During his run for office, President Donald Trump told American taxpayers that he would work hard to save them money.
We have already seen some of that promise come to fruition as Trump rolled back some of former President Barack Obama’s out-of-control regulations.
Now, it looks like more savings will be in the works by replacing a $38,000 piece of equipment with an everyday $30 item.
Fox Business News reported that the Navy will use the controllers to replace $38,000 helicopter-style joysticks used on the nuclear-powered attack submarine, the USS Virginia.
It turns out that the joysticks, or photonic mast handgrips, used on submarines have controls that are similar to the controls on an Xbox controller. But the Xbox controller has one thing going for it — most of the sailors on board the submarine are already familiar with how to operate it.
The original handgrip designed by Lockheed Martin to operate the periscopes was heavy and clunky — and expensive.
The Virginian-Pilot reported that Navy officials have been working with Lockheed Martin to use commercial off-the-shelf technology to reduce costs.
Another one of the Navy goals is to develop technology that young people already know and understand, such as touch screens. So replacing the cumbersome handgrip with an Xbox controller seemed like a commonsense move.
Senior Chief Mark Eichenlaub said the clunky handgrips are not cheap and they can only be used on a Virginia-class submarines.
“I can go to any video game store and procure an Xbox controller anywhere in the world, so it makes a very easy replacement,” he told the Pilot.
The Xbox controller will be installed on other Virginia-class submarines, the Pilot reported.
Now, that’s what you call brilliant — and frugal — thinking.