NewsBrief: February 23, 2024

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Cost Estimating NewsBrief: February 23, 2024

OPM Sending Survey for AI ‘Competency Model’ Project

(FEDweek) OPM is starting a survey of federal employees whose job responsibilities involve artificial intelligence as a next step in developing an inventory of skills that agencies have and projections of what they will need in that area, as required by the 2020 Artificial Intelligence in Government Act and a 2023 executive order. A memo on notes that last July OPM identified general competencies and technical competencies under the 2020 law, saying the new Artificial Intelligence Job Analysis Survey “represents the next phase of the study and will be used to validate the AI competencies identified by technical and human resources subject matter experts as needed for performing AI work governmentwide.” Read More

House Establishes Bipartisan AI Task Force

(ExecutiveGov) The House has formed a bipartisan task force that will explore how Congress can help the U.S. maintain its innovative edge in the field of artificial intelligence while advancing guardrails that could help protect the country from emerging and current threats. The new Task Force on Artificial Intelligence will be led by Reps. Jay Obernolte, R-Calif., and Ted Lieu, D-Calif., and will come up with a report detailing recommendations, guiding principles and bipartisan policy proposals. House Speaker Mike Johnson said in a statement published Tuesday the task force will be composed of members who represent key committees of jurisdiction and have AI expertise. Read More

Contractors on edge because of Pentagon’s proposed buying rules

(Federal News Network) Contractors are wary of the latest proposed rule giving DoD access to their IT systems. It is part of an effort to improve cybersecurity with incident reporting and information sharing. Another rule would impose new requirements on contractors unclassified systems. For reaction, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin spoke with Stephanie Kostro, vice president for Policy at the Professional Services Council. Read More

DOD Releases Amended Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement for Buy American Statute

(ExecutiveGov) The Department of Defense Acquisition Regulations System has finalized its amendment to the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement to incorporate policies from the Buy American Act. The amendment, which is based on public comment sought by the agency in June, aims to support the U.S. government’s agenda of reviving domestic procurement of goods, materials and services, the agency announced Thursday on Federal Register. DFARS was revised to conform to the Executive Order on Ensuring the Future Is Made in All of America by All of America’s Workers. DOD added specifications regarding qualifying countries for producing goods deemed as “domestic products” in order to accommodate the unique needs of the DOD. Read More

DoD ready to start implementing multibillion dollar moving contract after solving latest tech hurdle

(Federal News Network) The Pentagon’s massive project to overhaul the military’s system for moving members’ belongings from one duty station to another has cleared its latest technical hurdle and is finally ready to begin implementation, government and company officials involved with the multibillion dollar Global Household Goods contract said Tuesday. A new round of IT integration testing, conducted in January, proved “successful,” Stuart Bradie, the president and CEO of KBR, told investors on a conference call. HomeSafe, the holder of the up to $17.9 billion Global Household Goods Contract (GHC), is a joint venture between KBR and Tier One Relocation. Read More

LANL Researchers Develop AI-Based Malware Classification Technique

(ExecutiveGov) A team of researchers from the Los Alamos National Laboratory has introduced a new Microsoft Windows malware classification technique that uses artificial intelligence to identify novel malware families. The method uses semi-supervised tensor decomposition methods and selected classification techniques, including a reject option, to enable cyber defense teams to classify malware families under conditions of class imbalance, LANL said Friday. Read More

Delta Air Lines wants to fly you through the 2024 total solar eclipse from 30,000 feet in the sky

( If you’re looking for a more unique way to experience the total solar eclipse, Delta Airlines has a special flight along the path of totality available. This will be a rare way to literally follow the eclipse from within the path of totality, offering a literal birds-eye view of the total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024. The flight started in Austin, Texas taking off at 12:15 p.m. Central Time and ends in Detroit, Michigan, at 4:20 p.m. Eastern Time on April 8, 2024. The flight will take place on an Airbus A220-300 plane which is equipped with large windows so you can catch great views of the eclipse while in the air. Read More

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