You have no idea of scale.
And if DoD decided to do it inhouse, the libertards would be hanging from the lampposts crying the blues about big government.
"The only reason why they would do this, is so that they can call it sovereign territory, and to game international border rules to their own benefit."
Yes but the deeper reason is that the Communist Party of China has no legitimacy, so the Party uses anything they can to make their dicks look bigger.
"given how much money has to be spent on something like the NSA and still be completely ineffective,"
And you know this? How? They've been sending you memos?
You are thinking of the military of the 1970s. After Reagan, there was a push for COTS everywhere. Global Foundries was sold to fat boys in the robes from the UAE. These days, the U.S. military gets its stuff just like you do. The major defense firms probably do a bit of their own programming with their own tools, but they aren't producing chips. Even Altera is being sold to Intel so they can screw up the FPGA market as badly as they did the processor market.
This is the age old economics 101 thought problem: there it is usually phrased in terms of kidney dialysis. Do you sink all your kidney money into dialysis for the ones you know you can prolong their lives, or do you siphon it off for research. How much do you allocate? What are future generations worth?
Nothing special here regardless of your disillusioned rants on big pharma.
Being unemployed causes a myriad of problems one doesn't have whilst employed. In the U.S., health care is a big inducement to work for "THE COMPANY".
"You know, doing it in a real world setting and demonstrating it is a hell of a lot better than continuing to believe the lie these companies have done an adequate job at security."
No, it isn't, and that's a false choice. It is analogous to shooting a gun in crowded room, observing no one was hit, and then claiming it is a good way to show the police are not doing an adequate job of security. You'd better hope they don't pull this stunt again and cause the car's driver to lose control and wipe out half of your family so the other half can grieve.
This is the same governor who assigned some of the Texas National Guard to observe the Jade Helm military exercises in the southwest because he had been convinced that it might represent a threat to Texas. The idea was that Obama was using Jade Helm as a trial run for martial law before he declared himself President for Life. I wish I were making this up.
"desktop users who want complex and powerful programs to do things?" There aren't enough users who want or need complex and powerful programs to do things. Almost by definition, this will be a small subset of most organizations.
That at it becomes cheaper for corporate IT to support BYOD than building out infrastructure in-house. It also allows idiot MBAs to have their favorite stuff without requiring much support from IT. And when all the real app work can be done in a local cloud which IT can control, all that is required is a UI. Mobile works for much of the UI.
More to the point, MS have the idea that an ecosystem means windows in some form or another. Apple succeeded because they were able to look at parts of the economy in isolation first. If it had a tie in to something they were currently doing, that was even better, but they do not seem demand it from the outset. MS seems to have given their troops marching orders of "Show us a new way to integrate something into Winders". The result is that no market segment they attempt to enter is ever covered adequately with a device + software that addresses its needs. Rather, that they attempt to turn that segment into another outpost of Winders.
It is called MBA Breath. It is putrid, you want to get away, but the memory lingers with you like a malevolent spirit.
"Rule of thumb: If there's a human endeavor that doesn't make human lives better, then it is not worth doing." Really? The Large Hadron Collider. It won't do a damn thing for humans in the foreseeable future and no one is going to trust your prognostications that it will sometime in the distant future. Better shut it down.
The Pluto Probe? Won't do a damn thing for humans. Is it worth it? Group theory? 100 years ago it wasn't worth a damn thing.
The point is that we should do Science for Science sake. Sometime it in the future it might pay off. We cannot know that now. So we should not decide NOW whether it is worth doing.
You mean machines taking over physical labor has worked in the past. Now, machines are taking over intellectual pursuits. What jobs are supposed to be generated out of that?
The problem is that you have assumed an open system. The rest of the system found other things for people to do. When machines start taking over intellectual pursuits as well as mechanical, you've pretty much covered all human endeavors. The system is now closed. You need to find some way of enlarging the system and you'd better do it fairly quickly and constantly, humans have ways of multiplying and turning on each other when they have idle hands.