augmented vision wear to US Army troops last year. Although this is based on HoloLens technology the military grade version will have a customized software with the capabilities to provide a night vision, targeting, communication and threat recognition.icrosoft did an agreement with the Department of Defense to provide
Despite worker backlash, it seems that Microsoft will continue to work on $479 million military contract with the US Army.
Tech Spot reported back in November that Microsoft is agreed to supply the US Army with 100,000 mixed reality HoloLens based headsets. The pushback from more than 100 employees via an open letter to executives has failed to prevent the company’s commitment to the deal.
We made a principled decision that we’re not going to withhold technology from institutions that we have elected in democracies to protect the freedoms we enjoy,” said Nadella. “We were very transparent about that decision, and we’ll continue to have that dialogue [with employees].
The employees were annoyed with the idea that the technology they’re working on will be supplied to soldiers which will make them more deadly. According to the contract, US Army’s goal is to provide the troops with “mobility, increased lethality, and situational awareness” during combat missions. Moreover, creating the more efficient soldiers is not the only benefit high tech will bring.
The CNN notes that
The Israeli military, which has taken delivery of some HoloLens headsets, says the technology can be used to help commanders visualize the battlefield and field medics to consult doctors.
With the gear, troops are able to see a visualization of the combat zone which can reduce the collateral damage and have life-saving benefit. Some people would argue that using such high technology would reduce the overall casualties of the war rather than to increase them making battles more precise and less drawn out.
Satya Nadella supports what Microsoft’s Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith said back in November.
To withdraw from this market is to reduce our opportunity to engage in the public debate about how new technologies can best be used in a responsible way. We are not going to withdraw from the future. In the most positive way possible, we are going to work to help shape it.
Microsoft said that it is willing to get back all the employees who were working on the project but the company is also committed to fulfilling the military contract.
All of us who live in this country depends on its strong defence,” said Smith. “The people who serve in our military work for an institution with a vital role and critical history.