There’s a perception that the feds always select the lowest bid when buying products and services. So it’s reasonable to wonder if they’ve done the same thing when buying cybersecurity products and services, and whether that contributed to being sideswiped by SolarWinds. 

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Tkool Electronics

How the feds purchase cybersecurityThere’s a perception that the feds always select the lowest bid when buying products and services. So it’s reasonable to wonder if they’ve done the same thing when buying cybersecurity products and services, and whether that contributed to being sideswiped by SolarWinds. 

SG73S2ATTD75R0D_Datasheet PDF

How the feds purchase cybersecurityThere’s a perception that the feds always select the lowest bid when buying products and services. So it’s reasonable to wonder if they’ve done the same thing when buying cybersecurity products and services, and whether that contributed to being sideswiped by SolarWinds. 

The hijacking and subsequent destruction of at least four planes, two of which crashed into the World Trade Center towers at around 9a.m. Eastern Daylight Time, interrupted the normal flow of capital and sent international stocks spiraling downward amid uncertainty as to how the world market will react to the tragedy.

In the electronics sector, the most immediate effect will be seen due to a delay in scheduled parts shipments. With the U.S. borders closed tight, air freight, cargo arriving by ship, and even trucked goods from Mexico's maquiladora district are barred from entry as the government continues to assess the nation's security risks.

SG73S2ATTD75R0D_Datasheet PDF

For the time being, however, the personal horror of the attacks has pushed business concerns to the side. At least one semiconductor manufacturer interviewed earlier today was still trying to account for employees scheduled to fly today from one of the airports affected by the attack.

I can't get in touch with my boss right now. He's in New York (City). I know he's fine. I've spoken with people who have spoken to him. So far, we're just trying to make sure everyone is accounted for and nobody is traveling. We did have some people who were supposed to be flying out of Logan. I don't think they were going to LA,” said a spokeswoman for ST Microelectronics.

Robert Klatell, executive vice president and general counsel at electronic components distributor Arrow Electronics Inc., Melville, N.Y., summed up the industry's reaction.

SG73S2ATTD75R0D_Datasheet PDF

It is too early to tell at this stage how long things will be interrupted,” Klatell said. I don't believe anyone is doing business as normal today. Everyone is in a daze.

The parts of the business that we can control are operating fine. The system is up and people are working. What we don't know about is the impact on transportation and our ability to deliver product. Nor do we know what our customers will do. Initially, everyone's efforts are focused on the human side and making sure families are well.”

SG73S2ATTD75R0D_Datasheet PDF

The view from the financial sector was similar.

This is a tragic event, and the loss of life and the concern for people across the country is much more important than the monetary impact or loss of delay from moving parts around the world,” said Keith Dunne, an analyst at Robertson Stephens Inc., San Francisco. Tomorrow, when everything has settled a bit, the industry will just begin to review the damage.”

Professor Ifor Samuel of St Andrew's University has developed a semicondunducting polymer that amplifies light by a factor of 1000.

He carried out the work with the aid of research student Justin Lawrence, and announced the results at the British Association Science Festival at Glasgow University.

The development is a product of the EPSRC-funded Ultrafast Photonics Collaboration (UPC), led by St Andrew's with contributions from Imperial, Herriot-Watt, Glasgow and Bristol universities.

The aim of the UPC is to develop next-generation photonics technologies operating at datarates as high as 100Tbit/s. The initiative was established in July last year, and Prof Samuel's team is already producing results.

As well as pursuing higher data rates, polymer-based optical fibres would be significantly cheaper than silica-based technology.

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