Welcome!

Government Cloud Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Dana Gardner, Liz McMillan, Gopala Krishna Behara

Related Topics: Government Cloud, Cloud Security

Government Cloud: Blog Feed Post

Are You Thinking Through System Improvements after the Xmas Terror Attack?

Information technology in the federal enterprise does not work like it does in Hollywood

Government Information Technology on Ulitzer

Information Technology in the federal enterprise does not work like it does in Hollywood.   Although there are plenty of success stories to go around, federal IT is more limited and constrained than we would all want, for lots of reasons. Some of the reasons are just do to complexities and limited budgets.  Some of the reasons are for security.  Some of the reasons are because of  the way the government funds its agencies and manages programs. And some of reasons are because we humans have designed things using the wrong models and implemented them to serve workflows that are flawed to begin with.

This last point is something that I hope enterprise technologists all try to improve on for all our systems.

But perhaps the most important systems to consider improving right now are the ones supporting our national security decision-makers in the field.  These systems will very likely be under review in as part of the investigation into the Xmas terror attack.

There are a huge number of data-focused systems involved that could have been part of stopping this event. The most famous of these are the Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment (TIDE) and the Terrorist Screening Data Base (TSDB).  Other data sources that will need to be scrutinized exist at the Department of Homeland Security, Department of State (especially visa applications), and the intelligence community.

We can expect lots of thought will be put into how many very large enterprise grade data systems interconnect and interoperate together as part of the reviews and after actions underway right now.   I’m sure all concerned in the review of what went wrong in the national security community will realize the problems were not IT and the human element is absolutely the most important to understand.  But still there will be more that systems can smartly do to help humans do right.

I have two recommended pieces of reading for anyone involved in studying what went wrong and how to fix it. Both are from the same thinker, Jeff Jonas. Jeff publishes great thoughts on his blog at: http://jeffjonas.typepad.com, and frankly I recommend all enterprise technologists familiarize themselves with all his writings.  But two pieces stand out as being incredibly relevant to systems design to stop back actors:

Perpetual Analytics and You won’t have to ask– data will find data and relevance will find the user.

In the first piece on Perpetual Analytics Jeff describes the approach to data analytics most organizations find themselves in, where data is extracted from existing systems and secondary analysis is conducted on the extracted data across the entire enterprise whenever a question must be answered.  The ocean must be boiled every time a new analysis is conducted.  This boil the ocean approach does not scale.

He uses the term “perpetual analytics” to “…describe the process of performing real-time analytics on data streams.  Think of this like “directing the rain drops” as they fall into the ocean – placing each drop in the right place and measuring the ripples (i.e., finding relationships and relevance to the historical knowledge). Discovery is made during ingestion and relevant insight is published at that magical moment. ”

Check out the post for more, you will be glad you did, I’m sure.

The other piece I’d recommend you study is You won’t have to ask– data will find data and relevance will find the user .   It highlights a very important shift in approaches to getting the right data to find the right data and make relevance that will find a user. Here is how Jeff put it:

“Next generations of information management systems will not principally rely on users dreaming up smart questions to ask computers. Rather, this new breed of technology will make it possible for data to find itself and relevant discoveries to find the consumer (e.g., a user). And all in real time of course. While this will bring with it new policy debates like which data will be permitted to find which data and who is notified of what relevance, I am going to stay focused in this post on what this technology will enable.”

Another thing all of us who have ever worked in the federal IT business know, it can be very hard to change/improve legacy systems and legacy approaches.  But our existing systems are calling out for improvement, and I’m certain Jeff Jonas is spelling out a model that will improve upon the current approach.

Do you agree?

Related posts:

  1. Protecting Federal Networks Against Cyber Attack
  2. How can we judge enterprise-class CTOs and CIOs? Rank them on the Kundra Scale
  3. Six Enterprise Mega Trends to watch in 2010

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Bob Gourley

Bob Gourley writes on enterprise IT. He is a founder of Crucial Point and publisher of CTOvision.com

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
Early Bird Registration Discount Expires on August 31, 2018 Conference Registration Link ▸ HERE. Pick from all 200 sessions in all 10 tracks, plus 22 Keynotes & General Sessions! Lunch is served two days. EXPIRES AUGUST 31, 2018. Ticket prices: ($1,295-Aug 31) ($1,495-Oct 31) ($1,995-Nov 12) ($2,500-Walk-in)
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
Nicolas Fierro is CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions. He is a programmer, technologist, and operations dev who has worked with Ethereum and blockchain since 2014. His knowledge in blockchain dates to when he performed dev ops services to the Ethereum Foundation as one the privileged few developers to work with the original core team in Switzerland.
René Bostic is the Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America. Enjoying her career with IBM during the modern millennial technological era, she is an expert in cloud computing, DevOps and emerging cloud technologies such as Blockchain. Her strengths and core competencies include a proven record of accomplishments in consensus building at all levels to assess, plan, and implement enterprise and cloud computing solutions. René is a member of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and a m...
Digital Transformation and Disruption, Amazon Style - What You Can Learn. Chris Kocher is a co-founder of Grey Heron, a management and strategic marketing consulting firm. He has 25+ years in both strategic and hands-on operating experience helping executives and investors build revenues and shareholder value. He has consulted with over 130 companies on innovating with new business models, product strategies and monetization. Chris has held management positions at HP and Symantec in addition to ...
The challenges of aggregating data from consumer-oriented devices, such as wearable technologies and smart thermostats, are fairly well-understood. However, there are a new set of challenges for IoT devices that generate megabytes or gigabytes of data per second. Certainly, the infrastructure will have to change, as those volumes of data will likely overwhelm the available bandwidth for aggregating the data into a central repository. Ochandarena discusses a whole new way to think about your next...
CloudEXPO | DevOpsSUMMIT | DXWorldEXPO are the world's most influential, independent events where Cloud Computing was coined and where technology buyers and vendors meet to experience and discuss the big picture of Digital Transformation and all of the strategies, tactics, and tools they need to realize their goals. Sponsors of DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities.
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...
All in Mobile is a place where we continually maximize their impact by fostering understanding, empathy, insights, creativity and joy. They believe that a truly useful and desirable mobile app doesn't need the brightest idea or the most advanced technology. A great product begins with understanding people. It's easy to think that customers will love your app, but can you justify it? They make sure your final app is something that users truly want and need. The only way to do this is by ...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that Big Data Federation to Exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO, colocated with DevOpsSUMMIT and DXWorldEXPO, November 12-13, 2018 in New York City. Big Data Federation, Inc. develops and applies artificial intelligence to predict financial and economic events that matter. The company uncovers patterns and precise drivers of performance and outcomes with the aid of machine-learning algorithms, big data, and fundamental analysis. Their products are deployed...