Knowledge is Power

By Skyler Frink





Posted by Skyler Frink

If there's one thing GI Joe taught me, it's that knowledge is power.

Intelligence has always been a key factor in military engagements. From the lack of communication between Lee and Stuart in the civil war to the blunder by the British during the Battle of New Orleans, those without knowledge of the battlefield and the capabilities of both sides have been at a severe disadvantage.

Fortunately for the military intelligence has evolved, and getting exact information is increasingly possible with satellites, laser systems, advanced radar, unmanned sensors and unmanned vehicles. The problem facing the modern military is how to share this wealth of information.

The answer is the same as it's always been: Radios.

Modern radios, which behave more like smart phones than the radios of old that only relayed verbal communication, can transmit images, video and data. The utility of these improvements are obvious; verbal reports can be inaccurate and can often be misinterpreted. Rather than having to listen to a verbal report, imagine being able to see the battlefield through video feeds, or have a map that is updated in real-time as data flows in from various sensors.

With all of this information we get the ability to give more detailed commands. Rather than verbal orders, a satellite can locate a target and direct whatever forces are necessary to an area. There are no more questions about where other friendlies are located, because each soldier possesses a GPS that is constantly transmitting data to every other device on the field.

New technologies such as these help dispel the uncertainty created by the fog of war, and go a long way in improving safety for the men and women who are engaged in combat. GI Joe would be proud.

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The Mil & Aero Bloggers

John Keller is editor-in-chief of Military & Aerospace Electronics magazine, which provides extensive coverage and analysis of enabling electronic and optoelectronic technologies in military, space, and commercial aviation applications. A member of the Military & Aerospace Electronics staff since the magazine's founding in 1989, Mr. Keller took over as chief editor in 1995.

Ernesto Burden is the publisher of PennWell’s Aerospace & Defense Media Group, including Military & Aerospace Electronics, Avionics Intelligence and Avionics Europe.  He’s a father of four, a runner, and an avid digital media enthusiast with a deep background in the intersection of media publishing, digital technology, and social media. He can be reached at ernestob@pennwell.com and on Twitter @aero_ernesto.

Courtney E. Howard, as executive editor, enjoys writing about all things electronics and avionics in PennWell’s burgeoning Aerospace and Defense Group, which encompasses Military & Aerospace Electronics, Avionics Intelligence, the Avionics Europe conference, and much more. She’s also a self-proclaimed social-media maven, mil-aero nerd, and avid avionics geek. Connect with Courtney at Courtney@Pennwell.com, @coho on Twitter, and on LinkedIn.

Mil & Aero Magazine

December 2013
Volume 24, Issue 12
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