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Zachary
2005-Jan-23, 06:53 PM
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/4199935.stm

I'm not normally a military fan, but I just find this really nifty. Although of course the only thing somebody has to do to escape from it is to run up some stairs :lol:

Metricyard
2005-Jan-23, 08:17 PM
Cool toy, but I bet these things get trashed easily.

Hope there not too expensive.

Of course, better a bot than a soldier.

edit to add:

Will soldiers eventually become video game warriors?

Mars
2005-Jan-23, 10:29 PM
Who knew that your score on Doom would be a factor in your MOS (Job).

Amadeus
2005-Jan-24, 12:05 AM
Robot soldiers...
I cant begin to tell you how wrong this feels.

Ilya
2005-Jan-24, 12:43 AM
Any more wrong than a cruise missile?

Gullible Jones
2005-Jan-24, 01:20 AM
It's certainly a more pleasant idea than sending humans onto the battlefield, but somehow I doubt it would work that well, especially in urban warfare. A cruise missile, after all, does not have to go up and down stairs or peek around corners... And the 4-hour battery life is going to be a big, fat problem.

archman
2005-Jan-24, 05:52 AM
ouch, $200,000 a pop? That's more than an armored hum-vee. I hope its worth it.

Amadeus
2005-Jan-24, 01:10 PM
Any more wrong than a cruise missile?

Yes, the situation in Iraq is more of a police action in a civilian area now.
You have to be very carefull of who you target. Someone sitting at a screen remotely piloting this is not going to have all his senses tuned to the situation.

Cruise missles should only be used when there is a direct know contact and civilian risk is low.

If a civilian is hurt or killed it creates so much hostile feeling that it makes life even more dangerous for soldiers. If we had these things rooming the streets it will cause huge panic.

put it this way would you like your local cop to be replaced by these?
You police with your eyes and ears. You listen to the mood of the local people and you try to make things better.

The only use I can see for this is to explore houses and enclosed spaces where it is known that there are hostiles and low chance of civilians.

sarongsong
2005-Feb-16, 10:26 AM
...the only thing somebody has to do to escape from it is to run up some stairs :lol:
Not so fast...
"Colin M. Angle of iRobot steers a PackBot up a set of stairs by remote control...Robots are a crucial part of the Army's effort to rebuild itself as a 21st-century fighting force, and a $127 billion project called Future Combat Systems is the biggest military contract in American history..."
NY Times (http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/16/technology/16robots.html?ex=1109221200&en=dea58784dfc8c2f8&ei =5065&partner=MYWAY) Feb 16, 2005

kucharek
2005-Feb-16, 10:36 AM
-The less of our own soldiers life we risk, the more we will tend to use military options to solve problems that should be better solved in another way.
-How do we count an attack at such a robot? As an attack on a human soldier, giving him the right to fire back?
-Maybe a robot leads to less civilian casualities, as the operator may wait until it is clear if the civilian in the room draws a gun or an id, while a real soldier may have his reflexes, but on the other hand, it may lead to more kills and less arrests of combatants.

Bawheid
2005-Feb-16, 11:07 AM
A couple of points:

Cost; 200K is probably less than training and equiping an infantryman.

Use; this looks a lot like the Wheelbarrow bomb disposal robots which have been about for years. Great for somethings, not for others. There was talk of trying to adapt these for use in Ulster but the technology didn't exist at the time, and I'm not convinced it would be of benefit in a police action like Iraq.

One of the ways to gain the trust of people is to show trust in them, talking to them, taking off sunglasses, walking their streets etc all helps. Sending in a robot, however well meaning won't.

Argos
2005-Feb-16, 01:43 PM
They seem to be awkward, lacking agility. An easy prey for a human in the top of shape.

archman
2005-Feb-17, 05:27 AM
Cost; 200K is probably less than training and equiping an infantryman.

But don't forget, an infantryman doesn't have someone remote controlling him in some shack. The robot does. So that's $200k for the "expendable" hardware, and X amount for the operator. I wonder what the cost of the robot is when all that's figured in.

Bawheid
2005-Feb-17, 10:20 AM
Cost; 200K is probably less than training and equiping an infantryman.

