Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Unmanned Arms Race

This is a very interesting video report from Aljazeera on the use of unmanned drones both on the ground and in the air. It covers quite a few topics with a major emphasis on legalities and the ethical use of robots on the battlefield. Obviously the US involvement with the use of UAV plays the major focus in the coverage, which is to be expected given the initial use during Operation Enduring Freedom. It is a lengthy video, so grab some popcorn or have your robot maid from the 80's make you some.

With the variety of robots they cover it definitely appears that they will definitely have a place in modern and future warfare. The interesting concepts are how current usage can have future ramifications and if there ever will be policy made on "allowable" use, or what is considered a no-no. For instance, it is of interest that there are currently no ground bots that carry weaponry in combat. 

iRobot 710 Warrier in the Field
We know that iRobot has ground robots such as the 710 Warror that are weapons capable with simple additions, so it really comes down to when we are willing and ready to enact usage. The photo above shows its ability to "clear" anti-personal obstacles such as a mine field with a rocket that strings out 100+ grenades over the target. Sounds like this could have other uses if needed.  

Unfortunately this video didn't tell us how to determine if the T-800 that comes visit us from the future is the good or bad Arnold Schwarzenegger. Perhaps it has something to do with how well it treats your robot nanny.

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