Technology briefs


Google upgrades could increase agency visibility
Google’s recently announced revisions to its search service could require agency Webmasters to do additional work to ensure that their agencies’ content is properly indexed. Agencies that make the extra effort, however, could significantly increase their exposure, search consultant Steve Arnold said.

According to a report from equity research firm Bear, Stearns and Co., Google’s revisions will add a capability for semantic reasoning about indexed content. Google has applied for a number of patents for technology it calls the Programmable Search Engine (PSE), which looks for metadata that defines Web site content.

Preparing the PSE metadata will require some effort, Arnold said. But the work should be easy for agency Webmasters who participated in the Google Sitemaps initiative and provided a list of links to database queries so the search engine could index them.

Those unfamiliar with the conventions of site maps will find the task more difficult, Arnold said. Although Google garners the lion’s share of Web searches, industry observers predict that services offered by Yahoo, Microsoft and others will use the PSE format.

Unisys moves mainframes to Intel processors
Unisys has unveiled the first models of the company’s next-generation server architecture designed to help organizations create a more flexible information technology infrastructure and move more easily to a service-oriented architecture.
The new models in the ClearPath family of mainframe-class enterprise servers are based on multicore Intel Xeon processors. Company officials said the new architecture will enable Unisys enterprise servers to capitalize on Intel processor

With the multicore Intel platform, organizations can use emerging open standards while preserving and extending their investments in strategic applications, said Bill Maclean, vice president of Unisys’ ClearPath programs.

The new server architecture will enable four operating environments — Microsoft Windows, Linux, Unisys OS 2200 and MCP — to run concurrently on the same computer system in a single virtualized partition, company officials said.

Navy approves new use for 802.11g wireless

The Navy has approved the use of 802.11g wireless devices by employees boarding suspicious vessels.

Overseen by the Navy’s Program Executive Office for Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence, the Expanded Maritime Interception Operations (EMIO) wireless system provides a data link between crews on interdicted vessels and their home ship as far as a few nautical miles away. Unlike a simple radio unit, the wireless links can transmit biometric data, scanned documents, digital photos and e-mail messages from the boarding team, allowing near-real-time analysis.

EMIO is designed to not interfere with other shipboard systems. It meets all operational requirements, including security specifications. The units use the 802.11g wireless protocol and Federal Information Processing Standard 140-2 for encryption.

SELinux group gets new wiki site for collaboration
The developers of one of the most secure operating systems will use one of the most open collaboration platforms for its development work.

The programmer community for Security-Enhanced Linux announced it will start using a newly created wiki site for collaboration and discussion. Developers will use the site for discussions and to track components that must be completed. SELinux programmers can edit pages and add content after creating an account.

Read more technology news on Government Computer News’ Web site at

FCW in Print

In the latest issue: Looking back on three decades of big stories in federal IT.


  • Anne Rung -- Commerce Department Photo

    Exit interview with Anne Rung

    The government's departing top acquisition official said she leaves behind a solid foundation on which to build more effective and efficient federal IT.

  • Charles Phalen

    Administration appoints first head of NBIB

    The National Background Investigations Bureau announced the appointment of its first director as the agency prepares to take over processing government background checks.

  • Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.)

    Senator: Rigid hiring process pushes millennials from federal work

    Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) said agencies are missing out on younger workers because of the government's rigidity, particularly its protracted hiring process.

  • FCW @ 30 GPS

    FCW @ 30

    Since 1987, FCW has covered it all -- the major contracts, the disruptive technologies, the picayune scandals and the many, many people who make federal IT function. Here's a look back at six of the most significant stories.

  • Shutterstock image.

    A 'minibus' appropriations package could be in the cards

    A short-term funding bill is expected by Sept. 30 to keep the federal government operating through early December, but after that the options get more complicated.

  • Defense Secretary Ash Carter speaks at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco

    DOD launches new tech hub in Austin

    The DOD is opening a new Defense Innovation Unit Experimental office in Austin, Texas, while Congress debates legislation that could defund DIUx.

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