Whenever we think about technological advancements, especially in countries such as the United States, we think about private and commercial investments. We think about Silicon Valley and venture capitalists. And while a great many tech ideas do come from those parts of the nation, we often ignore the important role that the military plays in new technologies.
Military and Tech’s Mutually Beneficial Relationship
There is a mutually beneficial relationship that is ongoing between the United States military and the tech companies in the nation. Whether a tech company manufactures smaller components such as an rf directional coupler, or they are responsible for the massive computers or appliances that go into homes, they are likely to have some use to the military. Why? Because their technologies can be used for military purposes, which would give the United States an edge in the battlefield.
Developing New Technologies
The biggest role the military plays with tech companies is by investing in their research and development, and new technologies. If a company has a plan in the works that interests the military, or a prototype that needs investment testing before it can become mainstream, the military will partner with that company. They will invest in that company, because they can reap the benefits of that new technology or device.
Both Parties Win
Tech companies win because they now have the money to develop components, appliances, products or software they would have otherwise been unable to invest in. The military wins because it gets the earliest access to these technologies. They can adopt those technologies within their existing infrastructure, which puts them in an amazing position as compared to other militaries in the world.
These are the types of relationships that must be maintained and strengthened if technology is going to continue advancing at such a rapid rate.