Intercepts

New-Age Army? In the process of reinventing itself into a lighter and more quickly deployable force, the Army has decided to use the troops at Fort Lewis, Wash., as the test bed for new concepts, equipment and tactics. The Army named Maj. Gen. James Dubik to spearhead the effort and gave him a title that resonates with millennial buzzword significance: the deputy commanding general for transformation. Does that mean he will issue crystals to the soldiers and play Vangelis to inspire them?

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The New EDS Bear. William Dvoranchik recently took over as president of the Electronic Data Systems Corp. federal division - headquartered in almost-West Virginia - and made it clear to the Interceptor that EDS intends to once again become a pre-eminent competitor in the federal IT arena.

Dvoranchik said he plans to go after business "in a bigger, stronger way, reignite growth" and "grow at a rate of 25 percent."

To meet his ambitious goals, Dvoranchik added that he needs to hire more salespeople. "It's hard to find good people," he said, adding that he would not mind poaching some folks from rival systems integrators.

If you're looking for a sales position and believe you have the skills that EDS needs, send an e-mail to bill.dvoranchik@eds.com.

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N/MCI Ins and Outs. EDS definitely plans to bid as a prime contractor on the $2 billion-plus Navy/Marine Corps Intranet project, according to Dvoranchik.

Other bidders are CSC and IBM, but my Cherry Hill, N.J., antenna site has picked up strong signals that Lockheed Martin Corp. - once very hungry for the program - has dropped out of the bidding because of a host of unrelated corporate problems, including the over-budget and behind-schedule F-22 fighter.

AFGE vs. Army, Again. The American Federation of Government Employees - which delayed the Army Logistic Modernization program for about a year to protect the jobs of its members in St. Louis and Pennsylvania - has filed a suit against the Army.

It charges that the service's Fully Automated System for Classification (FASCLASS) provides vendors with personnel information and organizational data.

Bobby Harnage, president at AFGE, said the FASCLASS World Wide Web site "unfairly gives private contractors immediate access to sensitive...personnel information prior to the conclusion of a public/private competition."

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Radioman R AR. That bit of Morse code shorthand - "Roger Out" - sums up the end of one of the most hallowed job ratings in the 20th-century Navy, which early in this century quickly seized on the "revolution" in communications brought about by the combination of telegraph keys and shipboard radios.

Adm. Jay Johnson, chief of naval operations, sent a message last week changing the radioman rating to "information systems technician," which although appropriate to the new duties of the rating, does not have the same romance as the title of radioman.

But Johnson did not completely abandon the past with the name change, saying in his message, "In keeping with the proud tradition of the [radioman] rating, the rating badge of electronic sparks...is being retained" for the new information technology technicians.

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Deployed Again. The Interceptor's famed mobile unit all this week will be attending the AFCEA Technet Asia-Pacific 1999 conference in Honolulu, while Paula Shaki Trimble, Federal Computer Week's new reporter, will attend the Navy's Connecting Technology Fall '99 conference in San Diego. Reports from both events will be posted at www.fcw.com when news breaks.

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