SIGNAL Online Exclusives

May 13, 2011
By George I. Seffers, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

Other nations lined up to connect to history’s most expansive combat network.

On Sunday, France became the fifth nation to officially join the Afghan Mission Network, the system used by NATO nations and coalition forces to conduct warfighting operations in Afghanistan. France now will be able to fully share information with other nations, including such data as human intelligence and full-motion video.

May 2, 2011
By Max Cacas, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

Anti-submarine warfare tactics developed by anonymous gamers today could be part of the “brains” of an unmanned, autonomous enemy sub tracker now under development for the U.S. Navy.

April 27, 2011
By George I. Seffers, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

(This is the first in a series of online and print reports by SIGNAL Magazine Technology Editor George I. Seffers while embedded with NATO forces in Afghanistan.)

Communicators quickly cure warfighting connections of computer virus.

The Conficker computer virus, which was first detected in 2008, reared its ugly head last week in Afghanistan, where it was detected on the Afghan Mission Networkthe network NATO and coalition forces use to fight the war.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

April 19, 2011
By Robert K. Ackerman, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

The march continues to establishing a commercial manned orbital flight capability.

April 11, 2011
By Helen Mosher, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

Twitter and Facebook are just a few of the tools being used to facilitate international collaboration to address logistical issues in disaster relief.

March 30, 2011
By Rita Boland, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

Members of the 2nd Space Operations Squadron (2 SOPS) deployed a novel tool to Afghanistan last month, giving warfighters the ability to combine Global Positioning System (GPS) capabilities with Google Earth. The resource enhances situational awareness and information sharing, and developers intend it to assist with planning efforts. Though only available on the classified network now, plans are underway to create an unclassified version as well.

March 23, 2011
By George I. Seffers, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

U.S. Marines will not leave landlines behind. 

March 16, 2011
By George I. Seffers, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

Implications for a recently certified forensics camera may be greater than they appear. 

March 2, 2011
By Jordan Garegnani, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

A memorandum to federal officials about information sharing during government acquisition processes is opening the lines of communication between agencies and vendors. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) memo includes guidelines for comprehensive communication plans, awareness campaigns, education modules and discussion forums, all of which aim at facilitating dialogue.

March 11, 2011
By Robert K. Ackerman, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

Dual-use U.S. technology may be improving other nations’ militaries as a result of efforts by foreign technology workers in the United States, according to a U.S. government report. U.S. government agencies should tighten their processes and monitoring of visas and foreign workers’ access to controlled technologies, the report recommends.

February 24, 2011
By Rita Boland, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

February 15, 2011
By Maryann Lawlor, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

The U.S. Coast Guard is providing its Search and Rescue Optimal Planning System (SAROPS) to the navy of the United Mexican States. The partnership is designed to assist Mexico in developing maritime rescue coordination centers and improving its search and rescue capabilities.

February 2, 2011
By Maryann Lawlor, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

The popularity of the iPad as a holiday gift has brought a bombardment of new challenges to organizations’ information systems administrators. Rapt with what seems like endless applications, owners are bringing these tablets of wonder to their offices so they can enjoy the same capabilities they do everywhere else they boot up. Leaders in government and business already threw their hands up in their attempts to ban such activity, but when devices—even smart phones—become home to sensitive material, they must take steps to protect their organizations.

January 28, 2011
By Robert K. Ackerman, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

From the battlespace to the boardroom, the way of doing things in the past is passé.

Quote of the Day:
“Adaptability often is viewed as a responsive act. However, adaptability and preparation are inexorably linked.”—Alfred Grasso, president and chief executive officer, the MITRE Corporation

January 26, 2011
By Rita Boland, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

The Joint Program Executive Office Joint Tactical Radio System (JPEO JTRS) has made its first major release of the Software Communications Architecture (SCA) in 10 years. This change updates a minor version released in 2005 and enables smaller, faster communications devices that cost less.

January 13, 2011
By Maryann Lawlor, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

The lines of communication between the U.S. government and the commercial satellite communications industry seem to be down. Despite the guidelines in President Barack Obama’s National Space Policy that call for the “purchase and use of commercial space capabilities and services to the maximum practical extent,” conversations between the government and companies appear to have stalled. In addition, after careful review of the policy, the commercial sector now sees contradictions that could harm U.S. companies.

January 21, 2011
By George I. Seffers, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

A U.S. Naval Research Laboratory team recently tested an underwater acoustic laser capability that might one day provide a source of voice or data communications for submarines; navigational data for submarines or underwater robots; and sonar to locate mines or other objects in shallow water—all from an aircraft and without the need for hardware in the water.

January 7, 2011
By Robert K. Ackerman, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

The Defense Department budget efficiencies announced on January 6 by Secretary Robert Gates will generate program activity in electronic warfare (EW), intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR), tactical communications and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), according to a department statement. These efficiencies, which would total more than $150 billion over the next five years, would be accomplished through personnel reductions, program extensions, consolidations and improved business practices.

December 22, 2010
By George I. Seffers, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

The conventional wisdom—and common joke—is that the U.S. Marine Corps receives used-up, hand-me-down equipment passed along from the Navy and Army. But that proved not to be the case during the recently completed Navy-Marine Corps exercise Bold Alligator 2011. In fact, the Marine Corps brought to the exercise more modern information technology systems than the Navy, which created interoperability problems and delays in providing critical information to commanders.