Wacky World News, April 15th, 2009
Los Alamos National Lab announced their new PurchaseIT program this week to employees. It will be used to strictly control all future purchases of computer related items at the lab. The PurchaseIT program has been mandated by LANS CIO, Tom Harper (formerly a manager with Bechtel) in order to be compliant with Procedure P1011 ("Killing Off Science at LANL").
According to the new purchasing policy, all IT orders will only be accepted by Designated Procurement Representatives (DPRs). LANS is in the process of hiring hundreds of new support people using additional overhead taxes to fund these newly created positions.
Under these new rules, all purchase orders will be rigidly constrained to support current lab Information Architecture (IA) standards. This means that *ALL* incoming systems will have their hard drives erased and have wireless, Bluetooth, cameras, and microphones physically removed from systems so that they are permanently disabled.
It’s expected that physically removing Wi-Fi from LANL laptops will make them completely useless for lab travel and, therefore, force LANL staff to go out and purchase their own laptops. This should result in a major cost savings to the lab's equipment budget says CIO Harper. In addition to this, LANS hopes that these strict, new laptop policies will result in even greater savings by driving many of the best scientists out of the lab.
Customers who wish to not have these features disabled can apply for an exception by filing out LANS Form 666B in triplicate and then prostrating themselves in front of the CIO while begging for mercy. It is expected that almost all requests for exception will be haughtily denied by the CIO after making the customer wait for approximately 12 months.
The PurchaseIT system will require that all of these newly crippled computer systems be purchased only from a small selection or products offered by a select group of vendors who have strong connections with LANL's "Friends and Family" plan. Prices for these crippled computers will reflect the labor required to make them utterly useless. Laptops will start out at a price of approximately $6,000 for the least crippled versions and go up to $8,000 for systems that have been both utterly crippled and then beaten up with a hammer for an extra measure of crippling.
In tandem with this new program, LANS is also contemplating a new policy that mandates only software currently offered by the lab’s Electronic Software Distribution (ESD) system will be allowed on lab computers. ESD is expected to soon reduced the number of software programs that are available down to one choice: Microsoft Office.
CIO Tom Harper says,"This is just the first phase of our new Purchase IT program. During our next phase, we hope to move even further along in the process of destroying all the remaining science at LANL by requiring removal of all keyboards and LCDs from laptop procurements and mandating that all desktop computers be allowed to only run DOS 3.3."
When LANL Director Mike Anastasio was asked by our reporter about the new PurchaseIT program he had this to say: “Don’t SLIP – Wear shoes that GRIP!”. He claimed that LANL staff would fully understand what he meant by this cryptic phrase.
In a separate news story, Bechtel, the prime "for-profit" manager of LANL, reported massive profits of $31.4 billion dollars for this last year.
Tune in next week to learn how an Etch A Sketch is substantially equivalent to a laptop (in the aggregate).