Editor's Desk


Rising tide of cyberattacks threatens all boats

To get some measure of security against the growing number of serious online threats, the user experience might have to change.

Paul McCloskey

To take the next IT step, agencies have to get creative

Governments will have to resort to some atypical financial and management techniques to acquire cloud services under current economic conditions.

Lesson from Amazon's cloud crash: Plan for the worst

The days-long failure of Amazon Web Service's Elastic Cloud Compute was an acute reminder of what can go wrong in the cloud, but one federal website also demonstrated how to be ready.

Paul McCloskey

'Minority Report' technology is just a game -- for now

Advances in human interface technologies, evident in Microsoft's Kinect, have a lot of potential in public safety and health care.

Paul McCloskey

Cops, collaboration and the cloud

The Port of Los Angeles' use of unified communications -- this month's cover story on GCN -- is a preview of how the public sector will be able to utilize the cloud as technology continues to evolve, free of any required device or network.

Paul McCloskey

Gateways to the cloud — and a lot more

With ever more powerful mobile devices in the hands of government workers, and with IPv6 to enable new applications, government computing could be in for a makeover.

Paul McCloskey

Government joins the ingenuity party

The ingenuity boom does not seem to be led exclusively by technology developers. The government management ranks are brimming with new ideas for harnessing technology.

Are budget cuts a mother of IT invention?

As the economic downturn comes to roost in the public sector, IT managers have another, unavoidable incentive to innovate: Significant cuts in budgets and staff sizes while network demands, as always, are on the rise.

In search of more than a few good geeks

Agencies are facing a serious shortage of IT security pros, but government and industry are at least trying to develop a farm system.

The evidence speaks in favor of telework

A large portion of workers need only a secure computer connection and a phone of some kind for their jobs, and for them, the benefits of telework are real. The technology is there.

These are not your uncle's agency IT projects

The winners of this year GCN Awards for Government IT Achievement, many involving impressive scope, cross-agency cooperation and tight deadlines, are examples of how old barriers are being broken down.

Cancer institute's PKI system shows how it's done

The National Cancer Institute and Bristol-Myers Squibb have developed a working example of public-key infrastructure that increases efficiency, saves money and eliminates paper at little cost to NCI.

Harry Potter and the evolution of GIS

Developments in geospatial technologies include the geotagging of photos and, soon, SMS text messages. Geotags offer a lot of potential benefits, but there's also a potential dark side to anyone having a Marauder's Map.

Emergency crews get the message on social media

Emergency agencies across the country, from small cities to the state and federal government, are putting social media and Web 2.0 tools to effective — and sometimes life-saving — use as complements to established communications channels.

The challenge of transformational change

Potentially game-changing IT initiatives abound at agencies. But the odds are that they'll produce only incremental rather than transformational change. That doesn't mean we should stop trying.

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