The SIGNAL Blog

New Defense Secretary Needs Better White House Access

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman
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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. Military Services Freed to Explore Their Own Clouds

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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.

3-D Printing in Space Becomes Reality

December 9, 2014
By George I. Seffers
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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.

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