But don't forget, an infantryman doesn't have someone remote controlling him in some shack. The robot does. So that's $200k for the "expendable" hardware, and X amount for the operator. I wonder what the cost of the robot is when all that's figured in.

Good point. And the cost of the squad that has to go in and rescue it when it goes through a floor that can't take the weight, and a fitter for it, and a etc. etc.

Thinking about this overnight, the applications are even fewer than I thought. All a bad guy has to do is disable it and someone has to rescue it or you write off 200K.

Staiduk
2005-Feb-17, 02:08 PM
On a mailing list to which I apply; a similar article was put up. In the article; the originators of this project were talking in depth not of augmentation of existing troops but replacement. I put up the following response to that article"

"
"They don't get hungry," said Gordon Johnson of the
Joint Forces
Command at
the Pentagon. "They're not afraid. They don't forget
their orders. They
don't care if the guy next to them has just been shot.
Will they do a
better
job than humans? Yes." - from the article
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
More questions for the "Sergeant C-3P0" crowd: do they
break down? Yes. Can they operate intelligently under
confusing situations? no. Can they distinguish friend
from foe? No. Can they distinguish hostile from
nonhostile? No. Can they sense a developing situation?
No. Can they feel when something isn't right? No. Can
they sniff out a minefield? No. Can they lead men - or
other robots? Possibly other robots - by setting up a
master/slave interface. But can they *lead*? No. Can
they determine/locate/defend/escort endangered
civilians independently? No. Can they inspire? No. Can
they teach? No. Can they learn new
trades/qualifications? No. Can they fire a weapon/dig
a trench/cook dinner/sew/clean/hunt/fish/do first
aid-cpr/drive a truck/fix an engine/escort
guests/charm ladies/settle arguments/plan birthday
parties/set up charity fundraisers/help kids/wash
cars/repair a roof/take a drunk friend's keys/teach
recruits/comfort the bereaved/bring disater relief or
salute the flag? No.

Hell - if that's what they think soldiers are supposed
to be - mindless killing machines - they can send all
the armoured tin boxes they want - we'll deal with
'em. Somehow R2D2 with a .223 doesn't spark the same
terror in me that...say...an enemy sniper would. The
reason? That box might have a good weapon; it might be
accurate enough to knock the freckles off a flea; it
might even have a good enough computer to make
advanced tactical decisions. But somewhere up in those
hills is a .50 cal rifle. Behind that rifle is a
highly trained eye. Behind that eye is a cunning,
quiet, experienced brain - the brain of a hunter.
Inside that brain is a man fighting for a reason -
defense of home and family perhaps? Hatred of the
enemy perhaps? Support of his brothers in arms
perhaps? Because his God tells him to perhaps?
Whatever his reasons; he feels them - and they're
important enough for him to fight for. He has
*purpose* - the single most powerful weapon there is.

Which would you put your money on? More to the point;
which would you rather have on your side?

Seems to me that the American upper brass has a real
toy fetish going - instead of training, equipping,
feeding and caring for its men in the best way
possible; it seems to act like a kid in Radio Shack -
gotta have the Playstation, gotta have the PS2, gotta
have this new gadget, gotta have that one - meanwhile
the meat of the Army; the soldiers (and in particular,
the Infantry - the backbone of every force on Earth)
go ignored.
(I could make the point that America has enough
trouble with expensive toys that break, miss or hit
the wrong thing as it is; but that wouldn't be
politic. Heheheheheheheheheheheheh.....)

I'd also point out to these star-heavy and
diploma-laden twits: It's true; robots don't have
fear, uncertainty or forgetfulness. They also don't
have dicipline, pride, courage, honour, loyalty,
patriotism,
or the strength of conviction.
Those are the things that make an Army - not
microchips.

Dave

Weird Dave
2005-Feb-17, 02:18 PM
Although of course the only thing somebody has to do to escape from it is to run up some stairs :lol:

Watch the video - it zips up stairs very quickly. It doesn't look especially intimidating, though.

Nicolas
2005-Feb-17, 03:07 PM
Staiduk, you comment a lot about decision making abilities. This robot still is controlled by a human, it does not have AI. So apart from possible reduced environmental awareness, it has the same decision making capabilities as a human at location.

