sources and can operate in an effective, coordinated manner by exchanging information, even if the force elements are widely dispersed. As a consequence, decision making should be more informed than is now the case, collaborative planning among dispersed elements should be more timely and complete, and distributed engagements involving sensors, fire control authority, and weapons at separate locations should be more readily executable.

Underlying this exchange and use of information is the Naval Command and Information Infrastructure, so named to indicate an infrastructure that supports not just the manipulation of information but also the actual functions of command. Such an infrastructure should possess a number of attributes:

  • It should integrate and support operations at all levels of command;

  • It should be responsive and assured, providing a continuously available, secure, high-integrity resource to support all information needs;

  • It should facilitate information management by offering consistent, tailored operational information to specified recipients;

  • It should be dynamic and self-organizing, automatically healing breaches and forming and automatically maintaining high-priority, low-latency broadcast or normal communication channels;

  • It should be independent of location, providing great operational flexibility in the geographical positioning of component units; and

  • It should be easily scaled and evolved, adaptable in size to meet changing needs, and capable of being modernized easily through the use of common, open interface standards and functionally modular design.

The NCII (see Figure 1.6 in Chapter 1) comprises the communication and computing assets necessary to accomplish two things: (1) effect the exchange of information among information repositories, sensors, command elements, forces and weapons, and logistic and support elements and (2) allow this information to be used for both human decision making and automated processes pertaining to command and execution.1 The communications and computing components embedded with sensors, platforms, weapons, and support systems are not considered part of the NCII, but the effective operation of the NCII requires that their interfaces to the NCII satisfy standards established in the overall NCII design. Information repositories are part of the NCII if they are naval assets directly supporting command, but other naval information sources that may be called upon (e.g., personnel databases) are not part of it, although their inter-

1  

The word “infrastructure” as used in this report includes both the underlying communications base and the common support applications that ride atop the base; specific mission applications are not included.



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