Why Mercedes’s Self-Driving Trucks Are Set to Overtake Its Robotaxis | Fortune


Don’t hold your breath for a self-driving Mercedes car anytime soon.

At Daimler’s capital market day in London on Thursday, new CEO Ola Källenius said there was a “reality check setting in” regarding the Merc-maker’s plans for building fleets of so-called robotaxis—a project on which it is collaborating with the German industrial giant Bosch.

Instead, Källenius said, the technology would be used in trucks first.

Source: Why Mercedes’s Self-Driving Trucks Are Set to Overtake Its Robotaxis | Fortune

North Korean Nuclear Negotiations: A Brief History


North Korea ratifies the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT), a multilateral agreement whose dozens of signatories have committed to halting the spread of nuclear weapons and technology and promoting peaceful cooperation on nuclear energy. North Korea built its first nuclear facilities in the early 1980s.

Source: North Korean Nuclear Negotiations: A Brief History

Amazon Will Protest JEDI Cloud Contract; Cites ‘Political Influence’ | Defense One


Amazon Web Services will protest the Pentagon’s decision to award its massive Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure contract to Microsoft.

AWS provided notice Friday of its intent and will officially lodge its protest within the U.S. Court of Federal Claims.

“AWS is uniquely experienced and qualified to provide the critical technology the U.S. military needs, and remains committed to supporting the DoD’s modernization efforts,” an AWS spokesperson told Nextgov in a statement.

“We also believe it’s critical for our country that the government and its elected leaders administer procurements objectively and in a manner that is free from political influence. Numerous aspects of the JEDI evaluation process contained clear deficiencies, errors, and unmistakable bias—and it’s important that these matters be examined and rectified.”

Microsoft was awarded the contract on Oct. 25 after a nearly two-year process that saw significant controversy over the battle to build the military’s war cloud. Four companies initially battled for the contract, with two—IBM and Oracle—filing losing bid protests against alleged unfairness in the contracting process.

Source: Amazon Will Protest JEDI Cloud Contract; Cites ‘Political Influence’ – Defense One

Navy CIO talks innovation, cybersecurity and CMMC | FCW


Aaron Weis, the Navy’s newly appointed CIO, expects the Defense Department’s new unified cybersecurity certification to help bring government’s tech standard closer to industry’s.

“There’s not a single silver bullet,” Weis said during a panel talk at AFCEA DC’s Navy luncheon Nov. 13. “But I think you can lead by well-placed examples. You can lean on the Tier 1 providers, lean on the Tier 2s, Tier 3s to look at things culturally. And there are a number of ways that [the Navy] can go out and really put a pin on where things need to change.

The DOD’s planned Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) program could help and has the “right perspective,” Weis said.

Source: Navy CIO talks innovation, cybersecurity and CMMC — FCW

Disappearing Phantom: Iconic jet nears end of service | Stripes


It epitomized U.S. air power during the Cold War, was used extensively by the U.S. in Vietnam and was still in active service decades later. But now, the iconic F-4 Phantom II fighter-bomber is flying into the sunset.

Only a few dozen Phantoms remain in active service around the world out of 5,195 built during a 20-year production run that started in the 1950s.

The American ones, flown by the Air Force, Navy and Marines, are all gone, many of them having been shot down in their final roles as target-practice drones. Those still in use by foreign air forces are slated for retirement in the near future.

Source: Disappearing Phantom: Iconic jet nears end of service – Stripes

The Case for a More Pragmatic Approach to Russia


U.S. policy across four administrations has failed because, whether conciliatory or confrontational, it has rested on a persistent illusion: that the right U.S. strategy could fundamentally change Russia’s sense of its own interests and basic worldview.

It was misguided to ground U.S. policy in the assumption that Russia would join the community of liberal democratic nations, but it was also misguided to imagine that a more aggressive approach could compel Russia to abandon its vital interests.

A better approach must start from the recognition that relations between Washington and Moscow have been fundamentally competitive from the moment the United States emerged as a global power at the end of the nineteenth century, and they remain so today.

The two countries espouse profoundly different concepts of world order. They pursue opposing goals in regional conflicts such as those in Syria and Ukraine. The republican, democratic tradition of the United States stands in stark contrast to Russia’s long history of autocratic rule.

In both practical and ideological terms, a close partnership between the two states is unsustainable.

Source: The Case for a More Pragmatic Approach to Russia

DHS Cyber Monitoring Program Is Shedding Light on Agencies’ Shadow IT | Nextgov


The Homeland Security Department’s signature cybersecurity program is helping agencies discover scores of devices they didn’t know existed within their IT infrastructure, according to the program’s chief.

Launched in 2013, the Continuous Diagnostics and Mitigation program offers agencies a full suite of cyber tools, dashboards and services meant to give them a bird’s-eye view of their digital ecosystem.

The program, run by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, is meant to help officials better defend against cyberattacks by increasing visibility into the users, devices, systems and traffic across an agency’s network.

Source: DHS Cyber Monitoring Program Is Shedding Light on Agencies’ Shadow IT – Nextgov

Can social media ‘targetcasting’ and democracy coexist?


Speaking recently at Georgetown University, Mark Zuckerberg told an audience “I’ve focused on building services to do two things: give people voice, and bring people together.”

He later said “More people being able to share their perspectives has always been necessary to build a more inclusive society.” The speech anointed Facebook as the “Fifth Estate” in which “people no longer have to rely on traditional gatekeepers in politics or media to make their voices heard.”

The problem is that the platform Zuckerberg created does more than “give people voice, and bring people together.” It is economically incentivized to drive people apart. In the process it shatters an underpinning of democracy.

Source: Can social media ‘targetcasting’ and democracy coexist?

Most Executives Fear Their Companies Will Fail If They Don’t Adopt A.I. | Fortune


Artificial intelligence is so important for business success, executives said in a new survey, that most of them fear their companies will fail without it.

Seventy-five percent of executives “believe they risk going out of business in 5 years if they don’t scale AI,” according to a report released Thursday by consulting firm Accenture.

Source: Most Executives Fear Their Companies Will Fail If They Don’t Adopt A.I. | Fortune

GOP strategist Rick Wilson on how to beat Trump


It just boggles my mind. I spent 30 years making television ads for candidates, super PACS, and associations, and for the state and national parties. I had to tell the truth in those ads. The FEC [Federal Election Commission] says if the ad’s fake you can go to the [television] station and go, “This is a false and defamatory ad—take it down,” and they’ll take it down.

Not every time. Sometimes there’s an edge on it. Sometimes there’s a little bit of gray area, but for the most part you operate under a set of rules. They can put things on Facebook basically saying, Democrat candidate X wants to have drag queen story hour at the local mandatory Sharia training center, and scare the crap out of people.

Look, I’m a free speech guy, but this is also a corporate platform where there is some responsibility. They’re not guarantors of the First Amendment. And they certainly exercise their corporate discretion on all kinds of things they dislike.

You can’t run an ad for gun parts on Facebook. But you can say Bernie Sanders eats babies.

Source: GOP strategist Rick Wilson on how to beat Trump