Wednesday, February 9, 2011

1 in 50 Troops in Afghanistan is a Robot...

Rumor has it that the US is pulling troops out of Afghanistan....
According to Lt. Co. Dave Thompson, there are more than 2,000 ground robots fighting alongside US troops in Afghanistan, which translates to approximately 1 in 50 troops have circuits instead of flesh. This number does not include autonomous UAVs and any other top secret military robots that are kept out of the public's eye.
...Just because they are 'fighting' alongside our troops does not mean they are all outfitted with machine guns. Many are used to check out and assist Bomb-Techs on the field, autonomously patrol a secured perimeter or inspect vehicles at checkpoints and they are even the first deployed out to survey a new unknown area. There are even new designs of robots being tested to help aid and extract wounded soldiers in the battle field. 
But there's one small problem: however numerous, these rolling and crawling robots are still pretty stupid. And there's not much hope they'll get any smarter anytime soon. Thompson seems bullish about groundbots' prospects, but other military robotics engineers have expressed their disappointment. For all the growing popularity and utility of America's robot soldiers, they're still way too dumb to do much of anything on their own. Demonstrations of groundbot technology "have abounded," Dr. Scott Fish, the Army's chief scientist, said at the same D.C. event. But military researchers still "don't know when it is we can deliver … serious autonomy."
Who knows, in the future robots could even replace soldiers all together....!!

via gizmodo

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