Welcome!

Microservices Expo Authors: Stackify Blog, Aruna Ravichandran, Dalibor Siroky, Kevin Jackson, PagerDuty Blog

Blog Feed Post

INSA Publishes White Paper on Intelligence Community Information Technology Enterprise

By

Insa_clearThe Intelligence and National Security Alliance (INSA) has released a white paper documenting the vision and approach for enhancing enterprise information technology in support of intelligence and national security missions. This paper, titled  ”Doing in Common What Is Commonly Done” provides insights based on interviews of government leaders including CIOs, CTOs and other agency leadership.

The goal of the IC ITE approach is to move to an IT posture that is more integrated and service based (with 10 common service offerings across the IC for primary IT functions). IC level portfolio management will also be done enabling IT decisions to be made by more informed IT leaders across the enterprise. And enhancements will be made to the IC enterprise IT acquisition process, including more centralized and synchronized IT acquisition and more progressive models for procurement (like SOA and Agile instead of typical procurement).

From the paper:

 

The IC ITE focuses on greater integration, information security, and information sharing while seeking substantial cost reductions through shared infrastructure and service models. The IC recognizes that each agency has particular strengths or core competencies that can be better leveraged by designating IC elements to act as Service Providers for specific capabilities for the entire Community. The DNI designates the IC Service Providers who are responsible for determining investment requirements and using their respective acquisition and contract authorities to execute their IC ITE responsibilities. Currently identified common services and their respective providers include: the Desktop Environment, DIA and NGA; IC Cloud Services, NSA and CIA; Applications Mall, NSA; and Applications Stores, all agencies.

The IC ITE will be delivered in increments with Increment 1 (Initial Operating Capability, or – IOC) in FY13 and achievement of Full Operating Capability (FOC) planned in FY18. Increments for the IC ITE will include all activities required to plan for and implement IC ITE services, including scaling services across the IC enterprise, transitioning relevant legacy data and applications, and retiring legacy capabilities as appropriate. The initial IC ITE services focus on delivery of a common IC desktop, common back office tools, broader and standardized access to analytic tools and applications, and data-centric computing using complementary government-developed and commercial cloud architectures. Development of Increment 1 began in 2012 and ultimately intends to deliver enterprise capabilities for the IC Cloud Environment, the IC Desktop Environment, and the IC Applications Mall services. Future increments propose to deliver additional ITE services and capabilities based on mission needs, and will further define/refine governance, cost recovery business models, and additional efficiency opportunities. In five years, the IC expects all agencies to be leveraging this shared services platform with each providing or paying for enterprise services. This baseline platform and new Community IT ecosystem is expected to enable and encourage innovation to occur and to spread rapidly.

For industry, especially the IT vendors, one of the most important paragraphs follows:

The IC will lean heavily on industry to conduct R&D on enterprise solutions – COTs technology will likely predominate. Acquisition will be deliberate to provide some stability in enabling organized change. Outsourcing may be considered as long as vendors can meet service needs on a sustainable basis without sacrificing mission agility. Vendors depending on revenue streams from cost-prohibitive long-term license fees will likely find themselves disadvantaged as the IC ITE moves forward. Integrators who specialize in specific agencies may also be disadvantaged when the IC is seeking enterprise-wide solutions.

I encourage all technologists from all enterprises, even totally commercial enterprises, to review this INSA document for lessons learned for your particular organization. And for those who serve the national security community I encourage you to read closely both so you can see what is coming next and so you can provide input where you think it is necessary.

I have heard from IC IT leaders directly on this activity, and they genuinely want continued feedback. I’m working up thoughts for IC leaders myself on this. My inputs so far will probably be minor but my view is I must show friends in government that I care so I will provide input. I encourage you to do that as well.

One piece of input I’ll publicly state just for continued dialog: I found this summary of IC ITE views and vision to be overly simplistic in how “industry” is thought of. I think that may be because most IC CIOs and CTOs come from life-long careers in government. Or maybe it is because the document is just a summary and it doesn’t reflect the real nuanced views of IC IT leadership. But to try to summarize all that is not government under the term “industry” just falls flat with me. In the views of many who were interviewed for this summary, there is the government and there are vendors and it is that black and white. In the real nuanced world, there are many segments to American industry and to assume they are all the same weakens your ability to work with and influence and get the best from these many segments.

