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The Software Problem

Posted 06-13-2012 at 21:18 by TheBelly

I don't have a hardware problem. My problem is completely encompassed by the software running the hardware.

Perhaps a brief primer as to my background is in order. I'm a Soldier, and currently I'm sitting on a medium sized FOB in Afghanistan. This is my fourth deployment since 2006. I don't have a combat arms job, nor did I stay at a Holiday Inn last night.

So today's topic is all about how people here try and fix a software problem with hardware. When the Army said that Soldiers need to be able to engage targets from greater distance, the first reaction by the folks who implement such decisions was to put better optics in the hands of those who needed it. This is (essentially) how we got the ACOG, known in the US Army as the M150, Sight, bore optical.

Using either a red dot optic (the Army's ubiquitous M68 CCO) or plain old iron sights (the Mark 1 Eyeball), I've never had a problem engaging targets at the distances required to effectively take care of business. For many Soldiers the fix provided to them was the 4x32 ACOG. Therein lies the problem: the fix was provided to them. Just handed out as if it were the magical 'target engagement fairy.'

If we take the same type of fix and apply it to a different situation, we might come up with a different outcome. If both Mario Andretti and I both were equipped with the exact same vehicle, he would post up a better lap time than me. How is that possible when we both had the same exact hardware? He's better trained and has more experience. This problem is only amplified when the equipment is made better. Give us both an Indy car, and the difference is going to be THAT much greater, again due to training and experience. Mario Andretti has enough skill that he can make educated, well-mannered changes to the car to have it best suit him. I would just get in and mash the gas to the floor.

Back to the original point. Soldiers these days do not have the requisite level of skill to even be able to use a red-dot to full capacity, much less a magnified optic.

Train to a level that yo ufind the holes in your hardware. Then get the right tool to fix it. Simple as that.

You simply can't fix a software problem with hardware.
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