Heads up, literally!!! Especially if you live in an urban environment!!! The Pentagon “expects future battles to take place in massive urban environments” and may use risky Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) technology including drones, uncrewed planes, and quadcopters to address them.
Last November, at Fort Campbell, Tennessee, half a mile from the Kentucky border, a single human directed a swarm of 130 robots. The swarm, including uncrewed planes, quadcopters, and ground vehicles, scouted the mock buildings of the Cassidy Range Complex, creating and sharing information visible not just to the human operator but to other people on the same network. The exercise was part of DARPA’s OFFensive Swarm-Enabled Tactics (OFFSET) program.
If the experiment can be replicated outside the controlled settings of a test environment, it suggests that managing swarms in war could be as easy as point and click for operators in the field.
Piloting even one drone can be so taxing that it’s not rare to see videos of first-time flights leading immediately to crashes. Getting to the point where a single human can control more than a hundred drones takes some skill—and a lot of artificial intelligence.
In total, the swarm operator directed 130 vehicles in the physical world, as well as 30 simulated drones operating in the virtual environment. These 30 virtual drones were integrated into the swarm’s planning and appeared as indistinguishable from the others in the program to the human operator, and to the rest of the swarm.