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Currie Colket <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Currie Colket <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 21 Mar 1997 12:20:11 -0500
text/plain (179 lines)
Dear Michiel,

Thank you for the alert on the virus guard. The IBM AntiVirus checker we use 
here did not detect any problems with the forpaige.doc file. However, our 
checker is 7 months old and the WM.Wazzu.gen virus apparently is newer. I have 
discussed the alert with my network support people and they are looking into the

If they can confirm the virus, I will alert all addressees. If there is a 
problem, I suspect the damage is already done. I will be away from my office 
next week, so if I do not hear from them by COB today, I will not be able to 
alert folks for another week.

If the virus is present, it does not appear to be present. I found out the 
following from a search of "WM.Wazzu" on AltaVista ["" had no 

> WM.Wazzu.a - This curious virus contains a macro that, like the 
> concept virus, attaches to Word documents. When activated, wazzu 
> randomly inserts the word > "wazzu" in your document. (Go figure!) Dr. 
> Solomon's does NOT detect this virus. It was discovered on a Student 
> Lab PC while running the FINDVIRU virus checker. If you encounter this 
> virus, please contact the Helpdesk as soon as possible. 727-5536 or 
> e-mail: [log in to unmask] 

I have attached a copy of the file in ASCII text. 

Thank you again for the alert.



                              Strawman for 
                     Software Acquisition Manager 
                             Training Needs

Purpose:  This Strawman addresses the knowledge and skills needed by a software 
acquisition manager to support the acquisition of a software dependent system. 
This knowledge and skills may also be desirable for other acquisition personnel 
such as the program manager.

Context:  The knowledge and skills for a software acquisition manager must be 
driven by systems engineering of which software engineering is a significant 
part. Also the knowledge and skills for a software acquisition manager are 
driven by acquisition policy. The current thrust in the DoD is to use 
performance specifications which focus on what to build and not how to build.

Knowledge and Skills: The knowledge and skills necessary for the software 
acquisition manager are categorized in 3 general areas:  People, Process, and 

1.      People: People make the acquisition happen through the effective use of 
technology and processes. People with the right skills are necessary on both the
acquisition side and on the development side. Effective use of people will 
impact the cost, schedule, and quality of a project. Knowledge necessary for 
software acquisition personnel would help answer the following questions: 
 What are the useful organizational approaches that make sense in developing 
 What should one look for in a proposal in evaluating the effectiveness of the 
organization for developing software? 
 What are the dangerous organizational approaches that result in poor quality 

2.      Process: Processes allow a software acquisition manager with the 
necessary tools to manage the acquisition from the perspective of Cost, 
Schedule, and Quality. When plans fail managers sacrifice quality to achieve 
cost and schedule. Projects that are late have typically (but not always) 
seriously compromised quality. This results in a poorer product delivered to the
fleet as well as significantly higher life-cycle costs. Important knowledge 
include Mil-Std 498, ISO/IEC 12207, CMM, SPICE, SA CMM, Best Practices (SPMN), 
Software development strategies (e.g., evolutionary, incremental, build, 
waterfall), Documentation methodologies, Software metrics, Configuration 
Management, Cleanroom, Inspections, Planning strategies, Testing strategies, 
Software Quality (SA) strategies, Independent Verification and Validation (IV&V)
strategies, things to put into an RFP, things to look for in a proposal, and the
evolving acquisition environment. Software acquisition personnel must be aware 
of the tradeoff of COTS and proprietary software within an acquisition to commit
the government into future contracts.

