Saturday, July 13, 2013

Are Terminator-Robots The Soldiers Of The Future?

Robot-at-arms: Atlas is 6 foot, 2 inches tall and weighs 330 pounds. (Credit: DARPA/Boston Dynamics)

Be Afraid: DARPA Unveils Terminator-Like Atlas Robot -- CNet

Atlas looks like the prototype for a future robot infantryman, and it can tackle rough terrain and carry human tools. Can you say "Skynet"?

If you're short of nightmare fuel, say hello to Atlas.

On Thursday, DARPA unveiled this hulking, 6-foot robot developed by Boston Dynamics, creator of the infamous BigDog and other scary creatures. Surprisingly, the 330-pound terror is designed to help us meatsacks.

Atlas is a testbed humanoid for disaster response, but it looks like it knows its way around a phased plasma rifle in the 40-watt range. Fortunately, it comes from Massachusetts, not the future.

We've seen hints of Atlas with Boston Dynamics' Petman soldier robot, which can do pushups and run on a treadmill.

Read more ....

More News On DARPA's Newest Robot

ATLAS: Probably the Most Advanced Humanoid Yet, Definitely Terrifying -- Gizmodo
DARPA's Newest Robot Is The Coolest And Most Terrifying Creation Yet -- Business Insider
DARPA robot no longer just a computer simulation -- The Business Of Robots
DARPA's ATLAS humanoid robot gears up for disaster response -- Gizmag
DARPA unveils 6-foot-tall humanoid robot Atlas for researchers to program and pilot -- The Verge
Details on DARPA Robotics Challenge Trial Events -- IEEE Spectrum
Domo arigato, Mr Atlas -- CNet
This Robot Can Survive Being Hit By A Wrecking Ball -- WebProNews
DARPA ATLAS Humanoid Robot is Here --

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The CIA Invests In 'Narrative Science'

Narrative Science: The CIA is Investing in Artificial Intelligence That Actually Works -- Policymic

As part of the Central Intelligence Agency's growing trend of partnering with the private sector, the CIA announced Wednesday that it would be investing in Narrative Science, a Chicago-based startup that uses computers to make sense of data and present it in prose. Once a leader of technology innovation, the CIA recognized it could not compete for IT innovation and talent with private profit-driven firms. In one of the more impressive government adjustment to economic pressures, the CIA has changed the way the government creates IT innovation.

Read more ....

More News On The CIA And 'Narrative Science'

The CIA Invests in Robot Writers -- Mashable
The CIA takes an interest in Narrative Science’s quick summaries of big data -- Gigaom
The CIA Invests in Narrative Science and Its Automated Writers -- All Things D
CIA invests in robot journalism -- Poynter
Narrative Science goes beyond ‘robot journalism’ with CIA investment -- Venture Beat
Local AI startup gets CIA-linked funding -- Chicago Tribune
Chicago's Narrative Science lands deal with the CIA -- Chicago Business

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

A Guide To Killer Robots Everywhere

Semi-Autonomous Killer Drones From Around The Globe -- Killer Apps/Foreign Policy

With the United Nations Human Rights Council debating the development of lethal robots at its meeting in Geneva today, Human Rights Watch is ramping up its campaign to get world governments to preemptively ban the use of killer robots that can decide to attack a target without consulting their human controllers first. Despite the fact that the Pentagon has said that U.S. drones will not be able to fire weapons without "appropriate" levels of human control, HRW worries that battlefield necessity will do away with such voluntary restrictions.

Read more ....

My Comment: A brief but concise review.

Interpreting Global Flight-Path Maps

Global Flight-Path Maps: Five Interpretations -- BBC

Michael Markieta's images depicting flight paths across the planet attracted huge interest from our readers. What do the maps reveal? We asked five experts to give their interpretation.

The art critic

Wow, it's beautiful. It is not only dealing with two-dimensionality, it's trying to create three dimensions, or four dimensions - giving you a notion that you are travelling across the surface of this image.

It's almost like contemporary fractalisation - based on fractals, those beautiful divisions of science and nature. A number of artists have exploited them. Max Ernst based a lot of his surreal landscapes on fractalisation.

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My Comment: Northeastern U.S., Europe, and northeastern Asia .... those are the hot spots for air travel.

WHO Chief: Novel Coronavirus 'Poses A Threat To The Entire World'


New SARS-Like Virus Is A 'Threat To The Entire World' -- CNN 

(CNN) -- A new SARS-like virus recently found in humans is "a threat to the entire world," according to the director-general of the United Nations' World Health Organization.

The so-called novel coronavirus "is not a problem that any single affected country can keep to itself or manage all by itself," Margaret Chan said Monday in her closing remarks at the 66th World Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland.

The world needs to pull together its resources to properly tackle the virus which, Chan said, is her "greatest concern" at present.

"We understand too little about this virus when viewed against the magnitude of its potential threat," she said, and more information is needed "quickly" and "urgently."

Read more ....

More News On The Novel Coronavirus Posing A Threat To The Entire World  

UN health chief urges global cooperation to tackle novel coronavirus threat -- UN News Centre
WHO Chief Sounds Alarm Over Novel Coronavirus, 'A Threat To The Entire World' -- RTT
WHO calls Middle Eastern virus, MERS, ‘threat to the entire world’ as death toll rises -- New York Daily News First coronavirus sufferer in France dies in hospital -- Reuters
French man, 65, dies from SARS-like virus as World Health Organisation warns deadly disease is global threat -- Daily Mail
A timeline of SARS-like virus -- Global Post/AFP

What It’s Like Inside A Violent Tornado (Video)

Incredible Video: What It’s Like Inside A Violent Tornado -- Washington Post

It might strike you as foolish, but storm chasers Brandon Ivey and Sean Casey literally rode out a raging tornado with winds to 175 mph from inside a motor vehicle on Memorial Day. 

Watch the astonishing, “ear-popping” video below… 

But the vehicle, positioned intentionally to bear the brunt of the raging Kansas vortex, is no ordinary vehicle. 

Called the Tornado Intercept Vehicle 2 (TIV2, the second vehicle of its kind), it is designed to withstand a top of the scale EF-5 twister, with winds over 200 mph. 

Wikipedia offers the following details on this 14,000+ pound, armor-reinforced machine:  

Read more ....  

My Comment: What a terrifying experience lasting two minutes.