Focus with flexibility is now the hallmark of the U.S. Defense Department's principal communications capabilities provider. Just 18 months after its third restructuring and in the midst of supporting current operations, the Defense Information Systems Agency is nearing final operational capability of a robust network foundation that will offer warfighters a mega-increase in bandwidth. At the same time, the agency has been meeting immediate needs with new services and scoping out a future that may include modularly designed Web services. These Web services would allow warfighters to harvest the information and intelligence they need from various sources in near-real time.
Every year, scores of wireless communications products enter the commercial marketplace, but ensuring their security in U.S. government applications remains a major cause for concern for federal authorities. Through the Defense Information Systems Agency and the National Security Agency, the government is creating an architecture as resistant to hacking and other cybercrime as it is secure and efficient for approved users to navigate. A key part of this effort is an accreditation regime that tests and approves all new technologies set to enter civilian government and military programs.
For more than five decades, AFCEA has been proud to provide an ethical forum in which military, government and industry personnel can meet, exchange ideas and work toward solutions. The focus has always been on electronic communications avenues, and the association has endeavored not only to keep pace with the changes in technology and policy but also to stay well ahead of them. This is the benefit of membership. From algorithms to networking, experts have turned to AFCEA to help them share their discoveries and meet their challenges.
The U.S. Defense Department is turning to a family of software agents that locate, recognize and speed the delivery of critical information to where it is needed most on the battlefield. When minutes and seconds are precious commodities to a warfighter, software transfer agents help manage and expedite the dissemination of badly needed information. These robot-like software tools help leverage the power of the information age.
As the U.S. Army scrambles to digitize the battlefield, an important element in the warfighter's information network is a new high-capacity line-of-sight radio. Operating with an extremely efficient waveform in minimally occupied portions of the electromagnetic spectrum, this multiband software-reprogrammable radio system significantly enhances the ability to meet burgeoning theater bandwidth requirements.
The military's increasing reliance on commercial off-the-shelf information systems is leading to an environment in which the technologies could be driving the doctrine. The opportunities-and the challenges-presented by these new technologies cover the gamut of communications, computing, sensors, networks, interoperability and security. The defense community's response to this development may define military superiority for years to come.
The extraordinary growth of the U.S. economy since the mid-1990s has financial analysts loath to make predictions about the future and grasping for ways to assess and measure the very impetus contributing to the phenomenon-the pervasiveness of information technology. Business and government officials agree that technology has played a significant part in spurring on the sustained period of economic prosperity-from its contribution to manufacturing to its role in consumer purchasing to the impact on the work force. But success brings with it certain challenges. Companies as well as governments, while excited about today's bounty, are scrambling to address those challenges before the bubble bursts.
Companies that have made their millions-and billions-in the guts and brains of information technology products are spreading their techno-tentacles into e-commerce through the gap between operation and application services. They are not leaving the world of hardware behind but rather are ensuring that their companies will continue to prosper by infusing their technical expertise into the space between the transmitter and the receiver of e-commerce messages.
A set of software and algorithms developed to identify criminal activity in the gambling industry is now available to the federal government to help detect employee fraud and collusion. The system correlates data from a variety of sources to shed light on questionable personal relationships and transactions. In the federal sector, this system's potential uses cover internal security, background investigations and intelligence gathering.
Next-generation signal processor technology for wireless communications is the focus of a unique research center. The Atlanta-based StarCore Technology Center combines the pooled assets of Motorola Incorporated's semiconductor products sector and Lucent Technologies' microelectronics group.