Apple Online Store“Leaders from the Army’s technology command visited Apple, Inc. [in Cupertino, CA] to discuss the use of Apple products in Army business and battlefield operations,” Edric Thompson reports for Army.mil.

“Maj. Gen. Nick Justice, Research, Development and Engineering Command commanding general and key members of his staff traveled to Apple headquarters March 5,” Thompson reports. “Apple officials gave the Army group tours of its laboratories and other facilities and talked about some examples of where the military is already using Apple technology. The Army’s research and development command is evaluating commercial hand-held solutions such as iPad, iPhone, iPod, iMac, and MacBook platforms. ‘The Army is moving away from big-green-box solutions and toward those that will adapt along with our warfighters on the battlefield,’ Justice said.”

MacDailyNews Take: Major General Nick Justice. Now that’s a movie name!

Thompson reports, Justice said the Army recognized the billions of dollars invested by industry to develop its devices. ‘We’re continuing to leverage commercial technology for battlefield uses; we can’t ignore that kind of existing knowledge,’ he said. ‘Our job, as stewards of the taxpayer’s dollar, is to adopt and adapt appropriate commercial technology and offer the best possible solution to the warfighter.’”

Within RDECOM [Research, Development and Engineering Command], the Communications-Electronics Research and Development Center has developed numerous handheld command and control solutions and is supporting the development and transition of two iPhone applications: COIN Collector, a counter-insurgency information collection tool, and MilSpace, a combined planning and social networking environment,” Thompson reports.

“The Army’s official science and technology blog, Army Technology Live, released a public iPhone application last month. The app puts Army technology news, updates and media, such as images and video, in one location. The Army Technology Live iPhone application is available as a free download from the Apple iTunes Store,” Thompson reports. “‘Apple technologies offer unique and proven solutions with intuitive designs that allow users to learn quickly without a training manual,’ said Ron Szymanski, CERDEC’s lead computer scientist on the project. ‘The Army would like to leverage Apple’s experience when designing military applications.’”

“Engaging companies such as Apple allows the Army research and development community to leverage commercial business models as well, said Dr. Gerardo J. Melendez, director, CERDEC Command and Control Directorate,” Thompson reports. “‘As we push to develop more commercial capabilities to meet Army information and knowledge management needs, it’s important that we engage companies such as Apple because we stand to benefit just as much from their lessons learned and best practices,’ Melendez said. ‘Eliminating unnecessary processes or degrees of trial and error can only help us as we transition applications that can be deployed to numerous tactical levels throughout the Army.’”

Thompson reports, “The meeting ended with plans for future technical discussions between the organizations.”

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader "Davewrite" for the heads up.]