ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. (December 11, 2014) -- Leveraging collaborative, web-based technology to connect hundreds of registrants with speakers from all over the country, a Department of Defense (DoD) virtual conference broke down geographical barriers and offered a look at doing business more efficiently.With a theme of "Mobile CIO," the Nov. 19 event attracted 470 registrants and provided a platform for military, civilian, academic and industry leaders to share insights on how their organizations are shifting processes to mobile devices.The conference, co-hosted by milSuite and Defense Connect Online (DCO), used available technology to take the logistical stress - and cost - out of organizing a traditional conference. The third in a series of virtual conferences, it demonstrated how milSuite and DCO integrate to host high-level, low-cost conferences, which eliminate the travel costs and time commitments required for traditional on-site events.Keynote speakers included William Marion II, chief technology officer for the U.S. Air Force, who spoke from Air Space Command at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., and Gregory Youst, chief mobility engineer for the technology and integration division at the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA)."These virtual conferences are indicative of the new approaches to such areas as eLearning and strategic communications," Marion II said. "They provide agile, far-reaching, and inexpensive information sharing approaches. With the reductions in travel throughout the DoD, online collaboration represents the best way to continue to partner across the services and with industry. In this case, hundreds of similarly focused individuals globally discussed mobile strategies."The event featured six speakers, including the two keynote speakers, from the DoD and industry providing insights about trends, principles, strategic plans and technologies that are transforming how information is shared."The reality is that everything done today in the DoD from a desktop or laptop will eventually - and sooner rather than later - need to be done just as easily from a mobile device," said Brett Lovelace, milSuite strategic initiatives representative. "Our aim is to align the milSuite applications with the DoD course of action for future mobility operations, and this conference helped advance that goal."Similar to a traditional conference, attendees had the opportunity to choose between presentations, with at least two choices offered during time slots throughout the day. But unlike traditional events, there were real-time polls, live chat room discussions and ongoing virtual question-and-answer sessions."As the operational community adapts to emerging technologies it's more important than ever that we work together to share information and conserve resources," said Doran Michels, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) program manager, who spoke at the virtual conference. "Toward that end, state-of-the-art conferencing tools can allow a wider audience to participate, optimize information exchange, and considerably reduce the government's costs."The DoD is leveraging about 50 pilot programs to determine the best mobile strategy and implementation plan. Among the pilot programs is an Army initiative that put mobile devices in military classrooms and into the hands of troops deployed overseas.DCO and milSuite are among nine 'Enterprise Services' Web 2.0 applications hosted at DISA core data centers that provide tools for communications between joint forces and are included in DISA's Enterprise Infrastructure, which offers user applications, infrastructure resources, mobility solutions, and identity and access management for DoD personnel.DCO is an enterprise collaboration solution for online meetings, eLearning and webinars. milSuite, provided by the Army's Program Executive Office Command, Control, Communications-Tactical Military Technical Solutions Office, is a DOD-wide secure site of collaboration tools that mirror existing social media platforms. It hosts four social media applications that empower users to communicate through sharing documents, images, videos, blogs, discussions and a wide scope of features designed to improve efficiencies, capture information and enable professional networking.