Recently, Government Technology Insider had the privilege of attending the opening of the Nebula Software Factory at the Quantico Cyber Hub, in Quantico, Virginia. Located in the heart of the Department of Defense’s innovation zone, the software factory and the Quantico Cyber Hub are dedicated to supporting the rapid digital transformation that the DoD needs to protect the national interest and defend critical physical and digital assets. We had the opportunity to talk with Jonathan Payton, ACL Programs Manager at the Cyber Bytes Foundation about how this unique collaboration is helping support the Department of Defense at this critical time in their digital transformation journey.
Government Technology Insider: What is the mission of the Cyber Bytes Foundation?
Jonathan Payton (JP): The mission of the Cyber Bytes Foundation is to create a unique and constantly evolving ecosystem that produces the education, innovation, and outreach opportunities that fuel responsiveness to the most challenging national security and technical challenges we face today. The Cyber Bytes Foundation does this by bringing together innovators from industry, government, academia, and the non-profit world who all share a commitment to addressing these problems and identifying groundbreaking solutions.
GTI: How has the opening of the Quantico Cyber Hub accelerated innovation for the Department of Defense?
JP: Since the opening of the Quantico Cyber Hub two and a half years ago, we’ve focused on making it a hub for excellence in innovation in the areas of cybersecurity, 5G, artificial intelligence and machine learning, and augmented and virtual reality. With the addition of the Nebula Software Factory, developed in partnership with Chenega Applied Solutions, we’ve added best-in-class DevSecOps capabilities, which was the missing piece in accelerating innovation for the Department of Defense.
GTI: What has the partnership with private sector organizations, like Chenega Applied Solutions, added to this capability for innovation?
JP: The Quantico Cyber Hub team was first introduced to Chenega Applied Solutions about a year ago through our network of partners. We were looking for a DevSecOps partner to enhance our capabilities and value to the Department of Defense. With their reputation for supporting the DoD through their Modernization as a Service (MaaS) work with Kessel Run and other software factories, they were ideally suited to our collaborative environment and mission. Chenega Applied Solutions has enabled the Quantico Cyber Hub to become the birthplace of software factories for the Department of Defense and, in fact, the entire United States government.
GTI: What are the anticipated outcomes for the Nebula Software Factory?
JP: The goal of the Nebula Software Factory is to give the Department of Defense a proving ground where bootstrap developers can have the best tools and resources in the industry at their disposal to support the warfighter in every aspect of the mission. In short, it’s to DevSecOps right the first time, every time.
GTI: What’s the next step in this process to accelerate innovation for the Department of Defense?
JP: The next step in the process to accelerate innovation for the Department of Defense is to increase the awareness and adoption of automation capabilities. Right now, the DoD is working through the process of identifying what processes can be automated. It’s challenging work, but the end result is worth it. As that work continues, we’re continuing to talk with and listen to DoD leaders and the warfighter about where the mission critical challenges lie and what they need to succeed.
To become a Beta Test Group at the Nebula Software Factory, click here.