Ocean science instrumentation and technology development are supported at the National Science Foundation (NSF) by a variety of sources, including a special program area initiated in fiscal year 1982 (FY82) specifically for this purpose. The source of support depends on the type of instrument being proposed, the specificity of its intended use, and its cost. Funding for the development of general purpose, multi-disciplinary instruments has increased by a factor of five between FY82 and FY89, while requests for funding have increased by more than a factor of twenty-five (Fig. 1). The initiation and management of the instrumentation and technology development program area has been in response to community needs that are often disparate and evolutionary as technology and ocean science progress. Communication with the community and between the various federal programs that support technology development remain essential.