Intercepts

* Defense duo does the valley. My remote unit reported that John Hamre, deputy secretary of Defense, and Art Money, the designee for the assistant secretary of Defense Info Ops job, spent last week having high-level pow-wows in Silicon Valley, including visits to executives at HP and a session with Network, the dog, at Sun Microsystems. Sounds like the tour directors in Redmond, Wash., need to get to work.

* Top-job jibing. Now that Marv Langston has decided to take the DOD deputy CIO job, I've heard Paul Brubaker— who also was mentioned for the CIO slot— has set his sights on a new position: director of the Defense Reform Initiative, with a direct reporting line to Secretary of Defense William Cohen, Brubaker's former Hill boss. One source said the DRI job, which was advertised earlier this month, was handcrafted for Brubaker. Wait a minute, said another well-informed source, former Rear Adm. Bill Houley, a Lockheed Martin exec, has the inside track. It's good both these folks already have steady jobs.

* How about EC director? Here's another opening: director of the DISA/DLA Joint Electronic Commerce Program Office, which poses almost as much of a challenge as running the DOD Y2K shop. Air Force Brig. Gen. John Meincke, DISA vice director, said DOD expects to tap a single SESer to run the shop, currently co-managed by the two agencies.

* Battle brewing? I'm picking up strong but still low-level intell that the Navy may face some real problems from selecting a highly proprietary computer system for a program that touches on every aspect of the fleet. This is a tactical program directly involved in putting metal on target. Complaints about this have now bubbled up to the OSD level and, if unresolved soon, could really blow up.

* Battlefield FedEx. Despite the advances in technology since Operation Desert Storm, the Marines still rely on old-fashioned hand delivery to send imagery from division CPs to subordinate units. But after-action reports— received here at Intercept Central— from the recent Marine ''Operation Desert Scimitar'' said the divisions' ''courier services are proving to be very responsive in meeting whatever demands we throw at them.'' Sounds like an outsourcing opportunity for FedEx.

* Cashing in at Chips. Diane Hamblen, the professional editor of Chips, the Navy's pioneering computer magazine, plans to retire this June after a 30-plus-year Navy career. This includes, Hamblen said, publishing the first Internet electronic magazine when she started e-mailing Chips to subscribers on the old DDN in 1987. Hamblen produced a no-nonsense magazine that was not afraid to touch controversial subjects, and she answered not to an editor in chief but to admirals. We'll miss her.

* Going mobile. The Interceptor and his remote unit will be at the Software Technology Conference this week in Salt Lake City and the following week's Army Small Computer Program Office confab in Vail, Colo. Look for our daily Web coverage from both venues.

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