When it comes to IT, a useful segmentation of “industry” for national security decision makers might be: Systems Integrators, Service Companies/Consultancies and IT Vendors. Considering “industry” this way instead of as just one big blob can help inform and produce a more impactful strategy.

Here is how this sort of segmentation of IT related firms might look:

  • Systems Integrators (SIs): Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin, Boeing, SAIC, Raytheon, CSC, Harris, GD
  • Services Companies and Consultancies: the SIs do some of this but many firms specialize here, including CACI, BAH, ManTech, Camber, the FFRDC (Mitre, Aerospace) and many others
  • IT vendors: Microsoft, IBM, Oracle, Google, Amazon, Cisco, SAP, HP, EMC, RedHat, Cloudera, Thetus, MarkLogic, Cleversafe, Terracotta, Fixmo, Recorded Future, Sitscape, Triumfant, Invincea, WayIn, etc etc.

I’d be the first to admit this segmentation of the IT industry is not perfect (some companies do not fit this model), but it has a bit more fidelity than lumping all industry into one term, and if it were used in the IC ITE it would allow a more meaningful expression of intent. For example, the INSA articulation of the IC ITE makes it seem that the IC views all of industry as traditionally embedding themselves in an IC element for years to provide all holistic IT support. Clearly this is not talking about all of industry, it must refer to the systems integrators. In other parts it talks of industry needing to change software license models. This makes more sense if it is aimed at the IT vendors segment, not services firms and usually not systems integrators.  And portions which talk about the need for new educational and training for commercial workforces are probably focused on the Service companies. Lumping all kinds of industry serving IC IT needs into one term is sub optimal for many reasons which I will leave to readers to consider.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Bob Gourley

Bob Gourley writes on enterprise IT. He is a founder and partner at Cognitio Corp and publsher of CTOvision.com

