Office of Science and Technology Policy Blog
- Posted byon May 2, 2013 at 9:12 AM EDT
This article is cross-posted from the Council on Environmental Quality blog
Last year, in response to the Obama Administration’s call to action, 35 utilities and energy providers committed to provide 36 million homes and businesses with their own energy usage information in the consensus, industry-standard Green Button format.
Not only are utilities implementing Green Button Download My Data across the country for homes and businesses to securely download their information, but utilities in California and the Mid-Atlantic are beginning to implement Green Button Connect My Data functionality— making it easier for their customers to securely transfer their own energy usage data to authorized third parties, based on affirmative (opt-in) customer consent and control. These efforts will provide more than 11 million customers with an easy and secure way to automatically and routinely participate in energy saving opportunities.
Adopting the Green Button standard will enable households and businesses to more easily use web and smartphone apps to pick the best rate plan for them; take advantage of customized energy efficiency tips; utilize easy-to-use tools to size and finance rooftop solar panels; and download virtual energy audit software that can cut costs for building owners and help get retrofits started sooner.
- Posted byon April 30, 2013 at 3:42 PM EDT
One of President Obama’s top priorities is advanced manufacturing—the use of cutting-edge technologies to spur innovation in product development or manufacturing processes. As he said during his 2013 State of the Union address, President Obama wants to make America “a magnet for new jobs and manufacturing.” That’s why his FY14 budget includes $2.9 billion for advanced manufacturing R&D, including $1 billion to launch a network of up to 15 manufacturing innovation institutes.
To advance this Presidential priority, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) has been working closely with experts in industry and academia to identify advanced manufacturing technologies that could help create the industries and jobs of the future.
On March 7, 2013, OSTP and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Center for Bits and Atoms co-hosted a workshop at MIT on the science of digital fabrication— which could one day allow individuals to design and produce tangible objects on demand, wherever and whenever they need them. The purpose of the workshop was to gather representatives from academic institutions, businesses, non-profit organizations, and government agencies to document the state of the art today, and survey the roadmap for its future development.
- Posted byon April 30, 2013 at 9:26 AM EDT
This article is posted in full on the Joining Forces website
First Lady Michelle Obama delivers remarks at the White House Forum on Military Credentialing and Licensing, in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building South Court Auditorium, April 29, 2013. The First Lady announces the IT Training and Certification Partnership, a new public-private partnership that will enable thousands of service members to earn industry-recognized information technology (IT) certifications before they transition from military service. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)
At the event, First Lady Michelle Obama announced the launch of the IT Training and Certification Partnership, a new public-private program that addresses an issue that can prevent our troops from gaining employment in the private sector: Active military personnel typically do not have the industry-recognized certifications that reflect the IT skills and expertise they gained through their military service.
- Posted byon April 29, 2013 at 3:57 PM EDT
President Barack Obama delivers remarks at the National Academy of Sciences on its 150th anniversary, in Washington, D.C., April 29, 2013. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
- Posted byon April 29, 2013 at 1:22 PM EDT
Dan Wojciechowski is a Washington National Guard Major who recently completed the IT Training and Certification Program pilot. The pilot provided him with the necessary licenses for a new position at Costco Corporate Headquarters, where he will start as an Information Security Analyst in June, 2013.
Today, First Lady Michelle Obama spoke at the White House Forum on Military Credentialing and Licensing, where she announced the IT Training and Certification Program. This program will offer Service members an opportunity to receive industry-recognized information technology (IT) certifications as they transition from military service. That announcement had special meaning for me. Last year I had the great honor of being asked to participate in the pilot for the IT Training and Certification Program as part of the President's Military Credentialing and Licensing Task Force, with the goal of finding ways to smooth Service members’ transition to working in the private sector. Today’s announcements by the First Lady showed that the work the Task Force has done is definitely going to make a difference for a growing number of Service members.
I know the potential of this kind of program from personal experience. I was part of the pilot program at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington State, and it has already paid significant dividends for me. Through the pilot program I have now acquired several certifications that have been huge enablers for my transition into a civilian career. Basically, the training and certification processes helped align my military experience as a signal officer in the Washington Army National Guard with the business needs of employers who are looking for people with IT skills. With those certification credentials following my name on my resume, I got a solid job at Costco Wholesale, working as an Information Security Analyst.
- Posted byon April 26, 2013 at 3:17 PM EDT
Just as there is weather on Earth, there is weather in space. And though we cannot directly see or feel it when we step outside, it has the potential impact our daily lives.
“Space weather” originates on the Sun, can release the energy-equivalent of 100 hurricanes in just minutes, and can produce wind gusts that exceed one million mph. Every 11 years, the Sun undergoes a period of heightened activity called the "solar maximum”—a period that is occurring right now—that can bring especially powerful solar eruptions and hurl energetic particles into space, sometimes toward the Earth. Though the likelihood that these solar storms will thrust particles in our planet’s general direction is very low—when they do, they can damage satellites, harm astronauts in space, make GPS information erratic or undependable, and in some cases even cause electricity blackouts on the Earth.
That’s why the Federal Government works to maintain a range of sophisticated instruments on the ground and in space, which collect data on space weather phenomena spewing particles outward from the Sun. And, that’s why today, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy released a new report, Space Weather Observing Systems: Current Capabilities and Requirements for the Next Decade—an assessment of our Nation’s capacity to monitor and forecast potentially harmful space weather aimed at ensuring these critical capabilities continue to be supported and maintained.
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