Academic journal article Military Review

Understanding Information Age Warfare

Academic journal article Military Review

Understanding Information Age Warfare

Article excerpt

UNDERSTANDING INFORMATION AGE WARFARE, David S. Alberts, eds., CCRP Publications, Vienna, VA, 2001, 312 pages, price unknown.

The main thesis of Understanding Information Age Warfare is the importance of providing understanding of the characteristics of information superiority and information-age warfare. The essays describe a spiral-- development process required to transform the current military platform-centric infostructure into a network-centric one: "The main purpose of this book is to contribute to our ability to move to the next spiral by providing a more detailed articulation of Information Superiority and Network Centric Warfare."

Platform-centric warfare is oriented around individual nodes (AWACS, JSTARS, individual operation centers, and so on). Networkcentric warfare is oriented around an information "infostructure" required to provide maximum information sharing and collaboration. The essayists define the parameters of information (richness, reach, quality, and so on) and note the challenges of measuring the performance and effectiveness of spiral development.

The writers base their discussions on three information domains: physical, information, and cognitive. "The physical domain is the place where the situation the military seeks to influence exists (ground truth). The information domain is where information lives (might or might not be ground truth). …

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