NewsBrief August 27, 2021

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Cost Estimating NewsBrief: August 27, 2021

Navy taking new steps on software development modernization

(fedscoop) The Department of the Navy has established a team to take stock of its software tools to try and streamline its ability to write code. A new cross-functional team will take steps that include completing an inventory of the department’s software factories, and reviewing development standards. The team will also write new policy to determine what products are best to use when developing code, according to Navy spokeswoman Sandra Gall. The goal is to help modernize how the department creates software and implements its broader IT strategy, which is known as the DON Information Superiority Vision. “Establishment of this team supports DON strategic intent to provide mission-driven and user-focused software that is deployed at the speed of relevance to our sailors and Marines,” Gall told FedScoop. Read More

Unmanned Aircraft Systems: Advance Coordination and Increased Visibility Needed to Optimize Capabilities

(GAO@100) Combatant commanders carrying out ongoing operations rank the need for intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities as high on their priority lists. The Department of Defense (DOD) is investing in many ISR systems, including unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), to meet the growing demand for ISR assets to support the warfighter. GAO was asked to evaluate DOD’s efforts to integrate UAS into ongoing operations while optimizing the use of all DOD ISR assets. Specifically, this report addresses the extent that (1) DOD has taken steps to facilitate the integration of UAS into combat operations, and (2) DOD’s approach to allocating and tasking its ISR assets considers all available ISR capabilities, including those provided by UAS. GAO also reviewed the extent that DOD evaluates the performance of its ISR assets, including UAS, in meeting warfighters’ needs.Read More

Pentagon putting more data behind IT modernization decisions

(Federal News Network) As the Defense Department digs out of its mound of technical debt, the office of the chief information officer is ensuring military services and defense agencies receive value for these new investments. DoD is implementing a revamped approach to IT portfolio management to better connect investments to mission requirements. Danielle Metz, the DoD deputy chief information officer for information enterprise, said the new framework will integrate with DoD business processes to enforce recommendations for optimization and modernization. Read More

Polaris paves the way for Aurora exascale supercomputer at Argonnes

(fedscoop) Argonne National Laboratory plans to pave the way for its first exascale supercomputer with a testbed system, Polaris, announced Wednesday. The “stepping stone” supercomputer will afford staff and users early access to hardware and technologies that will be available when Aurora delivery begins in 2022, giving them time to prepare, Ti Leggett, Polaris project director, told FedScoop. Aurora will be one of the first large-scale deployments of yet-to-be-released technology from Intel, so Polaris will employ a similar architecture in the meantime. “It’s a different architecture than our systems currently run, that our users have been familiar with for many years,” Leggett said. “Polaris will fill the gap for hybrid computing with GPUs, the Slingshot, as well as preparing their data on the Eagle and Grand file systems.” Read More

Military Operations: DOD Needs to Address Contract Oversight and Quality Assurance Issues for Contracts Used to Support Contingency Operations/span>

(GAO@100) The Department of Defense (DOD) uses contractors to meet many of its logistical and operational support needs. With the global war on terrorism, there has been a significant increase in deployment of contractor personnel to areas such as Iraq and Afghanistan. In its fiscal year 2007 report, the House Appropriations Committee directed GAO to examine the link between the growth in DOD’s operation and maintenance costs and DOD’s increased reliance on service contracts. GAO determined (1) the extent to which costs for selected contracts increased and the factors causing the increases, (2) the extent to which DOD provided oversight for selected contracts, and (3) the reasons for DOD’s use of contractors to support contingency operations. Read More

DOD to establish new zero trust management team this fall

(fedscoop) The Department of Defense is standing up a new portfolio management team to oversee the implementation of zero trust architecture, acting CIO John Sherman announced Wednesday. Sherman said the team would be up and running by the fall and be overseen by the chief information security officer, Dave Mckeown. According to Sherman, the new team will help boost a new approach to security, which he says is a top priority. “You don’t just buy zero trust, it’s not a tool or a technology, it really is a new strategy,” he said during FedScoop’s FedTalks conference. “We have got to run a new … defense, and zero trust is going to be it.” Read More

Space Force Establishes Space Training & Readiness Command

(ExecutiveGov) The U.S. Space Force has stood up Space Training and Readiness Command, the third and final field command responsible for the service branch’s doctrine, training, test and education initiatives, C4ISRNET reported Saturday. STARCOM, whose establishment aligned with Space Force’s organization restructuring efforts, will be headed by Brig. Gen. Shawn Bratton of the National Guard Bureau and will be based at Peterson Space Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Read More