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28 August 2008

From: info[at]
Date: 28 Aug 2008 04:27:37 -0400
Subject: DNI Open Source Conference 2008: Decision Advantage - The Innovation Challenge has Begun!

Printer Friendly Guidelines  | Entry Cover Sheet 

Special Announcement

The Open Source Innovation Challenge

We are pleased to announce an exciting opportunity in conjunction with the DNI Open Source Conference 2008: 'The Open Source Innovation Challenge.' This is a unique occasion for representatives from academia; think tanks; industry; the media; federal, state, local, and tribal government; and other diverse sectors to use open source information to address real intelligence challenges. Subject matter experts from any field can apply innovative research techniques, thus giving new insight to the Intelligence Community.

Can you provide the most innovative and relevant answer to the Challenge questions?

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) has provided two Challenge questions (below) and instructions to all conference registrants. Those who choose to accept the Challenge can submit a answer for one of the two challenge questions posed. Entries will be reviewed by a panel of judges consisting of senior IC representatives. The three entries judged to be the best answers to Challenge questions will be announced during the opening plenary session of the DNI Open Source Conference on September 11th and the answers will be presented at the concluding conference plenary on September 12th. The Challenge is open to all conference registrants, including those who are not able to attend due to overwhelming registration demand.

Challenge Questions
  1. Using the best open sources to inform your answer, is Al Qaeda a cohesive organization with strong and centralized control, intent and direction?
  2. According to open sources, who will be the global leader in alternative fuels and why?

Challenge Guidelines

  1. Challenge Participants and Entries:Entries can be submitted either by individuals or teams, with no limit to the number of individuals on a team. Teams can consist of individuals from any number of organizations, rather than representatives exclusively from a single university, company or organization; multidisciplinary teams are encouraged. Each person, however, can only enter the Challenge once - as an individual or part of a team, not both. At least one member of each team must be a registered conference attendee and entries from individuals must be submitted by a registered (not necessarily a confirmed) attendee. Entries should address one of the two Challenge questions proposed; entries attempting to address both questions will be disqualified.
  2. Format: Entries should be prepared as a written report with a supporting PowerPoint presentation. The report can be no more than 3 pages in length, using Times New Roman 12 point font, with a page size of 8 ½ x 11 inches; reports longer than 3 pages will be disqualified. The PowerPoint presentation cannot exceed 6 slides (including an introductory slide). The report and accompanying PowerPoint presentation must address the following topics:
    1. Challenge- what is the question posed?
    2. Issues- what are the main considerations involved in answering the question?
    3. Techniques and Tools- were any special methods or resources utilized?
    4. Key Judgments- what are the answers to the question posed?
    5. Sources- note supporting data and evidence.
  3. Evaluation Criteria: Entries will be judged according to the following criteria:
    • Precision: The proposed answer should provide direct and well-supported answers to the question posed. Entries providing lengthy or interesting ideas not directly related to the question will not fare well in judging.
    • New Insight: The proposed answer should provide illuminating information.
    • Creativity: The proposed answer should provide creative ideas or employ new ways of researching and analyzing current issues. Innovative and high quality sources are expected.
    • Data Visualization: New techniques and creative data visualization approaches that communicate key judgments and supporting data effectively will fare well in judging.
    • Sourcing and Use of Open Sources: Challenge entries must be informed only by open source information. Open source information is defined (per ICD 301) as 'publically available information that anyone can lawfully obtain by request, purchase or observation.' All sources must be fully documented and cited.
    • Timeliness: Timeliness of submissions will be a factor in discriminating between high-quality submissions. Participants are urged to consider balancing the speed against the quality of their answer; a quick and thorough response may be better than an exhaustive and time-consuming analysis that reveals little more.
  4. Submission:
    • The Challenge begins when the Challenge questions and rules are distributed to registrants via email; questions and rules will also be posted on the conference website at at approximately 5:00 p.m. EST on Wednesday, August 27th, 2008.
    • The Challenge ends promptly at 5:00 EST on September 5th, 2008. No late entries will be accepted.
    • All entries must be sent electronically via email to Entries should consist of:
      • A cover sheet with contact information (does not count against the page limit).
      • A report following format guidelines and addressing evaluation criteria provided above (Challenge, Issues, Techniques and Tools, Key Judgments and Sources).
      • A PowerPoint presentation to be used at the conference should the entry be selected for presentation. The PowerPoint presentation must consist of 6 slides (including an introductory slide) following format guidelines and addressing evaluation criteria.
    • Entries will be time-dated according to submission time. Time of submission will be a factor in the judges’ decision.
    • Entries selected for presentation will be presented at the DNI Open Source Conference. Please note that the conference is a public and unclassified event, with media in attendance.
  5. Judging:
    • Three entries will be selected for presentation at the DNI Open Source Conference.
    • Entrants selected for presentation will be personally notified on Wednesday, September 10th, 2008. Entries selected for presentation will be announced publically at the DNI Open Source Conference on September 11th, 2008, and the entrant (or one representative from each team) will present their answers at the final conference session on September 12th, 2008.
    • If a selected presentation was entered by a registered attendee who was not confirmed for conference attendance, the entrant will be confirmed to attend the full two-day event.
    • No prizes, monetary or otherwise, will be awarded.
  6. All activities connected to this Challenge must be undertaken in a lawful manner. Submissions may not include classified or proprietary information. Submitters do not have an expectation of privacy in their submissions and all submissions may be subject to public disclosure. The United States Government (USG) asserts unlimited rights to the use of the submissions and may retain the submissions for an indefinite period. Selection to present at the conference does not confer an expectation of award, compensation, contract, or endorsement from the ODNI or USG.

