Here at Automated Office Solutions we take pride in our veterans, especially since we employ a few veterans and active duty service members ourselves. After our delicious cookout on Friday, we decided to reflect on the true meaning of Memorial Day and give everyone a few MORE reasons to thank a veteran and remember those that gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Below we take a look at six technologies that the military created that have made their way to the consumer market.
Many credit Charles Babbage as being the father of computers, as well they should. Babbage was the first to create a mechanical computer and this was the basis for many other computing machines to come.
Computers as we know them were created during World War II to run the military’s Ballistics Research Lab. This computer was called ENIAC, or Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer.
Internet (World Wide Web)
Probably the most popular military creation was the internet. DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) was mandated in 1962 to create a network link between the Pentagon, Strategic Air Command, and the command centers built in the Cheyenne Mountains. This network connection laid the groundwork for the internet as we know it today.
Once the network was in full use, the military released the protocol to American colleges, where it was tested, “perfected” and then released upon the world.
GPS or Global Positioning System, was created in the 1990’s by the Department of Defense. It used satellites to track positions of military assets. The technology and access to the satellites were released to the public after a request from President Clinton in 1996.
While the Royal Air force is credited for first discovering microwaves, it was the US military that found that these waves can actually cook food. This was discovered while military researchers were studying the effects of the waves used in the current radar systems.
The military has been using spy satellites since the 1950, but many of the pictures that were taken had been lost because of tough retrieval. In 1976, NASA and USAF create the KH-11 “Kennen” satellite that changed the images into digital format, allowing for digital transmission of images. The fundamentals of these technologies are still used today in many applications, such as digital security cameras, the cameras in our phones, and professional digital cameras.
Yes, aviators were created for the military and yes, they were used by pilots. Ray-Ban Corporation created these sunglasses to protect pilots from the glare and glints of the sun while in flight. Enemy fighters would normally attack from the sun because they were harder to see. Aviators allowed the pilots to look more directly for their targets that were coming from the sun. These sunglasses were tempered to block 80% of the sun’s rays, and covered as much of the eye as possible, making them perfect for pilots, as well as General Douglas MacArthur who popularized the sunglasses along with pop-culture references of the 90’s.
There are many other technologies created by the military that are cool as well: pilots were drinking Tang before it was cool to drink Tang, can you say SLINKY, and we can’t forget silly putty. The above list were some of our favorites. Automated Office Solutions appreciates our veterans, for the sacrifices they have made, the people they have protected and cool toys they have helped create.