- By Bob Brewin
- Mar 22, 1998
* DISA/GSA love-in? Look for a new spirit of cooperation between the Defense Information Systems Agency and the General Services Administration on joint network development. DISA's director, Lt. Gen. David Kelley, and Federal Technology Service Commissioner Dennis Fischer pledged to harmonize efforts on metropolitan-area networks at an Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association confab March 17.
Pete Paulson, Defense Information Systems Network chief, said this spirit of cooperation will extend to the networks both agencies plan to build in the National Capital Region. DISA wants to put as much DOD Purchase of Telecommunications Service traffic on the GSA network as possible to save money. Conversely, civilian agencies, such as the FBI and the DEA, may want to take advantage of the security, priority and pre-emption features built into the DOD MAN, Paulson said.
* ATM wars. MCI Government Markets, which holds DISA's bandwidth manager contract, will soon kick off an open competition for the Asynchronous Transfer Mode switches DISA wants to install on its DISN network, Kelley said. Because the competition between key federal ATM suppliers such as Fore Systems Inc. and Cisco Systems Inc. makes the telecom wars look like something from "Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm,'' MCI Defense boss Diana Gowen may wish that someone else won the bandwidth manager contract.
In a related development, my Landover, Md., antenna site has picked up strong signals that Harry Carr, former AT&T Defense veep and now president of ATM "edge'' manufacturer Yurie Systems Inc., may drop Yurie's federal sales deal with AT&T. How about Electronic Data Systems Corp., whose military group is headed by former DISA director Lt. Gen. Al Edmonds?
* DSSG dollars. My Courthouse Road, Va., mobile unit reports Boeing has not received any increase in the fast-food labor rates it bid on the DSSG contract. Instead, I'm told, DISA has taken the annual $2 million program management fee and spread it across each job on the contract at a rate of 6.5 percent so the agency can better track its expenses— a mere accounting exercise. I have also picked up hints that the amount of business flowing through DSSG is far lower than originally anticipated.
* A few good Y2K troops. That's what Bill Curtis, the new Year 2000 czar, needs. And, Kelley said, Curtis has started sniffing around for likely candidates at DISA. Anyone who really wants a job with Curtis— the IT equivalent of parachuting into Baghdad— can track him down through his old DISA number.
* Marine CIO shuffle. Chief information officers in the Navy don't last long. My Henderson Hall remote unit reports that Maj. Gen. Joe Anderson, the Marine CIO, will leave his post for a new job as an air wing commander— which sure sounds like a lot more fun than worrying about Year 2000. There's no word on his replacement, although one source speculated that Brig. Gen. (select) Robert Shea, currently the CINCPAC J6, would fit well in the slot.