back to article US JEDI military cloud network is so high-tech, bidders will have to submit their proposals by hand, on DVD

The Pentagon's JEDI system, a cutting-edge cloud platform designed to take the US Department of Defense well into the next decade of technology, will require companies to utilize a delivery system straight out of the era of dial-up modems and pagers. An updated request for proposals (RFP) guideline issued this week demands …

  1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge


    How else are you going to leave the details in the back of a taxi ?

    1. BebopWeBop
      Thumb Up

      Re: Naturally

      I was about to say that if they think that their biggest security risk is the transfer from bidder to Pentagon then possibly somene needs to tell them the facts of life, but you have a point!

  2. Phil Kingston

    Optical media?

    How quaint.

    1. Shadow Systems

      At Phil Kingston, re: optical media.

      Dang it, I wanna submit mine on clay tablets!

      I'll get my coat, it's the one with the mud (ancient Tippex!) in the pockets...

  3. FozzyBear

    Wading through all those submissions on DVD. Man that is a special level of hell.

    Of course, they at least drew the line at DVD's. imagine stipulating 1.44Mb Floppies!

    1. rav

      DVD is pretty common for Government Proposals.

      DVD's are not uncommon for US Government RFP's. When the media is handed over, a transmittal letter is generated acknowledging receipt.

      The problem with uploading data is there is no person to person hand off nor is there a hard signature as a receipt.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    Government contracting....

    What you are buying may change with the advance of technology, but the form you receive it in is set by law, and the law seldom changes.

    1. midcapwarrior

      Re: Government contracting....

      Not a legal requirement.

      Electronic submission to secure servers is an option.

      This is a choice made by the contracting office.

  5. WibbleMe

    No internet connection is actually a sensible thing,

    Did they check to make sure the electrical grid it not giving off their data though.

  6. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "the rule would unfairly favor giants"

    Oh, so you recognize that you're not a giant ? If you were one, I'm sure you'd be quite happy about that rule.

    And, IIRC, it seems to me that Oracle has a long history of telling everyone it is the giant in the RDMS space, elbowing everyone else out of the way with gleeful abandon.

    But, as usual, some billionnaire doesn't get his way, so the toys get thrown out of the pram before the brain engages. Tsk, tsk.

  7. Christian Berger

    So... how is this old fashioned?

    Normally this would be done by meetings by which you meet people in the same room as you are... as people have been for thousands of years.

    Of course I personally would insist on written proposals, as the ability to write a good proposal is probably corellated to the ability to write good specifications or software. All of those forms are text based and all require you to understand the core of the problem in a way that makes you able to add any special requirements. If you can do that, you can write both a good proposal and good specifications. If you cannot even write a good proposal chances are you are not going to be able to write good specifications to be implemented.

    1. ratfox

      Re: So... how is this old fashioned?

      The proposal should also be hand-written, to allow our graphology experts to determine your profile.

    2. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: So... how is this old fashioned? @Christian Berger

      Quite so, CB. And all one really needs to initially supply at such an elemental stage of a program which by all accounts hopes to be Great Game Changing and AI Leading is an engaging foreword that one wouldn't like any opposition or competition being privy with their own copies being furnished with further formative proprietary content .... Private Intellectual Property for Pirating/Mirroring.

      The Nuts and Bolts and Instructions and Working Drawings/BluePrints and Specifications can easily follow later as needs require in a much safer working environment than these Almost Instantaneous InterNetional Communications Channels and Bunkered War Games Rooms.

      And ..... is there a slick trick requirement from US DOD mentioning that one has to be a US citizen to submit/apply, although of course is that easily instantly arranged if one has something interesting and thought worthy of working with. 'Tis/'Twas always the case since even long before leading Nazi Third Reichers exchanged their secrets for relative freedom to live with and work for Uncle Sam in the Home of the Brave.

      There usually is in such programs.

      1. TRT Silver badge

        Re: So... how is this old fashioned? @Christian Berger

        And, indeed, a suitable high security flight case used to protect the DVDs and handwritten manuscript submission can also port a sizeable bribe in used dollar denomination bills. Can't be leaving a digital footprint for those bribes, no-siree.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Oracle are pissed

    IBM are no doubt pissed that their prefered method of Decks of punched cards and QIT60 tapes are no longer being accepted.

  9. Rob

    How many bidders...

    ... have said to some techie, we need to burn a DVD, closely followed by said techie grabbing the corporate credit card and running out to buy a DVD burner.

    We don't have any in our office anymore and the one I had in storage at home gave up the ghost, not got round to replacing it, not sure I will. Strangely ironic now I think about it, as I used to spend my working day building DVD masters and then reading a book while I kept an eye on 20 DVD duplicators whirring away... starting to feel old...

    1. Spazturtle Silver badge

      Re: How many bidders...

      Well the techie at Amazon Web Services will probably be using the corporate Amazon Prime account to order one from Amazon.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: How many bidders...

      DVD burners are getting increasingly rare at many US,gov, particularly DoD, contractors. Something about federal law and/or contract requirements for site security, minimizing insider threats, and all that.

      I've heard that even read-only (-ROM) drives are getting shut off in some places -- I guess to stop an entry point for malware, but then how would you read *an RFP submission* from an optical disk? Go back to cases of hardcopies in binders? Yeah, because using UPS and FedEx and leaving said cases on the loading dock for some intern to transfer to a meeting room is a REAL secure method...

      (A/C for obvious reasons.)

    3. PM from Hell

      Re: How many bidders...

      Ironically I have a couple of internal DVD burners in my spares case plus cables, I just don't have a desktop PC to house them in any more

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    For such a secure network design, I'd assume that the DVD is PGP encrypted, with the first half of the key emailed and the second half sent by SMS?

