Cult of Competence.

These two appointments will likely fly under the radar, which is fine. New FEMA appointee - W. Craig Fugate, head of emergency management in FL. He's responded to that state's hurricanes and such since 2001 - having the added political cover of having done so under two Republican governors.

And a new position in government, CIO (Chief Information Officer). Vivek Kundra, currently CTO (C-Technology-O) to DC, tech adviser to the Obama campaign, Tim Kaine's head of commerce, etc. etc. etc. Clearly, there is enough tech in government that it requires oversight. There is a fair debate as to whether we have one person oversee the lot of it so it can all be as consistent as possible, or whether we need a siloed approach because the needs of different agencies are so different. I imagine that a good CIO will do what they all do - do a masterful needs-assessment to understand the differences and then strike the most efficient balance between standardization and customization.

Three cheers for quiet competence. Oh, and guys, re-check your tax receipts. [I couldn't help it.]

1 comment:

David said...

Furgate sounds like a solid pick.

Regarding the new CIO, I don't think that you are grokking the scale of the problem: a network assessment of a relatively small network is a several-person, several month task. When you're dealing with > 1 million employees, 80 zillion legacy programs (consider: many gov agencies run SNA over IP t.o talk to their mainframes), and lots and lots of whiz-bang shiny technology, he might be finished with a quality assessment right about the middle of a possible Obama second term.

And of course, that means that the assessment will be 6 years out of date.

Networx was supposed to provide a common operating environment, and I think it's a step in the right direction, but it's a small step (even though it's a huge contract).

Consider the complexity inherent in the different security levels that different agencies require - USDA has different threats than the SEC, which has different threats than the NRC. Applying one standard to all of them is yoking the cattle and oxen together