Pentagon Will have to Undertake New Acquisition System for Electronic

The Protection Section requires to set up a “parallel” acquisition method created all over digital strategies and speeds, alongside the existing process set up to control “Newtonian” weapons growth, in purchase to realize deterrence, Lockheed Martin CEO Jim Taiclet claimed this 7 days.

Talking at the Hudson Institute on Oct. 4, Taiclet reported the tempo of technology development—particularly software and info distribution—continues to speed up, and the Pentagon desires an acquisition program that can continue to keep up with “a clock velocity that is a lot closer to the electronic engineering growth clock speed” compared to the environment of ships, jets, and satellites that work physically, alternatively than digitally.

“I feel that the U.S. protection business is however the most successful in the entire world. I feel we can discourage conflict correctly these days,” Taiclet claimed. Nonetheless, a individual procedure for operating with digital is “one detail I do imagine we need to have to do to keep in advance of the evolving threat.”

The Pentagon requires to shift toward a much more business-like tempo of advancement calculated not in decades, but months and months, Taiclet mentioned, asserting the reply probably lies in getting electronic expert services, something the Pentagon and Congress are unwell-configured to do and are taking also lengthy to acknowledge in his intellect.

Basically set, the “general procurement system” is not perfectly matched to electronic items, Taiclet claimed.

“The electronic technologies cycle is, all over again, months or months rather of yrs and yrs. So we’re suggesting to our governing administration prospects to feel about the procurement and acquisition process in a different way for electronic engineering insertion compared to Newtonian platform manufacturing,” Taiclet mentioned. “That has not caught on however. And I believe it’s anything we genuinely require to advocate for.”

The current acquisition system involves location specifications, requests for info and proposals, and competitions that can years, if not many years.

“It’s fine on the even bigger physical know-how things. It does function. It’s been successful,” Taiclet claimed.

But with digital systems—particularly substantial info-sharing networks, technological know-how moves as well rapidly so that by the time Pentagon purchases software package now, it is out-of-date.

“So which is the notion of the parallel route, which is, we have received to be equipped to offer with these providers that typically perform off of a membership product,” Taiclet stated. “ … Just your cell cellphone company for illustration, you pay out just about every month for it. They continuously improve the network, you’re having new attributes. Yet another application comes on your cellular phone, the app receives upgraded every night time, and this is repeatedly going on.”

The Defense Office does not have an powerful way to purchase solutions like that, he said, and the extended that takes to look, the extra powering it will get.

Taiclet suggested the Defense Office may also acquire mission capability as a service, “by the thirty day period, by the year. We have to figure out how to translate the DoD type

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Alternative Broadband Networks: Affordable Internet for the People, One Rooftop at a Time

Before Marco Antonio Santana could speak English, he was speaking computers. Now, the 32-year-old, who grew up in a Dominican household in New York City, helps provide high-speed fiber internet installations and repairs to over 180 units in a low-income housing complex in Manhattan’s Lower East Side. 

“I’ve been a nerd my whole life,” he tells me, running a delicate strand of fiber-optic cable into a splicer in NYC Mesh’s workroom. 

We climb to the roof of the 26-story building with striking vistas of the city’s water towers, bridges and prewar buildings. There, multiple long-range antennas and routers connect wirelessly to other rooftop nodes as far out as Brooklyn, miles away across the East River. It’s one glimpse into the growing network that NYC Mesh has built over the last several years. 

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NYC Mesh is not an internet service provider, but a grassroots, volunteer-run community network. Its aim is to create an affordable, open and reliable network that’s accessible to all New Yorkers for both daily and emergency internet use. Santana says the group’s members want to help people determine their own digital future and “bring back the internet to what it used to be.”

Internet access is an essential part of our daily lives: for employment, health, education, communication, finances and entertainment. Yet there’s a staggering divide between those who can afford to connect and those who can’t. At least 42 million Americans are estimated to have no access to high-speed internet, according to the data technology company Broadband Now. 

The lack of low-cost, reliable broadband options densely weighs on poor, Black, Latino, indigenous and rural communities. During the COVID-19 pandemic, when being online was the only lifeline, the crisis became even more acute. 

“There’s a stark problem of access,” says Prem Trivedi, policy director at the Open Technology Institute. Students doing homework in a fast-food parking lot to get free Wi-Fi is not sustainable. “That’s an intermittent connection that requires upending your life to do bare necessities.”

Digital equity is a herculean mission. It means going up against the few incumbent ISPs — Xfinity, Spectrum, AT&T, Verizon and the like — that determine prices, terms of service, speeds and where infrastructure is built. 

“ISPs are always trying to maximize profits. We are just trying to connect our members for the lowest cost possible,” says Brian Hall, one of the lead volunteers and founders of NYC Mesh. 

Historically, when the private market fails to supply access to a basic good, communities have stepped in to fill in the gaps, according to Sean Gonsalves, associate director for communications at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. “It’s how the electric and telephone cooperatives got started in rural America a century ago.” 

NYC Mesh community Wifi on phone

Richard Peterson/CNET

Providing donation-based internet access is part of NYC Mesh’s objective to serve the underserved. The premise is that communication should be free. “We will never disconnect

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