Tuesday, February 27, 2007

$9 Billion Bugs for U.S. Navy-Marine Corps Intranet (back issue)

Most I.T. projects have some hurdles or bugs. The $9 billion U.S. Navy-Marine Corps intranet (NMCI) is no exception.

Of course the military would use an acronym like NMCI, but I was hoping that we would be privy to one of those cutting-edge mission names like Mission Intranet Freedom or Mission Global Information Dominance... Ooops! That moniker might be letting the cat-out-of-the-bag....

Speaking at a conference of 1,200 military vendors in Norfolk, Virginia, the NMCI head honcho Rear Admiral James B. Goodwin III lamented about some of the challenges. As reported in the Virginian-Pilot, some of the bugs have included e-mail problems for Admiral Michael G. Mullen, President Bush’s nominee for chief of naval operations.

Rear Adm Goodwin joked, ““Probably not the e-mail I wanted to see from my new boss, but it’s one of the realities right now.”

For those not familiar with the project, EDS was hired to work with the Navy and Marine Corps to build a "comprehensive, enterprise-wide initiative that will make the full range of network-based information services available to Sailors and Marines for day-to-day activities and in war.”

The $9 billion project is in its fifth year.

NMCI features more than your average run-of-the-mill secure access to US Armed Forces information and systems and “universal access to integrated voice, video and data communications.

While it is not complete the Navy Marine intranet will "afford pier-side connectivity to Navy vessels in port. And it will link more than 360,000 desktops across the United States as well as sites in Puerto Rico, Iceland and Cuba.”

The Navy and Marine Corps use the NMCI to achieve "a number of critical objectives:

  • Enhanced network security
  • Interoperability with CINCs and other Services
  • Knowledge sharing across the globe
  • Increased productivity
  • Improved systems reliability and quality of service
  • Reduced cost of voice, video and data services