DARPA eying adaptable, scalable networks to help soldiers communicate

DARPA's latest initiative is far from revolutionary -- we've seen a number of installations aimed at improving communication in times of war -- but the Wireless Adaptive Network Development (WAND) project looks to "exploit commercial radio components, rather than custom ones," to "keep soldiers linked with each other on the battlefield." Essentially, soldiers would be equipped with $500 handheld radios that would form far-reaching ad hoc networks that could "shift frequencies and sidestep interference" to make communications more pervasive and more reliable. Interestingly, WAND is reportedly set to be demonstrated as early as January of next year, but there's no telling how long it'll take for the project to become fully operational.

[Via Slashdot, image courtesy of SOCOM]