July 29, 2008

Naval Disconnect

By Edwards, Mark

EXCERPT [Millennium sailors] were born with laptops in their hands.... But when we get them into the Fleet, the disconnect between what they were promised and what they find will be profoundly disappointing-a veritable bait-and-switch scheme. They will discover that our "leading-edge-of-the-shelf" and "state-of- the-art" technology is at best ancient....

The two-way communication bandwidth of a single BlackBerry is three times greater than the bandwidth of the entire Arleigh Burke destroyer. Looked at another way, the Navy's most modern in-service multimission warship has only five percent of the bandwidth we have in our home Internet connection.... Moreover, every system we field takes nearly seven years to reach the Fleet. By the time it gets to the people who need it, it Is already out of date.

VICE ADMIRAL MARK EDWARDS, deputy chief of naval operations for communications networks (N6), in Proceedings (April 2008)

Copyright Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars Summer 2008

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