1. Felipe
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    Felipe Active Member

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    Real life terminators

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Felipe, Feb 19, 2012.

    DARPA's 'Avatar project' aims to give soldiers surrogate robots, make James Cameron proud -- Engadget

    Well, life imitates art. We will be seeing real terminators before long I guess. Click the above link...

    In a fevered mash up of blockbuster films directed by James Cameron, DARPA is looking to put soldier controlled bi-pedal robots on the battlefield. Think Terminator meets Avatar. The agency has set aside $7 million of it's $2.8 billion 2012 budget to develop an "Avatar program" that will "develop interfaces and algorithms to enable a soldier to effectively partner with a semi-autonomous bi-pedal machine and allow it to act as the soldier's surrogate." DARPA isn't talking about simple remote control rigs, either -- these 'bots are being designed to clear rooms, and facilitate sentry control and combat casualty recovery. The new budget also sets aside $4.1 million to design laser countermeasures to protect military weapons, well, lasers -- ensuring that the future's robot soldiers will be nigh indestructible when they rebel against their human hosts.

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  2. Felipe
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    Felipe Active Member

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    "Combat casualty recovery and sentry mode", totally awesome. A robot that can retrieve wounded soldiers in the line of fire without risking further loss of human life. The sentry mode is also interesting, I envision infra red vision, motion detecting capabilities and very enhanced hearing. I'll bet with computer assisted aim, it would be one really good shot too.
     
  3. art
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    art Contributing Member Contributor

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    Quite a way away, I imagine, Felipe? I would barely trust the current state of the art bipedal robot to bring me my morning cup of coffee.
     
  4. CheddarCheese
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    CheddarCheese Contributing Member

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    I wonder why they're even bothering with the bipedal aspect when they're focusing on the battlefield. Wouldn't it just be better to stick to drones and remote-controlled armored cars? They would be much less fragile and much more easy to manufacture. I understand that a bipedal robot allows better maneuverability, but is it worth the cost?
     
  5. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Power will be a problem. I'm an engineer and I've worked a lot with control-system technology, and it's really hard to avoid having some kind of umbilical cable connecting the "robot" to an external power source. It can be done, but mostly with small robots that don't have to operate for long periods of time. Man-sized, bipedal robots? Your enemy could probably just wait for a short while until the robots fall over because their batteries are dead. Notice how Felipe's original post says that DARPA's $7 million funds "interfaces and algorithms" - both VERY necessary, especially interfaces, in my experience - but nothing about self-contained power systems. It's not easy to build power systems that will keep a man-sized robot functioning for a significant length of time.
     
  6. Mark_Archibald
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    Mark_Archibald Active Member

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    No military in the world has figured out that the most efficient weapon in urban combat is a remote controlled car with a camera and bomb strapped to it. Even this crude form of battle robot isn't being used by any superpowers.

    This is a wacky idea and its closer to science fiction than reality
     
  7. RusticOnion
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    RusticOnion Contributing Member

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    What I think they should do is to strap grenades to brain-dead birds.
     
  8. Felipe
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    Felipe Active Member

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    Many things that were once considered out of reach are now everyday items, the computer that you are sitting in front of for example. I remember the IBM 360 Model 20 that had to be fed cards with holes punched in them to read light and do simple math and it was huge. The leap that has taken place in cars since the 80's when computer control was first introduced, new smart weapons, technology is growing at a rapid pace. I'm sure that they, of all people know that the power sources and technology is not available today, but it will be. The drones that we have now, being remotely operated by someone not on or even close to the battlefield were science fiction twenty years ago. I guess they are looking forward.
     

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