you love self-service gas pumps that accept your credit cards
and let you skip those pesky trips to the cashier's station? If so, you
owe a word of thanks to the Department of Defense (DOD) for helping to
fund the development of the software that makes this convenient payment
option possible. Why would DOD invest in, of all things, software that
improves gas pumps? Because the same software that serves as the brains
for "intelligent" gas pumps also serves as the brains for military robots
that load munitions. Strange, but true.
in Civilian Life From DOD Military Innovations
gas pumps are just one of many military innovations that are now seamlessly
embedded in civilian life. Other military technologies are currently helping
civilians battle various health and safety threats. For example:
electronic sensors that deploy air bags in all new Ford and Chrysler
cars during car crashes are also installed on missiles to signal these
missiles to prepare to fire when they reach the correct acceleration.
|The laser radar
technology that tracks tiny, rapid movements of the eye during laser
surgery to correct near-sightedness and astigmatism also targets ballistic
new type of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) system that improves
the diagnoses of lung diseases and disorders was originally developed
to diagnose lung problems caused by exposures to chemical weapons.