Bob Brewin

Editor at Large Bob Brewin joined Government Executive in April 2007, bringing with him more than 20 years of experience as a journalist focusing on defense issues and technology. Bob covers the world of defense and information technology for Nextgov, and is the author of the “What’s Brewin” blog.
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From Veterans Affairs begins evaluating bids for $150 million imaging contract

April 16, 2009 The Veterans Benefits Administration, which has stored tens of millions of pages in veteran's files, closed a fast-track procurement on Wednesday that will digitize the paper forms to improve the way it processes and manages benefits. Read the full story on

Veterans Affairs begins evaluating bids for $150 million imaging contract

April 16, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Veterans Benefits Administration, which has stored tens of millions of pages in veteran's files, closed a fast-track procurement on Wednesday that will digitize the paper forms to improve the way it processes and manages benefits. The contract is part of a push by Eric Shinseki, secretary of the Veterans...

No Worries About Chinese Hackers

April 15, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow While the intelligence community has uncovered evidence of Chinese penetration of U.S. banking networks, Joel Brenner, national counterintelligence executive, said he's not worried "that the Chinese government wants to bring down our banking system." Why not? The answer is simple, he said in a transcript of an April 3 speech...

No More 'Off the Cuff' Budgets

April 14, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Households and businesses run on rigorous budgets, but the Defense Department doesn't. During the past six years, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said the department follows what he described on Monday as an "off the cuff" budget approach to fund essential stuff such as intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems, mine-resistant vehicles...

Defense, VA should convert old code to build new record system

April 14, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Two software companies claim the Defense and Veteran Affairs departments could spend a fraction of the billions of dollars they say they need to develop an electronic health records system from scratch if they converted old software to new open-source code. As a way to answer President Obama's call last...

Coming: A Bigger NMCI Mailbox

April 13, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Navy Marine Corps Intranet users have repeatedly complained about the storage limitations of the intranet's e-mail system ever since the Navy and EDS (now owned by Hewlett-Packard) started to roll it out nine years ago. Now the more than 700,000 NMCI users can expect a larger mailbox by the end...

A Capitol Police Radio System in the War Supplemental?

April 10, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow President Obama promised that the $83.4 billion 2009 war supplemental spending bill he sent to Capitol Hill yesterday would be the last one ever, and the Office of Management and Budget declared that in the future the president is committed to "honest budgeting and fiscal discipline" in preparation of budgets....

Army medical center successfully tests health records system

April 10, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow CHICAGO--The Madigan Army Medical Center in Tacoma, Wash., has completed a successful test of personal health record systems that allowed patients to access information contained in the Defense Department's AHLTA electronic health record system. Now the pilot project will be extended to the Navy National Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.,...

An Embarrassing AHLTA Outage

April 9, 2009 FROM NEXTGOV arrow I've been picking up rumors that the Defense Department's AHLTA electronic health record system crashed last month at about the same time as top military medical officials detailed the poor reliability of the system at a joint hearing of two House Armed Services subcommittees. Rear Adm. Thomas Cullison, deputy Navy...

From Obama backs joint VA-Defense electronic health records

April 9, 2009 President Obama put the power of his office behind development of a joint Defense-Veterans Affairs electronic health record system at a White House press briefing Thursday with Defense Secretary Robert Gates and VA Secretary Eric Shinseki. Read the full story on

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