The ability to accurately assess military resource requirements has become more important as defense budgets are strained by increased interservice competition and by political pressures. This paper chronicles the evolution of cost analysis as it has affected the process of weapon procurement. The art of cost analysis has gone through various permutations marked by the personalities involved over the past 40 years. RAND personnel figured prominently in the early days, and RAND's David Novick is considered "the father of cost analysis." The author stresses that, though cost analysis is crucial in the decisionmaking process, it is only part of the equation and must not be viewed as a panacea in solving procurement problems.