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Navy Unveils Web Site For Military Personnel

By Ben White
Special to The Washington Post
Thursday, January 28, 1999; Page A25

The Navy unveiled an ambitious, glossy new multimedia Web site yesterday to help far-flung military personnel and their families get a wide array of information and services.

Although a Navy project, the site is designed to aid service members in all branches of the armed forces, domestically and around the globe.

Navy Secretary Richard Danzig launched the site, saying it would go a long way toward offering comprehensive information to a dispersed military population. "There is no organization in the world that has people that are so widespread," Danzig said.

The site, www.lifelines4qol.org, was developed for the military by TRW Systems & Information Technology Group of Fairfax and is designed to offer basic textual information and gather several video technologies being used by the armed forces to distribute information, including satellite broadcasting, cable television and video conferencing. The official launching of the Web site was beamed live on the Internet from a state-of-the-art Navy television studio.

Visitors to the site will be able to enter a virtual "mall" offering information on military medical services, crisis counseling, personal financial management, chaplain services, pay schedules, career assistance, educational materials, deployment information and "leisure pursuits," including a newsstand as well as audio and video content. Large portions of the site, however, remain under construction and are currently unavailable.

TRW designed the site for a military partnership led by the Navy but also including the Marines, Coast Guard and Defense Department's Executive Committee on Quality of Life. LIFELines Executive Director Randy N. Eltringham said she expects the Army to join as a partner in the site in the near future.

The military has spent some $500,000 thus far to create the site's basic architecture, Eltringham said, and has $5 million in contributions from the partners to add new features.

Military officials and enlisted personnel at the launching of the site said it would be particularly useful for families dealing with the logistical mazes of relocations and new deployments and for reservists who are not in regular day-to-day contact with their respective branches of the service.


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