Military Technology Transfer
Aeragon examines how modern material human existence developed out of advances in military technology. Few elements of modern life are not the result of military development in some way. For example, the way that you are seeing this site, the Internet and computer, grew out of military technologies. Here, you can obtain a great deal of information about technological advances in military equipment down through the ages and their transfer to civilian uses.
Many of today's most popular consumer items were actually developed by the world's militaries. This includes many articles of clothing as well as things that would seemingly be unrelated such as trendy furniture. Some of the most sought after civilian vehicles and also certain modern building styles were spin-offs of military technologies. The consumer electronic products of today all owe their existence to advancements in military technology. In the few cases where the whole concept of a consumer electronic device is not the product of military technology, the underlying hardware technology such as printed circuits is. The influence of military design affects not only the functional aspects of material life, but also, the aesthetics of it.
This site contains information on many aspects of how modern societies have advanced technologically and materially through military advances. It also encompasses some facets that similar studies do not include. Many aspects of the social structures of modern Western societies are a direct result of defense advancements.
Many aspects of modern life where military technology has had a great influence are so pervasive that the roots of their creation have now faded into oblivion. It seems that many historians conceal the military sources of many technological advances. Perhaps it is because the military role in development is often secret that it takes a lot of digging to get to the true origin of many innovations. Perhaps many people find the violent nature of mankind so perplexing that it is easier to ignore those issues. Whatever the reason, it is an inescapable fact that the structures of modern political and economic systems emerged as a result of advances in military technology.
Before the Industrial Revolution, most societies were in a perpetual state of armed conflict. In fact, some people have postulated that the oldest profession is actually arms smithing - probably not an unreasonable theory. Historically, most goods designed and produced were for military or defensive purposes. Arms are the most sophisticated objects a society produces and usually a very high percentage of resources are devoted to this purpose. The choices are clear in that, if a society decides not to spend on defense, it will be overtaken by one that has.
Historically, conquerors were held in high esteem, glamorized and idolized even if begrudgingly. In many cases, warriors were the most respected members of society. Frequently, this was reflected not only in the design of everyday items, but also in the arts. Many civilian items produced before the twentieth century had decorative military themes although they had no defensive function. Many grand household items were built to commemorate a battle or conquest.
The origin of modern society is directly traceable to the Industrial Revolution, and the origin of industrialization is directly traceable to changes in military techniques. Industrialization began with the production of arms. Since the Industrial Revolution, military technology continues to be the driving force in industrial production although military goods might not comprise the greatest percentage of output.
There are various reasons for this. One of the primary reasons is that manufacturing has become an increasingly important factor in the outcome of war. In addition, numerous wars have occurred which have required virtually all of the involved nations industrial output. In many instances, militaries have directly managed manufacturing and manufacturing capacity frequently increased exponentially during wars. Furthermore, armament builders developed many basic industrial production techniques.
Militaries have frequently been innovators, hoping to achieve a significant strategic advantage over their adversaries with more advanced weapons. Before about the eighteenth century this pace was much slower than that which is recognized today. Since that time militaries frequently directly visualize and create new things. In some cases, they manage the creative processes of defense contractors. Many items that have been developed for military use that subsequently had consumer applications would not have received adequate funding if they were not first developed for military purposes. In general, weapons are commonly considered to be at least ten years more advanced technologically than comparable consumer products. As new technologies become declassified and less costly, they find new uses in consumer products.
Strongest, fastest, lightest, heaviest, highest, hardest and farthest are the words used to describe military equipment. Material technologies, that is to say the technology to make various materials themselves have advanced incredibly through military research. Many of the manufacturing processes and methods of today are the result of military advancements. Naturally then, military objects are an inspiration for the design of all types of manufactured objects. Sometimes, a military item is simply converted to civilian use while in other cases a military technology is modified slightly for consumer applications. Therefore, the force that truly drives and molds all modern societies is conflict.