A multifaceted one-stop shop that matches technology requirements identified by top government and military officials with available and emerging industry solutions will enable TechNet International 2000 attendees to home in on answers to critical questions confronting governments throughout the world.
There appears to be no speed limit for the changes taking place in the military as it enters a new millennium facing operations that involve coalition partners and diversified threats. Leaders look to industry to help with the transition to the latest paradigm, where issues such as bandwidth, information assurance and interoperability are as important as training, tactics and tanks.
Battlespace digitization was the focus of a number of leading experts as they debated the reality and trends evolving from this concept. The discussions were part of a recent international symposium in Paris presented by the AFCEA Paris Chapter and conducted under the patronage of the French Minister of Defense.
Future warfighting in the Asia-Pacific region likely will involve multinational coalitions of U.S. allies that already face difficulties operating together in a network-centric environment. New technologies may hold the key to achieving interoperability goals, but they also threaten to exacerbate the problem as the United States deploys systems faster than allies can keep up with them. And, lurking over all of these concerns is the need for multilevel security throughout the coalition environment.
Bits & Bytes-Satisfying the Essential C4ISR, Training and Simulation Needs of the Atlantic Alliance and its European Defense and Security Initiative" was the theme of this year's TechNet Europe held in the Prague Congress Center on October 18-20, 2000.
The diverse nature of threats in the 21st century calls for advanced planning strategies and international cooperation. As governments and the private sector face both physical and cyber attacks, organizations must focus not only on defense but also on how to recover after a disaster has occurred.
Winning the Wars of the 21st Century" was the appropriate theme of West 2001, the first western conference and exposition by AFCEA International and the U.S. Naval Institute in the new millennium. The first of three days of panel discussions and distinguished speaker addresses generated lively debate over how to prepare for-and deter-war in an uncertain era.
Personal identification technologies such as fingerprint, voice and facial recognition are adding another layer of security to government facilities and computer systems. Once prohibitively expensive, these devices are poised to become ubiquitous applications in wireless communications equipment, portable and desktop computers, smart cards and secure area access systems.
U.S. military forces face diverse challenges as they defend national security in the post-Cold-War ear. Dealing with these threats will require both technological solutions and new tactics and techniques. These were some of the views expressed at Tampa TechNet 2001, co-sponsored by the Tampa-St. Petersburg Chapter and AFCEA International.
Speakers in five Baltic countries recently used cyberspace to address security, global cooperation in the face of crisis, education challenges and the expanding use of technology. More than 40 presentations composed the first-of-its-kind online international conference and exhibition. TechNet Baltic 2001, organized by the AFCEA Stockholm, Oslo and Helsinki chapters and the Visby Telemedicine subchapter, took place September 24 through 28. The event was hosted by Finland, Lithuania, Norway, Russia and Sweden and featured a virtual exhibition where participants from anywhere in the world could view exhibitors' products and services.
Flexible coalition wide area networks, the Navy/Marine Corps Intranet, and miniaturized mobile wireless systems are key areas for successful warfighting, said military and industry leaders at the 16th annual TechNet Asia-Pacific conference in November. The three-day event, "Pacific Technology: Leading the Way in the Digital Future," covered interoperability issues and new technologies. Top U.S. Defense Department leaders came to share their visions and describe their technical requirements for the future.
The terrorist attacks of September 11 put the nation's critical information infrastructure to the test, and members of industry, the military and all levels of civil government came away from the experience with a new sense of urgency to work cooperatively to address the challenges revealed that day. According to security experts, existing emergency response infrastructures must be strengthened, critical information infrastructures must be protected and information exchange among federal, state and local law enforcement organizations must be expedited.
Technology's role in the worldwide war against terrorism and the critical part it plays in homeland security will be the focus of TechNet International 2002. Attendees will be privy to a wealth of information and view hundreds of technical solutions that address the key concerns of today's military, government and industry leaders.
Information assurance, research and development, and increased vigilance all are necessary ingredients for homeland security in this new age of terrorism, according to experts from civil government, industry and the military. Both government and the private sector must tap new and existing technologies to address the vital security needs that face all sectors.
Government and private industry are struggling to grasp different aspects of the same challenges as they implement network-centric operations. Whether involved with e-commerce or battlefield situational awareness, organizations stand to gain substantially from a networked information infrastructure. However, some solutions-architectures, protocols or security measures-that work in some areas may not be applicable to others.
Battlefield applications of 21st century communications and information technology capabilities allow commanders to assess their own positions as well as the locations of enemies. Soldiers in the field can receive orders and take action in record time. However, an intense dialogue is in progress on how best to employ these technologies to win the war against terrorism.
While weaving the thread of homeland security throughout the panel discussions at TechNet International 2002, speakers also expressed candid views about the problems that must be solved to make the best use of today's technical capabilities. Topics included network-centric warfare, biometrics, smart cards and emergency communications.
The military services must accelerate their incorporation of new technologies and methodologies to ensure victory in the war on terrorism, and information systems lie at the heart of these efforts. These technologies are likely to be the glue that bonds conventional and unconventional forces, the cornerstone of homeland security and the basis for ensuring continued military supremacy in all situations around the globe.
Placing the concept of management into a military context allows the art of both management and command and control to be examined. Both involve the same processes of sensing one's environment, understanding one's place and role in that environment, deciding what needs to be done and ensuring that action is carried out to achieve the intended effect. Information technology has a profound influence on these components, enabling the commander to retain the appropriate focus on the mission, improving the quality and speed of decisions, but increasing the need to take care not to be seduced by information for its own sake.
Interoperability between service, state and federal agencies and coalition forces is vital to securing the Asia-Pacific region. Equally important is the implementation of information assurance measures to get information to the right place at the right time. And, a streamlined acquisition process is needed that delivers joint systems that adhere to standards and policy.