We're watching the events unfold in Japan with a mixture of sorrow and horror, and wondering what Federal Computer Week can contribute to the story. This has occupied a few discussions in our regular daily news meetings.
The U.S. government is doing a few things to help the Japanese respond, including taking part in efforts to cool an overheating nuclear plant. But most of the American reaction is self-protective. The Navy has established a no-fly zone for its planes in the vicinity of the endangered nuclear faclities, and the FDA is stepping up inspection of food from Japan, checking for radiation in addition to normal hazards.
The events around the world coupled with the budgetary battles here in Washington, D.C., make us wonder about the U.S.' changing role on the world stage. How much money can we, or should we, spend to aid other nations in crisis when we have our own problems here? How will our decisions on that question change the way we're seen.
These questions don't have a lot to do with federal IT or workforce concerns -- hence, our challenge in finding ways to report stories that you haven't already seen elsewhere -- but they're on our minds. What do you think?
Posted by Michael Hardy on Mar 18, 2011 at 7:01 PM1 comments
EDITOR'S NOTE: This was updated March 21, 2011 to correct Karl Krumbholz's name.
There's a new(ish) blogger on the block.
Karl Krumbholz, director of the network services programs at the General Services Administration, is writing a blog to help people stay current on developments with GSA's Networx contract and other network services contracts and activities. Named, appropriately enough, "Network Services Update," the blog is well-written, but all-business, conveying solid information in a concise presentation.
You'll find it at http://gsablogs.gsa.gov/networkservices/.
We weren't aware of this one when we did our recent article on the best of the federal blogosphere, but we would have included it among the better ones if we had been.
Posted on Mar 17, 2011 at 7:01 PM0 comments
What would you do with $2,000?
Federal CIO Vivek Kundra is proposing that agencies give employees incentives to buy and use their own mobile devices rather than issuing government-purchased ones. The government could help, Kundra said, by providing a $2,000 subsidy to each employee.
That sounds like a lot of money to us. $2,000 could buy an iPhone, an iPad and maybe a year or more of voice and data services. We're hoping that Kundra's already calculated that the cost of the government providing devices is already more than the $2,000 subsidy -- and would therefore be saving money by providing the subsidy -- or else the idea doesn't make a lot of fiscal sense.
Even so, it's on the table now, so tell us: What mobile devices would you buy to use on the job for $2,000, and how would they help you in your work?
Posted by Michael Hardy on Mar 01, 2011 at 7:01 PM8 comments