US Cyber Command now ‘fully operational’

November 5th, 2010 at 8:46 AM  No Comments

Word from the Department of Defense has it that the new Cyber Command has “achieved full operational capability” … if you think that sounds like Grand Moff Tarkin said right before destroying Alderaan you’re not alone.

Fortunately the purpose of this new command is a bit less ominous than the Death Star. As General Keith Alexander, chief of Cyber Command and head of the National Security Agency put it:

“Cyberspace is essential to our way of life and US Cyber Command synchronizes our efforts in the defense of DoD networks.”

Currently the Air Force, Army, Navy and Marines all have cyber forces, which will all be unified under the new joint command. The Air Force has the largest cyber force, with an entire wing dedicated to it. The Cyber Command is responsible for protecting (and attacking) anything in the .mil world while the Department of Homeland Security is responsible for the protection (and probably less attacking) of the .gov world.

via The Register

Google sues the federal government for wanting to use Exchange

November 1st, 2010 at 6:35 PM  1 Comment

So the US Department of the Interior decides that it wants a new email system, and after consideration decides it wants to use Microsoft’s hosted Exchange platform.

Pretty straight forward, right?

Well, until Google decides that the DOI should have used Google Apps instead, and goes to sue the government for wanting to use Microsoft’s products. Nevermind the fact that Google doesn’t even have a GSA contract and cannot actually sell products to the federal government without one.

Google’s case makes it sound like they’re trying to protect the government from disaster by going with Microsoft’s product, providing a filing full of reasons why their platform is superior and Microsoft’s is run by idiots. Nevermind the fact that Google Apps has had it’s fair share of issues in the last few months (even in the last week) and that they’re constantly adding/changing/removing features that would probably not be welcome in a government setting.

via TechDirt


Microsoft and Edmonton focusing on open government

January 15th, 2010 at 5:42 PM  2 Comments

Edmonton, Canada has rolled out their open government program using Microsoft’s Open Government Data Initiative (OGDI) solution, and is working with them to develop an website that will give citizens and developers easier access to information and suggest ideas that enhance public infrastructure and services. The city’s program uses open source components along with Windows Azure. The use of open standards and application programming interfaces lets local developers and the city’s IT staff easily retrieve data for use in online applications or mashups.

According to Port 25, “Microsoft announced the OGDI initiative in May 2009, with the goal of reducing the cost of publishing government data while simplifying data access by leveraging cloud computing and open standards, which is exactly what has been achieved with Edmonton.”

More information on OGDI can be found here. You can also download the OGDI “starter kit” over at Microsoft Codeplex.