Winging IT. The 71st Flying Training
Wing at Vance Air Force Base, Okla., is the service’s first wing to lease PCs,
servers, notebooks, printers and software.

Under a leasing agreement with Dell Computer Corp., all of the wing’s hardware and
software will be replaced incrementally over the next three years. Non-Pentium PCs
currently in use will be replaced within six to nine months, Air Force officials said.

The initial desktop standard is a 400-MHz, Pentium II PC with 64M of RAM and running
Microsoft Windows NT and the Office Professional software suite that includes Word, Excel,
Power Point, Access and Outlook. Organizations requiring expanded capabilities will
receive PCs with 400-MHz Pentium Xeon chips, 256M of RAM and 9.8G hard drives.

NIMA promotion. President Clinton has nominated Army
Maj. Gen. James King, the acting director of the National Imagery and Mapping Agency, for
promotion to the rank of lieutenant general and NIMA director.

NIMA has been controversial since Congress created the agency in October 1996.

It was formed by consolidating the Defense Mapping Agency, Central Imagery Office,
Defense Dissemination Program Office, National Photographic Interpretation Center, and
parts of the Defense Intelligence Agency, Defense Airborne Reconnaissance Office and
National Reconnaissance Office.

The agency is in the process of combining about 175 legacy systems into a single,
integrated system called the Imagery and Geospatial Information System.

Urgent message. The Electronic Systems Center at
Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., has awarded GTE Government Systems Corp. of Needham
Heights, Mass., an $11.7 million contract to provide the Defense Improved Emergency
Message Automated Transmission System Replacement Command and Control Terminal to several

The terminal is used to compose emergency action messages for transmission through the
Defense Message System and the Higher Authority Communications System.

But DMS will not be able to carry all levels of messages, specifically high-priority
traffic such as emergency action messages and other top-secret messages, by 2000, when the
Defense Department had initially scheduled to pull the plug on AUTODIN.

Aiming high. The Air Force Research Laboratory in Rome, N.Y., has selected Sky
Computers Inc. of Chelmsford, Mass., to build the Air Force’s most powerful
supercomputer to date.

The $3 million, 384-processor computer was funded through the Defense Department’s
High-Performance Computing Modernization Program.

—Gregory Slabodkin  

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