The U.S. military will get their hands on the latest technologies in weapons no matter what. Now, it seems they’re getting so desperate that they’re reaching out to small businesses.
Though they still work with big military contractors, the U.S. Army has also just launched the Army Expeditionary Technology Search or xTechSearch. It will give “nontraditional defense partners” the opportunity to work with the military division via a four-phase competition. Applicants can pitch innovative technologies the army can use, such as next-gen combat vehicles, air and missile defense, and things that can enhance lethality in close combat. A cash prize of $200,000 will be granted to the final winner, who will be announced in April 2019.
With a program like this, the U.S. army is most likely looking for something big corporations aren’t thinking of….or might not be granting.
Not too long ago, Google said they would not use A.I. technology to make weapons or “cause overall harm.” This was a result of employees protesting Google’s military government contract known as Project Maven. “We believe that Google should not be in the business of war,” said the letter protesting Project Maven.
Employees at Microsoft and Amazon also aren’t feeling a relationship with armed U.S. forces. According to Vanity Fair, some folks at Microsoft were outraged with the company’s cloud computing contracts with ICE (Immigration and Costumes Enforcement). Meanwhile at Amazon, employees protested the company’s sale of facial recognition software to ICE and law enforcement.
So yea, it seems like some of these big companies don’t have love for the police and U.S. militarism. This makes sense, considering ICE raids that break up immigrant families, continual police killings, and U.S. drone strikes that impact innocent civilians.
But again, with this new xTechSearch, the military will get their new tech no matter what…and Lord only knows what it could be used for.