"the soft robotics field"
So they can jump. Put up a wall they can jump over, and a field of spikes for them to fall on.
Those of us who fear future enslavement by robot overlords may have one more reason not to sleep at night: engineers have demonstrated a few of the legless, floppy variety making some serious leaps. Animated pancake-like droids have demonstrated their ability to execute a series of flops in a fashion their creators – soft …
Listen to: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m00127t9
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This morning he specifically addressed the issue of swarms of killer drones, each the size of a tin of shoe polish. Scary stuff, particularly when the politicians reckon they could be around in 15 to 20 years, the AI experts reckon 18 months to 2 years, and the UK's MoD reckons 'now'. There is also a drone the size of can of Coca-Cola that contains enough explosive to punch a hole through 'feet' of steel plate. A tin-foil hat just ain't gonna be enough.
Sort of, but we currently have suicide bombers, grenades and guns. From a capability standpoint this offers little more than a new (limited) delivery mechanism.
Since the first artificial neural network came out decades ago, there has been little to no improvement in AI. AI marketing, yes, but in reality today's ML is nothing more than glorified complicated transforms, as it ever has been. I worry less about advanced artificial intelligence than I do about something / someone stupid (building planes incorrectly, driving and messing with their phone, a truck driver losing attention).
(Out of interest, swarms of killer drones, the size of a tin of shoe polish? Shame about that breeze today eh? Might need another go tomorrow....)
Please listen to the Reith lecture, by a world leader in the field, before commenting on it.
I heard nothing in that lecture that wasn't already possible, or possible in the very near future.
The shoepolish drones sound entirely possible NOW. You only need 3g of explosive to kill (apparently), and with current MI and tiny drone tech, it seemed completely feasible, and VERY cheap. You could make hundreds for very little outlay, you can target individuals (for example people with particular facial features; gingers, people with bad hairstyles etc), and a single container can hold 1 million of them.
And they would work fine in a city, where the breeze will have little effect.
That's lovely the lecture was by an expert as these are so hard to find these days, especially in the world of bigging up AI.
1. Powering stuff for any length of time, particularly with MI is difficult - whats the range? What's your duration? Where is your shipping container by the way?
2. Man-made light things that fly in a real environment suffer horrendously from the wind - work fine in a city? No, cities have some of the worst winds due to drafting effects of the buildings, plus the winds are more turbulent.
3. If you can get a container of naughty stuff anywhere near an area you want to damage, undetected, you wouldn't fill it with little 3g packets of explosives. Generally you're more imaginative and scaled up.
4. Will this 3g of explosive take out a door or a window as buildings might offer a downside to this mini-warfare. Or a shed. Or an umbrella.
Hmm. I've been in many cities and frequently the buildings create artificial channels that cause nodal increases in air movement.
A certain tower in Manchester that used to be Europe's tallest building was particularly good at creating unexpected levels of wind, much to the chagrin of unaware ladies in flared skirts.
I remember seeing on the local news that mitigations had been put in place. I assume they worked since I don't recall any more lorries being blown over there and no more outcry from surprised pedestrians being blown off their feet while walking past it. Considering the weather we've had the last couple days and a week or so earlier, something would have been reported by now :-)
The lecturer did not give a reference, but I expect that if you searched the right munitions manufacturers' web sites you'd find one. If you consider the explosive power of Semtex and how much plastic explosives have probably 'improved' in the last 20 years or so, and the use of shaped charges*, the 'armour-piercing coke can' is all too plausible.
(Rather academic to me, of course as my home is built using the standard 'brick and block' construction method.)
*As I understand it, the shape of an explosive charge can be used to focus a lot of the energy of the explosion in one direction, rather than just creating a 'ball of flame'. This was used for some of the first few nuclear bombs to achieve the desired uniform compression effect of the fissile material and thereafter a self-sustaining chain reaction. Although the first one used a high velocity naval gun to fire a pellet into a mass of fissile material, IIRC.
Look up HEAT round so see how a shaped charge can be used to penetrate armour.
Modern tanks and IFVs use composite armour (layers of metal and other materials) or reactive armour (explosives placed outside the main armour that the HEAT round hits which explodes and disrupts the shape of the HEAT explosion) to counter them.
This sounds a lot like the old saw ' When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail'
AI or ML are not nessecary to achieve a level of threat or panic in a population, as usual a very smart guy is overthinking a simple task.
If you can afford a container full of small smart munitions, you can also manage to place a series of ground launched cluster bomb type munitions, basically firework technology.
The biggest threat from AI is the huge number of idiots trying to find uses for it.