Military mines for golden technology
- By George I. Seffers
- Oct 02, 2000
The Defense Department will cash in two "golden nuggets" that emerged from
the intense competition at the Joint Warrior Interoperability Demonstration
(JWID) July 10 to 28.
Two technologies have been put on the fast track for purchase and fielding,
U.S. military officials announced Sept. 26. That's a rare achievement because
in past years, the chosen technologies received little more than free publicity
with no guarantee of purchase.
The golden nuggets from this year's JWID are Raytheon Co.'s SilentRunner
and BMC Software Inc.'s Reliability, Performance and Situational Awareness
of C4ISR (command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance
JWID is designed to introduce new and evolving commercial off-the-shelf
information technologies that solve C4ISR interoperability issues. JWID
operates on a $10 million budget donated by the individual services, the
joint staff and the Defense Information Systems Agency. Money remaining
after the demonstration is used to procure and field the nuggets at the
unified command level.
"This is only the second time we will actually purchase the golden nuggets,"
said Col. James Dowis, director of the JWID joint program office. "This
particular year, after we looked at all the technologies, these were the
only two that came out on top."
Raytheon's SilentRunner is described in JWID documents as a network
discovery, visualization and analysis software application that passively
collects information flowing across a network. It displays network structure
information in a vertical map format so that the information can be used
to defend against computer network attacks or tampering.
The BMC technology enables enterprise network monitoring and warns if
critical functions are in danger, ensuring that mission-critical application
services are available nonstop and that essential data is recoverable.
The early warning that a specific function might fail allows network administrators
to be proactive in trouble-shooting.
"This is a great tool. It means we are able to make sure networks are
operational around the clock and don't go down on us," Dowis said.
One BMC official said the "golden nug-get" tag gives the company recognition
it might otherwise not have.
"It is a great opportunity for BMC to get recognition in the area of
application service assurance — an area that's tough to get recognition
in," said Phil Dixon, federal account manager for BMC. "It's an area that
is becoming increasingly important, but it's not necessarily a sexy part
of systems management."