Computers in the Federal inventory are out of date, only 2% of the large- and medium-scale computers use 1975 or later technology. Newer equipment of similar capacity could use existing software without significant changes; provide such benefits as faster speeds, better reliability, greater capabilities, and lower energy consumption; and avoid costly operations.
Agencies have not recognized the costs and problems of continuing to use outmoded equipment. Guidance is needed to assist Federal managers' implementation of current technology, but such guidance has not been issued. Better knowledge of computer technology would enable Federal managers to better recognize and evaluate available economical alternatives. The present acquisition cycle is long, complicated, and frustrating and has contributed to the obsolescence of Federal computers.