Bureau won't rest on Census 2000 laurels

Bureau won't rest on Census 2000 laurels

By Patricia Daukantas

GCN Staff

JUNE 18—In terms of automation, Census 2000 was one of the most successful surveys ever conducted, Census Bureau chief information officer Richard W. Swartz said last week.

Over a two-year span, the decennial head count employed 950,000 workers, most of them temporary, and at its peak cost $22 million per day, Swartz said.

The Census CIO and several other federal officials spoke at a Washington meeting sponsored by SAS Institute Inc. of Cary, N.C.

The SAS platform serves as the 'unifying language' for the bureau's statisticians, programmers and support staff, Swartz said. Census is in the second year of its second consecutive five-year, unlimited-use SAS software license [see story at www.gcn.com/vol19_no27/enterprise/2851-1.html].

When Census signed the first unlimited-use agreement in 1991, it changed the way the bureau does business, Swartz said. Site licenses with other enterprise software providers have been modeled after the SAS deal.

Speaking on the 50th anniversary of the start-up of Census' first commercial computer, the Univac I, Swartz listed the bureau's upcoming compute-intensive projects. Every month the bureau compiles statistics for 13 key economic indicators, and it's now preparing to conduct the next economic census in 2002, he said.

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