@MicroservicesExpo Stories
The nature of test environments is inherently temporary—you set up an environment, run through an automated test suite, and then tear down the environment. If you can reduce the cycle time for this process down to hours or minutes, then you may be able to cut your test environment budgets considerably. The impact of cloud adoption on test environments is a valuable advancement in both cost savings and agility. The on-demand model takes advantage of public cloud APIs requiring only payment for t...
"Codigm is based on the cloud and we are here to explore marketing opportunities in America. Our mission is to make an ecosystem of the SW environment that anyone can understand, learn, teach, and develop the SW on the cloud," explained Sung Tae Ryu, CEO of Codigm, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
High-velocity engineering teams are applying not only continuous delivery processes, but also lessons in experimentation from established leaders like Amazon, Netflix, and Facebook. These companies have made experimentation a foundation for their release processes, allowing them to try out major feature releases and redesigns within smaller groups before making them broadly available. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Brian Lucas, Senior Staff Engineer at Optimizely, discussed how by using ne...
Many enterprise and government IT organizations are realizing the benefits of cloud computing by extending IT delivery and management processes across private and public cloud services. But they are often challenged with balancing the need for centralized cloud governance without stifling user-driven innovation. This strategy requires an approach that fundamentally reshapes how IT is delivered today, shifting the focus from infrastructure to services aggregation, and mixing and matching the bes...
"CA has been doing a lot of things in the area of DevOps. Now we have a complete set of tool sets in order to enable customers to go all the way from planning to development to testing down to release into the operations," explained Aruna Ravichandran, Vice President of Global Marketing and Strategy at CA Technologies, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
While we understand Agile as a means to accelerate innovation, manage uncertainty and cope with ambiguity, many are inclined to think that it conflicts with the objectives of traditional engineering projects, such as building a highway, skyscraper or power plant. These are plan-driven and predictive projects that seek to avoid any uncertainty. This type of thinking, however, is short-sighted. Agile approaches are valuable in controlling uncertainty because they constrain the complexity that ste...
Cavirin Systems has just announced C2, a SaaS offering designed to bring continuous security assessment and remediation to hybrid environments, containers, and data centers. Cavirin C2 is deployed within Amazon Web Services (AWS) and features a flexible licensing model for easy scalability and clear pay-as-you-go pricing. Although native to AWS, it also supports assessment and remediation of virtual or container instances within Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform (GCP), or on-premise. By dr...
"This all sounds great. But it's just not realistic." This is what a group of five senior IT executives told me during a workshop I held not long ago. We were working through an exercise on the organizational characteristics necessary to successfully execute a digital transformation, and the group was doing their ‘readout.' The executives loved everything we discussed and agreed that if such an environment existed, it would make transformation much easier. They just didn't believe it was reali...
It’s “time to move on from DevOps and continuous delivery.” This was the provocative title of a recent article in ZDNet, in which Kelsey Hightower, staff developer advocate at Google Cloud Platform, suggested that “software shops should have put these concepts into action years ago.” Reading articles like this or listening to talks at most DevOps conferences might make you think that we’re entering a post-DevOps world. But vast numbers of organizations still struggle to start and drive transfo...
Agile has finally jumped the technology shark, expanding outside the software world. Enterprises are now increasingly adopting Agile practices across their organizations in order to successfully navigate the disruptive waters that threaten to drown them. In our quest for establishing change as a core competency in our organizations, this business-centric notion of Agile is an essential component of Agile Digital Transformation. In the years since the publication of the Agile Manifesto, the conn...
"We're developing a software that is based on the cloud environment and we are providing those services to corporations and the general public," explained Seungmin Kim, CEO/CTO of SM Systems Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
The cloud revolution in enterprises has very clearly crossed the phase of proof-of-concepts into a truly mainstream adoption. One of most popular enterprise-wide initiatives currently going on are “cloud migration” programs of some kind or another. Finding business value for these programs is not hard to fathom – they include hyperelasticity in infrastructure consumption, subscription based models, and agility derived from rapid speed of deployment of applications. These factors will continue to...
While some developers care passionately about how data centers and clouds are architected, for most, it is only the end result that matters. To the majority of companies, technology exists to solve a business problem, and only delivers value when it is solving that problem. 2017 brings the mainstream adoption of containers for production workloads. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ben McCormack, VP of Operations at Evernote, discussed how data centers of the future will be managed, how the p...
Enterprises are adopting Kubernetes to accelerate the development and the delivery of cloud-native applications. However, sharing a Kubernetes cluster between members of the same team can be challenging. And, sharing clusters across multiple teams is even harder. Kubernetes offers several constructs to help implement segmentation and isolation. However, these primitives can be complex to understand and apply. As a result, it’s becoming common for enterprises to end up with several clusters. Thi...
Let's do a visualization exercise. Imagine it's December 31, 2018, and you're ringing in the New Year with your friends and family. You think back on everything that you accomplished in the last year: your company's revenue is through the roof thanks to the success of your product, and you were promoted to Lead Developer. 2019 is poised to be an even bigger year for your company because you have the tools and insight to scale as quickly as demand requires. You're a happy human, and it's not just...
DevOps teams have more on their plate than ever. As infrastructure needs grow, so does the time required to ensure that everything's running smoothly. This makes automation crucial - especially in the server and network monitoring world. Server monitoring tools can save teams time by automating server management and providing real-time performance updates. As budgets reset for the New Year, there is no better time to implement a new server monitoring tool (or re-evaluate your current solution)....
We just came off of a review of a product that handles both containers and virtual machines in the same interface. Under the covers, implementation of containers defaults to LXC, though recently Docker support was added. When reading online, or searching for information, increasingly we see “Container Management” products listed as competitors to Docker, when in reality things like Rocket, LXC/LXD, and Virtualization are Dockers competitors. After doing some looking around, we have decided tha...
"Opsani helps the enterprise adopt containers, help them move their infrastructure into this modern world of DevOps, accelerate the delivery of new features into production, and really get them going on the container path," explained Ross Schibler, CEO of Opsani, and Peter Nickolov, CTO of Opsani, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
The benefits of automation are well documented; it increases productivity, cuts cost and minimizes errors. It eliminates repetitive manual tasks, freeing us up to be more innovative. By that logic, surely, we should automate everything possible, right? So, is attempting to automate everything a sensible - even feasible - goal? In a word: no. Consider this your short guide as to what to automate and what not to automate.
identify the sources of event storms and performance anomalies will require automated, real-time root-cause analysis. I think Enterprise Management Associates said it well: “The data and metrics collected at instrumentation points across the application ecosystem are essential to performance monitoring and root cause analysis. However, analytics capable of transforming data and metrics into an application-focused report or dashboards are what separates actual application monitoring from relat...