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8/2/2012
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CIA Joins Federal Mobile App Brigade

Intelligence agency's new mobile app provides job announcements, news, virtual museum tours.

10 New Mobile Government Apps
10 New Mobile Government Apps
(click image for larger view and for slideshow)
The Central Intelligence Agency has joined the ranks of federal agencies offering mobile applications to the public with the release of a mobile version of CIA.gov.

Using a mobile device, visitors to the CIA website can contact the agency, apply for a job, get a quick overview of the agency and its mission, and access content from the CIA Museum.

The CIA Museum, located on the grounds of the agency's headquarters in McLean, Va., isn't open to the public. The agency recently announced it has redesigned the museum's online gallery to improve navigation, added an interactive timeline and video, and expanded access to its historical collections.

Included in the online exhibits are technologies developed for the CIA that eventually led to public benefits. For instance, improvements in battery technology for the agency later were incorporated into medical devices such as pacemakers and consumer products such as digital cameras.

[ NASA is well known for transferring its technologies into private-sector products. See NASA Unveils Technology Transfer Portal. ]

Other items on display demonstrate the role the CIA has played in the evolution of product miniaturization. Those include a 35-mm camera designed to fit inside a pack of cigarettes; a radio receiver that fit into the stem of a pipe and that the user could "hear" through bone conduction from the jaw to the ear canal; the "insectothopter," an insect-shaped micro-drone invented in the 1970s as a proof-of-concept; and a microdot camera.

The mobile version of the CIA Museum includes dozens of images and captions of museum artifacts, articles on topics such as the hunt for Osama Bin Laden, and a timeline of events related to the work of the CIA and other U.S. intelligence agencies.

The mobile site is available at cia.gov/mobile.

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