XBox controller cast in lead and copper to protest use of gaming gear in war

Rachel Berger, a design professor at California College of the Arts, cast an XBox controller in lead and copper to protest the U.S. military's use of XBox controllers as battle equipment.

The United States military has been integrating Microsoft Xbox video game controllers into battle equipment for more than a decade. Officials tout the ergonomic, cost savings, and training advantages of the cheap off-the-shelf controllers—soldiers who grew up playing Xbox can teach themselves its military applications within minutes. Unfortunately, the controller is inscribed with far more significant meanings and values than the military acknowledges. It is a child's toy transformed into a weapon of war.

Here's a photo of the controller in use, released by the U.S. Navy in 2008.

Lt. j.g. William Gregory uses an Xbox game controller to maneuver a photonics mast. Photo: Steven Hoskins/U.S. Navy

The controller is on display in Shooter Box, an exhibition open at CCA now. Check out some of the other exhibits too.