Author Archive

Aaron Boyd

Senior Editor, Nextgov

Aaron Boyd
Aaron Boyd is an award-winning journalist currently serving as senior editor for technology and events at Nextgov. He primarily covers federal government IT contracting and cybersecurity issues affecting both civilian and defense agencies. As a lifelong nerd and policy wonk, he feels right at home covering the intersection of technology and policy in the nation's capital.
Emerging Tech

The Air Force’s Platform One Team Thought It Was Agile. Then COVID-19 Hit.

The pandemic pushed the service’s internal DevOps team to hit a 10-updates-a-day deployment schedule for a new secure communications platform.

Emerging Tech

TSA Wants Passenger Self-Screening that Looks Like Grocery Store Self-Checkout

The agency, in partnership with the Science and Technology Directorate, is planning a solicitation to streamline airport security without compromising safety.

Emerging Tech

HHS Proposes ‘IT Control Tower’ to Manage Strategic National Stockpile

The proposal is part of a larger strategy to incorporate the manufacturing, distribution and point-of-care sectors.

Data

Federal Data Strategy Deadlines Shift Due to COVID-19

The team prioritized some items for the pandemic response but extended other deadlines.

Emerging Tech

Pentagon’s AI Center Awards $800M Contract Through GSA Center of Excellence Program

The contract is set to provide artificial intelligence-powered analytics tools to “prepare for future warfare operations.”

Data

HHS Relaxes Data Security and Privacy Enforcement For COVID-19 Test Sites

The agency offered a list of suggested security measures but said it will not be imposing penalties in specific circumstances.

Emerging Tech

Pentagon Shop Wants Machine Learning to Fix Complex RPA Processes

The office does not want new robotic process automation tools or cloud providers, according to a Defense Innovation Unit solicitation.

Emerging Tech

GSA Seeks Support for Challenge Sites, Including Potential New Challenge X Lab

The crowdsourcing Challenge.gov and Citizenscience.gov need program support, as does a potential new testbed for agencies.

IT Modernization

COVID-19 More Likely to Accelerate Telecom Modernization than Cause Delays, GSA Officials Say

The pandemic has delayed some agency transitions to the $50 billion Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions contract, but those are outliers, according to program leads.

CIO Briefing

FEMA Issues Solicitation For Temperature Screening Ahead of Plans to Reopen Two Facilities

The winning vendor will need to supply protective equipment for their employees and contactless, infrared temperature scanning for FEMA personnel.

IT Modernization

GSA Suggests Using ‘Secret Shoppers’ to Evaluate Call Centers

The contact center within GSA’s Centers of Excellence offered a template for using mystery shoppers to measure performance.

CIO Briefing

Decisions To Reopen GSA Regional Offices Will Be Made At the Local Level

The agency’s open floorplans and other concerns make it difficult to reopen offices, but GSA’s telework culture has kept operations running smoothly, according to an agency official.

IT Modernization

Centers of Excellence Team With Another Health Agency Amid Pandemic

FDA became the fourth agency in 2020 to join the Centers of Excellence program; ninth overall.

Emerging Tech

Big Tech and Aviation Companies to Set Standards For New Drone-Tracking System

The eight vendors will set the technology standards for FAA’s Remote ID program to track drones and their operators.

IT Modernization

Homeland Security’s Biometrics Database Is on Its Way to the Amazon Cloud

The Office of Biometric Identity Management released a privacy impact assessment as the program begins moving the nation’s biometric database to Amazon’s GovCloud.

Emerging Tech

Pentagon Wants AI to Predict Behavioral Changes in Troops

The Defense Department wants artificial intelligence that can tell when shifts in behavior could have “unwanted negative outcomes” for troops, their units and their missions.

Podcasts

Critical Update: How State Department IT Was Set Up to Deal with COVID-19

State Department CIO Stuart McGuigan joins Critical Update to talk about his vision for the agency and how the department’s decentralized nature made for an easy transition to mass telework.

Emerging Tech

The Army Wants a Wearable COVID-19 Detector

Due to the urgent need, the managing consortium has suspended some—but not all—of its members-only restrictions.

CIO Briefing

SBA Awards $5.5M Contract to Improve Response to Disasters

As the Small Business Administration responds to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s also implementing what it learned during its response to the 2017 hurricane season.