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This is the story of the first sixteen years of Informatics in Defense, as seen by a man who was a spectator from inside, then actor, and devoted all his active life to informatics as experience, and to Defense Minister as duty. These years were important because nobody in France outside of the Defense had simultaneous interest in computers and the budget for research about it. Industry was not motivated, seeing no future for the computer gadget. Defense made the triggering move, and Government as a whole followed: good or bad, it's another story.