Staiduk
2005-Feb-17, 03:34 PM
Staiduk, you comment a lot about decision making abilities. This robot still is controlled by a human, it does not have AI. So apart from possible reduced environmental awareness, it has the same decision making capabilities as a human at location.

I take it you're not a soldier. :)

That post is a response to the other article; in which they were discussing entirely autonomous robots. However; going back to my last point; if you can make snap judgements at combat speed while looking at a monitor; you have my deepest admiration. :)

Nicolas
2005-Feb-17, 03:41 PM
I am not a soldier.

I didn't realise you meant the article linked to somewhere down this thread as the other article you responded to. Therefore I commented that the robot being discussed here does not have AI. Just a misunderstanding.

I realise that for the robot being discussed here, the monitor takes away lots of information you get on location. And I don't see how future robots' AI can involve all the major important subtle (yes war has subtle elements) of decision making during war (like deciding when to stop a fight...).

Doodler
2005-Feb-17, 04:27 PM
On a mailing list to which I apply; a similar article was put up. In the article; the originators of this project were talking in depth not of augmentation of existing troops but replacement. I put up the following response to that article"

"
"They don't get hungry," said Gordon Johnson of the
Joint Forces
Command at
the Pentagon. "They're not afraid. They don't forget
their orders. They
don't care if the guy next to them has just been shot.
Will they do a
better
job than humans? Yes." - from the article
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
More questions for the "Sergeant C-3P0" crowd: do they
break down? Yes. Can they operate intelligently under
confusing situations? no. Can they distinguish friend
from foe? No. Can they distinguish hostile from
nonhostile? No. Can they sense a developing situation?
No. Can they feel when something isn't right? No. Can
they sniff out a minefield? No. Can they lead men - or
other robots? Possibly other robots - by setting up a
master/slave interface. But can they *lead*? No. Can
they determine/locate/defend/escort endangered
civilians independently? No. Can they inspire? No. Can
they teach? No. Can they learn new
trades/qualifications? No. Can they fire a weapon/dig
a trench/cook dinner/sew/clean/hunt/fish/do first
aid-cpr/drive a truck/fix an engine/escort
guests/charm ladies/settle arguments/plan birthday
parties/set up charity fundraisers/help kids/wash
cars/repair a roof/take a drunk friend's keys/teach
recruits/comfort the bereaved/bring disater relief or
salute the flag? No.

Hell - if that's what they think soldiers are supposed
to be - mindless killing machines - they can send all
the armoured tin boxes they want - we'll deal with
'em. Somehow R2D2 with a .223 doesn't spark the same
terror in me that...say...an enemy sniper would. The
reason? That box might have a good weapon; it might be
accurate enough to knock the freckles off a flea; it
might even have a good enough computer to make
advanced tactical decisions. But somewhere up in those
hills is a .50 cal rifle. Behind that rifle is a
highly trained eye. Behind that eye is a cunning,
quiet, experienced brain - the brain of a hunter.
Inside that brain is a man fighting for a reason -
defense of home and family perhaps? Hatred of the
enemy perhaps? Support of his brothers in arms
perhaps? Because his God tells him to perhaps?
Whatever his reasons; he feels them - and they're
important enough for him to fight for. He has
*purpose* - the single most powerful weapon there is.

Which would you put your money on? More to the point;
which would you rather have on your side?

Seems to me that the American upper brass has a real
toy fetish going - instead of training, equipping,
feeding and caring for its men in the best way
possible; it seems to act like a kid in Radio Shack -
gotta have the Playstation, gotta have the PS2, gotta
have this new gadget, gotta have that one - meanwhile
the meat of the Army; the soldiers (and in particular,
the Infantry - the backbone of every force on Earth)
go ignored.
(I could make the point that America has enough
trouble with expensive toys that break, miss or hit
the wrong thing as it is; but that wouldn't be
politic. Heheheheheheheheheheheheh.....)

I'd also point out to these star-heavy and
diploma-laden twits: It's true; robots don't have
fear, uncertainty or forgetfulness. They also don't
have dicipline, pride, courage, honour, loyalty,
patriotism,
or the strength of conviction.
Those are the things that make an Army - not
microchips.

Dave

Nicely put.