- By Bob Brewin
- Aug 16, 1998
Y2K SHUFFLE: Deputy CIO Marv Langston has assumed overall managment of Y2K within the Pentagon. This indicates the increased seriousness with which top DOD leaders, including SecDef William Cohen, view the problem.
Where does that leave the Pentagon's ''Y2K czar'' Bill Curtis, who reportedly found about the power shift after returning from a two-week vacation in Nova Scotia? Feeling fine, according to Curtis, who views the shift as giving increased top level support to the issue. ''I always worked for Langston,'' said Curtis, who will now act as ''Mr. Outside'' for the DOD Y2K program, dealing with OMB, industry, NATO and the former Soviet states.
The only mystery in this whole thing is why Langston took on the job. Maybe he saw ''Saving Private Ryan'' and regretted missing real combat during his active duty Navy tour.
THE NAVY VISION THING, AGAIN. Adm. Jay Johnson, the chief of naval operations, released the 1998 Navy Program Guide titled ''Vision...Presence...Power'' last week that offers some juicy insights into future plans for key Navy C4I programs and IT-21 projects, including the Global Broadcast System and the GCCS-M command and control system.
The paper (available by clicking on the "What's New" button on the Navy Web site, located at www.navy.mil) shows the service has big plans for the broadband GBS, including equipping 100 percent of combat ships and 70 percent of its submarines with the GBS receive-only terminals by 2002.
The paper also revealed a key reason the Navy wants to replace its Joint Maritime Command Information System with GCCS-M: Year 2000 deficiencies in the older systems. The Navy plans to install another key IT-21 component, high-bandwidth ''Challenge Athena'' two-way satellite systems, on roughly 40 ''Joint Task Force Command-capable ships,'' according to the paper. The document is solid evidence that the Navy high command has bought into the IT-21 project for the long term.
NEW ORLEANS IT UPDATE. Most people don't view the sultry jazz city as a hotbed of software development. That's because they don't read the artfully crafted language inserted annually in the House appropriations bill by Rep. Bob Livingston (R-La.) to force the Pentagon into developing its military personnel system at a Navy Reserve-managed facility in The Big Easy.
The report of the House Appropriations Committee (chaired by Livingston) on the 1999 DOD spending bill details $25.3 million in funding for Livingston's favored Naval Standard Integrated Personnel System, targeted by HAC as the DOD-wide military personnel system. It also adds another $44 million for development of the Defense Integrated Military Human Resources System as a ''model prototype'' for managing acquisition and development of personnel systems.
I can't figure out why the Pentagon would want to spend $44 million on a system to manage systems. On the other hand, it probably will be programmed to allow everyone to take frequent breaks for chicory-flavored coffee and beignets.