Tag Archives: Defense

Cyborg swarm maps unknown environments

(Credit: Edgar Lobaton.) Remember the much-debated “biobots” (remotely controlled cockroaches — see How to remotely control cockroach cyborgs and Kinect tracks bionic rescue roaches) created by researchers from North Carolina State University? Well, here’s an update: they have now developed software that allows for mapping unknown environments — such as collapsed buildings — based on the movement of a swarm of […]

Take back the Internet – by Bruce Schneier

September 17, 2013 by Bruce Schneier Bruce Schneier (credit: Geoffrey Stone) Government and industry have betrayed the Internet, and us. By subverting the Internet at every level to make it a vast, multi-layered and robust surveillance platform, the NSA has undermined a fundamental social contract. The companies that build and manage our Internet infrastructure, the companies that […]

Introducing ATLAS, DARPA’s most advanced robot

Let’s get ready to rescue DARPA’s Atlas robot. You got a problem with that? Talk to the (four) hands. (Credit: DARPA) He stands at 6′ 2, 330 pounds. His name: ATLAS — possibly the most advanced humanoid robot every built. Move over Petman. The mighty ATLAS, Boston Dynamics‘ new robot, sports an on-board real-time control computer, 28 hydraulically actuated […]

Fear of thinking war machines may push US to exascale

Tianhe 2 (credit: National University of Defense Technology, China) China’s retaking of the global supercomputing crown was discussed at a congressional forum this week on cognitive computing, Computerworld reports. Unlike China and Europe, the U.S. has yet to adopt and fund an exascale development program. Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-Ill.), who talked about China’s new 33.89-petaflop system, Tianhe-2, is finalizing a […]

Edward Snowden: NSA whistleblower answers reader questions

Edward Snowden took readers’ questions on why he revealed the NSA’s top-secret surveillance of U.S. citizens, the international storm that has ensued, and the uncertain future he now faces, The Guardian reports. [A few  excerpts — Editor.] Q: Some skepticism exists about certain of your claims, including this: “I, sitting at my desk, certainly had the authorities […]

NASA announces asteroid grand challenge

Asteroid (credit: NEAR Project, NLR, JHUAPL, Goddard SVS, NASA/Wikimedia Commons) NASA announced Tuesday a Grand Challenge focused on finding all asteroid threats to human populations and knowing what to do about them. The challenge is a large-scale effort that will use multi-disciplinary collaborations and a variety of partnerships with other government agencies, international partners, industry, academia, and citizen scientists. […]

Russia developing anti-terrorist robots

Robots at the Robofest-2013 youth festival in Moscow (credit: RIA Novosti, Artem Zhitenev) Russian experts are developing robots designed to minimize casualties in terrorist attacks and neutralize terrorists, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said on May 17, RIA Novosti reports. Robots could also help evacuate injured servicemen and civilians from the scene of a terrorist attack, […]

A 3D-printed navy?

The Northrop Grumman-built Triton unmanned aircraft system completed its first flight on May 22, 2013. Could a future version be 3D-printed? (Credit: Northrop Grumman by Bob Brown) Instead a carrying spare parts, space-constrained U.S. Navy ships in the future might carry 3-D printers and bags of various powdered ingredients, and simply download the design files […]

The Limits of the Earth — Part 2: Expanding the Limits

by Ramez Naam (Credit: NASA) This is part two of a two-part series on the limits of human economic growth on planet Earth.  Part one details some of the environmental and natural resource challenges we’re up against. Part two, here, looks at the ultimate size of the resource pool and solutions to our problems.  Both parts […]

Spooky action at a distance’ to be tested aboard the ISS

International Space Station (credit: NASA) Researchers at the Institute for Quantum Optics and Quantum Information in Austria and the European Space Agency have proposed using the International Space Station (ISS) to test the limits of “spooky action at a distance” (remote quantum entanglement) and potentially help to develop the first global quantum communication network. Albert Einstein famously described […]