Technology briefs


Google upgrades could increase agency visibility
Google’s recently announced revisions to its search service could require agency Webmasters to do additional work to ensure that their agencies’ content is properly indexed. Agencies that make the extra effort, however, could significantly increase their exposure, search consultant Steve Arnold said.

According to a report from equity research firm Bear, Stearns and Co., Google’s revisions will add a capability for semantic reasoning about indexed content. Google has applied for a number of patents for technology it calls the Programmable Search Engine (PSE), which looks for metadata that defines Web site content.

Preparing the PSE metadata will require some effort, Arnold said. But the work should be easy for agency Webmasters who participated in the Google Sitemaps initiative and provided a list of links to database queries so the search engine could index them.

Those unfamiliar with the conventions of site maps will find the task more difficult, Arnold said. Although Google garners the lion’s share of Web searches, industry observers predict that services offered by Yahoo, Microsoft and others will use the PSE format.

Unisys moves mainframes to Intel processors
Unisys has unveiled the first models of the company’s next-generation server architecture designed to help organizations create a more flexible information technology infrastructure and move more easily to a service-oriented architecture.
The new models in the ClearPath family of mainframe-class enterprise servers are based on multicore Intel Xeon processors. Company officials said the new architecture will enable Unisys enterprise servers to capitalize on Intel processor

With the multicore Intel platform, organizations can use emerging open standards while preserving and extending their investments in strategic applications, said Bill Maclean, vice president of Unisys’ ClearPath programs.

The new server architecture will enable four operating environments — Microsoft Windows, Linux, Unisys OS 2200 and MCP — to run concurrently on the same computer system in a single virtualized partition, company officials said.

Navy approves new use for 802.11g wireless

The Navy has approved the use of 802.11g wireless devices by employees boarding suspicious vessels.

Overseen by the Navy’s Program Executive Office for Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence, the Expanded Maritime Interception Operations (EMIO) wireless system provides a data link between crews on interdicted vessels and their home ship as far as a few nautical miles away. Unlike a simple radio unit, the wireless links can transmit biometric data, scanned documents, digital photos and e-mail messages from the boarding team, allowing near-real-time analysis.

EMIO is designed to not interfere with other shipboard systems. It meets all operational requirements, including security specifications. The units use the 802.11g wireless protocol and Federal Information Processing Standard 140-2 for encryption.

SELinux group gets new wiki site for collaboration
The developers of one of the most secure operating systems will use one of the most open collaboration platforms for its development work.

The programmer community for Security-Enhanced Linux announced it will start using a newly created wiki site for collaboration and discussion. Developers will use the site for discussions and to track components that must be completed. SELinux programmers can edit pages and add content after creating an account.

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