3.      Technology: Knowledge of software technology can be critical in the 
current acquisition environment of knowing what to ask for in the performance 
specification. Technology provides feasible engineering solutions to meet the 
systems requirements. Knowledge of the technology options available will have an
impact on what we can ask in the RFP. Later, knowledge of these technologies is 
important for evaluating the approaches of alternative technology proposed by a 
vendor. Technologies can seriously impact the cost, schedule, quality, and 
long-term life-cycle support of a project so the benefits and tradeoffs 
associated with their use must be well understood. Examples of key technologies 
software acquisition personnel should know include:

 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using WWW and Java technologies within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of Ada versus C++ within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of Interface technology within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoff of using Open Systems approaches within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of using the TAFIM for C4ISR systems;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of using the Joint Tactical Architecture for C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of using UNIX/POSIX versus Run-time Executives within 
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of using different scheduling algorithms within a single 
processor and within the distributed C4ISR software environment;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using Expert System technology within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using Artificial Technology within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using Virtual Reality within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using Safety-Critical technologies within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using modeling and Simulation technologies with C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of using Object Oriented Technologies versus conventional 
technologies for developing C4ISR; OOA???, OOD???, OBP???, OOP???
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using Client/Server technology within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using CORBA technology within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs is the use of different Software Engineering Environments 
for developing C4ISR systems;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using CASE tools within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using various software development methodologies within 
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using formal methods for analyzing requirements and 
specifications in C4ISR environments;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using Encryption/Security technologies within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in using Domain Modeling and reuse technologies within 
 Benefits/Tradeoffs in different architectural approaches within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of different networking approaches within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of automatic testing approaches within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of Information Warfare technologies within C4ISR;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of using COTS within C4ISR and if COTS is used, the 
appropriate mechanisms to integrate the COTS into the system;
 Benefits/Tradeoffs of integration technology for evolving legacy systems 
within the C4ISR environment.

One initial observation is that software technologies encompass many diverse 
areas. It is not likely to find a single individual knowledgeable in each of 
these technologies. It should be noted that the benefit/tradeoff knowledge level
for a technology is significantly less than a working knowledge of that 
technology.  Program Directorates may want to foster a working knowledge for 
certain software technologies critical to their mission domain. 

The new acquisition rules mean we have to be smarter in what we can ask for and 
smarter in our approach for evaluating proposals. Lack of knowledge of the 
benefits & tradeoffs of these technologies is a serious problem not only for the
software acquisition manager, but also for general program manager types. For 
example, the first item on the list is Benefits/Tradeoffs in using WWW and Java 
technologies within C4ISR; a software acquisition manager should know how the 
technology could be applied to a procurement, both from the perspective of 
knowing what capabilities to ask for in an RFP and from the perspective of 
analyzing proposal approaches. Not understanding the power of this important 
technology might, for example:

 Cause the RFP to be written in such a way that WWW and Java 
  technologies are precluded in the vendor's solution space;
 Cause proposals advocating the use of WWW and Java technologies 
  to be poorly evaluated as the evaluator might not understand how 
  the technology is an appropriate solution to the C4ISR domain.

It should be noted that each of the above technologies has risks for using and 
risks for not using the technology. These risks frequently have a serious cost 
impact on program maintenance, for example, current acquisition policy on the 
use of COTS can result in a very effective system delivered to the Fleet. An 
excellent example of an effective system using COTS was recently demonstrated on
the Theodore Roosevelt for the Scaleable High Performance LAN (SHPL) & Advanced 
Power Projection Planning & Execution (APPEX) programs. However, common sense 
must be applied as COTS poorly selected and poorly integrated could result in 
requirements not being satisfied or life-cycle costs an order of magnitude 
higher than alternative approaches. For example, the BSY-2 program found no COTS
product that could support the real-time database requirements, despite working 
with database vendors for years. A real-time database engine had to be 
developed. Then again, had SHPL & APPEX been custom built, such technology as 
the WWW would neither be easily integrated into the aircraft carrier nor 
inexpensively evolveable as the WWW technology evolves. Systems/software 
acquisition personnel must understand the technologies involved to understand 
the risks of using or not using each technology.

Summary:  Education and training in these people, process, and technology areas 
are desirable to improve expertise and knowledge of software acquisition 
personnel. This education and training must be done in the context of software 
engineering partnered with systems engineering to acquire a system under the DoD
acquisition rules.