How to Train Your Robot (to Lie).
"A military base has just fallen to enemy fighters. A robot containing top-secret information has to escape detection by the invading army. The robot is facing three corridors: right, center, and left. It could randomly pick a corridor and hope the enemy soldiers pick a different one. Or it could leave a false trail—assuming robots can be trained to lie. A new study using this scenario suggests that they can be. 'Those lying toasters.' click for picture
(Georgia Tech's Decepticon) knows how to mislead pursuers to shake them off." Also, worth checking out is a video that can be viewed from the main link which demonstrates the robots in a game of hide-and-seek.
posted by Fizz
on Sep 13, 2010 -
Judge Rules "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" Is Unconstitutional
- Judge Virginia A. Phillips of Federal District Court struck down President Clinton's Don't Ask, Don't Tell
(DADT) policy in an opinion
(Scribd) issued late Thursday, ruling on the constitutionality of a complaint brought by the Log Cabin Republicans
(PDF). President Obama's Justice Department has until a September 23 deadline to submit objections to the court regarding Judge Phillips's permanent injunction, which is uncertain given Obama's previous support of his Department of Justice defending the legality of DADT, despite his opposition to DADT in principle.
posted by Blazecock Pileon
on Sep 9, 2010 -
EA's new Medal of Honor
video game allows players to take the role of Taliban insurgents
killing American troops. In response, the US military has banned sales of the game
on all military bases, including in privately run businesses (such as GameStop) present on bases. Military members (who game) don't seem too happy about the decision here
. (More military member comments, some pro, some against, can be found here
.) You can watch someone playing as a Taliban insurgent here
. (Warning: MoH gameplay is rated 'M' for mature.)
posted by GnomeChompsky
on Sep 4, 2010 -
What warfighters eat. What's healthier.
Video is from an all-day seminar at NIH.
Start around minute 58 through 1:13 to hear the marine presenting in detail what warfighters currently get to eat -- first hand from the guy who handles supplying them, in detail.
Start earlier around minute 12 for what would be better 'nutritional armor' for warfighters (Dr. Bill Land).
Many more parts to the presentation. All worthwhile. [more inside]
posted by hank
on Jul 6, 2010 -
When a person graduates high school as one of the top students, all sorts of grand predictions are made for the person's future. But how many of them end up doing the things predicted of them?
The Buffalo News did a feature in 2007
on what the top students in the Buffalo area from 1987 ended up doing after high school. Some of them have done remarkable things, while others have made their mark in smaller ways, all are interesting in their own way.
posted by reenum
on Jul 4, 2010 -
Everybody's heard about the "secret" launch of the military's newest spacedrone the X-37
, and everybody's heard about the other "secret" launch on the same day. The military has launched another type of spacedrone
. This one looks a lot less like this
and more like this
. Unfortunately they've hit a snag
It's all part of the the U.S. military's prompt global strike
doctrine. Some people think this may be a bad idea
. [more inside]
posted by AElfwine Evenstar
on Jun 9, 2010 -
A Love Letter to a G.I. "This is in memory of an anniversary – the anniversary of October 27th, 1943, when I first heard you singing in North Africa. That song brings memories of the happiest times I’ve ever known."
The most romantic argument against Don't Ask, Don't Tell yet.
posted by roger ackroyd
on May 28, 2010 -
Chronic budget deficits, compounding debt and unfunded liabilities suggest the US financial situation will not be remedied, wiping out military funding. Surplus world oil production could disappear entirely by 2012, and reach a 10 million barrel a day shortfall by 2015. Coalition military operations would become essential to protecting US national interests. According to this year's remarkably candid United States Joint Forces Command Joint Operating Environment report (PDF)
posted by falcon
on Apr 7, 2010 -
One Night in Afghanistan
THE PRESIDENT: at a time when too many American institutions have let us down, when too many institutions have put short-term gain in front of a commitment to duty and a commitment to what's right... all of you want to build -- and that is something essential about America. [Al Qaeda and the violent extremists have] got no respect for human life. You see dignity in every human being. That's part of what we value as Americans. They want to drive races and regions and religions apart. You want to bring people together
and see the world move forward together. [more inside]
posted by kliuless
on Apr 4, 2010 -
He was... "...the meanest, toughest, most ambitious S.O.B. I ever knew but he'll be a hell of a secretary of state." -- Richard Nixon
Meigs Haig, Jr.,
, former NATO Supreme Allied Commander, Europe, who served US Presidents Nixon (as a military adviser, deputy assistant for national-security affairs, and chief of staff), Ford (chief of staff), and Reagan (secretary of state), has died at the age of 85
. Haig commanded a batallion
during the Vietnam War (where he was seriously wounded), managed the White House during the Watergate scandal that brought down President Nixon, and was himself a former Presidential candidate. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Feb 20, 2010 -
The Rhode Island School of Design has a set of beautiful designs for dazzle
ship camouflage. Dazzle Camouflage
was a way to confuse submarine operators as to the heading and speed of warships, so that they could not effectively fire torpedoes to sink them. Certainly a lot more colorful than today's camo! (previously
posted by that girl
on Feb 8, 2010 -
Economic crisis, mounting national debt, excessive foreign commitments -- this is no way to run an empire. America needs serious strategic counseling. And fast. It has never been Rome, and to adopt its strategies no -- its ruthless expansion of empire, domination of foreign peoples, and bone-crushing brand of total war -- would only hasten America's decline. Better instead to look to the empire's eastern incarnation: Byzantium, which outlasted its Roman predecessor by eight centuries. It is the lessons of Byzantine grand strategy that America must rediscover today.
posted by jason's_planet
on Jan 25, 2010 -
"Early in the Iraq War, it cost taxpayers $100,000 per year to insure a civilian contractor who was paid $100,000 per year. So the insurance was the same amount as the salary."
"Another very peculiar part of this particular story is that because of another law, the U.S. actually reimburses the insurance companies for any civilians who are injured in a combat situation. So at the very end, the insurance company will ultimately submit the bill to the U.S. government, and they will get paid back for any injury involving a combat wound."
"Let me ask a stupid question
: What is the point of the insurance company if taxpayers are paying for the premium and then also paying for the medical bill?
" [more inside]
posted by webhund
on Jan 12, 2010 -