  11. H in The Hague

    Single what?

    "Because the Pentagon wants to keep the entire project under the roof of a single provider ..."

    At first I read that as "... single point of failure ..." - call me a cynic.

  12. Aladdin Sane

    Let's hear it

    for sneakernet.

  13. Spazturtle Silver badge

    It will likely get awarded to Amazon Web Services, AWS already run the CIA's top secret network so they already have all in place.

  14. vtcodger Silver badge

    Rules and Regulations

    It's been many decades since I worked on a US government proposal. But back in the day, even the most modest proposal had to be delivered in physical form to a specific place by a specific time. If any portion was classified it would have had to be handled according to appropriate rules -- double wrapped, properly marked on the inner wrapper, delivered by hand or registered mail, hand receipted so that a security audit of the submitter could establish where the numbered copy went. And it would have had to be accompanied by half an inch of properly completed forms attesting that if granted the contract the submitter would fully comply with thousands of health, safety, workplace policy regulations; wouldn't discriminate in employment, wouldn't pollute the environment, would use no product produced in Cuba or North Korea, etc,etc,etc.

    DVD sounds to me like a step forward.

  15. Kev99 Silver badge

    Hand delivery of a DVD is a helluva lot more secure than the "cloud', which everyone knows is just a bunch of holes held together with vapor.

  16. Oengus

    It could be worse

    Oracle, in particular, has fought against the single-vendor requirement, arguing in a formal protest that the rule would unfairly favor giants like AWS and leave the DoD with a worse system in the long run.

    They could have ended up with an Oracle based system or a multi vendor system that has incompatibilities built in and no way of determining where issues are..

  17. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Reading between the Lines ..... and Things are Really Dire ‽ .

    US JEDI military cloud network is so high-tech, bidders will have to submit their proposals by hand, on DVD.

    Proof positive that the Pentagon is not virtually secured against exfiltration of programs and intelligence sources .... future resources ‽ .

    That makes the DOD pretty useless as a leading edge force in a field of Universal Greater IntelAIgent Games Play, for the Ether and AI is the One and Only Powerful Energetic Current Medium of First Choice for Future Builders and Greater IntelAIgent Game Changers, which may or may not be both the same thing and something completely different wherever IT Works, Rests and Plays with Command and Control Systems leading you into Phormative Areas of Planned Servitude/Secret Systems Service ‽ .

    Or perhaps you know different and can advise of A.N.Other Almighty Carrier Vessel for the Instant Universal Sharing of Information for Machining into Advanced Intelligence for the AIdDrivering of Global Operating Devices?

  18. DuncanLarge Silver badge

    OMG its soooooo haaard

    Oh FFS. So what. They want it on a DVD for some reason.

    Wow its so hard to:

    1. Capture video digitally and put it onto a computer. (whats a computer?)

    2. Open your editing program and edit the video so it looks good.

    3. Go to File->project properties and tick the tickbox/select in the "output type" pull down "DVD Video"

    4. Click render. Is it too hard to use a mouse too? Maybe Alexa will render for you. Alexa: Render my project? Amazon should get onto that, who uses a mouse these days?

    5. Go to the supermarket down the road. The place you get food from. Add some recordable DVD's to the trolley with the stuff that you still need to put in your mouth (pizza). Do we really still need to eat? Its the 21st century after all. Where are these meals in a pill I was promised? (watch demolition man)

    6. Stick one of the discs into your computer. Cant do that? Go on Amazon and buy a usb drive for the same cost of a few good pizzas. Sell it on ebay when you are done, the drive, not the pizza.

    7. Use dvd mastering software, freely available. This is assuming they want a dvd-video disc and not just a video file dumped onto the dvd. If the latter, burn the file to the disc. its a built in function in windows.

    8. Take the dvd and drop it to them so they can see a real human being is bothered to show up and gain some points in a competition.

    Honestly, is that so difficult? Its also not tech from the 90's. Last time I saw a dvd burner in the 90's must have been in alternate dimension.

    So why would they want it on DVD?

    Ready for another list?

    1. They are ubiquitous and everyone has easy access (to some degree) to dvd players and drives.

    2. They can hold dvd-video, or files. This means they can sit back and watch on a dvd player which are common as muck or play on VLC.

    3. They are not evil like USB flash drives. Take a look at BadUSB and think like a secure government organization which might want to avoid having an innocent looking USB flash drive acting like a keyboard and doing any kid of shit with powershell or bash within a few seconds of them plugging it in. Look up RSA and flash drives and how a secretary just plugged one in and lost some of RSA's most valuable secrets putting many of us normal people at risk.

    4. You can take some other ancient tech, called a pen, and write stuff on the dvd label. Last time I saw a flash drive with any space for scribbles was back in the early 2000's and that was just enough room for a few letters.

    5. They dont stop working when you drop one.

    6. They can be put in a thing called... a binder and passed about in bulk. Well I suppose you can chuck flash drives into a box and let them rattle about.

    7. They are unassuming, and not embarrassing. Supplying a video file on a Mickey Mouse shaped flash drive might lose you the competition, or win it of the judges like that sort of thing.

    The list can go on and on. For goodness sake, having a problem with supplying a video on dvd these days is as silly as posting a story about Amazon still selling books written on ancient crap called paper.

    WE STILL USE PAPER. Why isnt this headline in the news. I mean paper! Thats older than DVD by a loooong shot.

    Heck I still wipe my ass with he stuff. In the 90's we were promised that we wont have toilet paper any more. Where are my 3 sea shells? (watch demolition man).

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Other stories you might like