Friday, May 20, 2005

Technology Stewardship Asleep at the Wheel?

Los Alamos National Laboratory and the University of California:
Technology Stewardship Asleep at the Wheel?

Los Alamos National Laboratories (LANL) was in the national news last week, this time concerning the resignation of its director, Pete Nanos. Corporate media was all atwitter about a blog that called for Nanos' resignation and then accurately predicted down to the day when it would occur. The blog, was begun by LANL computer scientist, Doug Roberts, a 20 year veteran of the lab, in response to censorship of letters critical of Nanos' management by the LANL NewsBulletin. Roberts and other LANL scientists were outraged that Nanos would waste more than $100 million of taxpayer money, and they believe, compromise national security, by shutting down the lab because of missing computer disks. Disks, it turns out, that were only a figment of LANL bean counters' imaginations. The blog also has a special section called "The Running List of Wasteful Activities" in which LANL employees can anonymously draw attention to things that further waste tax payer dollars. Maybe management will heed the recommendations, but likely it won't because of the general aversion management types have to recommendations by the people who actually do the work.

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