The Army is testing new combat boot design prototypes after thousands of soldiers responded to a survey they would rather buy their own than wear Army-issued boots. The boots pictured are not part of the test. (U.S. Army)

Editor's Note: This article by Matthew Cox originally appeared onMilitary.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

U.S. Army footwear experts have begun field-testing a handful of new combat boot designs after thousands of soldiers responded to a survey that they would rather buy their own than wear service-issued boots.

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Mission: Impossible II was not a good movie, but it did help give post-9/11 Hollywood an enduring vision of military smart glasses.

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Wikimedia Commons/Natrij

Welcome to Gearhead Wednesday, a regular gear review column by Chief Kristin Beck (ret.), a decorated veteran of the Naval Special Warfare Development Group and all-around badass. Send pitches and suggestions to gear@taskandpurpose.com

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sersen/Flickr Creative Commons

I always joke that I learned how to shoot way too young. I was five years old, a year before kindergarten, but my grandma always said I should have waited until I was at least seven. My first gun was a third-generation hand-me-down, a .22 caliber rolling block, single shot rifle. It was an old gun, created sometime in the late 1800s and handed down through my family until it landed in my hands back in the 1980s. I might give it to my nephew if he ever moves out of California.

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