    The DNI Open Source Innovation Challenge
    Entry Cover Sheet

    Challenge Participant(s): (Name, Title, Organization)

    Entry Lead: (Name, Email, Phone)

    Challenge Question Selected:

    Email to: info[at]

From: info[at]
Date: 28 Aug 2008 04:17:23 -0400
Subject: DNI Open Source Conference 2008: Decision Advantage - Conference Reminder

DNI Open Source Conference 2008: Decision Advantage

Conference Reminder

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) thanks you for your interest in the DNI Open Source Conference 2008: Decision Advantage at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, DC, on September 11-12, 2008. If you have not done so yet, please confirm your attendance by filling out the session selection form. (Instructions can be found in your original Attendance Confirmation notice). Your feedback is important, as it aids planners with conference space requirements.

If you are now or in the future will be unable to attend the event, please notify Event Staff at info[at]

Please bring a copy of your Attendance Confirmation Notice with you to the conference. Be prepared to show your Confirmation Notice and an official form of photo identification, such as a drivers license, when you check in for the conference in the Atrium.
Check-In will begin each day at 7:00 am in the Atrium on the Concourse level of the Ronald Reagan Building, where you will receive a name badge and conference folder. Attendees must wear conference badges at all times; attendees without badges will be turned away and referred to Check-In. A complimentary continental breakfast will be served from 7:00-8:00 am. Logistical and transportation information can be found at: Also, be sure to visit the Web site for updated information about the agenda and session speakers.

Please be advised that this conference is a public event, unclassified and open to the public. All remarks and conversations should be made with this caveat in mind.

The two-day conference offers numerous panel sessions and keynote presentations from senior government officials. Confirmed Keynote speakers include Glenn A. Gaffney, Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Collection; Charles Allen, Under Secretary for Intelligence and Analysis, Department of Homeland Security; Michael Hayden, Director of the Central Intelligence Agency; and, James R. Clapper, Jr., Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence.

This year's event features the Open Source Innovation Challenge, a unique session where attendees can present solutions to current intelligence community open source challenges. Attendees are invited to submit ideas and solutions; winners will be selected to present their solutions in the final plenary session. The Innovation Challenge presents an ideal opportunity for private industry, academics, and open source practitioners to share their ideas before a welcoming audience.

In conjunction with the conference, a commercial exhibition will showcase open source information and technology vendors and will feature specialized open source demonstrations. If you think your organization might be interested in participating, please visit for more information about the exhibition and instructions on how to become an Exhibition participant.