News in Brief

FCC's crash, American Systems' new CEO and Los Alamos' latest app


FCC keeps net neutrality comments open as website crashes

The Federal Communications Commission announced it would extend the public comment period on its Open Internet proceeding until midnight on July 18, after a flood of last-minute comments to the agency's Electronic Comment Filing System crashed the site on July 15.

More than 675,000 comments were registered with the FCC as of July 14, with more inbound by email. The comment surge did quite match the outpouring of 1.4 million comments from outraged TV viewers in the wake of the Janet Jackson's famous 2004 Super Bowl "wardrobe malfunction," but the proceeding has been quite active for a policy matter.

FCC CIO David Bray tweeted that the fix for the comment-submission system is "probably a new cloud-based ECFS to replace 17 year old sys. Here's hoping we get funding in FY15 to do so." That remains to be seen; House appropriators are looking to fund the FCC at $53 million below the president's fiscal 2015 budget request. The Obama administration has threatened a veto of the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Act, in part because FCC funding levels would "undermine efforts at the FCC to modernize information technology systems."

A new CEO for American Systems

Washington Technology reports that Bill Hoover, president and CEO of American Systems Corp. since 2005, is retiring. Current chief operating officer Peter Smith will succeed Hoover as both president and CEO; Hoover will remain with the company as vice chairman of the board of directors.

American Systems is an employee-owned firm that specializes in providing human capital services, managed services and professional services. The armed forces make up most of its business, but the firm also serves civilian agencies.

Los Alamos app aimed at students

Los Alamos National Laboratory launched a new mobile app that students and postdoctoral candidates can use to learn about employment opportunities, science research, education programs and more at the facility. Los Alamos typically employs more than 1,200 part-time and full-time students and post-docs in a given year.

The free Los Alamos Students mobile app can be downloaded from iTunes and Google Play. According to the lab, the new app includes introductory information about Los Alamos' Student Programs Office, life at the New Mexico laboratory, a link to the official employment application and the student selection process, and an interactive quiz challenging students on their knowledge of the lab's research and development programs. Information for graduate-level students and candidates interested in postdoctoral opportunities, various summer school programs and learning opportunities, student salary information and opportunities for international students are also available.

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