NATO's Strategic Warfare Development Command

TIDE Sprint, Improving Interoperability through Online Collaboration

April 4, 2020


Spring 2020 TIDE Sprint wrapped up last Friday as a completely virtual event.

This year’s spring edition of the Think-Tank for Information Decision and Execution Sprint or TIDE Sprint was supposed to take place in Stockholm, Sweden. Instead, this TIDE Sprint was the first event to be conducted entirely online. More than 450 attendees; operators, engineers, scientists and academics addressed the way people, processes and technology work together to help solve tomorrow’s interoperability challenges using virtual collaboration tools to support their ideas, concepts and programs of work.

Data Science was a core theme of this TIDE Sprint with over 100 experts coming together online to discuss and address the need for data science standards to deliver an interoperable data science environment for analytics and collaboration across the Alliance. Interoperability for data science is more than just sharing data; collaboration, sharing of analytic products and reusing analytical models and pipelines are also essential steps to becoming a data-driven organization. Being data-driven is about making data and data science part of an organization’s strategy, its systems, processes and most importantly culture. At this TIDE Sprint, data scientists were identifying concrete steps that will lead to a viable data science capability for NATO, transforming it into a data-driven organization.

The Technology Track gathered software engineers from NATO Nations and Partners, industry and academia to discuss, evolve and validate federated interoperability, architectures and specifications. This year, the track made significant improvements to Federated Mission Networking Spiral Specifications by identifying the detailed security requirements for several federated core services. Federated Mission Networking is the key initiative for NATO Nations and Partners to conduct missions in a coalition environment by ensuring ‘day zero’ interoperable forces. When forces act together coherently, effectively and efficiently before a mission, instantly connecting their networks from the very first day of an operation, operational effectiveness and mission success increase significantly, while saving money as nations increasingly design interoperability into systems.

Federated Mission Networking is a framework helping multinational forces to better communicate, train, and operate together with enhanced interoperability and information sharing.

Participants of the Data Centric Security (DCS) track reviewed the implementation of the recently released NATO DCS vision and strategy. Experts made progress on how information can flow across seamlessly different classification levels in an environment that redacts certain content based on its classification and releasability to mission partners and other recipients. This process will speed up our ability to communicate and therefore improve our responsiveness and ability to share situational awareness.

The autumn edition of TIDE Sprint will take place in Norfolk, VA, USA from November 2nd to 6th.