Week ahead: Pentagon buying reforms coming soon


Acquisition reform will be in the spotlight as the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee unveils his plans for the upcoming annual defense policy bill.

Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) will outline his acquisition reform proposal at a speech Tuesday at the Brookings Institution.

He plans to introduce his proposal as standalone bill, elicit feedback and then fold it into the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

Thornberry has said his proposal will focus on two areas: allowing the Pentagon to experiment with new technologies and clarifying the responsibilities of each of the different officials involved in buying decisions: the Office of the Secretary of Defense and the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics.

The latter topic was addressed in the 2016 defense bill, but Thornberry wants to do more in the upcoming legislation.

“In a lot of respects, I’m looking at going back to basics here,” he told reporters earlier this month. “Adding bureaucracy to deal with a problem is usually not a very good answer.”

On experimentation, he wants the Pentagon to have more latitude to experiment with technology without it being a so-called program of record.

http://thehill.com/policy/defense/272693-week-ahead-pentagon-buying-reforms-coming-soon

Cisco To Buy Jasper Technologies For $1.4 Billion


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Cisco announced today it was buying Jasper Technologies, developers of an Internet of Things cloud platform for $1.4 billion.

With Jasper, Cisco gets a company that understands the burgeoning Internet of Things market. While the IoT term gets bandied about quite a bit, it simply means connected machines talking to one another over the internet. This could be industrial automation equipment on a shop floor, a connected car, a connected wind turbine or even a smart thermostat.

What Jasper is doing is providing a platform to build these connected devices and deliver them to market much faster and with less friction, Jahangir Mohammed, CEO of Jasper said at a press event announcing the purchase today.

http://techcrunch.com/2016/02/03/cisco-buys-jasper-technologies-for-1-4-billion/