense Department CIO office is intercollaborability. The goal is to encompass all options and then add some more.

Joint Regional Security Stacks Top CIO's List

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Success for the Joint Information Environment may come down to the Joint Regional Security Stacks (JRSS), says the Defense Department's acting CIO. However, their success may hinge on acquisition reform.

U.S. Military Services Freed to Explore Their Own Clouds

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) no longer will be the required go-to-group for military cloud services. Beginning Monday, December 15, the services will be able to choose their own clouds. DISA will be able to compete with commercial providers on an economic basis.

Pentagon to Dip its Toe Into Wireless

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The Pentagon finally will begin a foray into wireless with a test program scheduled to begin December 23. Terry Halvorsen, Defense Department acting chief information officer, says the department has been late in implementing this capability.

Mobility, Flexibility Top Pacific Force Network Needs

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Being able to project power across the vast and diverse reaches of the Asia-Pacific region will require a mobile and flexible network that will be able to follow the force and adapt to changing conditions and requirements, says the commanding general of the U.S. Army, Pacific.

Technology Gap Widening Among Prospective Coalition Partners

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The United States must continue to improve its leading-edge technology to stay ahead of potential adversaries who are closing the technological gap. However, this risks losing interoperability with small nations that would be important allies in an ad hoc coalition. Working with partners well before a coalition is formed may help solve the problem.

Nontechnical Factors Determine Interoperability

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Systems engineers are—and must be—focusing on technical issues that would enable interoperability across national lines; three other important facets ultimately may determine whether members of an ad hoc coalition can achieve effective interoperability in a multinational operation.

The United States Is the Network in the Asia-Pacific Region

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

There never will be a NATO-type alliance in the Asia-Pacific region. So, the United States must host any ad hoc coalition that is to be successful in a multinational operation.

3-D Printing in Space Becomes Reality

December 9, 2014
By George I. Seffers

The 3-D printer recently installed on the International Space Station has printed a replacement part for itself, proving the process works in space and potentially paving the way for long-term space expeditions.

App Identifies Convenient and Inexpensive Parking Options

December 9, 2014
By Rachel Lilly

'Tis the season for heading out and about to shop, travel and visit with family, and the free ParkMe app could make your activities easier this year. It shows the location and rates for lots and garages near you along with a live map of available street parking, and provides detailed directions.

NORAD Launches Santa Tracker Site, App

December 4, 2014
By Sandra Jontz

Ho ho ho—it’s that time of year again, and though Christmas Day is a still a few weeks away, the folks at NORAD have launched their wildly popular Santa Claus tracker apps and website, giving children (big and small) a chance to play games, watch movies and countdown to Santa’s departure from the North Pole.

Student and Teacher Support Crucial to Combat STEM Shortage

December 2, 2014
By Rachel Lilly

On the heels of the Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping frenzy, a new tradition is making its way into the headlines: #GivingTuesday. For the AFCEA Educational Foundation, it's an opportunity to highlight the impact of awarding scholarships and grants to deserving students and teachers around the world in support of STEM education.

Guest Blog: How Modernizing the JIE Can Make It a Success

December 2, 2014
By Chris LaPoint

Two years ago, the Defense Department developed the Joint Information Environment framework. Since then, key stakeholders and drivers have worked to realign, restructure and modernize the department’s information technology networks to increase collaboration while reducing the cyberthreat landscape.

New TSA PreCheck Program Enrolls Travelers at Participating Work, School Locations

November 25, 2014
By Sandra Jontz

The contractor that facilitates enrollment in the U.S. Transportation Security Administration’s PreCheck program developed an enrollment option to let employees of participating organizations sign up at their offices, saving them the trip to an airport or off-site enrollment center.

Communications Technology Company Expands Production to European, Middle East Markets

November 21, 2014
By Sandra Jontz

A mobile operations fusion kit that provides easy, rapid and on-the-go interoperability for mobile field operations and communications will be developed in European and Middle Eastern military markets as well as in the United States.

U.S. Commerce Department Releases Web Tool to Foster Export Law Compliance

November 20, 2014
By George I. Seffers

The U.S. Department of Commerce, Washington, D.C., today announced the consolidated screening list (CSL), a streamlined collection of nine different screening lists from the U.S. Departments of Commerce, State and the Treasury that contains names of individuals and companies with whom a U.S. company may not be allowed to do business due to U.S. export regulations, sanctions or other restrictions.

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