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AN ASSESSMENT OF THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF STANDARDS AND TECHNOLOGY INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY LABORATORY FISCAL YEAR 2007 Panel on Information Technology Laboratory Assessments Board Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS Washington, D.C. www.nap.edu
THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS 500 Fifth Street, N.W. Washington, DC 20001 NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the board responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance. This study was supported by Contract No. SB134106Z0011 between the National Academy of Sciences and the National Institute of Standards and Technology, an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the agency that provided support for the project. Copies of this report are available from Laboratory Assessments Board Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences National Research Council 500 Fifth Street, N.W. Washington, DC 20001 Additional copies of this report are available from the National Academies Press, 500 Fifth Street, N.W., Lockbox 285, Washington, DC 20055; (800) 624-6242 or (202) 334-3313 (in the Washington metropolitan area); Internet, http://www.nap.edu. Copyright 2007 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America
The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone is president of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. Charles M. Vest is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Harvey V. Fineberg is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academyâs purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone and Dr. Charles M. Vest are chair and vice chair, respectively, of the National Research Council. www.national-academies.org
PANEL ON INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY JEFFREY D. ULLMAN, Stanford University, Chair RICHARD S. BAKALAR, IBM Corporation JOHN M. CARROLL, Pennsylvania State University STUART I. FELDMAN, Google Inc. DAVID R. FERGUSON, Boeing Corporation (retired) ERIC H. GROSSE, Google Inc. CYNDI JUNG, NVidia Corporation JAMES M. LANDWEHR, Avaya Laboratories PATRICK D. LINCOLN, SRI International Corporation STEVEN B. LIPNER, Microsoft Corporation WILLIAM A. MASSEY, Princeton University ALEXA T. McCRAY, Harvard Medical School HILARIE K. ORMAN, Purple Streak, Inc. DAVID W. SCOTT, Rice University ALFRED Z. SPECTOR, Independent Consultant HAL S. STERN, University of California, Irvine STEPHEN A. VAVASIS, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada JAMES L. WAYMAN, San Jose State University Staff JAMES P. McGEE, Director ARUL MOZHI, Senior Program Officer LIZA HAMILTON, Administrative Coordinator iv
Acknowledgment of Reviewers This report has been reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the National Research Councilâs Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the institution in making its published report as sound as possible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards for objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the study charge. The review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the deliberative process. We wish to thank the following individuals for their review of this report: C. William Gear, NEC Research Institute, Inc., Betsy L. Humphreys, National Institutes of Health, Sanjit K. Mitra, University of Southern California, Max D. Morris, Iowa State University, and John McHugh, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia. Although the reviewers listed above have provided many constructive comments and suggestions, they were not asked to endorse the conclusions or recommendations, nor did they see the final draft of the report before its release. The review of this report was overseen by Alton Slay, Warrenton, Virginia. Appointed by the National Research Council, he was responsible for making certain that an independent examination of this report was carried out in accordance with institutional procedures and that all review comments were carefully considered. Responsibility for the final content of this report rests entirely with the authoring committee and the institution. v
Contents SUMMARY 1 CHARGE TO THE PANEL AND DESCRIPTION OF THE ASSESSMENT 2 PROCESS GENERAL ASSESSMENT OF THE INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY 4 LABORATORY Research Strategies, 4 Opportunities, 5 Planning for Growth, 7 The Research Culture, 8 The Project/Program Matrix, 9 Computing Infrastructure, 10 ASSESSMENTS OF LABORATORY DIVISIONS 11 Mathematical and Computational Sciences Division, 11 Information Access Division, 12 Statistical Engineering Division, 13 Advanced Network Technologies Division, 14 Computer Security Division, 15 Software Diagnostics and Conformance Testing Division, 18 CONCLUSIONS 21 vii