The Defense Innovation Unit Experimental, better known as DIUx, was created out of the Defense Department's need to use emerging technologies quicker and better connect with the small companies producing them. Today, its main focus is on commercial space, autonomy, artificial intelligence, human systems, and IT and software, says Wyn Elder, partner at DIUx.
"Those are the technologies the commercial world is outpacing the Department of Defense right now," he says. "Our role is to help accelerate . . . those prototypes [and] put them in the field quickly."
One of the companies DIUx is working with is San Diego-based Shield AI, which builds artificial intelligence robotics products for first responders and service members. The company has created a small autonomous drone that maps out large construction sites.
"With just a small tweak of an existing technology that was built for a commercial use case, we were able to provide a military user with what they needed within weeks," Elder says.
Watch the full interview above.